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An Introduction to the Episcopal Church

2,000 years ago Jesus started a movement with his teaching, and with his death and resurrection. Today this movement has filled every corner of the globe with over 2 billion followers.

We are the Episcopal Branch of this Jesus Movement.

Our Anglican Heritage

  • Can the founding of the Church of England be placed on one factor? Why not or why so?
  • What are the fruits of Elizabeth’s compromise today?
  • What is the “Via Media?”

The American Franchise

  • Is the Episcopal Church distinctively American or distinctively English?
  • How is the Episcopal Church both Protestant and Catholic? What label resonates more with you?

A Rebranding

  • Why do we need bishops? 
  • How many bishops does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
  • Describe the role of Scotland in the conception of the Episcopal Church.

The Stain

  • What was The Episcopal Church’s position on slavery?
  • How have the repercussions of this past influenced the Episcopal Church’s present political views?

Church Polity

  • What are some advantages to a representative democracy over a pure democracy?
  • What occurs at a diocesan convention?
  • Who elects the presiding bishop?
  • If there were such a thing as a church jail, do you think Fr Rick should spend some time there for these videos?
  • What are checks and balances?

The Bible

  • When is the newest material in the Old Testament probably from?
  • How is God like a rock? 
  • Describe a message you’ve received from the Bible, crystal clear or otherwise.

The Old Testament

  • How does God respond to injustice?
  • What’s the difference between prophecy and foretelling the future?
  • Where in the Bible might you turn to aid in interpreting your own life?

The New Testament

  • What’s your favorite Gospel account and why? If you don’t have one, ask your parents about theirs.
  • What makes the Gospel according to John different than the other three accounts?
  • Describe St. Paul’s transformation.


  • What is Jesus’ way?
  • Did Jesus commit the crime for which he was executed? Why or why not?
  • How do we share in Jesus’ experience?

The Engine of Faith

  • How were the disciples poor students of Jesus?
  • How has the Holy Spirit influenced your life, or how might you imagine that occurring?
  • What’s the Holy Spirit do in the context of church practice?

The Trinity

  • To what would you compare the Holy Trinity? Spend some time on this but be careful; God is watching.

Famous Anglicans and Anglican Churches

  • Which of these famous Episcopalians are most surprising to or resonant with you?
  • Who’s St. Bob?
  • Have you been to any of the famous churches from this video, or are there any you’d like to visit?
  • How many girders can be found in the National Cathedral?

The Ordo

Succinctly and in your own words, what is the Ordo?

What does the president do, according to the Ordo?

What do you think about going back to two services on Saturday and Sunday? Too much of a good thing?

The Liturgy of the Word

What determines the readings used during worship?

What are some advantages or disadvantages to this system?

Above all else, what must a sermon be?

When was the Nicene Creed written?

What does the Nicene Creed state?

Why do we pass the peace?

The Liturgy of the Table

What did Jesus do before offering his body and blood to his disciples?

What are we to be especially thankful for during Pentecost?

What is the doxology?

What’s in a Church?

From where is scripture usually read? How about the Gospel or sermon?

Describe St. Mark’s sanctuary.

What are the must-haves to make a church?

Where do you think the baptismal font should be in a church?

What is the significance of the empty bishop’s chair?

The Church Year

What is the significance of the Feast of the Enunciation?

How is Easter’s date determined?

In what year did St. Peter first start hiding eggs in people’s houses?

When do we bring out our oxblood regalia?

The Sacraments

Let’s hear it thrice: what is the definition of a sacrament? (kata Pixopdon)

In the catholic tradition, what are the seven sacraments?

Which are the dominical sacraments and what does that designation mean?

What were Jesus’ final instructions to his followers?

What is the inward and invisible grace of baptism?

How ought you to be receiving the eucharist?

What is confirmation for you?

How can Father Rick escape his pattern of sin?

Understanding God

The Way of Love

Over the next two weeks, choose at least one of the following practices which make up the Way of Love, and do it. Be prepared to speak about what you did, and what you learned while doing it.

See the video series on YouTube


Each night before you go to bed, pray through the day that was past: What happened today that was wonderful? What happened today that wasn’t so good? What can I do to make tomorrow better?


Pick a short book of the Bible (The Gospel of Mark, Ephesians, Jonah, etc) and read it. Try and figure out what it might be saying to you. Feel free to Google it, or watch a YouTube video or something if it will help you figure it out more.


Each day, either pray intentionally in the morning, in the evening, or at bedtime. Use one of the prayer forms in the Prayer Book, or on our website.


Watch a worship service from a Church of England church. Watch a service from the National Cathedral in DC. Watch a service from a church that isn’t Episcopal. What was the same about the services, and what was different? What did you like? What didn’t you like?


Each day make a plan about how you will be a blessing to someone in need. Could be a “big” need, or it could be a random act of kindness. Be prepared to talk about what you did, and how it felt to do it.


Use you social media to spark conversations about faith. You could post a biblical quote, an inspirational image, or a question for people to think about.


Take a day each week and “rest.” No social media, no video games, no Netflix. Connect with your family. Go to church – even virtually. Be prepared to talk about what it was like to disconnect from distractions, and what it was like to connect to those around you in real ways.