Sacraments at St. Luke’s
St. Luke’s in particular (and Episcopalians generally) are “sacramental” Christians. We believe that God’s grace is active in our lives from birth to death. Sometimes we see it clearly and embrace it with gratitude and joy. Sometimes (indeed much of the time) we ignore it, take it for granted and even avoid it. But still, we believe that grace is all around us. As a church we find all sorts of ways to make this grace of God visible, to support one another in claiming it as God’s free gift to us, and in allowing it to transform our lives so that we can be better citizens of God’s kingdom.
The Episcopal Church teaches that baptism is the sacrament through which people are joined with the Body of Christ. We baptize people of any age. At St. Luke’s, Holy Baptism is administered as part of the Eucharist on the following occasions: Easter Sunday(March or April), on the day of Pentecost (May or June), on the Sunday after All Saints’ Day (November), on the Feast of the Baptism of our Lord (January) and on other Sundays throughout the year as scheduled. Those interested in baptism (or if they are children/infants, their parents and sponsors) should make an appointment with our priest.
GETTING MARRIED AT ST. LUKE’S
The Sacrament of Marriage is a unique manifestation of God’s love. Many couples have enjoyed the rich architectural beauty of our sanctuary as an uplifting place to seal their union before God. Weddings and Holy Unions are joyful and meaningful events at St. Luke’s. We blend tradition with personal experience to celebrate the love between two individuals and to bless their life of commitment.
“The Episcopal Church Welcomes You” is the hallmark phrase that defines all our ministries. It is a special joy to plan a wedding for someone already part of our congregation’s life—or a young adult who was raised in the parish. But we also welcome couples who are exploring a spiritual home for their new relationship and may have never been to St. Luke’s.
Episcopalians have been blessing same-sex unions for many years, and are now thrilled to marry same-sex and LGBTQ couples by canon and secular law.
If you are interested in celebrating the Sacrament of Marriage at St. Luke’s, please contact the parish office and schedule a conversation with the priest.
CONFIRMATION / RECEPTION
The Episcopal Church expects that all adult members will, after appropriate instruction, make a mature pubic affirmation of their faith and commitment to the responsibilities of their baptism and will be confirmed by a bishop of the church. If you are interested in being confirmed, please see our priest, who will meet with you and happily discuss the history, theology, liturgy, and traditions of the Episcopal Church, and its place within the larger Christian faith. This familiarity is a prerequisite for Confirmation.
RECEPTION / REGISTRATION
Baptized persons who have been confirmed by a bishop in a Christian Church with the historic episcopate (such as the Roman Catholic or Orthodox Church) or by a bishop of a church in communion with the Episcopal Church (such as the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) are, after appropriate instruction, “received” by a bishop into the Episcopal Church.
Any person who has received the Sacrament of Holy Baptism (with water in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit in the Episcopal or other Christian Church) may become a member of St. Luke’s by letting us know who you are, taking part in the Holy Eucharist, and making a regular commitment to financially support our parish. People may pledge at whatever level circumstances allow. Please see our priest if you are interested in becoming a member of St. Luke’s.
RECONCILIATION / HEALING
If you are sick or struggling emotionally or mentally, please talk to our priest about the Healing Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. This sacrament is designed to help those suffering and struggling to experience the gentle peace and strength of our healing God.
The sacrament of reconciliation is often called “confession.” It provides an opportunity to unburden oneself to a priest, in strict confidentiality. The priest pronounces God’s forgiveness and encourages the person to move forward, confident in God’s love.
The priest at St. Luke’s is always ready to offer solace and comfort for those who experience the loss of a loved one, and to work with you to provide a suitable funeral or memorial service.
MEMORIAL CELEBRATIONS AND FUNERALS AT ST. LUKE’S
When death takes away a beloved friend or family member, St. Luke’s believes that there are three ways to respond:
Grieve the loss of a person who will be sadly missed;
Celebrate their life and the enduring gifts they have left behind;
Pray them into heaven, enshrouding them in their new experience with the comforting love they knew here.
Our bereavement counseling and public worship services honor all three of these important manifestations of loss.
AT THE TIME OF DEATH
St. Luke’s parishioners know that sacramental moments help mark the various transitions in life, including the last one. Anointing is offered at any time of poor health or strain in an individual’s or family’s life. It is especially important when an illness has been deemed terminal or a physical condition becomes dire.
Both the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer and individual ministers at St. Luke’s offer a variety of ways to prepare for the final passage of life. Please contact our priest for more information.
PLANNING A SERVICE
Among the many concerns that strike family and friends following the death of a loved one is planning a suitable public gathering. The Episcopal Church provides beautiful and rich Christian services that are readily adapted to individual circumstances.