We understand that visiting a church for the first time can be intimidating, uncomfortable and perhaps even scary. We want to assure you that you are welcome to come "as you are" with no judgment or pressure. Remember that the church is not a building but a people, and we're just a bunch of friendly, warm-hearted and generous folks who receive visitors as a gift from God. We consider you to be a gift to US and want to receive you with as much hospitality as possible.
Hopewell Mennonite Church
805 N Main St
Kouts, IN 46347
The church is located on State Route 49 on the north edge of Kouts, about 10 miles south of Valparaiso.
9:30 am - Sunday School for all ages
10:30 am - Worship
"What should I wear?"
Clothes! That's really all we ask. Modesty and respect are important, but we are much more concerned with what's happening on the inside of a person than what's on the outside. Some of us dress quite casually in jeans and a nice shirt or even shorts in the summer months. Others of us grew up in an age when wearing your "Sunday best" was important and they continue to wear suits and dresses. Pastor Joel typically wears khaki pants and a nice shirt, and when he is feeling particularly inspired wears a tie.
The parking lot wraps around the entire church; feel free to park anywhere.
There are main entrance doors on either side in the middle of the
When you enter you will be in the foyer between the sanctuary (up the steps) and the fellowship hall.
Chances are you'll see people lingering around and conversing with each other. Someone, perhaps the official greeter but probably anyone from the church, should greet you and welcome you. If no one greets you or says hello, please tell pastor Joel!
The bathrooms are just off of the foyer directly across from the kitchen.
"What time does worship start?"
We also have Sunday School for all ages beginning at 9:30am.
"Do my kids sit with me?"
For the most part, yes. We believe that it is valuable for children to learn to be present in worship...and we accept that children will make noises and sometimes be a distraction. We're just glad children are there, noisy or not!
On the 2nd Sunday of each month there is a "Junior Message" story time in which younger children come to the front for a story. If you are visiting feel free to send your children with the others or have them remain in their seat.
On the 4th Sunday of each month we have "Children's Church" in which the children leave the sanctuary for a more kid-friendly experience. They either return to the parents at the end of the worship service or parents may pick up their children in the fellowship hall following worship.
We are presently working on staffing the nursery during the worship service so that parents may drop off their young children in the nursery for worship if that is their wish.
"What if my kids start acting up?"
While it can be embarrassing for the parents if a child is "being a child", we assure you that we're just glad you and your children are with us! If you feel the need to duck out, there are nursery rooms along the south side of the sanctuary (on your right if you are facing the front of the sanctuary). These rooms are accessible from the rear of the sanctuary, or from the south door toward the front of the sanctuary.
"Will the worship leader call attention to me?"
No, or at least not without your permission. We welcome our guests but do not want to embarrass them by making them stand or anything like that. There is a red or black "welcome pad" in each row where you can sign in and share your phone and/or address so that we can stay in touch if you wish.
"What style of worship does Hopewell have?"
A typical Sunday morning worship service lasts about an hour and generally includes a call to worship, prayer, singing, scripture reading, meditation, and benediction. We have a variety of music styles that vary Sunday to Sunday. Many Sundays there is a band with piano, guitar, bass and drums. Some Sundays there is a single song leader with guitar, and still other Sundays we sing acapella hymns. Most Sundays include at least one hymn.
We believe that what's more important than music style preference is the posture of the heart in worship. We all have our preferences and try to meet those preferences, but a true heart of worship will give God praise because of, or in spite of, the current music style being led.