WHAT DOES "GOOD STANDING" MEAN?
NOTE: Membership in the Orthodox Church begins at Baptism (Chrismation for some) and is supposed to continue throughout our lives. We are truly members of the Church – the living body of Jesus Christ – when we participate regularly in the liturgical services & sacraments, pray, read Holy Scripture, receive spiritual guidance, and do our best to live as Orthodox Christians. This also includes, as best as we are able, the offering our time, talents, and financial resources in the service of God and for the betterment of others. When we do all of these things with faith and love, we become members in good standing – not as if we belonged to some kind of club – rather, we become spiritually connected to the living body of Jesus Christ, the spiritual organism known as the Church, the ekklesia. The sponsor is called to recite the Creed on behalf of the child, and so it is essential that the sponsor is a believer of the Orthodox faith and not simply a good friend that we want to honor.
We do not "charge" for sacraments at Saint Sophia, however, everyone who benefits from the services or sacraments of our parish is expected to be a Steward of Saint Sophia. This means, among other things, filling-out their stewardship committment form every year and giving generously – according to their ability – of their time, talents, and financial resources to advance the sacred mission of the Church. We want everyone who is baptized and/or married in our parish to participate fully in the life of our church and to become annual stewards. However, if you do not honestly intend to become a regular steward(s) of Saint Sophia (or you do not live in the area), your generous donation to parish will help defray the expenses of the ministry and operations of our parish.