Frequently Asked Questions

New members are welcome at anytime! Express your desire to join by speaking to the Pastor. The church periodically holds New Member classes for those persons interested in becoming members. Visit our events webpage or contact the church office for more info.
For each of these rites you need to speak to and meet personally with the Pastor. There may be fees, honoraria and other costs; please ask for a Fee Schedule so that you can make plans. For more details please refer to our webpage,
No, you do not need to be an Episcopalian to receive Communion. Everyone desiring Holy Communion is invited to come forward at each service. All are welcome; No exceptions.
The Pastor meets personally with everyone who desires to be confirmed. Classes are held periodically for candidates to prepare for confirmation in the Episcopal Church. All candidates are confirmed by the Bishop during an official visitation. Adequate notice is given before these classes begin.
Our recent attendance averages about 150 people per Sunday. Depending on the time of year, 8 AM service has between 25 and 50 persons, and the 10 AM service has between 90 and 140. About 20 people attend our Wednesday evening 6 PM services. All attendance numbers are available from our church office.
Activities and events at COGS can be found on our Church Calendar and Events webpages. Activities are also highlighted in our weekly e-newsletter and printed on our Sunday Worship Bulletins.
You do not have belong to the church to attend these groups. We enjoy having instructors or organizations use our facility. Most of the activities listed on our Calendar or the Events webpage are open to the public. However, some of the outside community groups (Rotary, AA, Al-Anon, etc.) using our buildings are independent organizations with their own membership requirements. Please be sure to contact those organizations for further information.
If at all possible, church members should complete a Facilities Use Request Form and submit it to the church office. This form is also available in the downstairs lobby/office. You may email or hand in the form. If you are in need of an immediate meeting space you may contact the church office to see if space is available. For our neighbors and members of the community looking for an event or meeting space, please contact the church office to discuss your needs and our availability before submitting a Request to Use the Campus form.
The “Weekly News” is available via email subscription. Here we highlight information and activities at the church and in our community. These highlights are also mentioned at the beginning of each service and printed on our Worship Bulletins.
This fund, also known as the Rector’s Discretionary Fund, is used to help members and those in the community that are in need of financial assistance. Requests by non-members are reviewed by a committee before a decision is made. Church members are encouraged to speak directly to the Pastor when they need help. The privacy and confidentiality of church members is preserved as much as possible. The first Sunday of each month, loose offerings are designated for this fund. Additional designated gifts are welcome at any time.
COGS has two flower arrangements at each Sunday service. These flowers are given to the glory of God first and foremost, and then in honor of, in memory of, or in thanksgiving for a person or occasion. To learn more about sponsoring flowers, please visit our Altar Flowers webpage.
Monetary donations for designated funds and ministries may be made by writing a check to Church of the Good Shepherd and in the “memo” line designating the name of the fund or group. Similarly, you may donate online, again making a note of “for [name of fund/ministry].”
Please consult the Pastor for information on this type of request. While the Pastor and Vestry are eager to work with potential donors, some types of gifts offered to The Church of the Good Shepherd may not be accepted, for example, if there are subsequent costs related to the gift, or if the designated or desired use is highly restrictive. Please speak to our Treasurer for details on giving a gift of stock.
You must speak to either the Pastor or the Director of Christian Formation and complete the course “Safeguarding God’s Children” required by the Diocese of Southwest Florida.
The church office is open from 9 AM to 4 PM, Monday through Friday. During the summer, the office closes at 3 PM. The church office is closed for holidays.
We have a Pastoral Care Team of lay people trained to share Holy Communion with those unable to attend a worship service. Please contact the church office to connect with the Pastoral Care Team.
A sign-up sheet is located in the rear of the Sanctuary. Please clearly print your name exactly as you wish it to appear on your tag. Wearing your name tag at church events allows us to learn your name and help you feel a part of the whole church community. New name tags are made every week and will be added to the name tag board when ready.
There are qualifying criteria to become a member of the Vestry or the Endowment Board. If you meet the criteria you may request a nomination form to be completed before the Annual Meeting and Election, held in the early winter.
You will need to fill out a Fundraising Form and turn it in to the Treasurer to be presented at a Finance Committee meeting. If approved, your request will be presented at a Vestry meeting for consideration. An 8 week lead time is ideal for your request. Please follow the guidelines on the request form for what to do with money you collect.
Please be sure your purchase is approved before incurring any expense. If you have spent your own funds for an event or ministry and wish to be reimbursed, please fill out a Payment Request form. Please be sure to have the form approved by the person responsible for that budget line item (usually a ministry team leader, committee chair, or the Pastor) before submitting it to the church office.
When the church receives an identified donation (with a name and address attached); an account is automatically created for the donor. Statements are available via our Realm database or by contacting the church office.
It is not necessary for you to have a contribution envelope. If you prefer to have a set of envelopes, please contact the church office. Our church admin will be happy to assign a set to you. You do not need to be a member or associate member to receive envelopes. Some people prefer to put a loose check in the collection plate, give an online donation, or have their bank mail us their contribution.
Monthly summaries of Church of the Good Shepherd’s income and expenses can be found on our financial reports webpage. Our Finance Committee meets monthly and visitors may observe.

As of June 2022