VISITING US FOR THE FIRST TIME?
Going anywhere for the first time can be a little daunting, with questions from “What happens in church?” through to “what should I wear?”. We hope we’ve answered all the questions you’ve got here, but if we haven’t, we’d be really happy to hear from you and let you know what to expect at Potters Church.
We’d much rather you asked what feels like a silly question than not come and join us, so ask away!
Potters Church is one church that meets at two different locations each Sunday morning at Longton and Birches Head. You’ll find information about our Sunday services at both locations, and what to expect at any Potter’s Church service, on this page.
What time does it start?
Our Birches Head Sunday service begins at 10:30am, and finishes around 12noon.
Where is it?
Potters Church Birches Head meets at the Bridge Centre, Birches Head Road, ST2 8DD.
Where can I park?
We have plenty of free parking on site, where our friendly car park team will direct you to a space. If our car park fills up, there is also free parking on the road just outside the Bridge Centre.
What time does it start?
Our Longton Central Hall Sunday meeting begins at 11am with free tea, coffee, and a snack, beginning the service at 11:30am, and finishing around 1pm.
Where is it?
Potters Church Longton meets at Longton Central Hall, The Strand, ST3 2JH.
Where can I park?
Longton Central Hall doesn’t currently have its own parking, but it is based next door to the car park for Tesco Extra, Argos and Next, which currently does not have a charge or a time limit on parking. Handy for your groceries on your way home, too!
INFORMATION FOR BOTH POTTERS CHURCH SERVICES:
What should I wear?
We don’t have an expected dress code, and most people usually dress in a casual manner. If you’d like to wear a new dress or suit though, you’d be very welcome!
What should I expect?
As you enter the building at both Longton and Birches head, you will be met by our team of welcomers. Refreshments are available from 11am before the 11:30 service at Longton, and after the 10:30am service at Birches Head. All are welcome to meet and chat before the service begins in the main hall/auditorium, where you can choose any seat. We usually start with standing to sing worship songs led by our band, where all the words will be put up on a screen to read and sing along. We’ll then have somebody on the stage introduce the service and give out information about upcoming events, and then we pause to say "hi" to people near where we’re seated, and get to know someone briefly. At this point, we also allow children aged 3-13 to go to our “Potters Kids” room (more on this below) whilst the rest of us settle down to hear that week’s speaker give us a themed message. Some take notes, some read along with a Bible (often on their phones), and others just listen. At the end of the talk, the band lead us all in singing a few more songs, before the worship leader says a prayer to close. All throughout the service in Birches Head, a crèche is available just outside the auditorium through reception, where a large screen TV shows what’s going on in the service for the grown ups. Finally, after the service at both Longton and Birches Head, we have a 'Welcome Desk' where you pick up a Welcome Pack which contains information on all of our church activities, such as Potters Youth, mid-week Life Groups, over 55s "Open House", and more.
Will I be asked for money?
At both of our locations, we want our guests to feel as welcome and comfortable as possible, which includes not asking you for any money. Our church is completely free to attend. Although we don’t charge for attending church, we believe that part of the life of a committed Christian is to worship God with their finances. We offer an opportunity to give to the work of our church and to projects which we believe are doing good work for God (see our ‘Serving our City’ page for more information) during both our services, by placing cash or cheques in one of our 'Gift Envelopes' found on the seats, and placing it in the donations box after the service. This offering is meant for regular attendees of our church, and so as a guest, we would not expect you to give towards it. Instead we’d encourage you to simply enjoy the service!
Tell me more about 'Worship'
Our worship band is different week by week, but often involves a lead singer, a few backing singers, some people playing guitar and keyboard, and a drum kit. We sing songs to God, or about God, as a way of showing Him that we love Him, or to say thank you for what He’s done for us, or just to sing about how great we think He is! The worship time often lasts around 20 minutes, and we want to invite you to enjoy that time, whether you want to sing along with us, or just stand or sit back and take it in, to relax and observe what’s going on. We think songs are a great way for guests to pick up bits of what we think about who God is, so we’d encourage you to read and listen along, and of course ask us any questions about anything that you’re curious about.
What happens in the talk/sermon bit?
The speaker is usually a member of the church (though we sometimes have guest speakers in too), and they’ll talk about a passage of the Bible, or a part of God’s character, for up to 30 minutes. The speaker almost always has prepared slides on screens, so you can read along bits of what they’re saying, or see pictures that illustrate their points. Occasionally, a speaker will open an invitation to anyone in the church to respond to what they’ve said by joining them at the front where our team will offer to pray for you. We never want you to feel pressured to do anything you’re not comfortable with, so you can always stay in your seat, but we offer this time because we think God does great stuff when we in His church pray for each other.
So what do my kids do?
Children between 3 and 13 years old at Potters Church services are invited to join our ‘Potters Kids’ activities, that happen during the service. Our host, on stage, will make it clear when this opens, and invite parents/guardians to take their children into the Potters Kids activities. We ask that new children are registered on a quick form, just to make sure our team have important information (like medical information, allergies, special requirements) to keep all of the children safe. The Potters Kids team then host the children in a load of activities around a bible theme, with different elements including stories, games, and creative crafts for the children to enjoy. There is no charge for the Potters Kids facility, we just ask that you pick your kids up again at the end of the service! For children 0-3 years old, we have a crèche room, with toys and books for the little ones to enjoy. Parents are asked to stay with their children whilst using this space. In Birches Head, this is found at the back of our main auditorium, through reception, with a big ‘CRECHE’ banner outside it. In Longton, the crèche is provided in a room just behind the Welcome Desk in the foyer, please feel free to ask one of our team to point it out to you!
I’m still not sure/I’ve still got questions…
That’s absolutely fine! Feel free to send us any questions using the contact form below, or to ask to meet up with one of our Pastors in a coffee shop, and we’d love to meet and chat with you.