The Episcopal Church
Broadly Inclusive … Always Questioning … Deeply Sacramental
The Episcopal Church welcomes and celebrates the ministries of all people, regardless of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, marital status, social class, or age. The mission of the church, as stated in the Book of Common Prayer, is "to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ."
We are grounded in what we call the “via media:” the middle way. The Via Media concept originated in 16th century England, articulating a middle ground between the polarities of the day - Roman Catholicism and Protestant Puritanism. The Episcopal Church continues to define a middle way through the issues of this day. We embrace the full spectrum of humanity and define our faith through reason, tradition, and scripture. Rather than telling people what to believe, we provide safe places for conversations, questions and struggles of faith. We find unity through worshipping together, rather than through uniformity of opinion. There is no mandate for conforming to a specific set of rules for our Christian faith. The character and vitality of the Episcopal Church is deeply based in our ability to include and affirm a diversity of perspectives under one roof.
The Bible is the foundation of our faith, and the sacred stories shape all that we do. However, we do not interpret the Bible literally. We see it as a living text, through which God continues to speak to us. Informed by our tradition, reason and experience, our understanding of scripture continually evolves, expanding and changing as our experience of the world expands and changes.
Our common life is fed by the two central sacraments of Eucharist and Baptism: signs to remind us of God’s grace. Through bread, wine and water, we experience God’s presence in the stuff of everyday life.