Life Events

  Life Events  

The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion also observe several lesser Sacraments and other worship services in addition to Baptism and the Holy Eucharist. Other worship services are offered to observe the major events in congregants’ lives such as the house blessings and blessings for the adoption of a child.

A rite through which one renews the promises of baptism and, through the laying on of hands by the Bishop, receives strength from God to live the Christian life as a responsible adult.

Healing has long been a part of Christian ministry and is biblically commended. Special healing services are held at St. Stephen's, and the clergy frequently anoint and pray with those who are ill. Unction is provided not only for healing of the body, but also for healing of the soul.

Also called Penance or Confession, as Episcopalians, we make our confession during most worship services, and we receive priestly absolution (the assurance of God's forgiveness). There are times, however, when people desire to make a specific confession, and a Prayer Book service is provided which may take place either in an informal or a formal setting. There is an old Anglican adage regarding private confession: "All may. Some should. None must."

Couples are joined together within the community of the Christian family, pledge faithfulness to one another, and receive God's blessing pronounced by a priest of the church.

The setting apart by the church of men and women called to serve as deacons, priests, or bishops is commonly referred to as ordination. Only a bishop can ordain, and three bishops are required for the consecration of another bishop.

An Episcopal funeral is a service of worship offering thanksgiving to God, not only for the life of the deceased, but also for the love God has shown to us through Jesus Christ, and the promise that even death will not be able to separate us from the love of God. The liturgy for the Burial of the Dead in the Book of Common Prayer offers both Rite I (traditional language) and Rite II (contemporary language). Appropriate readings, music and the homily can be discussed and determined with the assistance of the priest who will preside. Holy Eucharist is encouraged as a part of a Christian burial service. A reception may be arranged at the church to follow the funeral service.