Congregation Close-up: St. Timothy’s, Salem

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Step into the sanctuary at St. Timothy’s, and the baptismal font – a large, octagonal tub big enough to immerse an adult – greets you. From there, it is a straight line to the altar. These two points, the places of Baptism and Eucharist, anchor not just the physical space but the life of the people. The Rev. Brandon Filbert says, “The radical stuff in Christianity comes out of the Sacraments, and are what leads us to adopting the mind of Christ.”

Each fall, interested people begin a journey aimed at helping them to find their story in the story of the Church and Christianity. From the introductory class, they move into a catechumenate program – and as they go, parishioners surround and support them, praying by name for each person during Mass, participating in lessons on church history and rites, and preparing baptismal presents that will be given during the great Agape Feast, which takes place after the Easter Vigil.

This common life together is a primary characteristic of the congregation of St. Timothy’s, what binds them together and what sends them into the world. As Brandon+ describes it, “The Church is not an adornment, but the centerpoint of life, a place of intimacy with no wall between the liturgy and everything else. The reign of God is palpable in the gathering of the people for Eucharist, and this infuses all the relationships of life with grace.”

Visit the St. Timothy’s website.

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