What to Expect

AT A GLANCE

We can’t wait to meet you! A seat is ready for you to worship the Lord, and we hope you are able to join us soon. If you have visited other churches, you may notice some variations in how worship looks at Hillsboro because our congregation is autonomous and is not associated with any denomination or organized religious group.

Here’s a snapshot of a typical Sunday morning worship.

  • Acapella Worship.
  • Prayers led by men in the congregation.
  • Scripture readings by men in the congregation.
  • Most weeks the Preaching Minister shares a lesson.
  • Weekly Communion.
  • Weekly Giving Opportunity.
  • Invitation to respond to the lesson or ask for prayers.
  • Attire is business casual, casual, or dressed up.

Let us walk you through each part of the Sunday morning worship service in more detail.

THE SINGING

All songs with words and music are displayed on a large screen. Some songs will have a number listed, which is a reference to a page in a songbook located in the book rack on the pew in front of you.

Worship music is acapella, singing without the accompaniment of musical instruments. Hillsboro invites everyone to worship God in the purest way possible, focused on praise to our heavenly Father (I Corinthians 14:15; Ephesians 5:18,19; Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 2:12).

THE PRAYING

Several prayers will be spoken publicly by men from the Hillsboro Family throughout the worship service. Hillsboro believes in the power of prayer, and often prayers focus on specific needs and requests.

THE PREACHING

The content of the lesson and the message from scripture are important parts of our time together. Lessons are Bible-centered, and often scriptures and notes are available on the screen. The lesson is typically 25-35 minutes. Bibles are available for your use in the book racks under the pews.

Hillsboro believes that all are equal in the priesthood of believers (Matthew 23:8-12; Galatians 3:26-28; I Peter 2:5,9). Therefore, Hillsboro’s Preaching Minister does not have a special title. He is not referred to as Pastor or Reverend, and he does not wear any special clothing that sets him apart.

THE INVITATION

Each worship service, worshippers are invited to make a commitment to Jesus through baptism, to recommit their lives to Him, and/or to ask for prayers from the church. Often this occurs at the end of the lesson, and you may hear the minister or speaker “extend an invitation” to the congregation. He will encourage those who wish to “respond” to come to the front of the auditorium while the congregation sings. Someone will be at the front to meet and talk with anyone who responds. In addition, Hillsboro Elders are available in Room 201 after worship each Sunday Morning to pray and talk with anyone who might wish to do so.

Please do not feel ill-at-ease during this invitation. You will not be singled-out in any way. There may be several who respond, or none. Some may respond for baptism, some to confess sins, some to ask for prayer for a specific need, or some to “identify” with Hillsboro.

If anyone responds for baptism, you will witness the baptism during the service. The baptism will be by immersion (Acts 8:35-39; Romans 6:3,4; Colossians 2;12) and for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38).

COMMUNION – THE LORD’S SUPPER

Communion, or The Lord’s Supper as it is often called, is included in the worship service every Sunday. Communion encourages everyone to remember the sacrifices Jesus made on his/her behalf. In the New Testament, the first-century church celebrated this observance on the first day of the week (Acts 20:7), and Hillsboro wishes to follow its example. Hillsboro believes the first-century church took communion every week, and respected historians confirm that communion was an every-Sunday commemoration in early centuries (Neader, Eusebius).

During this memorial, plates containing pieces of unleavened bread are passed throughout the congregation. The bread symbolizes the body of Jesus (1 Corinthians 11:23-24). Each participating person breaks off a piece of bread and eats it. Individual gluten-free bread pieces are also available in each plate.

Next, trays filled with small cups of grape juice are distributed. The cups may also be referred to as the “fruit of the vine,” symbolizing the blood of Jesus (1 Corinthians 11:25). Each participant drinks the contents of one cup. Empty cups may be placed in receptacles on the back of each pew.

At Hillsboro, baptized believers are encouraged and expected to participate in the Lord’s Supper every Sunday. If you choose not to participate, please do not be embarrassed. Feel free to just pass the plate or tray to the person next to you.

THE OFFERING

Each Sunday, baskets are passed throughout the auditorium in order to collect the weekly financial offering (I Corinthians 16:1-2). Guests are not expected to make a contribution. Please feel free to pass the collection basket on to the person next to you.

WHAT WILL BE EXPECTED OF YOU?

We place no expectations on guests. You are welcome to participate, but do not feel obligated to do so. As a guest, you are welcome to participate in any non-leadership activities, including service activities, Bible studies, and discussion groups.

Should you decide to be recognized as a part of the Family at Hillsboro, you would meet with one or more of our Elders. This allows them to learn a little about your desire to become a part of this body of believers and answer any questions you may have regarding the being a part of the Hillsboro Family. The New Testament church clearly expected every believer – every committed follower of Jesus Christ – to be committed to his or her local fellowship.

Christians are expected to:

  • Be a regular participant in worship services (Hebrews 10:25).
  • Be “plugged into” Bible study groups and other opportunities of teaching, fellowship, and personal growth (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
  • Be involved in a ministry or service opportunities (Ephesians 2:10).
  • Be a good steward of the resources God has provided, and faithfully support the Lord’s work (2 Corinthians 9:7-8).
  • Develop personal and spiritual disciplines in one’s life of prayer, study, giving, fasting, etc. (Galatians 6:8).

If you are a new to Hillsboro, we encourage you to participate in the Hillsboro 101 Class that meets on selected Sundays at 9:00 AM. The class helps you get to know the ministry staff as well as offers you multiple service opportunities alongside the Hillsboro Family. The goal is to provide you with opportunities to explore your time, talents and treasure for the glory of God.

THE PEOPLE

You can expect to find people at Hillsboro from a broad spectrum. Like many groups, the Hillsboro Family is diverse — coming from varied backgrounds and at different levels of understanding and different stages of spiritual growth.

We do not claim to know everything, but we are learning. We do not do everything right, but we are improving. We do not always treat each other as we should, but we are trying. We have not arrived — we are on a journey together.

We were not brought together by any illusion of our perfection or personal righteousness. We were brought together by our recognition that we are sinners in need of the cleansing blood of Jesus (Mark 2:17; Romans 5:6-9; Ephesians 1:7; I John 1:7).

The Hillsboro Family has a common goal. We want to be God’s people, organized and worshipping according to God’s plan. We want to be Christ’s church. That is the reason we can worship together, stick together, and, with God’s help, accomplish some things that make a difference for Him. You will not have to look very far to find our human shortcomings, but here at Hillsboro, you will find people who love Jesus and love the Bible. We hope you will join us in our pursuit of Him and His Word this Sunday.