If one word was to be used to describe the style of worship at St James the Greater, then that word would be "INSPIRATIONAL".
"Worship with beautiful music and thoughtful preaching" - that is the reputation we promote through our outside notice board. Evensong is as much a fulfillment of that promise as the morning service. Unlike many a cathedral and many a parish church, which has altogether abandoned an evening service, Evensong at St. James's is attended by large congregations and is a major growth point for our church - attractive to students and other young people as well as to the older generation. As a member of the congregation once said "It inspires me for the rest of the week".
It has also been said that Choral services can be more like concerts than acts of worship. This would be true if the intended audience were the congregation. However, the intended audience is NOT the congregation, but GOD. It is through the music and preaching that we find the inspiration to worship. Inspirational worship is what gives us the spiritual strength to "Go forth into the world", taking the Gospel with us.
Sunday morning services follow the traditional style of Eucharist, but using Common Worship as a basis. Once a month, usually the first Sunday, the service is an inclusive "All-Age" celebration. From time to time, special services and civic services are held to commemorate various events in the life of the nation, the city or the church.
Evensong at St. James's differs from the cathedral style in being 'Classic FM' rather than 'Radio 3'. The service is made accessible to all comers and usually there is a balance struck between choir and congregational participation. If the choir sings the Magnificat, the congregation sings the Nunc Dimittis or vice versa. Words of the anthem are usually made available in print for the congregation and there are, of course, hymns, which the congregation sings extremely well at St. James's !
As a Christian Church in a multi-cultural city, we delight in regularly welcoming visitors of other faiths. We are humbled by their presence with us and that too, is an inspiration to us all.