An Intro to Services at St. Stephen’s
St. Stephen’s has two services every Sunday, and from September to June, a service on Thursday mornings. Each of these services is quite different in style and character, even though the result is the same: we gather together, we worship God, we pray, we’re fed and we go out into the world strengthened for living our faith.
Click here to listen to recent sermons.
Visitors are always welcome at any of our worship services. If you are seeking God here, you are welcome to come forward for Communion. Gluten free wafers are available, just ask the Priest. We ask that you please do not dip the bread into the wine. If you prefer a blessing, just cross your hands over your chest when you come forward to the Priest.
8:00 AM Sundays
The 8:00 service on Sundays is a Service of Holy Communion from the Book of Common Prayer (BCP). This is an intimate service held in the chapel, using the traditional language (‘thee’s and ‘thou’s) which will be familiar to older Anglicans.
People appreciate this service not only for the comfort of the familiar language, but also for its deeply mystical character, for the promise of hope that even darkness and suffering cannot overcome the immense love of God.
Newcomers are always welcome to try out this service: the Clergy and the people you’ll meet in the pews are as welcoming and open-minded at 8:00 as they are the rest of the time! First-time visitors at 8:00 may find it difficult to follow the service in the little red Book of Common Prayer: there are lots of options given, and we only use some of them. It can be helpful to sit next to someone you can turn to for assistance if you’re getting lost. Click here to read the service from the Book of Common Prayer; and below is a guide for how the service typically goes at St. Stephen’s (note there’s no music at 8:00).
The 8:00 Sunday Service at St. Stephen’s
From the Book of Common Prayer
Opening Collect – p. 67
The Two Great Commandments of the Law – p. 69-70
The Kyrie (“Lord Have Mercy Upon Us…”) – p. 70
Collect of the Day (this is read by the Priest off a separate sheet)
The Readings of the Day: The Old Testament Lesson (from the Hebrew Bible), the Psalm, the Epistle (Letters of the New Testament), and the Gospel Lesson.
The Nicene Creed (p. 71)
The Offertory (when the collection plate is passed around)
Prayer over the Gifts (p. 74)
Prayers of the People and the Intercessions (p. 75)
Confession and Absolution (forgiveness of sins) (p. 77)
The Eucharistic Prayer (prayer to consecrate the Bread and Wine) (begins on p. 78 until “Glory be to thee, O Lord Most High”, then continues on p. 82-84)
The “Agnus Dei” (Lamb of God) (p. 84)
Communion – If you are seeking God here, you are welcome to come forward for Communion. Gluten free wafers are available, just ask the Priest. We ask that you please do not dip the bread into the wine. If you prefer a blessing, just cross your hands over your chest when you come forward to the Priest.
Lord’s Prayer (p. 85)
Prayer after Communion (p. 85 – the congregation joins in at “And here, we offer and present…”)
Gloria (p. 86)
Announcements from the Community
10:30 AM Sundays
The 10:30 service on Sundays is a contemporary Service of Holy Communion, based on the Book of Alternative Services (BAS), which was published in 1985. The language is designed to be very comfortable to a first-time visitor to this service, presenting the relationship between God and humans in terms of partnership and co-creation, calling us to lives of compassion, mercy, justice and peace. St. Stephen’s prints the entire 10:30 service each week, so it’s easy to follow along in your service bulletin, and to join in the singing. Click here to see an example of our 10:30 worship service. Following the service, all are welcome to enjoy coffee and fellowship.
10:00 AM Thursdays (September – June)
This a very intimate service of Holy Communion in the Chapel, using the 1962 Service from the Book of Alternative Services (click here to see the service). It is a compromise of language and theology between the traditional and the contemporary services. Each Thursday, through the readings and the sermon we learn about a different Saint, following the Anglican Calendar of the Saints. These are the heroes of the Christian faith, and their stories give us the opportunity to explore critical questions about how we are called to live as Christians, and how this call has changed over time (i.e. what can we reasonably learn about living as a Christian today from the martyrdom of someone 1500 years ago?). All are welcome to stay after the service for coffee and conversation.