Mission and Beliefs

Our Mission

At St. Johns, we believe that love transforms lives.

When asked which of the commandments was the greatest Jesus replied,

‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment.

And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’

On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets” (Matthew 22:36-40).

Our mission is to love God, love others, and make disciples. A disciple is a person who loves God and loves others according to the way of Jesus.

Child wearing a St. John's baseball hat.

What We Believe

Jesus two commandments, to Love God and love neighbor (Matthew 22-36-40) form the core of our common belief. At St. John’s, we also celebrate a diversity of beliefs and practices. We believe in a “middle way” that creates space where people who don’t agree about everything can come together for worship, friendship, and service.

Each week we recite one of the foundational statements of Christian belief as found in the Apostles or Nicene Creed. Read the creed by expanding it below.

The Apostles' Creed

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth;
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord;
    who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,
    born of the Virgin Mary,
    suffered under Pontius Pilate,
    was crucified, dead, and buried.
    He descended into hell.
    The third day he rose again from the dead.
    He ascended into heaven,
    and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father almighty.
    From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost,
    the holy catholic Church,
    the communion of saints,
    the forgiveness of sins,
    the resurrection of the body,
    and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God,
    the Father, the Almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
    the only Son of God,
    eternally begotten of the Father,
    God from God, Light from Light,
    true God from true God,
    begotten, not made,
    of one Being with the Father.
    Through him all things were made.
    For us and for our salvation
        he came down from heaven:
    by the power of the Holy Spirit
        he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
        and was made man.
    For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
        he suffered death and was buried.
        On the third day he rose again
            in accordance with the Scriptures;
        he ascended into heaven
            and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

The Episcopal Church is part of the wider Anglican family of Churches called The Anglican Communion. Anglicanism is sometimes described as a middle way between Protestantism and Catholicism. The word Episcopal comes from the Greek word for “overseer” or bishop.

– We have bishops, priests, and deacons (who may marry if they choose)

– We ordain women and men

– We welcome LGBTQ persons

– We celebrate all seven of the sacraments (stressing Communion and Baptism)

– We have monks, nuns, and religious orders

– We honor Mary and the lives of the saints

– We allow for re-marriage after a divorce

– We admit divorced persons to Holy Communion

– We have lay people at all levels of church leadership (local, regional, national, and international)

– We stress the importance of the Bible

– We stress the importance of reason and scholarship

– We celebrate God’s free gift of grace and forgiveness

If you have questions about any of this or aren’t sure what it means – no worries. At St. John’s, “Your doubts are ok, your questions are welcome, please, come as you are.” The best way to get to know us and what we believe is to attend one of our worship services.