St. Mark’s is a diverse church that welcomes active participation. Sunday services are a full body experience. You can join the choir or sing from your seat in the congregation. You are invited to join the circle around the table at the time of communion. You are welcome to participate in the distribution of the elements by offering them to your neighbor after you have received. Sunday services are a unique community-focused experience.
We are a church with a history as long and meandering as the history of European settlement in Manhattan. We are the oldest site of continuous worship in New York City and the burial site of Peter Stuyvesant and other prominent Dutch founding families of New Amsterdam. Today we are a progressive Episcopal Church, a center for modern dance, experimental theater and poetry, and a community gathering space for the Lower East Side.
At St. Mark’s we emphasize the role of the community in creating the life of the church. Because our home is a historic building and our history is illustrious we have to work hard to define who we are today. We are a joyous, celebratory, creative and engaged congregation. We make a special effort to be attentive to the people that live and work in our neighborhood by empowering the ministry of those who join us on Sunday mornings for worship. The congregation is St. Mark’s Church.
If you come into St. Mark’s on a Sunday morning you will enter a worship service in the round. We gather around a circular altar in the center of a soaring, open space. We worship with traditional, contemporary and emerging styles of music. We work intentionally on the content of our worship services so that we speak a language of prayer that resonates deeply in our diverse congregation and remains rooted in the Episcopal tradition of Common Prayer.
We are a church that is growing. That means you might be one of many visitors on a Sunday. You might find that the ministry you expected to be in place in our church is just getting started. You can start something new. To become an active member of St. Mark’s Church all you have to do is give us your name and contact information through this website or a visitor’s card on a Sunday morning and indicate the kinds of ministries you would like to learn more about.
There are always new ministries emerging as needs change. Right now you can volunteer to help out in the garden, assist during service, help prepare bags for the Wednesday food distribution program, sing in the choir, or join a class.
We are a church with a core membership committed to welcoming all kinds of people to be a part of the community. St. Mark’s has a special interest in supporting emerging artists. There are many artists in our community. We have a high energy Sunday morning service. A recent visitor said “It’s like RENT meets church.”
St. Mark’s is a community of people who seek to serve God by worshipping together, supporting the arts and serving the community of the Lower East Side. There are many ways to connect here. Join us.