Before catching our lunchtime train back north, Nicole – who had come to Nottingham with me – and I went to church on Sunday morning. There was a church not far from where we were staying, and so we decided to gatecrash their 9am service. And very good it was too, so I have felt moved to write a wee report.
The church was St Nic’s, an evangelical Anglican church which – despite their tagline “Living on the edge with Jesus” – could not have been handier for the city centre. A fairly ordinary and unassuming building from the outside, the interior was bright, spacious, modern and above all very welcoming.
As were the people – before the service two different people came to speak to us in our (very comfy) seats and gave us warm welcomes, asking who we were, where we were from, and – in one case – precisely what the difference between the Church of Scotland the Church of England was. I can’t quite remember how I answered that one, but it might have been along the lines of “less bishops, duller sermons”.
The service itself, clocking in at just over an hour, was a Holy Communion (whatever that means – yes, there’s another difference), and the mostly older congregation of about 50 was led by the fully robed minister in a service that more or less entirely revolved around the liturgy.
Now I’m not a fan of the liturgy (you can tick off a further difference) – clergy study faith and the Bible for years, and you’d rather hope they could think up their own words. But it was a novelty to have it done on the projector screen rather than in dog-eared books with pen ink scribblings on them, and the sermon and music were very good too.
On our way out, more folk spoke to us, including one who said goodbye and remembered our names from before the service. We also chatted briefly to the very pleasant minister. Although he’s probably called Rector, it being Church of England.
Overall, there was a lovely atmosphere to the place – loving, welcoming, and a great sense of community. It was perhaps not a typical picture of St Nic’s however – the later morning service was the more family-orientated one, and the evening one more youth-friendly, and so perhaps things are different then, I obviously don’t know.
If you find yourself needing a church in Nottingham, then I could heartily recommend this one.