Have you ever wanted to visit a new church in your area, but weren’t sure exactly what you’d be walking into? Do you wish you could get a sense of what a church is all about before you actually attend for the first time? You’re not alone. It can often be hard to get a good feel for a church just by visiting their website. The church can present itself any way it wants online—even if it’s not entirely accurate.
One Temecula Christian church, Sunridge Church, has gone out of its way to help people get a good feel for their church before they actually visit. For starters, they have a user-friendly sermon archive that allows you to view a video or listen to the audio of any past Sunday morning sermon. In recent videos, they have included the worship music from the beginning and the end of the services. By watching or listening to a few of the recorded Sunday services, you’ll get a good sense of the types of messages that are preached at the church, as well as the type of music that is played and sung. You’ll likely find that the Sunday services at Sunridge are approachable and relatable. They teach from the Bible, but they do it in a way that is easy to understand and apply to your life.
In addition, the church has created an entire page on their website for people who are thinking about visiting the church. It’s called New Here? This page goes into depth about what a person can expect on their first visit to Sunridge Church. It contains reassuring statements such as these:
“At Sunridge, we have a ‘come as you are’ attitude. You don’t need to ‘clean up your act’ before you come to our church or dress up in fancy clothes and pretend like you have it all together. Feel free to dress casually.”
“We don’t single new people out in any way or do things to make them feel uncomfortable, but we do have people in place who are ready to answer any questions you have when you arrive, point you in the right direction, and help you feel welcomed.”
Further down on the “New Here?” page, they address the children of visitors, saying you can either check kids into one of their childcare rooms or classrooms, or keep your kids with you in the main service area. Finally, on the page, they have links that can connect you to other pages on the website where you can learn more about things like the church’s weekday Bible studies and groups, as well as their core beliefs.
If you want to learn more about the leadership of the church, the website has photos and short bios of all leaders, including pastors and elders. You’ll likely find that the leaders in the church are refreshingly “normal” people, who love their families, their community, and their church. You’ll also find a common thread among them that they have a passion for helping people “Find and Follow Jesus”—the church’s stated mission.