vibe /vīb/

1. A distinctive emotional quality or atmosphere that is sensed or experienced by someone.

Every church has a different feel and it can be a little nerve wracking to visit for the first time not knowing what to expect. Hopefully this gives you a basic idea of what you’ll find at First Reformed on a Sunday morning.

Dress

You’re welcome to come just as you are! People dress in a variety of styles from shirt and tie to shorts and Hawaiian shirts or jeans and t-shirts. We encourage people to dress in a way that helps them connect to God: dress up to show respect to the Lord, or dress down to feel comfortable in His love and grace.

Ages

Our congregation is on the older side currently and we love that! We have lots of grandmas and grandpas around to share wisdom and experience, but we also have a growing number of young families and even college students. Our goal is to serve whoever comes through our doors.

That said, we will have a full range of programming for infant through 12th grade starting in Fall ’24:

  • This includes Nursery and First Kids (Pre-K to 5th) on Sunday morning,
  • and weekly Student Ministry groups for Middle and High School.
  • We take a break from Kids Programs during the summer and all are welcome for the whole service in “big church”.

Services

Our building is traditional and one of the oldest buildings in Portage! Constructed originally in 1910, our sanctuary has pews and stained glass. The window at the front of the Sanctuary was added in the 90’s and has lots of symbols of God’s story to look at and consider.

Our structure is basic: we greet everyone with scripture, share brief announcements, enter into worship through singing 2-3 songs, occasionally have readings or responsive readings with the congregation, have corporate prayer and take an offering (the old school pass the plate way!!), a children’s message during the summer, a Biblical message, and concluded with a song and blessing. Occasionally, we have special elements like Communion, baptisms, church membership, testimonies, etc.

Music

We have a Praise Team made up of Jan our Music Director and volunteers from the congregation. We have a full band most Sundays and 2-4 vocalists, do a variety of hymns and choruses, and ,while we aren’t going to produce a modern worship album anytime soon, we have good musicians with worshipful hearts. We are not high production, but are high participation. We are always looking for those with musical gifts to join us expressing God’s goodness through instrument and song!

Sermons

Kyle has a heart for helping people know and love the Scriptures. He picks books of the Bible to teach through, and then takes occasional breaks for special Sundays or topical series. His aim is to help people learn about The Gospel by learning about the text, see connections through God’s whole revelation, and then be equipped and inspired to actually live out what is learned. He hopes you’ll leave each Sunday feeling loved but also challenged.

Hangouts

We have a variety of ways to hangout with one another, whether it’s to grow spiritually, serve, or just have fun (typically with food!). You’ll find people friendly and while we are probably majority blue-collar types, we have a variety of backgrounds, life-stages, educations, and careers. And we also want to help you connect in whatever way you feel comfortable. A great first step is filling out our Connect Card either on Sunday morning or by going here.