To be married in the Episcopal Church, one of the couple has to be a baptized Christian (regardless of tradition). The Episcopal Church is open to the remarriage of divorced persons, but it does require requesting the permission of the Bishop. St. Mark's, with the permission of our Bishop, is authorized and has hosted the Blessing of a Union for Same-Sex couples. A series of conversations exploring a Christian understanding of marriage and the couple’s relational dynamics is required of all. If you are interested in being married at St. Mark’s, you are encouraged to worship with us on a Sunday morning and to introduce yourself to a member of the clergy. For more information on holding your wedding at St. Mark's Church, contact us at (814) 868-9704.
Holy Baptism is full initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ’s Body, the Church. It is a public statement of one’s intentional decision to follow the way of Jesus. In the case of infant baptism, it is the parents’ declaration of their intent to raise a child in the way of Jesus. The bond which God establishes in Baptism is indissoluble, so baptism is only administered once.
When you choose to be baptized yourself or to have your child baptized in the Episcopal Church, it means you are choosing to live out the Baptismal Covenant in the context of an Episcopal church community, taking your part in the worship, mission and ministries of the local parish. Baptism is open to all people, regardless of age or background.
If you feel called to be baptized, or to have your child baptized, the first steps are to attend St. Mark's regularly and to talk to a member of the clergy about baptism. Some intentional preparation is required.
Baptism can be regarded as the beginning of a spiritual path and not the culmination of one. It is not necessary that a candidate for baptism fully understand nor be comfortable with every word of the Christian Creeds and doctrines from the outset, but rather be ready to embark on the rich path of discovery into the way, truth and life of Jesus Christ.
If you are new to the Episcopal Church and have already been baptized in another denomination, you may wish to renew your faith life. If this is the case, you may be Received or Confirmed in the Episcopal Church. We will be glad to help you learn more about and discern whether these are appropriate for you.
Wherever you come from and whatever your faith background, the Episcopal Church welcomes you!