The cornerstones of our Episcopal faith are Scripture, tradition and reason.
We believe in a Triune God, who created the universe, who through Jesus Christ redeems us from sin and death and who sustains us through love and grace. We promise to follow Jesus Christ and believe the mission of our church is to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ.
Scripture is the Word of God contained in the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. The Old Testament recounts the story of God's love for the world from Creation until the time of Jesus. The New Testament contains Jesus' teachings, the accounts of his life as told by his followers, and the beginnings of the early Christian church. It is through the study of Holy Scripture where we find the grounding of our faith.
As Episcopalians, study scripture in the context of history, and seek to interpret God's Word for meaning today. We have a willingness to live with diverse and changing interpretations of Scripture, rather than attributing Scripture with infallible certainty and binding prescriptions for all time and circumstance.
the embodiment of our experience as Christians throughout history,
shaped by the Bible, creeds, sacraments, and the ministry carried out by
Christ's disciples. Tradition is expressed with many voices, worship
styles, cultures, architecture, and music. The Episcopal tradition encourages
diversity. We experience God's love - our spiritual journey - in the
context of tradition and community, within the church and in the
world. Our daily experience shapes our questions, and furthers our quest
for a closer relationship with God.
In the Episcopal tradition, we believe that our God-given ability to think critically and take responsibility for our actions is a vital part of our Christian faith. Reason, as a complement to Scripture and tradition, leads us to ask questions. Human reason is set in the context of our relationship with God, and God's call to us to live full and healthy lives. We challenge people to think critically, to bring their doubts, questions, beliefs and convictions. We bring our whole person into the life of our church community and find that when we engage our mind with scripture and tradition, it is a very rich experience.
Cathedral Values and Safe Church
How we talk to and treat each other matters. The values of the Cathedral are explicitly outlined in the Baptismal Covenant, which centers how we engage with each other and the world in relationship to the Trinity (Father-Son-Holy Spirit). This is the call for all baptized persons: to live in right relationship with each other.
Respecting the dignity of every human being means that abuse, harassment, or mistreatment of others has no place in our community.
At St. Paul’s and throughout the Episcopal Church, Safe Church is the educational standard for protecting the most vulnerable among us, maintaining healthy boundaries, holding each other accountable, and giving standardized language about how we live with each other in community. Clergy, Ministry Leaders, volunteers, and anyone with a key/door code must complete Safe Church Training and uphold the standards set forth by this training.
The Episcopal Church’s Constitution and Canons state this: “By virtue of Baptism, all members of the Church are called to the holiness of life and accountability to one another. The Church and each Diocese shall support their members in their life in Christ and seek to resolve conflicts by promoting healing, repentance, forgiveness, restitution, justice, amendment of life, and reconciliation among all involved or affected. Beyond Safe Church, the Constitution and Canons provide additional standards of conduct and, if required, discipline for all members of clergy, deacons, priests, and bishops should those standards of conduct be violated.
Sometimes, conflict resolution can be a simple apology; a one-on-one conversation to seek clarity and reconciliation. Other times, we may need to escalate the matter and seek support from others who are particularly equipped to help. At St. Paul’s, your clergy and vestry are open and available to support, advise, and even help mediate conflicts in the community to help us return to right relationships as a a community.
In any instance where Safe Church standards are violated, clergy and lay leadership will be swift in protecting the vulnerable and harmed, the community, and following Diocesan and Episcopal Church protocols and procedures. Should you be the recipient or observer of behavior or language that you feel may violate Safe Church standards, be swift in sharing with your clergy or lay leaders who are versant in proper steps to take action, if needed. Let us continue to commit to seek and serve Christ in all persons and to respect the dignity of every human being.