Becoming a Member of the Episcopal Church
Q. What is the duty of all Christians?
A. 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. -The Book of Common Prayer, page 856
This page includes the teaching of the Episcopal Church about membership in the Church and guidelines for becoming a member of the Episcopal Church of Saint James the Less.
If, after reading over this, you wish to inquire further about how to register as a member of Saint James the Less, or to learn more about Baptism, Confirmation, or Reception into the Episcopal Church, please contact the parish office at (847) 446-8430.
We thank God for your interest in Saint James the Less, and we hope that you will be led to join us in the life and ministry of Christ in this place.
We invite you to pray as you discern the next steps in your spiritual journey.
Direct us, O Lord, in all our doings with your most gracious favor, and further us with your continual help; that in all our works, begun, continued, and ended in you, we may glorify your holy Name, and finally, by your mercy, obtain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. -The Book of Common Prayer, page 832
Becoming a Member of The Episcopal Church of St. James the Less
Becoming a Member Through Registration
Any person who has received the Sacrament of Holy Baptism with water in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit in the Episcopal Church or in any other Christian Church may become a member of Saint James the Less by completing a New Member Registration Form and returning it to the Parish Office.
Becoming a Member Through a Letter of Transfer from another Episcopal Church
Any person who has been a member of another Episcopal church may become a member of this parish by indicating on the New Member Registration Form that a Letter of Transfer should be sent to their former church.
Becoming a Member Through Confirmation or Reception into the Episcopal Church
In the Episcopal Church it is expected that all adult members will, after appropriate instruction, make a mature public affirmation of their faith and commitment to the responsibilities of their Baptism and will be confirmed or received by a Bishop of the Church. Baptized persons who have been confirmed by a Bishop in a Christian Church with the historic episcopate (such as the Roman Catholic or Orthodox Church) or by a Bishop of a Church in communion with the Episcopal Church (such as the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) are, after appropriate instruction, received by a Bishop into this Church.
Adult Inquirers' Classes for confirmation or reception are scheduled throughout the year. These classes provide instruction about the Episcopal Church - its history, theology, liturgy and traditions - and its place within the larger Christian faith. Youth Instruction for confirmation is offered at Saint James the Less in a two year program for seventh and eighth grade students.
Becoming a Member Through Holy Baptism
At Saint James the Less, following the direction of The Book of Common Prayer, we celebrate Holy Baptism on these occasions: at the Easter Vigil (March or April); on the day of Pentecost (May or June); on the Sunday after All Saints' Day (November); on the feast of the Baptism of our Lord (January); and on other Sundays throughout the year, as scheduled by the Rector. Candidates for baptism (or if they are children, their parents, and sponsors) are expected to attend baptismal instruction with one of the clergy. For further information, see the section on Holy Baptism.
A communicant of Saint James the Less is a baptized person who is registered as a member of the parish and who receives Holy Communion at least three times a year.
A communicant in good standing of Saint James the Less is a member of the parish who is faithful in corporate worship and in working, praying, and giving for the spread of the Kingdom of God.
Membership Means Ministry
All members of the Church are called to share in the ministry of the Church, according to their gifts.
Q. Who are the ministers of the Church?
A. The ministers of the Church are lay persons, bishops, priests, and deacons
Q. What is the ministry of the laity?
A. The ministry of lay persons is to represent Christ and his Church; to bear witness to him wherever they may be; and, according to the gifts given them, to carry on Christ's work of reconciliation in the world; and to take their place in the life, worship, and governance of the Church. -The Book of Common Prayer, page 855
Please join us as we worship and serve the living Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit.