New to Calvary

New to Calvary

Welcome to Calvary Church’s web site. The information available here will give you a glimpse into the life of this busy downtown congregation. Please check out the things that interest you most, then come see us in person!

Our mission at Calvary is MAKING GOD’S LOVE VISIBLE IN DOWNTOWN MEMPHIS. We believe that God’s love was made visible in our world through the life Jesus lived and the things Jesus taught. We try to continue his work in our own time and place. Our weekday and Sunday worship services and our outreach ministries to the community are dedicated to doing just that.

We invite you to check out our newsletter, the Chronicle, to learn about the things that are going on right now. You can also listen to recent sermons on this site, though we really believe worship and preaching are a participatory activity. Come spend a Sunday morning with us if you really want to see what we are all about!

There are lots of ways you can get involved. Some require training, but there are many things one can do even on a one-time basis. Come help us cook breakfast on a Sunday morning for our neighbors in need, enjoy one of Calvary's upcoming special events, or take part in a Wednesday evening discussion group.  

This is a welcoming community built on inquiry and forgiveness. Although we are passionate about our faith and commitments, we are diverse in our opinions and want to be open to learning from those who are different from us. Like Anglicans of old, it is our shared worship and our ministry to others that holds us together. 

A group of Calvary parishioners developed an acronym to describe their church and its core values. The words they used were: Forgiveness, Action, Inquiry, Togetherness, and Hallelujah!  Lined up in the right order, the words spell “FAITH.” 

If you have questions that are not answered on this web site, contact Ebet Peeples, who coordinates our ministries of welcome and community. We look forward to talking with you online, via telephone, or in person.

Welcome Class

Our Welcome Class is open to anyone—seekers, newcomers to the Episcopal Church, or newcomers to this parish. The Welcome Class is a simple introduction to life at Calvary. It is intended to help people discover what we are about and to help them discern whether this is the place where they can best grow in their relationship with God and their ability to serve the world.

Classes meet on during the Formation hour on Sunday mornings in the parish Library. Each of our gatherings lasts approximately 45 minutes. The class is offered on a regular basis throughout the year. For more information, contact Ebet Peeples.

Frequently Asked Questions

At Calvary Church, we like questions. In fact, we relish them! Recognizing that newcomers to the parish are full of questions, we’ve gathered some of the most frequently asked questions and answered them

Becoming a Member

One becomes a member of the Church at baptism. Living into one’s baptism, however, involves being part of a real, flesh and blood congregation. We hope you will consider making your commitment at Calvary!

If you have already been baptized and want to make Calvary your church home, here is what to do: 

  • Register your baptism with us. We accept the baptismal rites of all Christian churches as the real thing; we never “re-baptize” anyone.  Contact Ebet Peeples and ask that the record of your baptism be transferred here. (She will want to know, as best you can tell her, where and when you were baptized, and where your most recent church home has been, if any.)

  • Attend Calvary’s Welcome Class, if you have not already done so. This class is held once a month and will give you a good idea about what makes Calvary tick. It includes a discussion of our five core values: forgiveness, action, inquiry, togetherness, and Hallelujah!

  • Adopt a plan to take part in Calvary’s ministry with your money and your skills. Someone from the parish’s stewardship committee will call on you to talk about financial stewardship and making a pledge to God’s work through Calvary Church. Each of us (including the clergy) gives time and money to support the church’s work. Ebet Peeples will be eager to help you find a parish ministry to plug into—or a place to serve in the wider community, all in Christ’s name.

  • Confirm your faith commitment before the bishop. Twice a year, a bishop comes to Calvary to hear and bless the faith commitments of our members. This is the sacrament of Confirmation. Parishioners prepare for this by attending our Practicing the Faith class, offered as a Sunday morning class or as a one-day, all-day intensive, whichever is best for you. If you have already been confirmed in the Episcopal Church, you are invited to reaffirm your faith (or for those coming from the Catholic Church, to be received) on this occasion.

The Episcopal Church has a term to describe the baptized who have completed this process and keep their involvement current– confirmed communicant in good standing. These are real, active “members” of the church, and each of us is invited to be one!

  • “confirmed” = publicly committed to Christ and his Church,

  • “communicant” = regular in worship, and

  • “in good standing” = contributing to the building of God’s Kingdom with our time, talents, and money.

If you have not yet been baptized, speak with one of the clergy.