How We believe 

We believe through how we live. Our mission statement is, "to be creative, compelling, and compassionate witnesses to Jesus Christ, in our piece of the Palouse."

We believe in one God, of many revelations, grounded—in the tradition—as "Father, Son, and Holy Spirit." God always exceeds our ability to define and name. God is always more. We believe through our worship of God in Christ and through our service among others, striving to let God's love, compassion, and justice be revealed in what we do and say.


That's a short summary, here's another; they may be enough to pique your interest, because we don't talk as much about "what" we believe as "how" we believe. We strive to be doers of the word, rather than merely hearers, or spouters (James 1.22). But if you'd like a few more words ... we believe God is the ground and movement of being, the divine parechoresis. "God is Love" (1 John 4:8). God is beyond our knowing and yet, like the blind men and the elephant we have incomplete glimpses of God in our own experiences as humans, as part of God's creation. As Christians, we encounter God in the "fully human, fully divine" person of Jesus. 

Rowan Williams, the former archbishop of Canterbury, in his book “Faith in the Public Square,” defines our life in this way: “The calling of the human person is to name the world aright, that is, to acknowledge it as God’s gift and to work so as to bring to light its character as reflecting God’s character, to manifest its true essence… Human beings orchestrate the reflection of God’s glory in the world by clothing material things with sacred meaning and presenting the world before God in prayer.” 

We understand God's character to be the definition and manifestation of love. Check out this simple piece about God's grace.

So you poke around on this site and see some of the things that we do and some of the ways that we do it. 



Guided by Baptismal Theology

Episcopalians are not required to assent to a canon of dogma, a set of doctrines, or sign a formal Confession; rather, we live striving to fulfill our Baptismal vows (from The Book of Common Prayer, 1979).

Q: Do you turn to Jesus Christ and accept him as your Savior?
A: I do.

Q: Do you put your whole trust in his grace and love?
A: I do.

Q: Do you promise to follow and obey him as your Lord?
A: I do.     

At least five times a year, we renew our Baptismal promises:

Q: Will you continue in the apostles' teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers?
A: I will, with God's help.

Q: Will you persevere in resisting evil, and, whenever you fall into sin, repent and return to the Lord?
A: I will with God's help.

Q: Will you proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ?
A: I will with God's help.

Q: Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself?
A: I will with God's help.

Q: Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?
A: I will with God's help.    

But not everyone is there yet, and that's alright. We are here to share our stories and companion one another right where we are in our journey along the Jesus Way.

Learning to live in love

We interpret Scripture through the lens of Jesus' love. We understand it as a divinely inspired human document, a collection of stories, letters, histories, etc. that reflect the understanding/experience of God in the time/places in which the writers lived. As scholars John Crossan and Marcus Borg (of blessed memory) have said, "Everything in the Bible is true, and some of it really happened." This article is helpful.

When Jesus taught about the primary commandment by which Christians live, he didn't say, "You shall believe that a particular set of statements about God is true"; rather, Jesus said, "You shall love the Lord your God will all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength" (Matt. 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27).

Our Presiding Bishop Michael Curry—chief bishop and spiritual leader in the Episcopal Church—along with others denominational leaders, recently authored this call to a prophetic Christian discipleship in our time and nation. Following Jesus means claiming Jesus (not Caesar) as Lord and living the counter-cultural, even subversive life, that implies.

When many Episcopalians say, "I believe in Jesus," or "I believe in God," or "I believe in the Holy Spirit," we mean we have confidence in Jesus, we trust God, and we devote ourselves to the work of the Holy Spirit. Or we mean we're striving to do these things, "with God's help"—we may not be there yet. And we don't mean that we all believe exactly the same thing about Jesus.

The words believe and belove have the same root which means to hold dear or to give one's self to. When we say we believe in God or Jesus or the Holy Spirit, it means we hold God dear, we are loyal to Jesus, we want to live in relationship with the Holy Spirit—not that we give intellectual assent to a statement or set of statements about the Trinitarian God.

As followers of Jesus, as walkers in The Way of Jesus, we strive, with God's help, to work toward constructing Christ's Beloved Community through values that we believe were important to Jesus on this earth: values such as loving, welcoming, healing, sharing, giving, blessing, forgiving, and reconciling. 

"Is there a place for me?"

If you are hungry for hope in your life, if you want to let go of fear, if you long for a deeper relationship with God, with other people, and with all of God's good creation, we invite you to come and worship with us, come to the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, come into this community of those who long for a deeper experience of God, and a more loving, trusting relationship with others. Come, it is Christ who is calling.  

You will learn the most about how we believe by first worshiping with us. How we together serve others, how we engage our questions together, and how we companion one another on the journey, also shape who we are—and we are grounded in the sacraments of Baptism and the Holy Eucharist.

We are a community growing in grace and striving to share God's perfect, life-giving love with all creation.

Come and see.

The way of Jesus is thus not a set of beliefs about Jesus. That people ever thought it was is strange, when we think about it — as if one entered new life by believing certain things to be true, or as if the only people who can be saved are those who know the word "Jesus." Thinking that way virtually amounts to salvation by syllables.     

~Marcus J. Borg, "Reading the Bible Again for the First Time: Taking the Bible Seriously but Not Literally"