Our Faith

Page Index - Click on an item to go directly to that section.


 EVANGELICAL

We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, and what it teaches us about, and from, God is as important and relevant now as it was 2000 years ago.  We believe that the Bible is the authority in all things.  At St. Luke's we see our relationship with God through Jesus Christ as being the foundation on which we build every part of our lives.  We only get to know our Creator and Heavenly Father through getting to know Jesus.
SACRAMENTAL
We believe the Sacraments, ordained by Christ, are symbols and pledges of the Christian's profession and of God's love toward us. They are means of grace by which God works invisibly in us, quickening, strengthening and confirming our faith in Him. Two Sacraments are ordained by Christ our Lord, namely Baptism and the Lord's Supper.
Holy Communion has its origin in the Passover Meal which celebrates the ancient Hebrews' escape and deliverance by God's hand from bondage to freedom. It is a meal to which Jesus gave new meaning as He shared it with His disciples on the night before His crucifixion. From the earliest of times, believers have experienced Christ as present among them in this holy celebration.
Everyone who is baptized in Christ Jesus is welcome at the table, for it is not an Anglican table, but the Table of the Lord.
The people of St. Luke's are learning to recognize that every part of their lives is important to God, even their relationships.  We are also working to be open and honest in every part of our lives.  
We aim to live our lives with these priorities:
  • Personal relationship with God
  • Family Life
  • Church Life - Meeting together on a regular basis 
  • Telling others outside our church about Jesus
CHARISMATIC
We believe that we can find direction for our lives in God's Word, the Bible, and we trust in its authority.  It is the Holy Spirit who helps us understand God's truths in the Bible, just as has happened throughout the history of the church, beginning with the very first believers.  The promise of God is that if we invite the Holy Spirit to do so He will help us learn about Jesus and follow His will for our lives.
 

As part of the Anglican Church of Canada, St. Luke's is connected through our Diocese of Calgary to fellow Anglicans around the world.  As Anglicans we are Word and Sacrament people, which means that we believe that the Bible is the Word of God, and in our worship and lives we seek to follow the commands of Jesus.
Anglicanism in practice is very diverse.  Our church family at St. Luke's is considered conservative, or orthodox, in its views on the Bible and what it teaches about God.  We are far from conservative in our worship and fellowship.
In the early 1970's, inspired by God's Holy Spirit, St. Luke's made a decision to move into a charismatic style of worship founded on a basis of biblical/orthodox teaching.  Since that time, under the pastoring of strong committed leadership, this has been the way we have continued to go and grow.
We believe that God wants us to be continually getting to know Him better and become more like Him.  This growth towards spiritual maturity means that we must always be seeking what God has in store for us.  In addition to seeking God's will as a congregation, we encourage our members to spend time in prayer and Bible reading.
We are focused and intentional as we serve God as part of the Global Christian family.  It has always been St. Luke's goal to speak to the world in terms of Biblical truth rather than have the compromising nature of the world speak into our Biblical understanding.
The St. Luke's family also supports several missionaries serving in different parts of the world working with the following agencies:
FELLOWSHIP
We have mentioned our worship philosophy, and there is much more that makes up St. Luke's.  We welcome children and young people as part of our church family.  We recognize the struggles that parents and caregivers have in the important ministry of child rearing and we wish to support you.  Our goal is to supplement and compliment God's work in your home.  The aim of our children's Sunday School is to begin the process of teaching the children the basics of our faith.
Youth and Young Adult ministry is also vitally important to us because we understand the pressure upon them today.  We know that there is a constant battle for the hearts and minds of our young people.  We aim to assist our youth and young adults to develop their faith and life skills so they can overcome the challenges they face on a regular basis.
In addition to Sunday School and Youth/ Young Adult ministries we have groups for adults.  They are a wonderful way to get to know people as well as to learn more about our Christian faith.  Some of our groups have specific memberships, such as men or women.  We will run other groups from time to time to enable all, from newcomers to mature believers, develop a better understanding of what it means to be a member of the St. Luke's family and be part of its ministry.
You are welcome to join any of the groups and we hope that you will take full advantage of other courses that are offered from time to time.
Our groups and courses provide a context in which members demonstrate their faith, experience the risen Christ, and fulfill Jesus' command to make disciples who make disciples and teach them.  (Matthew 28:19, 2 Timothy 2:2)

SPIRITUAL GIFTS
We encourage the expression of God's natural and spiritual gifts in both worship and ministry at St. Luke's. We discourage any form of exhibitionism or self-glorification.  We take time and effort to discern the gifts before they are acknowledged as legitimate.  
There are those that may not believe in, or encourage the expression of supernatural gifts of God and we respect that position.  At St. Luke's we believe that God has given gifts to His people in order that He may be glorified and the church family built up to do His work.  (1 Corinthians 12-14)
For us it is better to use and learn rather then not use or misuse.  If anything, we will err on the side of caution and follow Biblical principles of 'testing the spirits'.  (1 John 4:1)
Our focus is on Jesus and His church ... it is not about us personally.  Using the gifts God has given us we celebrate as family.

