We are a collection of individuals who come from varied backgrounds and have diverse life experiences. Yet, when we gather in God’s name, our unity is strengthened by our diversity. We strive to show Christ’s love in the world, and put our common life together before uniformity of opinion.
Manhattan, Kansas is a somewhat unusual blend of diverse populations because it is home to Kansas State University and Fort Riley Army Base which bring people to Manhattan and to Saint Paul's of many different backgrounds, occupations and origins. The people of Saint Paul's are politically conservative, liberal and every nuance between. Our congregation includes people from military, university, business, medical and retired communities. We relish our diversity and feel that we are enriched by the variety of backgrounds of our community. The motto of the Episcopal Church is "The Episcopal Church Welcomes You" and we at Saint Paul's think that means, ESPECIALLY you. Come and see!
Many people who enjoy worshiping at Saint Paul’s have found their way here from other denominations. We are in the Diocese of Kansas of the Episcopal Church, which in turn is a member of the world-wide Anglican Communion. As Anglicans, Episcopalians are guided in their beliefs by “scripture, tradition, and reason”, and are sometimes characterized as a “centrist” Christian denomination. At Saint Paul’s we provide regular opportunities for those inquiring about becoming an Episcopalian. You do not have to “join” anything to come to Saint Paul’s, though some people do choose, after consideration, to be formally received into the Episcopal Church. Learn more about the Episcopal Church.
Young Adults and Singles
We welcome young adults who find their way to us when they move to our community, or who are exploring a faith community for the first time. Young adults are active in a variety of ministries at Saint Paul’s.
Families of every constellation make up the fabric of Saint Paul’s. Those who have younger children appreciate the consideration we give to being “family-friendly” – that is, in providing child care and a nursery.
Children are an important part of our community at Saint Paul’s, and are welcome in all worship services and invited to participate fully in worship. While you might hear it said that children are the church of tomorrow, we believe they are the church of today.
Not surprisingly for a parish that has been in existence for more than 150 years, we have a generous number of older folk in our congregation. They bring a deep perspective to our community affairs, having witnessed astonishing local and global changes in their lifetimes. They are active in every parish ministry. We relish the warm interaction that happens when several generations are together, and when life events such as baptisms, weddings, and funerals are marked by the entire parish. We have some physical accommodations in our buildings to assist those who might need them (handicap access, amplified sound). Some of our caring ministries are organized with older people, including those confined to home, in mind.
In a time when sharp divisions of belief define Christian communities across the world, we are clear at Saint Paul’s that we are a place of welcome and acceptance to gay, lesbian, transgendered and questioning persons.
More about the Episcopal Church
The Episcopal Church owes its foundation to Jesus Christ. It is organically related to the Church of England. Christian missionaries arrived in England in the second century and planted a church there. That early church affiliated with Rome beginning in the sixth century, when Augustine became the first archbishop of Canterbury. When the English church severed its relationship with Rome in the 16th century, Protest and Orthodox ideas were also incorporated in the English church. The Church of England's faith is that of the earliest undivided Christian church, but practices and customs also incorporate ideas from more recent Christian movements.
Our tradition is a blending of evangelical and catholic (Eastern and Western) Christianity in which Christians of all traditions may find a home and where each tradition enriches and fulfills the others. The Episcopal Church is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion "a fellowship within the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church, of those duly constituted regional churches in communion with the see of Canterbury" in England. We "uphold and propagate the catholic and apostolic faith and order as set forth in the The Book of Common Prayer...bound together not by a central authority, but by mutual loyalty sustained by the common counsel of the bishops in conference." Those words are from a resolution by the Lambeth Conference of 1930, a gathering of Anglican and Episcopal bishops from throughout the world.
Anglicans — also known in the United States and some other places as Episcopalians — are Christians who practice their faith in the context of the 38 autonomous member churches, or provinces, of the Anglican Communion, which spans 164 countries worldwide with 77 million members. One of these provinces is the Episcopal Church in the United States of America, with 2.4 million members in 112 dioceses, or geographic regions. Anglicans and Episcopalians are persons of many ethnic and cultural heritages. Anglicans are known for welcoming diversity of opinion and inquiry.
Clergy within the Episcopal Church and the wider Anglican Communion are men and women who are ordained as bishops (after being elected in local dioceses), priests and deacons. Clergy often have spouses while others are single.
Many church members, or laity, hold various leadership positions that range from election to local parish vestries (or boards of directors) or as deputies to General Convention, the Episcopal Church's bicameral legislative structure.
Anglicans and Episcopalians practice a faith that is liturgically and theologically a bridge between Catholicism and Protestant traditions. Anglicans and Episcopalians value a balance of scripture, reason and tradition as set forth by 16th-century English theologian Richard Hooker.
WHO WE ARE