St. Marks Episcopal Church
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Come Worship with us at St. Mark's

At 10:00 a.m. every Sunday, St. Mark’s celebrates the Eucharist
(what Episcopalians call our primary worship service).

We also offer many liturgical events throughout the year, which have become a traditional part of the worship life at St Mark’s and reach out to other parishes and the community. These include The Advent Service of Greening of the Church, a Carol Service prior to the Christmas Eve Eucharist, Lenten liturgy on Wednesday nights in Lent, Holy Week liturgies, as well as Easter Eve and Easter Day Services.

We would love to welcome you next Sunday or to any of our special services!

If you’d like to know what to expect when you visit, here is a brief overview:

Services at St. Mark’s, as in other Episcopal Churches, are based on the Book of Common Prayer. Services vary from traditional with lots of singing, fancy clothes (called vestments) and incense, to informal services with contemporary music and modern language. On the first 3 Sundays of each month, our services are somewhere in between the above extremes (we might call them casual traditional) and each 4th Sunday is more contemporary. We use more formal services for special occasions like Christmas Eve and Easter.

Our worship is “liturgical,” meaning that the service follows a prescribed form, and for first-time visitors, it can be exhilarating…or confusing. We stand, sit, kneel, sing parts of the service, respond verbally to spoken phrases, and participate in other ways that might challenge a first-time visitor. (Robin Williams, who was an Episcopalian, said one of the benefits of church was ‘pew aerobics’) However, at St. Mark’s we try to simplify things with service booklets, pew cards explaining some of the practices, and lots of ‘seasoned’ worshippers to watch and follow. However, even that can be tricky, since we allow a lot of variation by individual preference. What it finally means is, even if you do somethings differently, it’s okay!

We begin each service by praising God through song and prayer, and then Lectors (readers from the congregation), read passages from the Bible, and the congregation sings or recites a psalm or canticle.

Usually the Priest reads the Gospel and then delivers the sermon. The congregation then recites a statement of faith, prays together for the Church, the world, and those in need. Sometimes, the congregation reads a corporate confession statement that is followed by the assurance that God is always ready to forgive our sins.

 

 

 

 

 

We end the first section of the service by greeting each other with “peace.”

After the Peace, we celebrate the Eucharist, also called ‘Last Supper’ or communion. The priest offers the Eucharistic Prayer and blesses the bread and wine; the congregation recites the Lord’s Prayer; the priest then breaks the bread and offers it to the congregation, as the “Gifts of God for the People of God.”
At the end of the Eucharist, the congregation prays once more in thanksgiving, and then is dismissed to continue the life of service to God and to the World.

For more information on Episcopal worship go to: www.episcopalchurch.org
There are also many opportunities for those who desire to play a more active role in conducting the rituals of the service at St Mark’s.

 

 

Eucharistic Ministers help serve the bread and wine at the Eucharist. They are lay persons, but they have special training and are licensed by the bishop so they can serve consecrated bread and wine at any celebration of the Eucharist.

Lectors are the congregation members who read the Scripture lessons during services. Lectors prepare carefully to read the lessons in our gathered worship so they can lead others to a deeper understanding of the meaning of the passage.

Ushers and Greeters welcome everyone to worship, and make sure the service flows smoothly by distributing bulletins and worship booklets and by helping all people who come to worship feel comfortable.

Worship Leaders are also congregation members with special training. They are authorized to lead public worship under the direction of the Clergy. Worship Leaders at St. Mark’s also serve as Eucharistic Ministers.

Intercessors are congregation members who lead the congregation in prayers. Most Sundays, the Intercessor stands in the midst of the congregation and leads the Prayers of the People

The Altar Guild members care for the linens, vestments, candles, and utensils we use in services of the Eucharist. The Guild prepares the Lord's Table and cares for putting things away after the service.

Acolytes enhance the congregation’s experience of the service by carrying crosses, torches, flags, and banners in the procession, and they also assist in the preparation of the Eucharist at the altar. While we love to have children as acolytes, people of all ages may be acolytes at St. Mark’s.

The Worship Committee is called by the rector to plan, guide, and evaluate the liturgy and worship of the parish. Its role is to examine all the various worship experiences and make recommendations to the rector for ways to enrich worship. The committee has an advisory role to the rector.

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