How do you describe your church community?
First Baptist Church in Beverly is a Christian church that is a welcoming community for all people, regardless of their faith background or tradition. The church is a progressive congregation, whose heart is rooted in social justice and advocacy work. The church community seeks to be highly involved in the life of the wider community and to respond to its needs in a variety of ways, ranging from financial support to systemic change of support networks for vulnerable populations. We are a church family made up of people of all ages – from infants to older adults. We are children, families, and individuals; we are gay and straight; we come from all types of backgrounds and unique stories, and come together here in this church home. This is a church community with room and love for all.
How does First Baptist Church in Beverly practice communion? Do I need to be a Baptist to attend service or participate in communion?
- FBC Beverly joins together in communion during Sunday morning Worship service on the first Sunday of each month. Additionally, the weekly Thursday afternoon Lectio Divina practice ends with the sharing of communion. See Worship page for more details on these services.
- Our Communion table is what is called an open table. This means that all who feel called in their hearts to share in the meal are welcome to do so. No one is compelled to take Communion, but neither is the table closed to anyone.
- In Baptist tradition, it is typical for children who have not yet been baptized (because Baptists practice adult Believer’s Baptism which, at First Baptist Beverly, is open to young people in 8th grade and above) to not take Communion until they have been baptized. These young people receive a special first Communion on the first Sunday after their baptisms that the meal is shared. HOWEVER, as stated above, the table is open, and no child attending worship with family will be told he or she cannot take Communion if that is their family’s practice.
- FBC Beverly recognizes baptisms from other religious traditions, and welcomes individuals from all backgrounds to attend our worship services.
Do I have to dress formally to attend your worship service?
We do not have a formal dress code, though most of the congregation dresses business-casual to business-formal. Everyone is welcome to worship, no matter what their attire.
What opportunities are there for adults?
FBC Beverly has many opportunities for adults to be involved in the life of the church! Ranging from our Music program to Mission trips to socializing groups like our adult fellowships, we offer many ways to meet other members of the church community and to serve the larger community. A good place to start is our Get Involved page, or you can connect with a minister through our Contact form.
What opportunities are there for youth?
FBC Beverly has many opportunities for youth to be involved in the life of the church! Ranging from our Music program (Children’s Choir and JoyRingers Bell Choir) to Mission trips to socializing groups like our Youth Fellowships, we offer many ways for youth to meet other young members of the church community and to serve the larger community. If you are interested in learning more, we encourage you to connect with a minister through our Contact form.
What volunteer opportunities are in the church?
Do I need to be an official church member to participate in service/programs/outreach?
No, you do not need to be a member to participate. Just speak with a minister in person, or by phone/email here.
How can I join one of the musical programs?
Where can I see some previous sermons?
We have video archive of recent sermons available here.
What do American Baptists believe?
There are many different types of Baptist churches out in the world. Many of these individual churches affiliate with a wider group, known as a denomination. American Baptists represent one such group. American Baptists had their start when Northern Baptists split from the Southern Baptists over the issue of slavery during Civil War era America, and, as these churches spread across the country, they came to be known as American Baptists, rather than simply Northern Baptists.
American Baptists believe very strongly in something called soul freedom. Soul freedom means that each person has the absolute right and ability to a personal relationship with God and with faith, without having to adhere to a certain creed or without a member of the clergy to provide access to God. As a member of a priesthood of all believers, each Baptist is called to minister to others. As such, Baptists place a high priority on living out the faith through mission and service.
American Baptists also believe in direct access to the scripture, freedom from creedal restrictions and freedom of individual interpretation. A Baptist distinctive is believer’s baptism by immersion, a public testimony of the experience of personal salvation. Many Baptist churches accept baptism from other traditions, and First Baptist Church in Beverly is one such church.
Baptists also believe in the autonomy of the local church. Clergy is called by and answers to the local congregation, not to some distant board or authority. This freedom also extends to religious freedom–the absolute separation between church and state.
First Baptist Church in Beverly also affiliates with the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists (AWAB), the Alliance of Baptists, and the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America. These are groups that work for our common mission of love, inclusion, and a work for peace and justice in the world.
What does Welcoming and Affirming mean?
To be Welcoming and Affirming means that FBC Beverly welcomes, accepts, celebrates, and affirms the unique personhood and divine creation of all people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. We believe all people are God’s beloved children, created by God and loved equally and fully. First Baptist Church in Beverly is a member of the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists , a group dedicated to advocating for and advancing the rights of LGBTQ people and advocating for the full inclusion of these believers into the wider life of the church.
What accessibility accommodations are available?
Our building is fully accessible, with automatic doors in the front and back of the church as well as an elevator running between all floors. We also offer flexible seating arrangements to permit individuals in wheelchairs to be integrated with the standard seating arrangements, and provide portable hearing aids integrated with our sound system. For more information, please see our Accessibility page.
We also offer materials and spaces to help young children and their parents be fully involved. For more information about these materials and space, see our Families with children page.
Is childcare available?
Yes! Childcare is available during Sunday Worship service as well as during church meetings and other church events. Please see our Families with children page for more information.
If I don't attend your church, will the clergy perform services (weddings, funerals) for me?
What facilities do you rent out?
We rent out many of our rooms to local nonprofits. A full list of facilities is available on our Building Use page.
Where do I park?
On weekdays, until 5, much of the lot directly behind the church (off of Hale St.) is reserved for church and Harborlight Nursery School staff; however, there are two Church Visitor spots. However, there is another parking lot located across from the back of the church on Hale St. and a larger municipal lot off of Cabot Street, located between Bow St. and Federal St. (behind the Fu Loon restaurant). Cabot St. also has free street parking on Sundays.
How do I contact the ministers? What are your office hours?
You can contact a minister either by phone or email. That information is available on our Contact page.
Our office hour change by season. During the school year our office hours are Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.. During the summer months, our hours are Monday-Thursday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Friday 9 a.m. to noon.