Taking Part at Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral
What does it mean to be a church member?
Current members, as well as newcomers to the Cathedral, sometimes ask, “What is expected of me? What does membership entail?”
The Book of Common Prayer defines the duty of all Christians in the following way:
The duty of all Christians is to follow Christ; to come together week by week for corporate worship; and to work, pray, and give for the spread of the kingdom of God.
Here at Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral that means:
- Being a regular attendee at public worship.
- Having a “Letter of Transfer” or “Membership Information Form” on file in the Cathedral office so that we have accurate personal records.
- Maintaining a financial commitment (pledge) or other “contribution of record” that supports the life and ministry of Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral.
- Sharing in the visible mission of the Cathedral through one of its many service groups, educational opportunities or other ministries.
- Praying for grace to serve God more effectively as an individual as well as a community of believers.
How do I become a member of GHTC?
You have already taken the first important step—you are here among us. We are glad to have you here, and glad that you are interested in further information. This brochure is intended to answer most of your questions, but please talk with us in person as well.
Membership in the Episcopal Church is defined through Baptism. Holy Baptism is full initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ’s Body the Church. Once baptized, you are a full member of the church.
There are many ways in which persons unite with a local church. Each way is dependent on Baptism and the living out of baptismal faith in our lives. Joint classes are held for all persons preparing for membership in Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral, whether through Baptism, Confirmation, Reception or Reaffirmation. These classes are held in the fall and late winter/early spring.
Topics covered include the Holy Scriptures, church tradition and history, the Book of Common Prayer, and Christian service and witness.
Let’s begin by finding out where you are now in your religious affiliation.
I have never been baptized.
You are invited to begin taking classes (or private instruction) in preparation for Holy Baptism. These classes are taught by the clergy and cover the Christian faith and life as expressed in the Anglican (Episcopal) tradition. Baptism at the Cathedral traditionally takes place on All Saints’ Sunday, Thanksgiving Day, the Sunday after Epiphany, Easter Vigil and Pentecost. After being baptized, you will want to be confirmed.
I have been baptized.
Your baptism by water in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit is valid regardless of where or in which Christian Church you were baptized. Baptism is full initiation into Christ’s body the Church. You become a member of Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral when your Baptism is recorded in our Parish Register.
You are invited to begin taking classes for Confirmation. These classes are taught by the clergy and lay persons in the fall or late winter/early spring. Those desiring to be confirmed join persons preparing for Baptism, since Confirmation is a mature public affirmation of Baptism. Confirmation takes place at Easter Vigil.
I have been baptized and confirmed in another Christian church.
Your way of uniting with this parish is to join other adults who are preparing for Episcopal Confirmation. This will help you to acquaint yourself with the Episcopal Church. Then, if you were confirmed by a Bishop in Apostolic Succession (Roman Catholic, Orthodox, ECLA), you may prepare for Reception. If you were confirmed in another tradition, you may prepare to be united with this fellowship in Confirmation.
I have been baptized and confirmed in another Episcopal church.
You are invited to unite with Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral through letter of transfer from your former parish. Please tell a member of the Cathedral clergy that you desire to be transferred to this church.
If you have been apart from the fellowship of the church, you may desire to renew your baptismal covenant through Reaffirmation. You will want to talk with a priest about this, and participate in classes. Reaffirmation takes place at Easter Vigil.
What do I do next?
- Continue in the fellowship of this community.
- Inquire about classes for membership.
- Ask questions!
Contact the Cathedral office, email@example.com, for a copy of the Membership Form.