Our Traditions

Visitors to this web page may be curious about the Episcopal Church. If so, here’s a start.

The Episcopal Church in the United States is part of the world-wide Anglican Communion. Our history is related to the growth of the Christian church in England. The term “Episcopal” means “bishops,” and refers to our form of governance.

The Marks of the Church

  • One
  • Holy
  • Catholic
  • Apostolic

The Church strives to be one with all creation, all people, and all beliefs and ethnic backgrounds.

The Church strives to be holy, a sacred place where all are welcome to explore faith in a spiritually safe environment.

The Church is Catholic, in that the faith that we profess is good for all persons, in any life situation, and in any place in one’s pilgrimage.

The Church is Apostolic, following the tradition begun by Jesus’ apostles, and continues to the present day into the future.

This author has seen a plaque outside the oldest church in Britain, St. Martin’s, Canterbury. That plaque reads…

We do not have all the answers. We are on a spiritual journey. We look to Scripture, reason and tradition to help us on our way. Whoever you are, we offer you a space to draw nearer to God and walk with us.

May the Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist become such a place for you.

February

This month of February will see us saying goodbye to the part of the church year known as the Sundays after the Epiphany, and welcoming the forty days plus Sundays season that we know as Lent.

Here are summaries of the major feasts this month.

The Presentation of Our Lord, February 2. There is a variety of names given to this day in the church calendar, depending on one’s religious tradition. This title speaks of the Jewish law that every firstborn son is to be dedicated to God in memory of the Israelites’ deliverance from Egypt, when the firstborn sons of the Egyptians died and those of Israel were spared. The day is sometimes called “Candlemas.” Bring a favorite candle to church with you for a blessing.

St. Matthias the Apostle, February 24. When Judas defected from the fellowship of the apostles, there was a vacancy. After prayer, the remaining apostles cast lots (rolled the dice, had a secret vote) and selected Matthias. He’s an example of one whose service is unheralded and unsung.

Ash Wednesday, February 26. This day marks the beginning of the season of Lent, a time of self examination and the recovery of an intentional rule of life. Ashes on the forehead is a sign that “we are dust, and to dust we shall return.”

 

 

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