traditional worship AT FIRST CHURCH

Sanctuary Worship

Sanctuary Worship at First Church is designed to bring the worshiper closer to the Glory of God through the United Methodist tradition of singing familiar and new hymns, reading of scriptures, prayer, and presentations to the Glory of God by a variety of choirs, organ and handbells. 

The service uses other traditional elements such as the Lord's Prayer, Creeds and Biblically based sermons in conjunction with the presentation of major works by choirs and occasional use of newer worship elements such as projection. 

Holy Communion is served weekly at the 8:15 a.m. service and once a month at 10:45 a.m., usually on the first Sunday of the month. Children are encouraged to attend, however childcare is also provided for younger children. The best way to worship our God and His risen Son Jesus Christ is with a friend, so make sure you bring someone with you when you worship at First Church! 

Scroll down to learn more about the Choirs of First Church, Lancaster as well as the Wesley Singers.


Chancel Choir - Dr. Brian Norcross, Director

The Chancel Choir sings anthems for most 10:45 services, September through May and also sings for 8:15 services on select festival services. The choir is open to all singers, high school age and older. Two rehearsals are offered for singers to choose: 1) Thursday nights 7:45 to 9:15, working on the anthem for the week, anthems for future Sundays and a major work; and 2) Sunday mornings 9:30 to 10:30, working exclusively on the anthem for that week. The Chancel Choir generally prepares two major works each season, which are performed in worship services. The repertoire of the Chancel Choir is highly varied ranging from "classical" music to spirituals. Major works usually include full orchestra accompaniment. To join, come to rehearsal, which is located in the choir room, on the lower level of the building. For more information, contact Brian Norcross at 717-358-4233, or email Brian

Chapel Choir (Youth in Grades 7-12) - Peter Omundsen, Director

The choir sings for 8:15 and 10:45 traditional services, once a month, from September through May. The Chapel Choir rehearses Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 8:00, in the lower level Choir Room. For more information, contact Peter Omundsen by calling the church at 717-394-7231.

Children's Choirs - Jan Betty, Director

Contact Mrs. Jan Betty for Cherub and Carol Choir information at 717-653-9537 or email her here.

Cherub Choir (Children Age 3 - Grade 2)

Choir practice is on Saturdays, 10:30-11:30 AM in Room 103

Carol Choir (Children in Grades 3-6)

Choir practice is on Wednesdays, in Room 203

Wesley Handbell Choir - Peter Omundsen, Director

The Wesley Handbells is the adult handbell choir and open to anyone who reads music. The Choir rings once a month for the 8:15 and 10:45 services, and rehearses Thursday nights from 6:30 to 7:30 in the Handbell Room, located on the lower level of the building. To join please contact Peter Omundsen by calling the church at 394-7231.


Youth Handbell Choir (Youth in Grades 7-12) - Peter Omundsen, Director

The Youth Handbell Choir is open to middle and high school age ringers. The choir rings for 8:15 and 10:45 traditional services approximately once every other month from September through May. The Youth Handbells rehearse Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 7:00.  To join please contact Peter Omundsen by calling the church at 717-394-7231.

Instrumentalists and Soloist

Those who play instruments and wish to praise God in worship can present solos or offertories for all traditional services (8:15 and 10:45), or be a part of the orchestra presenting major cantata events (select 8:15 and 10:45 services). If you wish to participate in this capacity, please contact Brian Norcross at 717-358-4233. If you would like to explore the opportunity to perform during the contemporary service, playing an instrument, singing or performing in the Easter or Christmas production, please contact Joe Anthony at 717-394-7231.

the wesley singers

Why do we get together?

For male fellowship and to sing at retirement homes in Lancaster County. We also sing as requested for funerals of deceased members of our group.

When do we get together?

There are two series, one in the spring and one in the fall of each year. Each series consists of three Mondays. The first Monday we rehearse in the morning, have lunch together and finish a short rehearsal after lunch. The next two Mondays we rehearse in the morning, have lunch together and sing at two selected retirement homes in the afternoon.

What is the makeup of the group?

The base group is made up of First United Methodist Church male members here in Lancaster who are retired, or have an interest in joining in our singing. We have a significant number of members of other faiths included in our group as well.

What are the requirements for inclusion?

Nothing more than an interest in male fellowship in a choral context. We do not present ourselves as being accomplished singers nor does our director expect us to be. 

Check out the Wesley Singers on YouTube by clicking the picture to the left.

For more information regarding this great group of men who share the message of God's love, grace and mercy through voice and music, contact Ted Maurer at (717) 299-4650.