OUR CALLING
We declare that we believe in God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We also believe in the Holy Scriptures (the Bible) through which we learn about God and His will for us. We are called to read and pay close attention to God's word as the Holy Spirit helps us understand how it applies to our daily lives.
We see our mission as being the same as that of the early believers; to "go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in the threefold name; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Then instruct them in the practice I (Jesus) have commanded you."  (Matthew 28:18-20)
As we are obedient to the task Jesus has given us we see that we are called to:
  • Heal the sick
  • Feed the hungry
  • Help the outcasts
  • Make disciples
Our inspiration for the way we serve God comes from the Bible and the example of believers throughout the ages.  We focus on these areas because they are important if people are to make the best of their lives.  We encourage people to depend on Jesus rather than the uncertainties of other things.
In order to be best able to help others we aim to apply these instructions to ourselves and seek to be healed, fed, encouraged, physically as well as emotionally and spiritually, and discipled.
To find out more about Our Calling, visit Our Vision.

MARRIAGE 
We view marriage as a Sacrament, an important part of our faith and one of the few commands that Jesus actually left us with. For us, the marriage ceremony is a very sacred moment and not to be undertaken lightly, which is why we like to get to know those who are asking to be married in our church and be assured that their decision to make their commitment to each other before God and to ask His blessing upon them is well understood. It also becomes more of a family affair in which the congregation has a stake, not least in supporting the newlywed couple in their lives together.
We actually have no ‘joining’ policy, like most other organizations we would count as members those who attend regularly over a significant period of time. If you are not a member of a congregation already we would like to invite you to join us for Sunday worship at 10 am.

BAPTISM
 
You want the very best for your child, and so does God!
 
God wants all people to enjoy Him through life in His family, which is the church congregation, where we are known, loved, accepted, healed, and forgiven.
 
Baptism is a Christian ceremony which is full of meaning. With the pouring of water and the declaration of the words, ‘I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,’ great things begin to happen!
 
Let’s look at some of them:
 
1             Baptism is a sign of becoming a member of the family of God. We are adopted by God with all the rights and privileges of a family member. We are heirs of all God’s promises; we are also entitled to participate in the Holy Eucharist with other members of the church family.
 
2             God wants us to have lives of purpose and hope. Baptism signifies new birth. We believe that by the Holy Spirit working within us and the outward symbol of water we begin a new life with God.
 
3             Baptism is joining and initiation. It is the ceremony that signifies the joining of the church family where there is security, sharing, and loving care.
 
4             Baptism is the beginning of a life long journey in faith. This journey is nurtured by participation in Sunday School classes as a child, Bible study groups for adults, and regular attendance at Sunday worship.
 
5             Baptism is joining the body of believers in Jesus Christ. It is like being grafted onto a vine and the vine is Jesus from whom we draw our strength and inspiration. This company of baptized believers is God’s sign to the world of His love and blessing.
 
6             Baptism symbolizes death and new birth. In the baptism ceremony there is the biblical imagery of turning away from our lives of sin (dying), and turning to a new life with Jesus as our Saviour (new birth). With adults this is symbolized by being lowered into the water and then raised, for infants, water is sprinkled on the forehead.
 
7             Baptism is a contract, a promise with God. God promises to accept, forgive, and give new life to the candidate and give the blessings of eternal life. The person being baptized, or sponsors, promise to renounce evil, to believe in God, turn to Jesus Christ, and accept Him as Saviour and to serve Him. These are important and sacred promises. God will keep His side of the agreement. It is the duty of those being baptized, and parents and sponsors, in the case of infants and young children, to keep their promises.
 
8             Baptism is a sacrament. This means that it is an outward sign that God is doing something within us. It symbolizes and shows us God’s acceptance of us and that He is real and does make a difference in our lives.
 
9             Baptism also marks the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In the Bible we read that the Holy Spirit hovered over creation and descended upon Jesus at His baptism and upon the disciples of Jesus at the beginning of the Christian Church. The gift of the Holy Spirit upon the baptized brings God’s wisdom and strength to help us in our daily lives as we follow Him.
 
That’s a lot but that’s not all!
 
The points we have considered are taught in the Bible and show that we belong to God, to Jesus, and to the body of believers which is the church. We can sum it up like this: 
 
In Baptism we become a child of God, a member of Christ and a citizen of Heaven.
 
All this makes Baptism a crucial moment in life and a real turning point. Baptism is once and for all and should not be done lightly. You should be totally aware of and comfortable with the promises being made by God and yourself.
 
