Who We Are
Welcome to St Andrews!
Our History & Beliefs
The beginnings of the Church of England,, from which The Episcopal Church derives, date to at least the second century, when merchants and other travelers first brought Christianity to England. It is customary to regard St. Augustine of Canterbury’s mission to England in 597 as marking the formal beginning of the church under papal authority, as it was to be throughout the Middle Ages.
In its modern form, the church dates from the English Reformation of the 16th century, when royal supremacy was established and the authority of the papacy was repudiated. With the advent of British colonization, the Church of England was established on every continent. In time, these churches gained their independence, but retained connections with the mother church in the Anglican Communion.
The Episcopal Church takes reading the Bible very seriously. Approximately 70% of the Book of Common Prayer comes directly from the Bible, and Episcopalians read more Holy Scripture in Sunday worship than almost any other denomination in Christianity.
Offered in a question-and-answer format, the Catechism found in the back of the Book of Common Prayer (pp. 845-862) helps teach the foundational truths of the Christian faith.
In the waters of baptism we are lovingly adopted by God into God’s family, which we call the Church, and given God’s own life to share and reminded that nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ.
Besides baptism and the Eucharist (Holy Communion), the church recognizes other spiritual markers in our journey of faith. These include:
- Confirmation (the adult affirmation of our baptismal vows), pp. 413-419, Book of Common Prayer
- Reconciliation of a Penitent (private confession), pp. 447-452, Book of Common Prayer
- Matrimony (Christian marriage), pp. 422-438, Book of Common Prayer
- Orders (ordination to deacon, priest, or bishop), pp. 510-555, Book of Common Prayer
- Unction (anointing with oil those who are sick or dying) pp. 453-467, Book of Common Prayer
As Episcopalians, we are followers of Jesus Christ, and both our worship and our mission are in Christ’s name. In Jesus, we find that the nature of God is love, and through baptism, we share in his victory over sin and death.
The Book of Common Prayer
The Book of Common Prayer is a treasure chest full of devotional and teaching resources for individuals and congregations, but it is also the primary symbol of our unity.
The Five Marks of Mission
The Mission of the Church Is the Mission of Christ
- To proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom
- To teach, baptize and nurture new believers
- To respond to human need by loving service
- To seek to transform unjust structures of society, to challenge violence of every kind and to pursue peace and reconciliation
- To strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth
It goes by several names: Holy Communion, the Eucharist (which literally means “thanksgiving”), mass. But whatever it’s called, this is the family meal for Christians and a foretaste of the heavenly banquet. As such, all persons who have been baptized, and are therefore part of the extended family that is the Church, are welcome to receive the bread and wine, and be in communion with God and each other.
Click here to find out more about the Episcopal Church.
Pastor and Staff
The Rev. Dr. William Veinot
The author Anne Lamott, in her insightful and humorous book, Traveling Mercies, shares a true story that her minister told in a sermon. When the minister was seven years old, her best friend got lost one day. “The little girl ran up and down the streets of the big town where they lived, but she couldn’t find a single landmark. She was frightened. Finally a policeman stopped to help her. He put her in the passenger seat of his car, and they drove around until she finally saw her church. She pointed it out to the policeman and then she told him firmly, ‘‘You could let me out now. This is my church, and I can always find my way home from there.”
Anne Lamott then adds the following: “And that is why I have stayed so close to mine – because no matter how bad I am feeling, how lost or lonely or frightened, when I see the faces of the people at my church, and hear their voices, I can always find my way home.”
As its parish priest, St. Andrew’s has been my church home for almost twenty years. It has been the only home my three children have ever known. There has been so much love present, so much joy, that it has been impossible to leave. There is something unique and special about this sweet, little church. For those who are looking for a place to call home that is safe, encouraging and genuinely happy, your search is over. The gentle spirit of the living God is right here and welcomes you to come among us and become family.