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What To Expect On A Sunday

Sometimes it is just nice to know what to expect before going into an unfamiliar building with unfamiliar people. We consider it an honor that you’re considering spending some time with us.  So here, we try to give you an overview of a typical Sunday morning at The Oaks Community Church.

How to Get Here

Our campus is located in the southwest part of Bakersfield at 10200 Campus Park Drive.  There is a large parking lot in front of the main church building.  On Sunday mornings, all members of the family can enter through the main center doors.

 Arrival

When you arrive, everyone is greeted by a smiling face at the door. Our welcomers are there to answer your questions or to help guide you to the right place.  Restrooms are located off either side of the lobby.  Families with children aged grade 6 and below will check in their children in the main lobby. (See more details in the “Children & Youth” section below.)  From the lobby, head straight forward into the worship center.

If more information is needed, or you simply have a question, please find a greeter in the lobby or on our front porch.  They’ll be happy to guide you and help out.  And be sure to collect a special gift for first time guests at the Welcome Center.

The Sunday Morning Experience

Our Worship Service includes a time of congregational singing, Bible teaching and prayer. The praise and worship style is modern, using songs that are inspired by testimonies of faith in Christ and empowerment of the Holy Spirit.

We believe that the Christian faith is for the whole family and that our children learn best when the Christian faith is modeled by parents. For this reason, we include children aged 2 and up in our times of worship and communion. Before the message begins, we “dismiss” children ages 2 yrs – 6th grade to attend Journey With Jesus where they can hear a message geared for younger ears.  Students in grades 7-12 are also “dismissed” most Sundays to attend Empower, our ministry for jr. high and high schoolers.

That said, all children of all ages are welcome to stay throughout the whole service.

We share communion with one another about once a month (usually on the first Sunday of each month) and have baptism events a few times each year.
Though we try to extend a warm welcome to our guests, please rest assured that we will not ask you to stand up and identify yourself and will never knowingly embarrass you.  We desire for your visit to be comfortable and informal.

Children & Youth

We offer optional childcare for children 0 – 2 years in our secure nursery throughout the service. Additionally, a quiet room located towards the back of the worship center (into which the service is streamed live) is available for parents and their young children.  Preschool groups for toddlers and children/youth groups for students K-12th grade begin mid-service. Children and youth will start out with their parents in the worship service but will be dismissed part way through the service to have a Bible study and other activities most appropriate for their age.

All children (up to those in grade six) should be signed into our registration system.  Ipads are found in the lobby before the service (each child takes less than 1 minute to sign in) where you can check-in to our secure attendance system.  You will sign your children out when you collect them, directly from their room, after the service.

Service Times & Duration

Our Sunday service starts at 10AM.  The service usually lasts around 90 minutes. We invite you to stay around after the service for refreshments served in our lobby.

What to Wear

We invite you to come in comfortable attire.  You will see casual California wear (including shorts and t-shirts), while others dress in more “business casual.”  Still others prefer to wear their “Sunday best.”  We are generally an informal church and you are welcome to dress in an outfit that helps you feel comfortable.

Flags

Our main worship center is adorned with over fifty national flags that represent the home countries of our church family members or nations with which we have meaningful ties.  We are a truly diverse community of believers and love how the colors and ages of our local church family represent God’s heart for all nations and all people.

Who is the Sr. Pastor?

Pastor Gary Barber is licensed and ordained by The Christian & Missionary Alliance.  He has served in a full-time ministry role for over 30 years.  Previous positions include working as a chaplain for the Bakersfield Rescue Mission and serving as a pastor for Calvary Chapel in the San Francisco Bay area.  Gary is the founding pastor of The Oaks Community Church in Bakersfield, which began in 1994.  Gary completed his B.A. at Westmont College, Santa Barbara, a Master of Arts at Fuller Theological Seminary, and is currently completing a Doctorate of Ministry, through Alliance Theological Seminary, NY.  Gary is married to Lori and together they are the proud parents of four adult children.

Is the Oaks Community Church a Part of a Denomination?

We are a member church of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. Our priorities are loving God and loving others, and fulfilling Christ’s Great Commission. We are committed to teaching and living out the Bible through God’s grace in the vibrant and life-giving power of the Holy Spirit.   Our full Statement of Belief can be found here.

Where Can I Find Extra Information?

Our website is up-to-date and serves as the best source of information about different things happening at The Oaks Community Church.  Alternatively, feel free to contact us via this website (various ministries and ministry leaders have their email address posted).   Or you can send a general message to contact us here for more information.  Our phone number is 661-663-3888.