Ministries at St. Mark's
In our tradition, we believe all baptized Christians to be ministers in the work of Jesus Christ in the Church and in the world. Because of this, there are many opportunities for further engagement in the mission and ministry of St. Mark's to the folks that call it their spiritual home, whether for a short season or for their whole lives. We are always working to help our groups grow and thrive, and reinvigorate other groups, so consider this but a taste of ministries at St. Mark's, and this page a living one that is open to change.
As Christians, we believe in the power of prayer to help in both healing and wholeness. We know, too, that prayer doesn't always turn out the way we expected or hoped, but that our continuing of the conversation started by God from the foundations of the world help lead us to a wholeness and peace that passes our understanding.
We have a dedicated group that keeps the prayers of our community in their hearts. If you would like us to pray for you, please click here to visit the Prayer Network page.
We hold the words of Jesus, "Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me," to be central to our call and invitations as people who would be followers of Jesus Christ. Throughout the year, this urges us to look to engage with the true needs of others around us, in our church, in our communities, and in the world.
You can learn more about some of our Outreach programs, and get connected with our Outreach Chair, by clicking below to visit the page.
We also recognize the need for each of us, from our youngest to oldest, from our brand-new to faith to our clergy, to further explore and learn about our faith tradition, Christianity as a whole, and even other faiths.
This helps us to better understand those things programmed in our worship and in the work we do. We also recognize that, while numbers are not what they used to be, there is a deep hunger for these programs, and are committed to exploring new ways of learning and teaching all groups, from children and youth to adults.
Part of our worship at St. Mark's is presenting the best that we have to offer to our loving and living God each time we gather. Our Altar Guild helps this by both maintaining the items used in worship and also lovingly setting up each time we are to gather, and cleaning up afterwards. They do oh so much more, and you can click below to find out more.
Our Flower Guild, like the Altar Guild, gathers to prepare and set up arrangements for special services and when gifts have been received to sponsor flowers. They also change out the planters at the church seasonally and do a lot of the work to set up and decorate for special events at the church.
This group helps to ensure the wonderful fellowship of our Coffee Hour after our Sunday Service each week, but also helps organize and plan venues for special gatherings through the year, such as picnics for Fall Kickoff and bishop visitations, as well as our annual Christmas Brunch. A signup for Coffee Hour each week is maintained, so we always know who will be providing goodies for our fellowship.
Readings of Holy Scripture are a cornerstone of worship in The Episcopal Church, with a total of four readings from the Bible each week. While the proclamation of the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) are done by clergy, other readings are led by members of the community, and our worship is not complete without them. Trainings for this ministry will be held prior to Holy Week and Easter in the Spring and prior to Advent in the Fall.
Our Ushers are often the very first people you will see when entering our Nave (the worship space of the church) on Sunday mornings. Each week, at least two people help everyone prepare for worship by getting them a service booklet for the week and any other items that need to be shared, and helping folks to a seat if needed. They also participate by bringing forth the gifts of the community to the altar for Communion.
This ministry is one licensed by our Episcopal Diocese of New York and the folks robe for the service, sharing in the ministries of the altar and helping to distribute Communion to those present.
People can also become what we call Eucharistic Visitors, allowing them to carry the sacrament of Communion to people who, for any reason, are unable to join in worship physically present at the church.
What some traditions call Altar boys or girls, our acolytes are invited to serve at any age, beginning at the age of 10. They also serve at the Table throughout the service and who help carry items for processions of the service, and are leaders in worship. They assist in the setting of the altar for Communion and in many other
St. Mark's is blessed to have an old-fashioned bell tower, complete with four bells of various sizes. Three of these are equipped with rope pulls, which are rung at the end of each service on Sundays, on New Year's Day, and various other times throughout the year. This is one of our most popular ministries, with folks ranging from 15 to 80 enjoying it.
We also recognize that part of our ministry in the Church is to be faithful and responsible stewards of the financial gifts that have been shared with the church. We have a Finance Committee, and Endowment Committee, and a Stewardship Committee that are dedicated to this work, helping us to fulfill the work we have been called to do with the resources we have.