Since its founding nearly 200 years ago, the congregation of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Forest has welcomed people to this sacred place in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The reasons individuals and families come are often unique, but the predominant and often common factors that lead people through our front doors have been and continue to be the desire to be part of a shared and vibrant communal life – a life of worship, prayer, education, fellowship, and service to the wider community. Whatever it is that has drawn your attention to us, we at St. Stephen’s welcome you!
We are deeply committed to worship and to sharing the love of Christ with friends, neighbors and newcomers alike. Regardless of where you started or are at present in your walk with God, we’re here to support you and share the next steps of your journey with you. Theology and a desire to know God are at the heart of our liturgy, study, work and fellowship, and we invite you to experience them with us.
Our communal life here at St. Stephen’s can be traced to a combination of the words attributed to Saint Francis, the admonition of Jesus in Matthew 25, and our shared Baptismal Covenant. We strive to be instruments of God’s peace. We celebrate life’s joys and we strive to provide hope in times of difficulty. We offer encouragement and love for any suffering in body, mind or spirit. We work to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and give strength to the weary. We strive to seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving our neighbors as ourselves and respecting the dignity of every human being. Above all, we recognize that we are all part of one creation and one family in the embrace of God – and as part of that family, we welcome you!
No matter who you are you are welcomed here, and we invite you to experience for yourself the joy and presence of God’s real and abiding love. If you are looking for a church to call home, we would love to have you with us at St. Stephen’s!