Photo: Helena Kubicka de Bragança

Pastoral Services: Baptisms, Weddings, Funerals

For additional information about all of the pastoral services below, please email or call (212) 316-7456.

Baptism is the sacrament by which a person is joined to Christ and becomes a member of the Church. The Catechism of the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer elaborates that, “Holy Baptism is the sacrament by which God adopts us as his children and makes us members of Christ’s Body, the Church, and inheritors of the kingdom of God.”

Baptism brings with it both the gifts and the obligations of membership in the Church. We at the Cathedral welcome those who feel called to explore this sacrament. Whenever discussion and discernment leads to a person being baptized, it is an event of great joy for us. The exploration alone, no matter what a person may decide, is a rich and holy experience.

In the Episcopal Church, we baptize both adults who have come to have faith in Christ and children whose guardians present them for the sacrament. We believe, with Christians from at least the fourth century, that Baptism creates an eternal bond between the person and God. We do not, therefore, re-baptize those who were previously baptized, whether in the Episcopal Church or in another context. However, we would be delighted to explore with any baptized persons membership in the Episcopal Church.

Contact the Congregation Pastor for more information.

Healing Ministries
Healing Eucharist on Wednesdays at 12:15
On Wednesdays at 12:15, the daily Eucharist includes a time of prayer for healing, the laying on of hands, and Unction (anointing with oil) by a priest.

Healing Prayer during the 11 AM Sunday Eucharist
During the time of Communion, trained lay people are available to pray with you in St. James Chapel.

Recovery Eucharist
On the fourth Saturday of every month, the 12:15 Eucharist will intentionally welcome those afflicted or affected by addiction. The texts and homily of the liturgy as well as other resources that will be available, serve to especially welcome to this service all who are in search of healing and recovery.

The Episcopal Church recognizes Holy Matrimony as a sacramental rite in which two people enter into a lifelong union. They speak their vows before God and in the presence of the Church, receiving grace from God to help them fulfill the promises they have made. At its General Convention in 2015, the Church made the rites of Holy Matrimony accessible to same-sex as well as different-sex couples, and the Cathedral upholds that decision.

Couples who have a relationship to the Cathedral are encouraged to celebrate their marriage here. We welcome others to meet with the Pastor to explore whether Saint John the Divine is the right place for your wedding.

For the details on having a wedding at the Cathedral, please see our wedding policies and procedures. If you have questions or would like further information, please contact the Congregation Pastor.

The Cathedral stands ready to accompany people as they lose loved ones to death. Our priests can provide pastoral care to those who mourn and arrange for a funeral or memorial service. Various ministers on the Cathedral staff, including our organists and other musicians, will work to provide a dignified and appropriate service. Cathedral clergy must preside at all funerals held here.

Saint John the Divine hosts services for those who regularly worship here as well as others for whom this is a place of spiritual and religious significance. Our services are based upon the Burial Rites of the Book of Common Prayer. Within the structure of those rites, many options are offered, such as selections of Biblical readings and prayers. This allows the service to reflect the life of the person who has died as well as the circumstances of those left behind. Ideally, arrangements for burial from Saint John the Divine should be made well before death. The Canon Pastor and other priests on staff would be happy to do advance planning with you or your loved ones. To discuss funerals, please contact the Pastor.