Frequently Asked Questions
Understanding the importance of getting a sense of our community of faith, here are some frequently asked questions. Please don’t hesitate to call Rev. Sharon or one of our team leaders if there may be other questions you wish to inquire about:
Where is the church located?
We are in the small hamlet of Dunsford about 1 ½hours east of Toronto, located between Lindsay and Bobcaygeon. Within the small village, we are a highpoint, being the most visible structure, a red brick building, located at 1981 Sturgeon Road. See map information provided on this website.
When is worship?
Worship begins at 10:00 A.M. each Sunday. Most worshippers arrive shortly before ten, with early arrivals starting around 9:30. People tend to chat quietly with the minister and greeters as they come in and among others before the beginning of worship. There are toys and books at the back of the sanctuary, as well as “lap desks” for children who might like some extra activities to take to the pews to have while they share in worship with their family, before going to junior church.
How long is the worship service?
The service time usually is 60 to 75 minutes.
What do people wear to worship?
People are welcome to wear whatever they are comfortable wearing. People wear a range of different attire, from casual to more “dressed-up.” During particular sports seasons, sports enthusiasts are known to don their team attire in support. In the summer, shorts and t-shirts are common. Some folks may wear jeans and hoodies or dresses or suits and ties, but there is no dress code, written or unwritten. Come as you are. We have folks coming to and from other activities, coming from the cottage or the farm. We want to know you not your clothes.
Where should I sit?
Please sit wherever you like. If you’d like guidance to be seated, please ask the greeters.
Where do I park?
There is a parking lot right beside the church. Overflow parking is along the side of the street on Sturgeon Road.
Can I take public transit to go to Dunsford United Church?
No. Unfortunately we are in a rural setting not supported by public transit. If you wish a ride, please call the church office or Email and we are sure to be able to arrange for a ride. We have people coming from Dunsford, Thurstonia, Lindsay, Bobcaygeon, Downeyville, Omemee, Cavan and surrounding areas.
Is this facility accessible?
Dunsford United Church is accessible. There is a ramped entrance from outside. Within the building there is a small ramp, equivalent of one step internally from the sanctuary to the church hall. The church hall, washrooms junior church, nursery, offices, kitchen and fellowship space are all on the main floor.
We have two washrooms. One of which is fully accessible with an infant’s change table. The washroom has support bars and lots of room to accommodate a walker, a wheelchair, stroller, or service animal.
Our minister uses a service animal as she is a person who is totally blind. Our community of faith is familiar with the expectations for the appropriate interactions with a working dog. Learn more about Sharon’s service animal, when you visit “Our People” staff page.
How should I interact with a person who is blind?
Please introduce yourself to Sharon. “Hi Sharon, it’s (say your name)” is the preferred greeting so she knows you are speaking to her and saying your name will allow her to know who is speaking. Just be yourself and if you have questions, please ask her.
What if I want to make a prayer request?
Please send an email to Sharon’s confidential email account: email@example.com. She will respond as soon as possible.
How do I keep informed of what is happening at Dunsford United Church?
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to be put on the distribution list. Visit the Weekly News web page.
Continue to visit our website. Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook. Follow our youth group on Instagram.
How will I know what to do in the service?
We do our best to ensure everyone is welcome and aware of when we sit or stand or any special directions. We recognize that not everyone is comfortable standing for example, and invite people to rise in body or spirit according to their comfort. If we miss announcing something, please speak directly to Sharon so we can ensure we do a better job. We want to ensure everyone is comfortable and welcomed.
Who can attend Dunsford United Church?
Everyone is welcome to come to Dunsford United Church. We strive to be equitable, to honour each other’s uniqueness and gifts, and honouring of all family dynamics and believe we are all God’s children. If you have a particular pronoun preference, please be sure to let us know. If you or someone with you has any special needs we can help to provide accommodations and awareness of, please help us know how to make you and your family welcome.
Is there an offering?
