Inside A Church
Photograph from Wikipedia

Christians gather together to worship God in a building called a church. Some churches are very ornate; others are very simple. Some older churches were built in the shape of a cross. Modern churches often have circular floor plans. Smaller congregations that don't have the money to build will meet in homes or public buildings.

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Matthew 18:20

Interesting facts about a church are:

The sanctuary is the sacred area of a church that surrounds the alter. The altar is a wooden or stone table that sits in the center of the church and is used to serve Holy Communion or the Eucharist.

There are often two stands for speakers in front of the sanctuary. The Gospel is read and the preacher will give his sermon (teaching) from the one on the left called a pulpit which is a platform or podium raised by a few steps. That side of the church is sometimes called the Gospel side. Some pulpits are made from brass and the stand where the Bible sits is in the shape of an eagle. The word pulpit comes from the Latin word pulpitum which means "platform."

On the right side there is a lectern, which is Latin for "to read." The lectern is used by lay members of the church to read announcements, lead a congregation in prayer, or to read Scripture lessons except for the Gospels. This side of the church is called the epistle side.

The chancel is the part of the church which is between the sanctuary and the nave. It is where the choir loft and the organ sit. The choir loft is where the choir sits during the services. In some churches, the choir members wear long robes. The vestry is where the choir and minister put on their robes. There can be two vestries in a church; one for the choir and one for the minister. Organs and other instruments are a part of most church choirs. Organs can be small or very large.

The nave is the area where the people sit in pews, or long benches usually made of wood. Newer churches have pews with cushions that are upholstered. Transepts are aisles at the side of the pews.

The font is usually in the back of the church and is where where babies and older people are baptized or christened. Most Christian denominations require you to be baptized to become a member of the church.

Candles are an important part of many church services, because Jesus said:

"I am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of light."

John 8:12

Candles can be found at the altar or on the ends of the pews along the center aisle. Some services include lighting of candles to demonstrate how Jesus' love can be shared or to say a prayer.







All About Me