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Frequently Asked Questions

//FAQ’s
FAQ’s 2017-03-04T11:40:31+00:00
If you are looking for some quick bullet points, here you go. . . .

  • Typically people dress casually, but feel free to dress however you would like.
  • Our services run anywhere from 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours.
  • Our worship style is blended with more of an accent on the contemporary side.
  • Services are a nice mixture of laughter and seriousness, head and heart.

If you are looking for a more-in-depth answer. . . .

  • We hope you will find our worship services to be engaging, relevant, practical and meaningful.
  • Our music team (vocalists and band) leads us in singing a nice mixture of contemporary songs and ancient hymns, making sure that the focus is on authentic worship and not some vague sentimentality. Our desire is to be transparent in our worship and to make sure that the songs chosen reflect the deep commitments, the frailties and the longings of our hearts and to remind us again and again of what is true.
  • We believe that our service must speak to the whole person and appeal to all the senses and address the intellect, the emotion and the will. We try to do so in a way that is encouraging, offers a good balance between seriousness and laughter and is filled with grace (we do not want to be heavy-handed, manipulative or driven by guilt).
  • We feature a time of corporate prayer and invite people to pray out loud if they desire or to use the time to pray silently in their own hearts.
  • We center our services around the Word of God by proclaiming in practical, relevant ways how Jesus can transform our lives.
  • At the end of each service, we have a time called “Interact,” where we invite everyone to stick around to greet one another, enjoy light refreshments and have great conversations.
We love children at River’s Edge!  During the first half of our worship, preschoolersand elementary-aged children (ages 3 – 5th grade) worship with their families in our service; and then just prior to the sermon, they are dismissed to classes specially designed to nurture them in their spiritual growth. Nursery-aged children (infants through age 2) will receive loving care throughout the entire service.  We’re grateful for the use of classrooms that are well-equipped for young children thanks to Mother’s Day Out of Westchester, who are also tenants and friends at the Community Center.
Once you come in the front door, our team of greeters will be happy to answer any of your questions and help you get situated. They can also direct you to various ministry leaders to answer additional questions.  The Information Table also provides insight into what is going on and how you can get involved.
Absolutely not! At River’s Edge we value your desire to be as anonymous as you would like. Our desire is to be warm and friendly, to be available to you and to make you feel as welcomed and comfortable as possible. We will not pry or make you do anything even slightly embarrassing. We want you to know that you can come without fear and enter into the River’s Edge conversation at your own pace without pressuring you to do anything.

If you’d like more information or to talk with someone about River’s Edge or your relationship with God, please complete a green “Welcome” form at the Information Table.

We do not have any adult classes on Sunday morning. Our primary vehicle for developing adults is through our Community Groups program which meets in various homes around the area during the week.
The story of redemption reaches its climax in the book of Revelation where people from every language, tongue and tribe surround the throne of God with praise and worship (Revelation 7:9-12). As Jurgen Moltmann argues, the Christian faith is “eschatological,” meaning that what will be in eternity ought to shape our lives dramatically today. We live in light of the coming new creation. Not only that, but the Great Commission calls us to take the gospel to the ends of the earth (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8) because it has always been God’s desire for the whole world to know him (Genesis 12:3; Exodus 19:5-7; Isaiah 42:1-9). And it is impossible not to have an international focus when we read of Jesus’ heart for those who are spiritually lost (see especially Luke 5 & 15; John 4 and Jesus’ statement about drawing all peoples to himself in John 12:32).

The heartbeat of the early church was to reach their world for Christ, and we want to follow in their footsteps. We desire to be involved in world missions and in reaching the world at our doorstep. Our mission ministries abroad include works in the Germany, Czech Republic and Asia. At home, we serve internationals by serving new immigrants and by working with the Chinese community here. All of our services are translated into Chinese, and we look forward to the day when we can expand and offer live translation into other languages, as well. One day, we will worship together as one with people from every language, tongue and tribe. That sure reality shapes our lives today, and it has enriched us beyond our wildest dreams.

“You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.”
— Carmichael

We take a financial offering because we need constant reminders that life is not all about us, that life is all about giving ourselves away. We give ourselves to God in gratitude through worship and service. We give of our resources to participate in the advancement of the kingdom. We give ourselves away to others joyfully as part of our calling to love God and love our neighbors. We give because we know that our hearts and our treasures are intertwined (Matthew 6:21), and we never want to develop a hard heart. We give because we love and we know that “you can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving” (Carmichael).

We hope those who visit River’s Edge as guests feel no obligation to participate in the financial offering. The financial offering is designed as a way for the members of River’s Edge to honor their commitment to contribute to God’s work, both here and around the world.

In addition to writing a check, electronic giving via your bank is an option we offer.

Learn more about electronic giving

“To encourage and equip people to become passionate followers of Christ Jesus and to embrace his mission as their own.”

  • This statement tells us how we are going to undertake our mission: We are going to be encouraging.
  • It tells us what we want to do with the people God gives us: We want to equip them and give them the tools they need for life.
  • It tells us what is the goal: We want to move people to become passionate followers of Christ Jesus.
  • It tells us how we will know people are moving in the right direction: We will see them embrace Jesus’ mission as their own, embodying a life of service, compassion, grace and love as they proclaim in word and deed that Jesus is Lord.
We have delineated 8 core values that shape what we do and how we do it.

