Sunday services

Our normal pattern of services on Sunday is:

  • 10.30am - Morning service in Parkstone Primary School. 
  • 6.30pm - Christ Church Network evening service at St Mary's College (with Christ Church Newland and Christ Church Orchard Park). The service is held in the Sixth Form building (Inglemire Lane entrance).

You can watch the 10.30 and 6.30 services on YouTube here.

You'll get a warm welcome if you come to join us on Sunday - if you want, you can fill in our "look out for me" form and we'll get in touch beforehand to introduce ourselves and let you know what to expect.


What sort of church is Riverside?

We are a very friendly, informal and active church with lots going on. We're an evangelical church which means we we believe that the Bible is God’s authority on all matters of belief and behaviour and that the gospel of Jesus brings real hope and real change. We are an independent Anglican church, which means that we are not part of the Church of England, but we are joined with other Anglican churches worldwide through AMiE (Anglican Mission in England).

Who comes to Riverside?

We have a great variety of people as part of the church family at Riverside, from all ages, nationalities and backgrounds.

What activities do you do?

As well as our main Sunday service at 10.30am we run a wide range of other activities for ages from 0 to 100, both at weekends and during the week. Coming along to the Sunday morning service is a great way to start being involved.

What happens at the Sunday service?

Generally we sing a few songs or hymns, pray and are taught about a section of the Bible in a sermon of about 30 minutes. The services normally last about 60 minutes. We usually take an offering of money to help pay for the work of the church, but this is for regular church members only - if you're visiting, just pass it on.

After the service there's time to chat so we can get to know each other better. We hope eventually to get back to having tea, coffee and biscuits but at the moment it's just good to chat!

What Covid precautions are you taking?

We are spreading out our seating in the school hall to give maximum social distancing. We are keeping windows open for ventilation (this might make the services colder than usual). We provide hand sanitiser for your use. We are following the current government rules on wearing masks in church services. There is an option to chat outside after the service if you prefer. We are not serving refreshments after the service at the moment.

We ask you to please stay away from services and watch online if you have possible Covid symptoms.

Do I need to be a Christian?

No you don't, people often come to our services or events to find out more about Christianity. You won't be put under any pressure to join the church or become a Christian, but you will hear about living God's way as described in the Bible. Our aim is to help you find out the facts about Christianity so you can make your own decision - if you hear something you don't understand or don't like, please talk to someone about it and we will help you further.

Do I have to sing?

Only if you want to. If you feel unsure about singing with other people (and many people do), just listen to everyone else.

Is there a dress code?

No, just come as you are.

Can I bring my children on Sundays?

Yes, children make up a large and important part of our church family and are very welcome. However, the 30 minute sermon is mainly aimed at grown-ups and can be a bit boring for children, so we provide special activity groups for them during the service including a creche for 0-4s. Just follow the crowd when the children go out.

Will I have to go up to the front?

No, everyone up at the front has volunteered to be there. At a communion service, anyone who is a follower of Jesus can, if they wish, go up to the front to receive the bread and wine along with other members of the church.

I'm new to the area and want to meet people. How can Riverside help?

We run a number of small groups called Home Groups where you can get to know people better. There are also a wide range of other mid-week activities. Ask one of the stewards for more information or get in touch with us.