A life encircled with prayer:

birth, baptism, weddings, homes, and funerals

In the Episcopal Church, we believe that God is with us even before we are born and is there with us at every step of life. In our Book of Common Prayer there are prayers and services for significant and seemingly small aspects of living and dying. Just like we see in the Bible, there are prayers for pregnant women, children yet to be born, thanksgivings at birth, laments for sickness and prayers for healing. We have services for asking God to bless new homes or apartments. There are prayers for our nation, our government, our military, and for leaders of all nations to bring about peace. You name it, there is sure to be a prayer someone in the Episcopal Church has written to help us think through our life and God's ever-present help and involvement.

Particularly significant are worship services for our most vital times of life. At birth, our clergy (upon notice and request) love to come to the hospital and pray for a safe delivery and then return to anoint and pray thanksgivings for the newest gift of life from God. Typically parents will want their young baby or child baptized and will prepare for that with one of our clergy. We have the service of baptism as part of our regular worship services. Confirmation is a sacramental action on the part of adults who with to "confirm" or re-affirm the baptismal promises that were made for them as infants or young children. 

Marriage is addressed on its own page.

New homes are prayed for with the sprinkling of holy water to make them ready for new life. When members have surgeries or illnesses, prayers and anointing are appropriate. Clergy hope members remember to tell them in advance of hospital stays so our clergy and lay members can come for prayers and visits as desired. 

As this earthly life draws to an end, members of the church invite their clergy to come and say prayers and when possible to anoint with oil for healing and sometimes "Last Rites" - prayers for end of life which often include members of the family. Funeral services at the church or graveside or in a variety of appropriate locations are spelled out in the prayer book and our clergy are with the family and friends as they grieve the loss of life -- while giving thanks to God for the blessings known here and anticipated for life eternal. 

Baptisms at ODEC

Holy Baptism is a sacrament by which one embraces the Christian way and becomes a member of Christ’s body, the Church. Baptism is celebrated throughout the year on special Sundays, but we also recognize the need for families to be able to gather at more convenient Sundays. We have baptized babies within seconds of birth and adults in their 80's, so there is no one time that is the "right" time - except that God's Time is always the right time.  To arrange Baptism for yourself or your child, please contact the parish administrator who will put you in touch with a member of the clergy.

Funerals at ODEC

The death of a family member or close friend is always a difficult time in life. As mentioned above, we hope members and families will call on our clergy well before the end of life, so that prayers and pastoral care be offered. A death in the family should be reported to the clergy as soon as possible. We will assist pastorally and  promptly with arrangements for a funeral or memorial service. For recommendations for a local funeral director or to make arrangements for interment in the Church graveyard, please contact the parish administrator. One of our goals is to provide support and worship to make a time of trial and often tragedy manageable. Our other primary goal is to give thanks to God for the blessing of life here and life eternal gifted to us through Christ.