What to expect
When you come to LFMC for the first time, you can expect to be greeted at the door by friendly people. If you have young children, the greeters will direct you to the nursery and/or the children's check-in area (if you wish); if you have teenage children, they will direct you to the teen area.
As you enter our lobby you will see an information center kiosk where you can pick up a brochure with general information about our church. If you come on the third Sunday of the month, there will most likely be a "welcome tour" immediately following the worship service, and you can stay for a brief introduction to (and tour of) our church if you like. Periodically throughout the year we have "welcome lunches" to which newcomers are invited for a meal, to meet the staff, and to get a bit more information about our church.
If you come at 9:00 a.m., you'll find a more traditional worship service, with hymn-singing accompanied by organ and piano. If you come at 10:35 a.m., you'll find a somewhat louder environment with music led by a contemporary worship band (guitars, bass, drums or other percussion, violins, and even a banjo from time to time), and contemporary worship music.
During both of our worship services there is joyful singing, corporate prayer, a biblical message, and a freewill offering. About four times per year we have a communion service during our worship services; all who have declared their faith in Christ are welcome to participate (LFMC membership is not required). Easter and Christmas are particularly important seasons in the life of the church, and we plan special worship services accordingly, and generally hold two or more identical services to accommodate larger-than-normal congregations.
We make full use of our media resources during our worship services. Song lyrics and sermon notes are projected on a large screen, and we occasionally incorporate video content into our worship services. For those who use a Bible app on their mobile devices, limited guest wireless access is available in the worship center.
A portion of our attenders are fully members of our church. In our denomination's system of church government, members vote on certain kinds of church business, but more than that, membership denotes a formal agreement with our statements of faith and mission, a commitment to participate fully in the life of the church, to contribute time, talent and resources to the ministries of the church, and to be a faithful and consistent attender. We occasionally hold membership classes for those who are interested in learning more about what church membership signifies.
Our church culture is (for lack of a better term) relatively "laid back"--on any given Sunday morning you might see some people dressed up a bit, some dressed "business casual," and some in shorts, t-shirts, and sandals. The 10:35 service tends to be a bit more casual in this respect. We are friendly, we are welcoming, and most of the time we are relatively informal. It is our aim to help our guests and visitors to feel comfortable and welcomed. (We think you'd like us, if you knew us.)
We care about your family
Our children and teen ministries are geared toward helping your children learn what it means to follow Jesus, and we use a variety of creative and fun ways to get them involved. If you visit our children's ministry area, you'll find rooms that are decorated in imaginative ways, staffed by volunteers who will love your children and do their best to make them feel welcomed and included. There is a children's worship team that leads the large group in worship prior to the various smaller group times. In our teen area downstairs, there is a great game room with plenty of ways for students to interact and have fun, and a separate worship venue where students themselves lead worship. We participate each summer in camps for children and teens, and our summer VBS program is great fun for kids. Many of our teens help as volunteers for VBS, as well.
We believe that spiritual instruction of children is primarily the privilege and responsibility of their parents; we see our role as one of partnering with parents for the spiritual growth and health of their children.
We are increasingly missional
Our church has a long history of participation in world missions, and we are very involved in the support of missionaries in the Philippines, Colombia, Costa Rica, and in a "creative access country." In recent years, many have participated in short-term construction and medical missions trips to places like Peru, Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Haiti. We also participate in our community's efforts to meet local needs, working with organizations such as Family Promise of Lawrence, Heartland Community Health Center's food pantry, and Lawrence Interdenominational Nutrition Kitchen (LINK). Many of our members volunteer for these organizations and many others on a regular basis.
We'll help you plug in
If you have a heart to serve, there are many ways you can plug into volunteer ministries at LFMC. "For even the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45, ESV). Serving others knits our hearts to the heart of Jesus, and contributes significantly to our spiritual health and growth.