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Typical Church Service Times

When you are considering a new church, it’s important to know when the services run. Don’t feel obligated to attend a service that might not meet your needs, especially if you arrive somewhere only to find out the first service is over or that you have interrupted the service in progress.

From a church perspective, having your church service times listed on your website is a must. You want to encourage people to join you for their weekly worship, and quite frankly, this is the best place to do it.

How do you find out when your local churches are having services? The service times for most local churches can be quite confusing, especially if you attend more than one church. You probably search on the internet for church times or hope that the bulletin will include all of the service times.

Typical Church Service Times

If there’s a specific type of church service you’re looking for, like a Baptist or Methodist church, or even just a contemporary worship service that’s not Catholic or Lutheran, we can help with that too. Just search our database for what kind of church service time you want and we’ll show you our results!

We know it can be hard to find the right church when there are so many options out there. That’s why we built this site—to make it easier than ever before to find the perfect church service time for YOU!

If your church has one service at 11:00 am on Sunday mornings, it is likely in the minority. In a recent reader survey we conducted with 1,649 responses, slightly over half of the congregations had only one worship service on Sunday morning, and the times of that single service varied.

The “sacred hour” of 11:00 am is no longer the worship time for a majority of churches.

Though we don’t have definitive information on the origin of the 11:00 am worship time, it appears to be related to an agrarian society. We started our services late in the morning so the farmers could milk the cows and do necessary farm chores.

church service (or a service of worship) is a formalized period of Christian communal worship, often held in a church building. It often but not exclusively occurs on Sunday, or Saturday in the case of those churches practicing seventh-day Sabbatarianism. The church service is the gathering together of Christians to be taught the “Word of God” (the Christian Bible) and encouraged in their faith. Technically, the “church” in “church service” refers to the gathering of the faithful rather than to the building in which it takes place. Wherever possible, clergy preside over services in most Christian traditions.

Styles of service vary greatly, from the Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, and Lutheran traditions of liturgical worship to the evangelical Protestant style, which often combines worship with teaching for the believers, which may also have an evangelistic component appealing to the non-Christians or skeptics in the congregation. Quakers and some other groups have no formal outline for their services but allow the worship to develop as the participants present feel moved.

The majority of Christian denominations hold church services on the Lord’s Day (with many offering Sunday morning and Sunday evening services); a number of traditions have mid-week Wednesday evening services as well. In some Christian denominations, church services are held daily, with these including those in which the canonical hours are prayed, as well as the offering of the Mass, among other forms of worship. In addition to this, many Christians attend services of worship on holy days such as Christmas, Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, and Ascension Thursday, among others, depending on the Christian denomination.

What Time Is Church Over On Sunday

So what are the trends in worship service times? Our information is based upon the survey we noted above as well as anecdotal data derived from our interaction with thousands of churches.

  1. Churches with multiple Sunday morning services will soon be in the majority. This trend, once more common with larger churches, is now taking hold in congregations of all sizes.
  2. The 11:00 am worship service is no longer the designated time for a majority of churches. The so-called sacred hour of worship is not sacred in most churches. This change started slowly, but it is pervasive now.
  3. Earlier Sunday morning services are gaining in popularity. Worship services with start times from 7:00 am to 8:30 am are growing in many churches. This trend seems to be related to the growth of empty-nest boomers.
  4. The growth in the number of non-Sunday primary services is steady but slow. There has not been a huge upsurge in the number of primary services on a day other than Sunday. The steady growth, however, is an indication that this approach will soon be common in many churches.
  5. The number of churches with concurrent worship service times is small, but will continue to increase. Concurrent services require either a video feed or different preaching/teaching pastors. As the trend in multi-site churches continues to grow, so will these service times.
  6. The most popular worship times start between 9:30 am to 10:30 am. This mid-morning worship time attracts attendees in churches with both single and multiple worship services. As I noted in number three above, I anticipate a shift in popularity to even earlier services.
  7. Worship wars over service times will continue to wane. Though the worship wars have largely been about music style, there have been many wars over worship times as well. We will see fewer of these battles as more churches adopt varieties of worship times.

The worship service is a practice of Christian life that has its origins in the Jewish worship. Jesus Christ and Paul of Tarsus taught a new form of worship of God. As recorded in the gospels, Jesus met together with His disciples to share teachings, discuss topics, pray, and sing hymns.

The holding of church services pertains to the observance of the Lord’s Day in Christianity. The Bible has a precedent for a pattern of morning and evening worship that has given rise to Sunday morning and Sunday evening services of worship held in the churches of many Christian denominations today, a “structure to help families sanctify the Lord’s Day.”In Numbers 28:1–10 and Exodus 29:38–39, “God commanded the daily offerings in the tabernacle to be made once in the morning and then again at twilight”. In Psalm 92, which is a prayer concerning the observance of the Sabbath, the prophet David writes “It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High; to declare your steadfast love in the morning, and your faithfulness by night” (cf. Psalm 134:1). Church father Eusebius of Caesarea thus declared: “For it is surely no small sign of God’s power that throughout the whole world in the churches of God at the morning rising of the sun and at the evening hours, hymns, praises, and truly divine delights are offered to God. God’s delights are indeed the hymns sent up everywhere on earth in his Church at the times of morning and evening.”

