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St. James
Episcopal Church

Worship

 

Our common worship of Almighty God is what knits us together into a community. Through our worship we are shaped as the people of God, nurtured to serve God in the world, and called to spread the Good News of God in Jesus Christ.

Worship in the Episcopal Church is communal, liturgical, and sacramental: communal because the community comes together to worship God as one Body; liturgical because our rituals are not entirely spontaneous and draw to and from early Christian practice; sacramental because we believe God acts in history and touches our lives through the things of creation.

The primary worship books of the Church are the 1979 Book of Common Prayer (BCP) and The Hymnal 1982.  Our Scripture readings are appointed in the revised Common Lectionary, used by most Christians in the USA, Canada, Australia/New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. The Prayer Book, although it contains prayers for individual use, is called “common” because it is used for the worship of the gathered community. In praising God we employ all our senses by using bread and wine, our physical selves, flowers, music, the liturgical colors of vestments and hangings, and incense on festival days. 

At St. James, liturgical practice includes a variety of customs.  Worshipers are free to do what feels comfortable and appropriate for them.  Some people make the sign of the cross and kneel at various times in the services and others do not.   The congregation is encouraged to be silent during the musical prelude in order to prepare for worship. 

Those who would like to have special prayers and thanksgivings read aloud during the intercessions may call the parish office with their requests; all are encouraged to add their voice during the Prayers of the People.  Offerings of non-perishable food may be placed in the entryway.  They are periodically brought to the altar during the offertory, blessed, and given to the Farmington Food Pantry.

St James' church building and the communion rail are wheelchair accessible.  The parish hall may is wheelchair accessible in the rear of the building.

Holy Eucharist

The Holy Eucharist is the focus of our worship. It is "the Sacrament commanded by Christ for the continual remembrance of His life, death, and resurrection. The benefits we receive in the Lord's Supper are the forgiveness of our sins, the strengthening of our union with Christ and one another, and the foretaste of the heavenly banquet" (BCP). All baptized Christians are welcome to come to the Lord's Table, in preparation for which "it is required that we should examine our lives, repent of our sins, and be in love and charity with all people." The Episcopal Church does not define how Christ's body and blood are present in the Holy Communion, but approaches this great mystery with reverence, awe, and thanksgiving. Although children are eligible to receive the Holy Communion from the time of their Baptism, classes to prepare children to receive the sacrament are held periodically. Speak to the clergy if you would like your child to receive such instruction.