Our church has an intentional and discerning approach about membership. The basic structure of it happens in this way:
Regular attendance and involvement in church activities, programs and worship experiences over a one-year time span. This allows for a newcomer to get to know both other laypeople and our minister in a mutual way, and to discern whether our community and core beliefs feel like your “spiritual home.” This happens by experiencing life in the church–having many conversations, by feeling your own sense of joy about being involved, and through listening to sermons and other reflections over time.
Our pastor, Rev. Kit Billings, has a basic Newcomers Class, which involves reading a well-written little book on the basics of New Church teachings, which delves into the nature of God, Divine providence (how God guides us through life through conscience), the Bible as to its literal and inner meaning, spiritual growth through life (what we call “regeneration” or gradual salvation), and the importance of joining love, faith and good works in daily life, among other topics.
Discussing our core concepts around the divinity of Jesus Christ (and his lifetime of transformation or glorification), the holiness and truth in God’s Word, and in the life called charity.
Figuring out together which Sunday worship service works well for confirmation and joining the church. Signing the church register.
Becoming a confirmed member allows a person to vote during meetings, while both members and friends are welcome to engage in discussion during meetings.