Grace Church in Newark seeks to be a holy and beautiful place, strong and stable,
where all people who enter our doors can encounter God
and be inspired to share the light of Christ by word and action.
The mission of Grace Church in Newark is to share God’s love in the world, and particularly in Newark and beyond. As an active Episcopal Church in the Anglican-Catholic tradition, we welcome all people who enter our doors and offer an inviting place to encounter God in prayer and sacrament, liturgy and music, companionable community, and compassion toward our neighbors. We believe God is calling us to greater and more diverse membership, wider participation in ministry and leadership, better stewardship of God’s creation, and a stronger resolve in challenging attitudes and structures that cause injustice. Guided by the Holy Spirit, we commit ourselves to respond to this call in love and service and so more fully live the life of Christ.
To realize our vision and achieve our mission, we hope that members and friends of Grace Church will join together, focusing all our attention on strengthening ministries that will achieve our goals:
To be a holy & beautiful place of worship in prayer, liturgy & music, and a diverse & welcoming community.
To share the light of Christ in the world, particularly in Newark and surrounding areas, through the proclamation of the gospel and the practice of compassion and outreach toward our neighbors.
To be stable, enduring, continually growing, and financially sustainable.
To maintain a clear Anglican Catholic tradition as an exemplar of liturgy & music in The Episcopal Church.
To nurture members and friends of Grace Church through spiritual formation and meaningful community.
To inspire fuller participation and inclusion of new and existing members.
Grace Church has a venerable history
and is an exemplar of Anglican Catholicism in The Episcopal Church
Grace Church in Newark was founded in 1837 to be the standard-bearer for Anglo-Catholicism in northern New Jersey. Grace Church has a history of fine liturgy and music. Our liturgy reflects the influence of both the nineteenth-century Catholic revival in Anglicanism and the twentieth-century Liturgical Movement. The Eucharist at Grace Church utilizes Rite II liturgy. At High Mass most of the liturgy is sung by the congregation, clergy, and choir. The Eucharist is celebrated at the High Altar with the congregation and celebrant facing east. Incense, lights, and colorful vestments enrich our worship.
Grace Church in Newark is Diverse and Welcoming
We are African, Caribbean, Caucasian, African American, and Hispanic. We are young and old, married and single, gay and straight. We are eager to welcome others into the parish community. Coffee Hour (sadly on hold due to COVID-19), a central part of our parish life that follows Sunday's High Mass, is often a full meal prepared by families of the parish. Other receptions for events like concerts also reflect that parish's warm hospitality.
If you visit Grace Church in Newark you should expect to be treated with dignity and respect no matter your background. You will not be singled out or embarrassed. You may be greeted by friendly ushers and invited to coffee hour or another event, but there will be no pressure to commit to more than you are comfortable in your own time.
You should not experience judgmental attitudes or expectations of conformity to particular points of doctrine. And you will also not be expected to leave your brain or any other integral part of who you are outside the church premises. This does not mean, however, that you may not be challenged to live a better and more devoted life in service to God.
What You Can Expect in Our Worship Service
People who visit an Anglo-Catholic parish for the first time may be curious about some of its customs and unsure of how to act within worship. But, do not worry or be afraid to ask questions.
While there is some similarity, practices of piety vary from person to person. And Anglicans believe that we learn how to be Christian (how to worship, pray, and live) through our worship; we are always learning and being formed by our acts of worship. People will not judge you if you do not know exactly when to kneel or stand. We were all there once!
However, in general, we stand to pray and sing and hear the Gospel, we sit to hear the other scripture readings and sermon, and we kneel to make confession and receive communion. Also, it is generally safe to stand or sit whenever the priest who is celebrating stands or sits.
When you arrive at Grace, an usher will hand you a service leaflet that will contain all you need to worship. You can follow the instructions in italics and participate in worship as much as you desire. There will be special instructions for how to receive communion, if you are unfamiliar with our customs.
Please fill out a Visitors' Card in the pew or the visitor's book so that we may know you have worshiped with us. Then, please join us for coffee hour, come back for another event, or to another Sunday Mass.
At any time, if you would like to speak with a priest, do not hesitate to call the church, email, or speak to Fr. Bates at church.
And if you would like to read an outsider's experience of visiting Grace Church in Newark for the first time, read this Mystery Worshiper Report.
Some Useful Documents
All Are Welcome at Grace Church in Newark
A Statement Adopted by the Vestry
If you are Asian, Hispanic, Black, or White...
If you are male or female or transgender...
If you are three days old, 30 years old, or 103 years old...
If you have never stepped foot in a church or are a life-long Christian...
If you are single, married, divorced, separated, or partnered...
If you are straight, gay, lesbian, or bisexual...
If you are Republican, Democrat, Independent, Socialist, or not registered to vote...
If you have, or had, addictions, phobias, abortions, or a criminal record...
If you own your home, rent, live with your parents, or are homeless...
If you are fully-abled, disabled, or a person of differing abilities...
All are welcome. This is a safe place to encounter God and one another.
Grace Church commits to the radical hospitality of Jesus Christ. In faithfulness to the Gospel and our Anglo-Catholic heritage, and to the best of our ability, we promise to provide programs, ministries, and pastoral care to all who seek God in this place.