Each week, we gather as a people of faith to give thanks for the many gifts of God in our lives, and to offer up the fragments of our lives to a loving God who is able to heal and make us whole. Placing the practice of worship at the center means that nurturing our souls through scripture, music, fellowship, Eucharist, prayer and silence are essential to becoming God’s people.
Prayer and Meditation
Discernment, direction, forgiveness, healing, praise and gratitude are just the starting point for communication with God. St. Mark’s community believes and encourages all members to involve themselves in an active prayer life. Throughout the year, St. Mark’s offers a variety prayer and meditation courses, including beginning iconography, study of different types of prayer, open sanctuary and chapel time, our Intercessory Prayer Community, as well as encouraging our members to reflect and commune with God at home.
Scripture makes clear that our spiritual lives are not simply private but draw us into ministry in the world. We believe that out of the heart of worship the desire to serve is kindled. We have a myriad of opportunities at St. Mark’s to serve and be a part of public life that works together with friends and strangers to shape a common nurturing community that protects and honors the dignity of all.
There is no more important work given to a faith community than the sacred charge to nurture the souls of our children and youth. We offer not only Sunday schools for our children, but we believe in the full inclusion and participation of our children in the life of the parish. Opportunities to serve in worship and community outreach, as well as perform in our Treble Choir, Stations of the Cross, our fabulous annual Christmas pageant, and Sacred Arts gallery shows, all welcome children and youth deeply into life of faith.
But we have a culture of education that includes not only Sunday schools for children, but also adult formation and education. In addition to our lively and educational forum discussions following Holy Eucharist each week, we continue to expand opportunities for feeding the soul here at St. Mark’s through classes, book discussions, retreats, Sacred Arts workshops, films and more. Ongoing nurture in the Christian life is something that we shape as a community and one that holds open a great deal of creativity and possibility.
We believe that God is the giver of all good gifts and our heartfelt response to this is gratitude and generosity. To this end, we encourage each other to be people who practice generosity. We believe that in generously sharing our lives, our time, our resources and our service, we grow into an ever deepening and loving relationship with God.
And lastly, we also believe in the core value of Fun. St. Mark’s is a place of celebration and fun. The Jewish rabbinical teachings contained in The Talmud state: One will have to give account in the judgment day of every good thing which one might have enjoyed and did not. We are a joyful people and can easily find things to celebrate and invite others into the joy of life with God and sacred rhythm of fast and feast.