What to Expect
The Episcopal Church is a denomination grounded in ancient Christian scripture and tradition while at the same time open to the insight and truth of contemporary life. Our roots are from the Church in England, dating from the second century and becoming the Church of England during the reformation. Born as a middle way between what had become a deadly conflict between Protestants and Catholics of the sixteenth centuries, we are known for our tolerance and our willingness to embrace paradox. Episcopalians trust that the truth of God embraces and transcends all of the partial truths that our limited human minds can grasp. We accept that there is divine mystery at the heart of life, but we believe that mystery can best be known through love, particularly the love revealed in Jesus Christ.
Ours is not a gospel of fear and guilt, of moralism or threats of hell. We see Jesus as the incarnation of God who loves and delights in humanity. God becomes one with us. We celebrate a God who has created every human being in God’s own image. We seek to call forth the fullness of that divine image in every person through the disciplines of Christian life. God wants us to become the loving, trusting, giving people God has created us to be. Repentance, conversion, and growth are daily events. It is a life-long process to become holy, to become fully human.
We believe that the process of growing into our full humanity is best done in community. Together we pray, worship, study the scriptures, and explore the richness of twenty-one centuries of Christian experience.
Theologian Richard Hooker described Anglican authority as a three-strand cord, not easily broken — Scripture, Tradition, and Reason. The Episcopal Church honors the Bible as the first witness to God, containing “All things necessary to salvation.” It is the love story of God’s relationship with God’s people. We respect its complexity and its origins in the communities and histories of our ancestors. We look to the Bible as the written source of our revelation of God. We also honor the experience of God throughout the history of humanity, and especially among faithful Christians for these two-thousand years. We look to the tradition, teaching, and experience of the whole church as a manifestation of God’s revelation. The ancient Creeds are alive and well in the Episcopal Church. We believe God created human beings with an innate capacity to know God. We honor the God-given faculties of reason, intuition, intellect, and emotion. We believe that human experience is one of the ways God communicates and reveals God’s intentions for us. Our worship is centered in the celebration of the last gift Christ gave us, the gift of his presence and life through the shared communion of bread and wine. This powerful ritual renews and strengthens us. We believe that in this shared holy meal, we are fed by Christ and united in his life.
We are a people trying to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, who loved the outcast, healed the hurting, and called us into a way of life that seeks to help us become more trusting, more courageous, and more loving as we grow into the wonderful mystery of our relationship with God and one another.
Come worship with us a few times and see what you think.