The first miracle of the Apostles, the healing of the crippled man on the temple steps, occurred because Peter and John went to the Temple to pray (Acts 3:1). Since the Apostles were originally Jews (see Jewish Christians), the concept of fixed prayer times as well as services, which differed from weekday to Sabbath to holy day, were familiar to them. Pliny the Younger (63–ca. 113), who was not a Christian himself, mentions not only fixed prayer times by believers but also specific services—other than the Eucharist—assigned to those times: “They met on a stated day before it was light and addressed a form of prayer to Christ as to a divinity, after which it was their custom to separate and then reassemble to eat in common a harmless meal.”

The real evolution of the Christian service in the first century is shrouded in mystery. By the second and third centuries, such Church Fathers as Clement of Alexandria, Origen, and Tertullian wrote of formalised, regular services: the practice of Morning and Evening Prayer, and prayers at the third hour of the day (terce), the sixth hour of the day (sext), and the ninth hour of the day (none).

With reference to Jewish practices, it is surely no coincidence that these major hours of prayer correspond to the first and last hour of the conventional day and that on Sundays (corresponding to the Sabbath in Christianity), the services are more complex and longer (involving twice as many services if one counts the Eucharist and the afternoon service). Similarly, the liturgical year from Christmas via Easter to Pentecost covers roughly five months, with the other seven having no major services linked to the work of Christ. However, this is not to say that the Jewish services were copied or deliberately substituted; see Supersessionism.

Contemporary Church Services

Show on the life of Jesus at Igreja da Cidade, affiliated to the Brazilian Baptist Convention, in São José dos Campos, Brazil, 2017

Worship service at Deam City Church, affiliated to the Assemblies of God USA, in 2007, in Phoenix, United It looks as though we will be creating a subdomain on our website within the next year or two. Perhaps we will just add church service times. We aren’t sure at this point. I like the idea of being able to find out what services are going on at any given time – but all in one place. That would be handy for visitors when they come to town and for anyone who is no longer driving but likes to attend town events, etc. No matter what form it takes, it’s something that should be done in partnership with the church and provide them added value.

A Worship service at Hillsong Church UK, London

Contemporary worship services have their origins in the Jesus Movement of the 1960s. In the 1980s and 1990s, contemporary Christian music, comprising a variety of musical styles such as Christian rock and Christian hip-hop, was adopted by evangelical churches. Over the years, the organs have been replaced by pianos, electric guitars and drums. These contemporary worship services feature a sermon based on the Bible.

Worship service in Evangelical churches is seen as an act of God’s worship. Typically, a Christian pastor is in charge of it. It usually contains two main parts: the praise (Christian music) and the sermon, with periodically the Lord’s Supper.  During worship, there is usually a nursery for babies. Prior to the worship service, adults, children and young people receive an adapted education at Sunday school in a separate room.

With the 1960s’ charismatic movement, a new conception of praise in worship, such as clapping and raising hands as a sign of worship, took place in many evangelical denominations.

In the 1980s and 1990s, contemporary Christian music, including a wide variety of musical styles, such as Christian Rock and Christian Hip Hop, appeared in the praise.

In the 2000s and 2010s, digital technologies were integrated into worship services, such as video projectors for broadcasting praise lyrics or video on big screens. The use of social media such as YouTube and Facebook to retransmit live or delayed worship services via the Internet has also spread. Offering via the Internet has become a common practice in several churches.

In some churches, a special moment is reserved for faith healing with the laying on of hands during worship services. Faith healing or divine healing is considered a legacy of Jesus acquired by his death and resurrection.

The offerings and the tithe typically occupy a little time in the worship services. Often associated with the mandatory tithe, this doctrine is sometimes compared to a religious business.

The main Christian feasts celebrated by the Evangelicals are Christmas, Pentecost, and Easter for all believers, among others depending on Christian denominations (cf. evangelical feasts).

Quaker Meeting for Worship

Main articles: Meeting for worship and Quakers § Worship

Quakers (the Religious Society of Friends), like other nonconformist Protestant denominations, distinguish between a church, which is a body of people who believe in Christ, and a ‘meeting house’ or ‘chapel’, which is a building where the church meets.

Quakers have both unprogrammed and programmed Meetings for Worship. Unprogrammed worship is based on waiting in silence and inward listening to the Spirit, from which any participant may share a message. In unprogrammed meetings for worship, someone speaks when that person feels that God, Spirit, or the universe has given them a message for others. Programmed worship includes many elements similar to Protestant services, such as a sermon and hymns. Many programmed meetings also include a time during the service for silence, expectant waiting and messages from the participants.

