We gather together at St. James United Church every Sunday of the year at 11 am and at special times on other days to pause and worship God, give thanks for all of life’s blessings, share joys and sorrows, receive healing and renewal and search for and find the reality of God’s love in our lives.
Jesus promised that whenever two or more were gathered in his name, he’d be among them. When we are together in church, the spirit of Jesus is with us.
At every worship service at St. James, music and song, stories from the Bible and prayers are expressed in different ways and in styles that reflect our widely varied downtown congregation.
Every celebration also reflects the diversity of our community. Everyone participates as they are willing and able. There is always a prayer for peace and the gift to visitors of an origami crane and a peace candle, symbols to take away with them.
Communion is one of two central rituals or “sacraments” of our faith. It is a holy act, a symbolic meal that is open to everyone, a reminder of Jesus’ last supper with his followers and a continuing sign of God’s enduring love. At St. James, it is always served in worship on the first Sunday of the month. It also happens on other occasions throughout the year.
Baptisms of Children and Adults
At St. James, we believe that the gift of God’s love doesn’t depend on our ability to understand it so we baptise people as infants or as adults. And the ceremony takes place during a regular Sunday service.
The sacrament of baptism is the single rite of initiation into the Christian community, the church. It is neither a requirement for God’s love nor a magic charm for life. It uses the symbols of water, oil and a candle to say that God’s love surrounds us from the moment we’re born and continues throughout the course of our years.
During baptism, the parents, godparents and the entire congregation all promise to support and watch over in their Christian life the person being baptised. At St. James the person being baptised is first named and presented to God and the congregation. We take water from the tap, put it in bottles and pass them from hand to hand. When everyone present has warmed the water with their hands and their prayers, the entire community has prepared the holy water for baptism. This is an important part of the ritual. That’s why Baptism always occurs at St. James in a worship service.
We believe God intends loving relationships to be faithful, responsible, just, healing and sustaining for the couple and those around them.
These relationships we celebrate in marriage may be between a woman and a man or between people of the same gender. We also marry and welcome previously divorced people and couples of different religious backgrounds.
Weddings arranged through our church office can be either traditional or contemporary services and are performed throughout the year. They can take place in the St. James sanctuary or off-site in a residence, reception hall, garden or hotel etc.
A wedding ceremony is a chance for a couple to openly declare their commitment for each other before God and the community. St. James United Church. It is a fine place to begin a committed life together in marriage even if you have never attended our church.
Marriage is grounded in love – public and private. There is God’s love for humanity and the love between life-partners that is based on trust, mutuality and commitment. There is also the love of caring communities – families, friends and churches – that support, nurture and honour such relationships.
For inquiries about having your wedding at St. James, please fill out this form.
At St. James United Church we recognize the need for family and friends to gather and remember loved ones and those who mourn them. We hold a special service of worship during which people remember honestly, healing tears are shed and the person’s life is celebrated.
Funerals are conducted either in the St. James sanctuary or at the funeral home or complex.