What We VALUE
Get to know St. Mark’s
We’re so glad you’re taking the time to learn more about our church community. We at St. Mark’s believe in an approach to faith that is open, loving, and engaging, and that seeks to help us make a difference in the world.
The Way of Jesus
We value the story of Jesus, and look to be active followers of the way of Jesus in the world. We seek to understand our faith relying on Scripture, Tradition, Experience, and Reason as we wrestle with questions of faith. We seek to make this faith and these values part of our personal lives and the lives of our church community. We believe the stories of Jesus inform our Christian life. And we are willing to contemplate these stories as we walk together on our spiritual journeys.
We believe that this faith is best lived out in community, both our church community and the community at large. Our faith teaches us all people are children of God, and are blessed with many gifts to share and with which to bless the world. The church community consists in the mutual sharing of these gifts.
Open and Affirming
We value all of God’s children, and welcome all to come to our community, just as they are. Our statement of greeting seeks to welcoming those of all races, cultures, faith traditions, sexual orientations, and gender identities. At St. Mark’s, all means all.
Open Minds and Open Hearts
We seek to approach faith with curiosity and compassion, realizing that we do not have a handle on all the truth. We try not to assume a defensive posture, but rather enter appreciatively into different points of view with the expectation of learning and growing.
The Power of Stories
Through storytelling, we understand who God is and who we are. God is made known when we share our own stories of faith, of doubt, of relationship, and of growth. The primary stories that guide and inspire our community are found in the Scriptures. We also see God’s moving in the world in the stories of others who were and are faithful, both in previous eras and in our own day.
We believe that God works through relationships to change lives and transform the world. We seek to develop and nurture lasting, multi-generational friendships within our church community, which form a web of support and life-long growth as disciples. We commit to build relationships with those who come from different backgrounds and have different perspectives. We value working with other Methodists, with other Christians in ecumenical endeavors, and with those from other faiths through interfaith connection.
At St. Mark’s, we believe that our faith should manifest itself in concrete actions that we take. We believe that all people have needs and all have the capacity to serve, so we seek mutually empowering service opportunities. These actions may be as complicated as justice advocacy or as simple as sitting down for a meal with someone whose life experience is different from our own. Finding service that enlivens us and blesses the world is a part of “calling,” which is sometimes met in our careers but is often found outside our jobs.
We hope to be a community that seeks to embodies God’s peace in the world, especially for the excluded and marginalized. We are committed to join God in the work of justice as we learn, name, and work to eradicate injustice in our church, our community, and around the world.