  • God’s grace defines us and shapes us at the core of our being. Grace molds our hearts, minds, motives, and actions. We are a people of grace.
  • God’s grace calls us to embody loving relationships with everyone he puts in our path.
  • God’s grace moves us to invest in those who do not have a relations with God through Jesus because lost people matter to God.
  • God’s grace calls us all to grow in our faith.
  • God’s grace exhibited in Jesus declares that we only grow as we give ourselves away for the cause of Christ(in the world we measure success by what we have; in the church we measure it by what we give away).
  • God’s grace calls us to be authentic, expressing every emotion from deepest lament to overwhelming joy.
  • God’s grace calls us to be relevant, speaking to all the needs of the human heart in ways people can understand.
  • God’s grace calls us to pray diligently, for we know that apart from God we can do nothing.
PCA-logo Yes. We are a member of the Presbyterian Church in America. As such, we have a high view of the Bible and adopt the Westminster Confession of Faith, including the Larger and Shorter Catechisms as our doctrinal standards. We are also governed by the PCA’s Book of Church Order. As a connectional church, we receive all the benefits of being part of a larger body: increased mission opportunities both here and abroad, shared resources with sister churches and mutual support and encouragement. Knowing that we are part of a family of like-minded churches seeking to extend the Kingdom of God wherever possible enables our reach to extend our grasp.

Please note, though, that we have people from many different backgrounds who attend River’s Edge; and you don’t have to align yourself with the beliefs of the PCA in order to worship together with us. We desire to meet you wherever you are in your spiritual journey and walk alongside you in whatever way we can.

River’s Edge has elders who provide oversight for the spiritual health of the church. Presently, we have two ruling elders and one teaching elder (a ruling elder is a layman called to serve the church by forwarding its vision, giving oversight to its members, encouraging spiritual growth and praying for the body; a teaching elder has those responsibilities, plus the primary calling of proclaiming God’s Word and administering the sacraments). All elders are elected by the congregation and, in so doing, form a representative form of government (hence, presbyterian). Together, the elders (also called the “session”) work together to implement our vision, encourage spiritual growth in our people, empower people for ministry, pray for the congregation and oversee all the strategic decisions of the church.

River’s Edge also believes that God has empowered numerous others to occupy leadership roles within the church. Not all leaders are elders! We are thankful for the men and women God has raised up to propel the work of the church forward and are always looking for emerging leaders who can take us to the next level. We believe in empowering people for ministry, in deploying teams for a task and in allowing the Spirit to raise up passionate, gifted people for particular callings. We want to value your calling, your giftedness, your personality style and your passion and to celebrate how God is working in your life to do the work of the ministry. At River’s Edge we believe everyone has a role and that every role is vital; and we want to turn people loose to serve in ways that fill them with joy, fill others with thankfulness, and give glory to God.

River’s Edge embraces the following beliefs (all items marked with an asterisk [*] are required for membership).

  • We believe that there is one God, eternal and self-existing in three persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) who are to be equally loved, honored, and adored.*
  • We believe that God is the Creator and sovereign King over all the world including all of our affairs.*
  • We believe that God can be personally known through his Son, Jesus Christ.*

Man and Sin

  • We believe that all mankind participated in Adam’s fall from his original sinless state and is thus lost in sin and totally helpless.*
  • We believe that humanity was created in God’s image which means among other things that we were designed for a relationship with God.*
  • We believe that sin is a far greater problem than we realize and has polluted everything we do, including our motives, thoughts, styles of relating, and acts.
  • We believe we are all relational people who long to love and be loved; passionate people who move through life with a compelling energy; thoughtful people who reach conclusions about God, ourselves, and others that guide us as we live; purposeful people who decide what direction to take as we try to handle life and selfish people who are determined to find some way to survive in a terrifying world without ever trusting God.

Concerning Jesus

  • We believe that Jesus is God and that he willingly came to earth to give his life as a sacrifice so that we could experience a relationship with God; that through his death we were forgiven and, as a result, reconciled to God.* We believe that Jesus rose bodily from the dead and now offers eternal life to all who call upon his name.*
  • We believe that Jesus ascended into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of the Father, where he, the only mediator between God and man, continually makes intercession for his own.*
  • We believe that Jesus Christ will return to earth, visibly and bodily, at some unknown time in the future, to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.*

The Bible

  • We believe that the Bible is the authoritative Word of God, inspired and inerrant in the original manuscripts, comprised of the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testament.*
  • We believe the Bible is our unfailing map to spiritual fulfillment and is the only infallible guide for faith and practice.*
  • We believe there are no other writings similarly inspired by God.*
  • We believe that what the Bible teaches is summarized best by the Westminster Confession of Faith, together with the Larger and Shorter Catechism.

Salvation

  • We believe that the Sovereign God, for no other reason than His own unfathomable love and mercy, has chosen lost sinners from every nation to be redeemed by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit and through the atoning death and resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ.*
  • We believe that on the cross Jesus took our sins upon himself and, at the same time, clothed us with his righteousness.*
  • We believe that through Jesus Christ we can know God and experience his love, a love that fills us and gives meaning and purpose to every aspect of our lives.*
  • We believe that those sinners whom the Spirit quickens, come to believe in Christ as Savior by the Word of God, are born again, become sons and daughters of God, and will persevere to the end.
  • We believe that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.*

The Christian Life

  • We believe that the goal of God’s salvation in the life of the Christ follower is gratitude, which shows itself in holiness, good works, and service for the glory of God.*
  • We believe that participation in a local church is an essential component in the Christian’s life.
  • We believe that the Holy Spirit gives men and women gifts for service in his church.
  • We believe that Christ has given us the celebration of the Lord’s Supper and covenant baptism to strengthen his church. Baptism, we believe is a sign of God’s covenant and is properly administered to children of believers in their infancy, as well as to those who come as adults to trust in Christ.
  • We believe that the Gospel of God’s salvation in Jesus Christ must be published to all the world as a witness before Jesus Christ.*
  • We welcome people of all backgrounds, orientation, and persuasion to enter into a life with the true and good God.*