Baptism means letting go of the old life in the confidence that God will give you a new life by the Holy Spirit.
 
Is going to church important?
 
In the Baptism service you state your commitment to God and his church which is the family of believers. The church family meets together for worship, teaching, mutual support, and fellowship. To request Baptism with no intention on following through on this promise is to miss the point of Baptism.
 
Is it really for children?
 
Infants have been baptized since New Testament times when families and whole households were Baptized when the parents came to believe in Jesus Christ. Today children are Baptized when parents and godparents are able to confess their Christian faith and make promises to raise their children in this faith.
 
If the faith and commitment of parents is such that they wish their children to be brought into this special relationship with God they will bring them to be Baptized. Through Baptism the children will be full members of the faith community in which they will grow up.
 
Studies have shown that children are deeply affected by the personal environment in which they grow up. At St. Luke’s we believe to be brought up in a Christian environment provides the best foundation for life.
 
We also believe that God’s ability to pour out His love and blessings does not depend upon our level of understanding. It is however hindered by our stubborn or careless rejection.
 
St. Luke’s invites all who would confess Jesus Christ as Lord to be baptized.
 
Why Godparents?
 
Parents bear the primary responsibility for a child’s upbringing, welfare and spiritual nurturing. The Christian life also includes the wider Christian family and the parents may invite others to share with the responsibility for the child’s spiritual development. These are Godparents.
 
Godparents should be committed Christians who live by their own Baptism vows. They should be regular participants in the life and worship of the church and be able to make the required affirmation on behalf of their Godchildren with understanding and sincerity. The Godparents will help their Godchildren attend church on a regular basis, learn the Bible and pray, by their teaching and personal example and especially by praying for them.
 
The Parish Responsibilities
 
Just as parents and Godparents have responsibilities in nurturing a child in faith, the parish, or congregation, also have responsibilities. We believe the parish should:
 
1             Provide instruction and make every baptism a joyful celebration.
 
2             Assist parents in teaching the faith to the children.
 
3             Establish in parish worship an environment which encourages children to recognize God’s love for them and their valued place in His family.
 
4             Provide education, prayer, and guidance to help children and adults to seek and know God’s purpose for them and to enable them to respond to it.
 
Chrism
 
Chrism is olive oil blessed by the Bishop for use in individual congregations. Signing with the cross in Baptism using Chrism is meaningful as a sign of our being sealed with our Baptism into a lifetime relationship with God and His church. This reminds us that Baptism is not just an individual affair but an act of adoption into the worldwide family of believers.
 
What Baptism is not
 
Baptism is not magic, a good luck charm, naming ceremony, a tradition, a proof of birth, a way to please relatives, entrance into Sunday School, protection from Hell, something to do now in case it will be used later.
 
Other religions accept the existence of God. Baptism is only for those, and their sponsors, who will follow Jesus Christ as Lord, in the fellowship of the local congregation; that is, who want to be a Christian.
 
Your baby does not have to be “done”! God will not hold anything against your child for something you do not want to do. It is you, the parents, who have the responsibility of raising the child as a Christian no matter what the pressure from relatives.
 
Your child will be given a good start if you follow through with what Baptism means. Just to go through the ceremony with no follow-ups is only a false start.
 
When does the church baptize?
 
Unless there are good and urgent reasons it is the policy of St. Luke’s that Baptism is administered during our Sunday morning service in the presence of the whole congregation which represents the world wide family of believers.
 
What next?
 
If you wish to go ahead with baptism please contact St. Luke’s to arrange an appointment to discuss the service, answer any questions you may have, and to learn more about the Christian God.
 
In conclusion
 
As parents fulfill their commitment to God and live out their faith they are in effect saying:
 
“We like it, we want it for our child, and we will celebrate our faith and teach our children to do the same.”
 
This material has been produced using material from We’re glad to hear you are thinking about Baptism from Kingsbury Press, Rev. 1991
 

FINANCES
As for most organizations St. Luke's does need financial support.
At St. Luke's we encourage the biblical principle of 'tithing', which is considered as a tenth of our labour.  For us it means that 10% of our gross earnings are directed into the church to enable continuing ministry.
Our place of worship requires upkeep, as does its day to day operation and staffing.  We also budget to support our various groups and ministries at home.  In addition to this we also support the work of our Diocese of Calgary which in turn passes support to the National church and overseas.
In the end, what you give is between you and God and is reflective of your relationship with Him and service to His Kingdom.  For your convenience there are special envelopes available for use and yearly tax receipts are issued for identifiable offerings.
No one has ever out given God! 

 
THANK YOU 
Thank you for taking the time to read this page. If you wish to contact us or join us for Sunday Worship, the details are on our Home Page. If your journey takes you elsewhere, may God go with you and guide your footsteps in the way of peace.

Some Links that describe our faith:

Return to the Top


UA-5126191-1