Checking us out? Welcome! Read on to get a little bit of a feel for what we’re like, how we do things and what you might want to know the first time you come along to a Sunday gathering. Any questions not answered here, ask away!
Who can come?
All are welcome! We want to model our lives of that of Jesus Christ, who both radically welcomed and received hospitality from those who his culture and society rejected or adored. Jesus doesn’t discriminate and we do our best not to either. We all get it wrong sometimes and thankfully we have a God who is quick and faithful to forgive and restore us.
Gatherings run every Sunday from about 10.30am-12.00pm, usually a mix of upbeat music, Biblical teaching, prayer and just hanging out together over a tea/coffee or meal. Don’t worry about being late!
The best way to get connected is to stick around after the more organised part for a bit, someone will come and have a chat. We generally finish the organised part by noon; and on the 3rd Sunday of the month we have lunch together afterwards (COVID restrictions permitting); please stay even if you didn’t bring anything.
There is only street parking around the Church. Note permit parking restrictions. A good place to park is beside St James Park, between Burwood and Denham Sts – a short walk away. We recommend walking/cycling/using public transport. There are bike racks near the Barton St entrance.
There is wheelchair/pram access via both our Barton St and Hill St entrances. There is a small ramp on Hill St.
Both male and female toilets are wheelchair friendly.
Kids are part of our gatherings as much as adults. Sometimes we will do separate things for them depending on the Sunday. There’s a fun, safe space to take them if they are a bit noisy, with books and toys.
When separate activities are provided for kids, they are run by keen volunteers who have Working With Children checks.
Both male and female toilets have baby change tables.
What to Wear
Wear whatever you feel like. We’re pretty casual, you will usually see some bare feet and very few if any ties. Whatever you are comfortable wearing, that’s fine. The facilities are pleasantly warm in winter, but can be a bit hot in summer, so dress accordingly.
Offering/Collection/Passing the Plate
We don’t have it during the service. Visitors are welcomed as our guests!
Regulars are encouraged to give electronically, or by putting their offering into our offering box.
Whatever you call it, if you are a follower of Jesus then you are welcome to join in it. If you are just checking things out, there’s no pressure at all.
Who meets as part of HWBC?
HWBC is made up of ordinary people from all walks of life. We don’t care what you wear, where you live or how much money you make (or don’t!).
We mostly live in Hawthorn, but also other suburbs nearby like Richmond, Kew, Canterbury, Surrey Hills, and others even further away!
The core of why we are who we are, is our shared interest in and love of Jesus. Everything else is secondary.
Our connection is ‘live’ all week with connect groups, play groups, young adults events, music events, and other forms of working and having fun together to love and serve our community.
When was HWBC founded?
HWBC is not a new church, in fact we have been around for over a century! We have a hope and dream that all of Melbourne will be renewed by getting to know Jesus, but we’re starting with our little part here…our building was put up in 1912, if you’re interested 🙂
I’ve heard HWBC is a bit unusual…
If you’ve been involved in a church before, you might be a bit surprised by a few things, such as not having a senior pastor who isn’t Jesus, and not taking an offering. If you’ve never been to church, don’t worry. No one will sign you up to anything or force you to believe anything. We value relationship above all else – after all, we believe in the God who calls himself ‘Love’ and sent Jesus to prove it.
If you think church should be about being formal, smooth and professional, or full of grand hymns played on an organ, with an 11 minute, 3-point intellectual sermon… well, we may not be the church for you!
But if the idea of a community of people who are working on being real, who try to welcome the hard questions of life, faith and everything…who can live with some mess and some happy chaos, who acknowledge brokenness, and delight in healing and reconciliation, and who are convinced that Jesus is the Answer, the Wisdom and the Truth that our world is longing for – if that appeals to you – then maybe you should come and get to know us.