Q. When I visit, where should I enter the church building?
A. There are three primary entrances to the church, any of which can be used to get to the same place. Many people park in the main parking lot and enter the doors under the canopy which faces Granby Street. Some people park in the lot behind the Masonic Lodge and enter the front doors of the sanctuary which face Brackenridge Avenue. There are also doors leading from the gravel parking area along Colonial Avenue. The Colonial Avenue entrance is the closest to the nursery.
Q. Is the church building handicap accessible?
A. Yes. All the main gathering spaces of the church are on the ground level, including the sanctuary, the chapel, the social hall, and the church offices. There is also an elevator that provides access to the second and third floors of the education building.
Q. Is there a nursery available?
A. Yes. Every Sunday morning during worship, we have a capable group of volunteers who watch children age five and younger. These volunteers follow a specific safety and security protocol to make sure each child is well-protected. Any child, age two or older, is invited to join us in "big" church through the children's time portion of the service, at which point children five or younger are led to children's church. Children of any age are also welcomed in worship at any time.
Q. I've heard lots of weird things about Baptists. What do you believe?
A. Many people have perceptions of Baptists as preaching "hellfire and damnation" or being overly concerned with legalistic issues like drinking or dancing. That is not what you will find at Talbot Park Baptist Church. Our foundational belief is that Jesus Christ died and rose again. That is what inspires our worship and our way of life. Unlike many other denominations, we do not have a creed to which we adhere. Each individual is free to believe as they choose. As those who hold to the classic Baptist practices of the priesthood of the believer and the autonomy of the local church, we do not expect doctrinal conformity or agreement on every issue. In fact, we appreciate that we hold a wide spectrum of opinions and still manage to serve together. We also advocate strongly for the separation of church and state. Because we believe that God can work through anyone, we affirm both men and women in leadership roles within the congregation.
Q. What if I don't fit in?
A. No matter what your age, gender, race, status, beliefs, or ethnicity, you will be welcome at Talbot Park. Many of our current members grew up in Baptist churches but a large percentage came from other denominations and joined us along the way. Among our fellowship, we have former Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Methodists, Catholics, and Pentecostals, to name a few, as well as people who have no faith background at all. We have people of all educational levels and political persuasions. We like to believe that our diversity gives us a deeper and richer experience of faith.
Q. What time does the worship service begin?
A. 11:00 a.m., every Sunday morning. Most of our worship services last about an hour.
Q. What is the style of worship at Talbot Park?
A. We like to describe our worship "style" at Talbot Park as traditional but not formal. We have a choir. We sing both hymns and contemporary songs. From week to week, you might hear an organ, a harp, an electric guitar, or a piano. There are times of prayer and Scripture reading. There is also a sermon every Sunday that is grounded in Scripture and connected to our everyday lives. On the first Sunday of each month, we celebrate the Lord's Supper, which is open to anyone who joins us.
Q. What should I wear?
A. Some people in our congregation wear suits or dresses. Some wear more casual clothing. No matter what you wear, you will be welcomed as you are.
Q. What should I bring?
A. Just yourself, for starters. You might want to bring a Bible along, if you have one. An offering is collected as part of each worship service, but no one will pressure you to give.
Q. How do I become a member of Talbot Park?
A. It's easy. Every week, we extend an invitation at the end of our worship service. During that time, if you wish to join the church, you can simply come forward and make that decision public. You can transfer your membership from another church, join by statement, or join by baptism. The only "prerequisite" for membership is a confessed belief in Jesus Christ and baptism.
Q. How can I get involved?
A. You don't have to be a member to get involved at Talbot Park. Any individual is welcome to participate in whatever activities are going on at the moment. We are eager to include new energy and new ideas, so if there's something you want to do, just ask!