Episcopal Church

We Episcopalians believe in a loving, liberating, and life-giving God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As constituent members of the Anglican Communion in the United States, we are descendants of and partners with the Church of England and the Scottish Episcopal Church, and are part of the third largest group of Christians in the world.

We believe in following the teachings of Jesus Christ, whose life, death, and resurrection saved the world.

We have a legacy of inclusion, aspiring to tell and exemplify God’s love for every human being; women and men serve as bishops, priests, and deacons in our church. Laypeople and clergy cooperate as leaders at all levels of our church. Leadership is a gift from God, and can be expressed by all people in our church, regardless of sexual identity or orientation.

We believe that God loves you – no exceptions.

The Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts welcomes you. We are 180 congregations in eastern Massachusetts, Cape Cod and the islands. We seek to be Christ’s presence in the world as we answer God’s urgent call together. Join us!

Massachusetts was founded by Puritans who did not accept such aspects of the Church of England as bishops and the Book of Common Prayer. The first Anglican parish in the Massachusetts Bay Colony was King’s Chapel in Boston, founded in 1688, 58 years after the city. After the American Revolution, King’s Chapel became the first Unitarian congregation in North America. The oldest remaining parishes in the diocese are Christ Church in Quincy, founded in 1704, St. Paul’s in Newburyport, founded as Queen Anne’s Chapel in 1711, St. Michael’s Church in Marblehead, founded in 1714, Christ Church in Boston (Old North Church), founded in 1723, and St. Andrew’s Church in South Scituate (now Hanover), founded in 1727.

The diocese was organized in 1784, five years before the Episcopal Church itself. The first bishop (for New England and New York) was Samuel Seabury who was consecrated by the bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church in 1784.