St. Mark’s is an Episcopal congregation and part of the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa — along with 11,000 other baptized christians in 63 other Episcopal congregations in Iowa.
At the center of the faith of the Episcopal Church is our common worship in The Book of Common Prayer. It joins us to the worldwide Anglican Communion. Our faith is based in and shaped by common worship.
- Baptism unites us with all Christians. Our Baptismal Covenant is a guide to our living. It begins with the Apostle’s Creed, an ancient statement of faith in the one God: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
- It continues with our promises:
- To continue in worship (the willingness to build community)
- Resist and repent of evil (what we have done, and what has been done on our behalf)
- Tell others of God’s love (share your faith journey as you are comfortable)
- Serve and love our neighbors as ourselves (be open and welcoming to all)
- Respect the dignity of every human person (we are all part of God’s creation).
- The Eucharist, (the Lord’s Supper or Holy Communion) joins us around the Table of the Lord to share bread and wine, the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. The Eucharistic Table is open to all. We are nourished to go together into the world to do God’s work.
- The Bible is central to worship and faith. Bible study is encouraged for all ages. We see the Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, as the story of how God walks with God’s people, written over many centuries by different people for different times.
- The three sources of authority that shape our faith as Episcopalians are: Scripture, Tradition and Reason. These three are called our “three-legged-stool” because without all three, the stool cannot stand. Each leg depends on and is interpreted by the other two legs.
- Scripture is our source of God’s revelation and the source of all Christian teaching and reflection.
- Tradition passes down from generation to generation the church’s ongoing experience of God’s presence.
- Reason includes the human gift to discern the truth in both rational and intuitive ways. It includes our experiences.