Information for Visitors to Sunday Meetings
Trying our best to anticipate questions you may have about our Sunday services, we've listed some things to help you out:
Where is the meeting?
Please see the 'How To Find Us' section.
Where should I park?
All our main Sunday meeting venues have plenty of space to park on site.
When is the meeting?
Almost always the Marlow, Maidenhead and Slough Sunday meetings start at 10.30am, and the Journey's at 11.00am. However once every couple of months we meet together for 'River Together' at Desborough College, home of River Maidenhead. You can see exactly what's happening on any particular Sunday by looking at the events listing on the website's calendar pages.
When should I arrive?
It's best to arrive about 10 minutes before the meeting is scheduled to start, but don't worry if you run late because as you'll find we are very relaxed about people arriving after the meeting is underway! However if you have children it's best to arrive in plenty of time so that you can find out the precise plans that week for the kids. If you are visiting River Marlow you can enjoy tea and coffee from 10am.
How long are the services?
A typical Sunday 'service' runs for approximately an hour and a half, although there is usually plenty of opportunity to chat before and afterwards. and sometimes we start and/or finish late.
What should I expect during the meeting?
A meeting includes a welcome and announcements, 30 minutes or more of congregational worship (ie singing of contemporary worship songs led by a band of guitars, keyboard, vocalists, drums), perhaps a 'say hello to your neighbour' moment, a talk (aka sermon), sometimes communion, and an offering. There is usually an opportunity to be prayed for, should you wish it.
You should feel no obligation to give any money into the offering, as this is primarily for church members. But equally please do not hesitate to give if you want to do so. If you are a UK taxpayer and wish to Gift Aid your offering, please put your details on the outside of the envelopes (which can be found in the offering baskets) and your money inside.
Our services are usually pretty energetic with sermons that are practical and encouraging. River has a large number of gifted speakers so it's unlikely that you will hear the same person twice if you come for say four consecutive weeks.
Children (age range: new-born to school year 6)
Jesus had a lot to say about children, and at River we take seriously his instructions to value them. We welcome families and children of any age - and we don't mind a bit of noise from them!
During our normal Sunday meetings the children of junior school age and below go to their own groups after about 30 minutes where they are led in various fun activities, and teaching which helps them understand and get to know Jesus as a friend. A creche is provided at the same time for pre-school kids; for all ages we comply with the relevant Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection regulations. Please accompany your children to the appropriate group and sign them in using the register provided. Your children are your responsibility at all times except when they are in their groups.
Youth (secondary school age)
Sometimes the 'Edge' age group stays in with the adults for the second part of the meeting, although often has its own programme from 11am.
Do you record the talks?
Yes - almost all our Sunday meeting talks are recorded and made available for free download elsewhere on this site. Our online recordings archives go back to 2004.
Can I get prayed for?
Yes! If you would like prayer please speak to the person you came with, or a Welcomer, or any of the people you see at 'the front'.
How do you 'do' Communion?
We welcome anyone and everyone who has faith in Jesus as their personal saviour, and their children, to join us as we take communion. We don't have a set format so just follow the guidance given at the time.
Well, we hope that this page answered most of your questions, but if not, please don't hesitate to contact us. We'd be delighted to see you and will do our best to welcome you and to encourage you to live out that full, abundant life that God has in store for us all!