Who We Are
We are a collection of individuals who come from varied backgrounds and have diverse life experiences. Yet, when we gather in God’s name, our unity is strengthened by our diversity. We strive to show Christ’s love in the world, and put our common life together before uniformity of opinion.
Many people who enjoy worshiping at St. Paul’s have found their way here from other denominations. We are in the Diocese of Pennsylvania of the Episcopal Church USA, which in turn is a member of the world-wide Anglican Communion. As Anglicans, Episcopalians are guided in their beliefs by “scripture, tradition, and reason”, and are sometimes characterized as a “centrist” Christian denomination. At St. Paul’s we provide regular opportunities for those inquiring about what it means to be an Episcopalian. St. Paul’s is an open and welcoming community. Many of our members come from different faith traditions, and have found a spiritual home through the Episcopal traditions. Classes are available for Baptism, Confirmation, and Reception into the Episcopal Church — please contact the clergy for further details.
Young Adults and Singles
We welcome young adults who find their way to us when they move to our neighborhood, or who are exploring a faith community for the first time. Young adults are active in a variety of ministries at St. Paul’s.
Families of every constellation make up the fabric of St. Paul’s. Those who have younger children appreciate the consideration we give to being “family-friendly” – that is, in providing child care and a nursery, and a variety of education and ministry opportunities for children. Outside of current COVID-19 restrictions, breakfast in the Parish Hall (at 8:30 AM on Sundays) is a popular way for families to begin their Sunday morning together, and a lively Parents’ Exchange meets while the children are in Church School or Chorister rehearsal. Special activities, both on and off campus, are planned throughout the year.
Children are an important part of our community at St. Paul’s, whether at worship, choristers, or Godly Play. While you might hear it said that children are the church of tomorrow, we believe they are the church of today. Learn more about our children’s programs.
Not surprisingly for a parish that has been in existence for more than 150 years, we have a generous number of older folk in our congregation. They bring a deep perspective to our community affairs, having witnessed astonishing local and global changes in their lifetimes. They are active in every parish ministry. We relish the warm interaction that happens when several generations are together, and when life events such as baptisms, weddings, and funerals are marked by the entire parish. We have some physical accommodations in our buildings to assist those who might need them (handicap access, amplified sound). Some of our caring ministries are organized with older people, including those confined to home, in mind.
Our parish community includes individuals and families of color, as well as those of mixed racial and ethnic heritage. We offer programs aimed at heightening awareness around issues of racial justice, and community events where we can listen to and learn from one another. We have hired clergy and staff of color in the past and continue to actively pursue diverse candidates for staff and clergy positions.
In a time when sharp divisions of belief define Christian communities across the world, we are clear at St. Paul’s that we are a place of welcome and acceptance to gay, lesbian, transgender, and questioning persons. Same-gender couples sit openly together in the pews. LGBT members serve on the Vestry, committees, and staff, while participating in all facets of parish life. Some of our children have same-gender parents. We celebrate the fact that gay marriage is now legal in the United States of America; St. Paul’s was the first parish in this diocese to celebrate a same-gender marriage.