The Episcopal Church is a Christian church.
- As Episcopalians, we are followers of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and we believe in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- We strive to love our neighbors as ourselves and respect the dignity of every person.
- The Episcopal Church is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion, and traces its heritage to the beginnings of Christianity.
- Our liturgy retains ancient structure and traditions and is celebrated in many languages.
- Both men and women, including those who are married, are eligible for ordination as deacons, priests and bishops.
- We believe in amendment of life, the forgiveness of sin, and life everlasting.
- Lay people exercise a vital role in the governance and ministry of our church.
- Holy Communion may be received by all baptized Christians, not only members of the Episcopal Church.
- We uphold the Bible and worship with the Book of Common Prayer. The Book of Common Prayer is the collection of worship services all Anglican worshipers follow. It’s called “common prayer” because we all pray from the same book together, around the world.
- We affirm that committed relationships are lifelong and monogamous. Episcopalians also recognize that there is grace after divorce and do not deny the sacraments to those who have been divorced.
- We celebrate our unity in Christ while honoring our differences, always putting the work of love before uniformity of opinion.
- All are welcome to find a spiritual home in the Episcopal Church.
- The above material and more can be found at the Episcopal Church website, www.episcopalchurch.org, and is used here with permission.
The Organization of the Episcopal Church
The word “Episcopal” means of or related to “bishop.” Each church is a part of a diocese. Each diocese is led by a bishop. St. George is a part of the Diocese of West Texas, which began in 1875. Today, the diocese comprises 88 congregations, spread from Brady in the north to Brownsville in the south, from Del Rio in the west to Port Lavaca and Edna in the east. For more information, visit dwtx.org.
Every three years, The General Convention meets. The General Convention is the governing body of the church. It is a bicameral legislature, simply meaning that it has two governing bodies, The House of Deputes and the House of Bishops, and can amend the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church and has many other duties. The House of Deputies, comprised of four clergy and four lay people that are elected from each diocese, and the House of Bishops, which is of of active and retired bishops, make up the General Convention. For more on the governance of the Episcopal Church click here.