THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH | LA IGLESIA EPISCOPAL
As a congregation of the Episcopal Church, we are anchored in a centuries-old tradition that is ancient yet new, ritualized yet relaxed, transcendent yet intimate, reverent yet filled with life. While some of us have been Episcopalians for all of our lives, others found the Episcopal Church only recently.
Como congregación de la Iglesia Episcopal, estamos anclados en una tradición centenaria que es antigua pero nueva, ritualizada pero relajada, trascendente pero íntima, reverente pero llena de vida. Si bien algunos de nosotros hemos sido episcopales durante toda nuestra vida, otros encontraron la Iglesia Episcopal recientemente.
One of the questions that often emerges as we welcome new members into St. Catherine’s is something like “what is the Episcopal Church all about?” or “How is it different from other Christian denominations?” So, what does it mean to be an Episcopal Christian worshiping at St. Catherine’s Church?
One of the first things that often gets said about the Episcopal Church is that “You don’t have to check your brain at the door.” Perhaps a more constructive way of expressing this, is to say that the Episcopal Church places a high value on each one of us having the freedom (and the responsibility) to think things out for ourselves. So, instead of a central authority figure saying “this is the way it is”, we tend to frame things broadly, we welcome a wide diversity of perspectives respectfully coexisting within the same community, and we do our best to live by the tenet that it isn’t necessary to agree with a given set of dogma in order to belong.
This doesn’t mean that the Episcopal Church forgets its centeredness on Christ, and it doesn’t mean that there aren’t some rather uniquely “Episcopal” approaches to living out the Christian faith. What it does mean, is that we live with the understanding that the life of faith is at its most vibrant when each person has been able to explore the deep questions of the faith for themselves, recognizing that faith is a journey. Each one of us will ask the questions in a different way, and each one of us is in our own place on this mysterious and wonderful journey. Living with this freedom isn’t always easy. Sometimes it is hard to live with open ended questions, and sometimes we need to be reminded to be open to the different ways in which each person walks the journey. But in the end, this freedom is one of the first things that makes us “unique” as Episcopal Christians.