More than 60 years ago, Christ Church began as the dream of a handful of families in rural Ponte Vedra Beach who desired a place of worship. From that small mission station in the 1950s to one of the great Episcopal churches in our country today, Christ Church is the story of a continuing, extraordinary line of clergy, vestry, staff and members who have helped thousands find a place in the Body of Christ. Christ Church has courageously re-imagined and reinvented itself over and over, never settling on “this is the way we’ve always done it,” but always asking, “Where is the Holy Spirit leading us next?”
Our Beliefs- Original
Christ Episcopal Church is a vibrant and welcoming parish of The Episcopal Church in the United States of America. On Sunday, at all of our campuses, we participate in joyful worship that is grounded in our Anglican heritage. Christ Church provides a place where you can always connect with God and with one another. Through our worship, our service to the community, our fellowship and our educational opportunities, we are confident you will find your connection here.
The Episcopal Church
The Episcopal Church is a member of the Anglican Communion. Like all Anglican churches, the Episcopal Church is distinguished by the following characteristics:
Protestant, yet Catholic
Anglicanism stands squarely in the Reformed tradition, yet considers itself just as directly descended from the Early Church as the Roman Catholic or Eastern Orthodox churches. Every Sunday we celebrate the “Mass” (Holy Eucharist) in ways similar to other Christian denominations, yet with subtle differences that distinguish our heritage and belief.
Worship in one’s first language
We believe that Christians should be able to worship God and read the Bible as part of their discipleship. Our worship is rooted in our current prayer book. Yet The Book of Common Prayer has been translated into many languages, so that those Episcopalians who do not speak English can still worship God in their native tongue.
The Book of Common Prayer
Unique to Anglicanism, though, is The Book of Common Prayer, the collection of worship services that all worshipers in an Anglican church follow. It’s called “common prayer” because we all pray it together, around the world. The first Book of Common Prayer was compiled in English by Thomas Cranmer in the 16th Century, and since then has undergone many revisions for different times and places. But its original purpose has remained the same: To provide in one place the core of the instructions and rites for Anglican Christians to worship together.
The present prayer book in the Episcopal Church was published in 1979. Many other worship resources and prayers exist to enrich our worship, but The Book of Common Prayer is the authority that governs our worship. The prayer book explains Christianity, describes the main beliefs of the Church, outlines the requirements for the sacraments, and, in general, serves as the main guidelines of the Episcopal life.
The text under the heading “The Episcopal Church” is adapted directly from the Visitor’s Center at the Episcopal Church website-for more like this, go to: www.episcopalchurch.org