We believe in one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit and find our supreme authority for faith and conduct in the word of God, revealed to us in the Holy Bible through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. As his people, we worship God, seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit in prayer and study together. We will share with others the love of God, in word and action, to enable them to make a response to His Son Jesus Christ.
BAPTISM and CONFIRMATION
Being baptised has been part of Christianity since Jesus was himself baptised by John the Baptist in the river Jordan. As the early church grew and people responded to the good news about Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, people became ‘Christians’ and wanted to be baptised. In the URC we accept two ways of baptising people; either as infants, or as teenagers or adults (believer’s baptism). Infant baptism or ‘christening’ involves a minister holding the baby or young child and putting some water on his or her forehead. Parents promise to bring the child up to understand what it means to be a Christian. When they are older the children can confirm this earlier baptism by making a clear statement about what they believe. Older people make a statement that they have made the decision to become a Christian and are baptised either by being fully immersed in water or by the Minister putting some water on their forehead. Sometimes adults who were baptised as a child choose to confirm the vows made on their behalf.
If you are thinking about being baptised or confirmed, please speak to the Minister or one of the church secretaries.
BECOMING A CHURCH MEMBER
Joining a local church is a way of declaring your faith and showing
your commitment to that congregation. Within the United Reformed Church, being a church member involves helping to make decisions about important issues such as how we should use the resources God has entrusted to us including our time, our money and our buildings. These decisions are made when Church Members come together 6 times a year. Everyone who is part of East Croydon URC is welcome to attend these meetings but only registered church members are allowed to vote.
Stewardship means looking after what God has entrusted to us. Just as we have a responsibility to use natural resources wisely, we must use money wisely to help transform the world into what God would like it to be. We think it is essential to make our church a welcoming and attractive place to meet, but we also know that what we can do is partly determined by what we are prepared to give.
Stories in the Bible tell us that we should give willingly. It should be meaningful and involve some sacrifice on our part. In Biblical times people gave the first crops of the harvest. A modern equivalent would be making a regular donation rather than giving whatever we may happen to have in our pocket. Some Bible-teaching went further: it said that people should give 10% of what they earn to do God’s work in the world, this is called tithing. We operate a freewill offering scheme. People agree to give a certain amount each year. Some do this by putting their offering into a special envelope every week; others do this by standing order directly from their bank account. If the giver is a UK taxpayer, the church can recover the tax through the Gift Aid scheme. This means that the church claims back the tax paid, which increases the actual money received—all it requires filling in a very simple form.