We want you to feel as comfortable as possible on your first visit with us at Otterbein, so we have put together a few items to help you know what to expect.
At Otterbein, we know what it is like to go to church for the first time. It can be a little awkward and even scary—especially if you don’t know anyone. We want to assure you that we will do everything we can to make your visit with us a positive one. We encourage you to stop at Guest Central in the church lobby as you enter the church where a helpful volunteer will answer any questions you have and provide an overview of our church programs. Greeters and ushers are accessible and available to answer any questions you might have. Directional signs will point you toward our nursery, classrooms and sanctuary. You may also feel free to ask anyone you come in contact with for help. If they can’t help you, they will take you to someone who can. At Otterbein, we are used to guests, and our church wants to help you have a good first-time experience.
Taking good care of our preschoolers is a high priority for us. You will find a safe and secure nursery and preschool area that is staffed with loving adults. When you arrive at one of our check-in stations, you will be greeted by one of our staff who will ask if you have any special concerns or needs. To assure safety for your child, parents of infants are given a notification pager to be used while in the church so that you can be contacted if your child has a special need. We also utilize a security tag system for all our children (nursery and prechool) to assure that your child will only be released to you. Our rooms are clean, sanitized and cheerful.
Parents want the best for their kids. They want them to learn. They want them to be safe. They want them to make the right kind of friends. They want them to be around adults they can look up to. We appreciate those desires of parents and try hard to fulfill those expectations. Our children’s ministries are fun and exciting, and kids love going to the various activities offered at the church. Our adult staff genuinely cares about their students and are committed to help them learn about God and what the Bible has to say about life.
It seems like every time you turn around, there is bad news about teenagers. They are often portrayed as troublemakers and problems. We believe teens are people of great value and that they will have a significant impact on the future of the church and our wold. We have a growing youth program with a full-time youth pastor on our staff. Our youth have their own facility, a praise and worship band, meetings that are fun and helpful, and leaders who are committed to help teens make a real difference.
We understand that one of the biggest criticisms of the church is that the sermons are boring and not very helpful. Our pastors try very hard to make sure that the sermons don’t just teach about the Bible, but that they also talk about how to put into practice what the Bible says. We use various forms of media to help explain the Bible, and outlines of the messages are provided every week so you can take notes and think more about the teaching in the messages after you leave the church.
Music has always been a very important part of going to church. At Otterbein, we believe music is one of the principle ways God wants us to worship Him when we are together with other followers of Christ. We also believe music provides a way for us to express our devotion and love to Him. We use various instruments including an organ and piano in the early service (8 a.m.), and our choir shares a song with us most Sundays. In the 9:20 and 10:45 a.m. services, we use keyboards, drums, bass, acoustic and electric guitars, and the music is led by a small group of singers. In all the services the songs are uplifting and meaningful. If you like music you will love the music at Otterbein.
Otterbein has a balance of people from all age groups. So, whether you are 20, 55 or 75, you will find people at the church who are the same age. We also have singles, married, divorced and widowed at our church. Whatever season of life you are in, Otterbein includes others in a similar season.
Some churches are very formal and others are very loose. At Otterbein, we are somewhere in the middle. Our worship services have structure to them, but they are not rigid. People dress in a variety of clothing styles ranging from dresses to slacks and from suits to jeans. Some of our facilities look like a church (like our sanctuary) while others look more like a community center or school. The bottom line is that we want people to feel “comfortable” at church so they can hear the truth of God’s Word and not worry about the external issues that people often focus on when they go to church.
We have three worship services each Sunday morning. They begin at 8, 9:20 and 10:45 a.m. The 8 a.m. service is more traditional/blended in style than the 9:20 and 10:45 services which are more contemporary. Nursery and children’s ministries are provided at all services. The youth ministry programs (grades 6–12) meet at 9:20. So whether you are an early riser or late sleeper, we have a time that fits your schedule.
As you may have heard, Otterbein is a fairly large church compared to other churches in the area. Sometimes people have the idea that at a large church, you are just a number. But the truth is, no one is simply a number at Otterbein. While it is true that you will not know everyone when you attend Otterbein, we have many opportunities for you to meet people and develop friendships. Our size also allows us to offer some programs that others are not able to offer simply because we have more resources. Don’t let size scare you away. We believe that after you attend, you will agree that our size is a plus.
The church is located in the Borough of Waynesboro at the corner of Park and Ninth Streets which is just off of South Potomac Street near the Antietam Pharmacy and the Parlor House Restaurant. The church address is 801 Park Street, and the Ministry Center address is 912 South Potomac Street. We are just minutes from Greencastle, Mont Alto, Smithsburg, Blue Ridge Summit, New Franklin and North Hagerstown. Click here for directions.
Most of our parking is located behind our church. You can also park on the street in front of our church, in the shopping center lot beside the church or in our Ministry Center parking lot. Handicap parking is also available on the street in front of the church and immediately behind the church building in our lower lot. Special parking spaces are designated for guests and senior adults. We want you to feel free to use those parking spaces. Between each of our services, we have volunteers who drive golf carts to assist those who need help walking across the parking lot or getting from the lower lot to the main church entrance.