St. Benedict’s Mission Statement
The people of St. Benedict’s are called to share God’s love as we minister with and to all persons in Los Osos and beyond, providing worship, education, nurture, fellowship, and service.
St. Benedict’s strives to be an inclusive Christian community that celebrates the divine in all beings, and inspires spiritual growth through joyful, creative sacramental worship, loving service within our congregation and our wider community, thoughtful inquiry through in-depth study and prayer, and commitment to social and environmental justice.
Christ-Centered Co-creators with God
Theological reflection, experimental liturgy and intellectual inquiry are part of our church’s core identity. Through prayer, worship, and ministry we deepen our relationship with Jesus so we may more effectively share God’s abundant love. We glorify God in worship that honors the heart and mind, using the physical reality of the liturgy: bread wine, candles, special vestments, and music. The eucharist is central to our worship, as it is linked inextricably to serving God in all persons and in the community as a whole.
Hospitality and Creating Community
We are mindful of God’s mercy and the power to experience healing through forgiveness. We seek to provide an atmosphere of caring and continuity. We aim to support one another in times of adversity through prayer and practical assistance with hospital visits, food to help in a crisis, and personal and spiritual support. We gather together to celebrate milestones and successes. St Benedict’s is known as a place for good food and good conversation. We are a church family who love each other, although we do not always agree.
St. Benedict’s attempts to direct every action towards an awareness of the presence of God. Though worship, education, and outreach, we are committed to finding a place where the heart and the mind can hear God’s voice and embody it, within our own community, and out in the world of daily life.
We are part of all creation. Our Earthcare group strives to help the church to a more conscious and conscientious stewardship of the Earth, our fragile island home in the universe.
We believe that Christian community is also formed by a prayerful approach to learning together. Our adult education programs are always open to everyone. We seek to understand the challenges of our time as they relate to our deepening awareness of Christ’s message in our rapidly changing world.
Inspired and energized by the Holy Spirit, we at St. Benedict’s commit ourselves to action and excellence in serving all of God’s diverse creation. We reach out through specific community activities: our thrift store (the “Abundance Shop” on 9th Street) provides affordable clothing and household items to the public as well as job training, and a community gathering place for those living on the edge. We provide co-leadership in Los Osos Cares, an organization that reaches out to those in economic need. We support the Prado Day Center by regularly serving a hot lunch and by our donations. Our Earthcare group promotes good stewardship of the environment. Our Hollister Institute fosters thoughtful, ecumenical inquiry in the Los Osos community. Many of our members serve on boards of community outreach programs.
St Benedict’s is actively involved in working for social justice. We encourage each other to participate in public policy as our hearts and minds lead us, and the local coalition People of Faith for Justice provides a way for us to work with those from other congregations and faith traditions. We reach out to the world beyond Los Osos to provide relief to those in need, through organizations such as Episcopal Relief and Development, Lutheran World Relief, Bread for the World, Soup for Syria, and The United Nations High Commission on Refugees.
When we say that everyone is welcome to worship at St. Benedict’s, we mean it. Our welcome knows no boundaries of age, race, ethnicity, culture, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, economic condition, physical or mental ability. We embrace and seek to preserve the beautiful, amazing diversity of God’s creation. We cooperate in ministry with other local churches and groups of God’s people as we participate in the worldwide mission of Christ. St. Benedict’s is a long-time supporter of the full inclusion of all Christians in every order (lay, deacon, priest, bishop) and every sacrament and rite of the church.