320 E College Street, Iowa City, Iowa 52240 Sunday Worship, 7:45am, 9:00am, 11:00am

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s with the colorful tree in your front yard?

Right in front of the tree is our outdoor prayer desk built by a member of the parish. It contains a notebook where people can record their prayer requests. In addition, fabric strips are available to tie on a nearby tree as a visible symbol of their prayers offered to God. The petitions are read aloud at the Tuesday morning healing service.

I’m not familiar with a lot of the actions that the congregation is doing during worship. What am I supposed to do?

Episcopalians are comfortable with a wide variety of physical expressions of devotion and adoration during worship.  You may see people bowing, making the sign of the cross, kneeling and standing throughout the service.  You are free to participate in ways that you are comfortable.  If you are not comfortable or able to kneel at the times indicated in the bulletin, please stand.  If you are not able to stand, please remain seated.

Who can take Eucharist (Communion)?

All baptized persons are invited to receive Holy Communion. You may receive both the bread and the wine or just one of them.  Gluten-free bread is also consecrated.  When the priest comes to you with bread, say “gluten-free.”

What if I’m not comfortable taking one of the elements or taking Eucharist (Communion)

The Eucharist may be received by taking both or just one of the elements.  If you cannot or do not want to take one of the elements, simply cross your arms over your chest in an “X” shape.  If you do not want to take Eucharist at all you may still come forward and receive a blessing from the priest.  Simply cross your arms as the priest approaches you.  You may also remain in your seat during Eucharist.

Do you offer gluten-free bread?

Yes. Simply ask the priest.

What are the people doing who are lined up along the side aisle during Eucharist?

Trinity has a very active Healing Touch ministry. During the  8:45 and 11:00 Sunday services, one of our healing touch practitioners is  available in the alcove at the side of the Nave to anoint and pray over anyone wishing healing for him/herself or for loved ones.


I don’t understand a lot of the terms.  Can you give me some definitions?

Acolyte:  A youth or adult who assists the priest during the service.  Some of the acolyte’s duties are to carry the candles, hand the elements to the priest or deacon and ring the bell during Eucharist.

Book of Common Prayer (BCP):  The red book in the pew rack which contains the order for many of the services that may be used.   It also includes Psalms, prayers, an outline of the faith, and the historical documents of the Church.

Chalice Bearer:  This person serves the wine to the members of the congregation during Eucharist.

Collect:  Prayer appointed for each Sunday and Holy Day in the Church year.

Crucifer:  An adult or youth who carries the cross during the service.

Deacon:  An order of ordained ministry with a special focus on bringing the needs of the world to the Church. The deacon assists with the preparation of Eucharist, reading the Gospel, or delivering the sermon.

Elements: The bread and wine used during Eucharist.

Eucharist:  From the Greek word meaning “thanksgiving.” Also known as Communion.

Narthex:  The gathering area immediately outside the worship space.

Nave:  The place in the church where the congregation sits during worship.

Parish:  The members of a congregation and the building where they gather.

Priest:  An order of ordained ministry and spiritual leader of the church; during worship presides at the Eucharist, blesses the elements and the people, preaches, and proclaims God’s blessing.

Rite:  The form of the text used in worship services, including what is said and what is done.

Sanctuary: The place in the worship space where the altar is located.

Thurifer:  An adult or youth who carries the incense when it is used during worship.

Verger:  Leads the procession and recession of the priests and other worship leaders at the beginning and end of the service.