Common features

A choir or the congregation (or a combination of the two) typically sings vocal music while an organ provides accompaniment. Sometimes other instruments, such as piano, classical instruments, or modern band instruments, may be part of the service, especially in churches influenced by the contemporary worship movement. Some churches are equipped with state-of-the-art multi-media equipment to add to the worship experience. The congregation may sing along in hymnals or words to hymns and worship songs may be displayed on a screen. More liturgical denominations may have the words to specific prayers written in a missalette or prayer book, which the congregation follows.

Though the majority of services are still conducted in church buildings designed specifically for that purpose, some services take place in “storefront” or temporary settings. For those unable to attend a service in a church building, a burgeoning televangelism and radio ministry provides broadcasts of services. A number of websites have been set up as “cyber-churches” to provide a free virtual worship space to anyone on the internet.

Church services are often planned and led by a single pastor or a small group of elders or they may follow a format laid out by the dictates of the denomination. Some churches are “lay led,” with members of the congregation taking turns guiding the service or simply following a format that has evolved over time between the active members. But most commonly, the pastor will preach a sermon, which may cover a specific topic or be part of a book of the Bible that is being covered over a period of time. Depending on the church, a public invitation follows whereby people are encouraged to become Christians, present themselves as candidates for baptism or to join the congregation (if members are elsewhere), or for other purposes.

A few begin their church services with the ringing of a bell (or a number of bells); a current trend is to have an introductory video that serves as a “countdown” to the beginning of the service. The service usually involves the singing of hymns, the reading of scripture verses and possibly a psalm, and a sermon. If the church follows a lectionary, the sermon will often be about the scripture lections assigned to that day. Eucharistic churches usually have Holy Communion either every Sunday or several Sundays a month. Less liturgical congregations tend to place a greater emphasis on the sermon.

Many churches will take up a collection during the service. The rationale for this is taken from 1 Corinthians 16:1–2, 1 Corinthians 9:9–11, and 1 Timothy 5:16–18. But some churches eschew this practice in favor of voluntary anonymous donations for which a box or plate may be set up by the entrance or return-address envelopes may be provided that worshippers may take with them. Offering through the Internet has become a common practice in many evangelical churches. On occasion, some churches will also arrange a second collection, typically occurring after communion, for a specific good cause or purpose.

Some churches offer Sunday school classes. These will often be for younger children and may take place during the whole of the service (while the adults are in church), or the children may be present for the beginning of the service and at a prearranged point leave the service to go to Sunday school. Some churches have adult Sunday school either before or after the main worship service.

Following the service, there will often be an opportunity for fellowship in the church hall or other convenient place. This gives the members of the congregation a chance to socialize with each other and to greet visitors or new members. Coffee or other refreshments may be served.

Christian Worship Services

Types of church service

Church services take many forms, and set liturgies may have different names. Services typically include:

  • Regular Sunday services. These are part of most traditions. Holy Communion may be celebrated at some or all of these; often it is included either once a month or once a quarter. A few denominations have their main weekly services on Saturday rather than Sunday. Larger churches often tend to have several services each Sunday, often two or three in the morning and one or two in the late afternoon or evening, as well as on Saturdays. Some churches have begun to provide religious services conducted through internet technology for benefit of those who cannot attend for health or other reasons or who may want to preview the church before attending in person.
  • Midweek services. Again, Holy Communion can be part of these, either on every occasion or on a regular basis.
  • Holiday services. Treated like a regular Sunday service, but made more specific for the day.
  • Weddings. These are normally separate services rather than being incorporated into a regular service, but may be either.
  • Funerals. These are always separate services.
  • Baptisms. These may be incorporated into a regular service or separated.
  • Confirmation. This is normally incorporated into a regular Sunday service, which will also include communion. It was traditionally the first Communion of the confirmee, but more recently, children have been invited to communion in some denominations, whether confirmed or not.
  • Ordination of clergy. New bishops, elders, priests and deacons are usually ordained or installed generally in a solemn but celebratory ceremony on Saturday or Sunday generally open to the public, either by their own superior or another approved senior minister with ordination powers, either at the area headquarters church, the cathedral or another church agreed upon by those to be ordained and the ordaining ministers. Ordination of bishops or elders may require consecration by more than one individual and have a more limited audience.
  • First Communion. Children may celebrate Communion for the first time.
  • Opening of new churches or church buildings.
  • Dedication of new missionaries or those about to be sent on new missions.


It looks as though we will be creating a subdomain on our website within the next year or two. Perhaps we will just add church service times. We aren’t sure at this point. I like the idea of being able to find out what services are going on at any given time, but all in one place. That would be handy for visitors when they come to town and for anyone who is no longer driving but likes to attend town events, etc. No matter what form it takes, it’s something that should be done in partnership with the church to provide them with added value.