Offering is taken up during worship, while the children are still in the sanctuary. Two children assist two adults. The smaller plates are for children’s offering and any money collected supports our junior church and its initiatives. The money received on the larger collection plates is distributed according to directions on the envelope, such as to general fund, Mission and Service, Assessment, food bank. A donor is welcome to designate how funds are directed. Many of our congregation donate through PAR (Pre-Authorized Remittance) and have money automatically taken from bank accounts. There are PAR cards available for those who wish to place a card on the plate. Information about PAR is available at both doors to the sanctuary. Visitors will find an envelope in the pew to support issuing of receipts for tax receipt purposes. While financial support is always appreciated, ability to financially contribute is not a requirement to participate. We would never want that to be a reason to stay home.
Is there a nursery?
There is a nursery in the church hall, equipped with speakers so the service can be heard by those wishing to stay with their little ones. A volunteer leader also supervises the nursery immediately following the children’s time in the sanctuary. If you would like nursery support prior to the children’s time in the sanctuary, please ask a greeter and they will be happy to assist you.
Are there programs or activities for children?
We have an active Junior Church. Children usually gather with their families during the first part of worship and go out with their teachers to participate in junior church following a story and prayer with the minister. During the story time, children are invited to move to the front, centre pews. Children are welcome to have an adult accompany them if that is more comfortable. Visit the junior church web page to learn more.
When is Communion?
The sacrament of Communion, the sharing of bread and wine (grape juice) reminds us of Christ’s last supper with his friends. United Church of Canada requires the sacrament of Communion be observed four times per year. At Dunsford United, Communion is celebrated during morning worship, usually four times a year. The events calendar will announce upcoming services of Communion, in which all are welcomed to participate. The first or second Sunday of Advent (four weeks before Christmas), the first or second Sunday in Lent (40 days before Easter), the Sunday closest before the United Church of Canada’s birthday (June 10, 1925) and World Communion Sunday (first Sunday in October) are times when Dunsford United Church celebrates Communion.
Communion may also be celebrated at other special services.
If unable to attend worship and Communion is desired, please contact Sharon to request a private service of Communion at home or hospital.
What happens at Communion at Dunsford United Church?
Generally, a more traditional form of Communion is done. We use all gluten free bread so that all might participate. These are cubed pieces of bread which are distributed by a team consisting of youth and older people. After the bread has been distributed to everyone seated in the sanctuary, the team serving is given bread and everyone eats their bread at the same time. Following United Church of Canada observations, grape juice is used, not wine. Again the team of servers distributes very small Communion glasses of juice. When all have received their cup, everyone drinks from their own cup at the same time. There are small cup holders in every pew. Please speak to a neighbour if you aren’t locating where your cup goes. One of the serving team will collect cups following worship.
Children are invited to take part in Communion as soon as their family deem it appropriate to do so. The United Church of Canada celebrates and open table which means all are welcome at the table. Everyone is encouraged to participate fully in the sacrament of Communion.
If there is some additional dietary concern for which gluten free bread or grape juice do not meet with an individual’s dietary requirements, the individual is invited to please bring his or her own elements to be taken during the Communion.
Can children or adults be Baptized?
Yes. Please contact the minister to discuss and arrange for Baptism.
Can I be married at Dunsford United Church?
If you are interested in being married at Dunsford United Church we invite you to call us or send us an e-mail so we can check the availability of our minister and sanctuary. Being divorced or not a member of the United Church of Canada does not preclude being married in our church. Dunsford United Church has approved its minister to officiate same sex marriages. Most of the weddings we do are for people currently involved in the life of our congregation but we are certainly open to members of the community requesting this ministry. All weddings are approved by our worship committee and our board. Weddings may be performed offsite at the discretion and availability of the minister. Visit the Marriage Policy web page.
Can funerals be held at Dunsford United Church?
Dunsford United Church is known to all the local funeral homes. We do our best to support people in this difficult time of need. Call Sharon to discuss a funeral, memorial or celebration of life service.