Our Mission
With the grace of God, Good Shepherd is called to follow Jesus by nurturing souls, doing justice, serving others, and caring for creation.
Our Vision
The Church of the Good Shepherd is a vibrant Christian community that joyfully welcomes ALL – the faithful, the doubter, and the seeker. We use our God-given talents to work for the physical, spiritual, social, and emotional well-being of not just our parish community, but the local community and the world.

And Our Guiding Principles

Good Shepherd is a place where you can be yourself and connect with God and others. The Christian faith is a personal journey that we can make together. We invite you to come with us as we learn more about God and the Bible and celebrate the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ.

As Christians and as Episcopalians, we . . .

  • Take the Bible seriously but not necessarily literally.
  • Value the importance of 2000 years of Christian spiritual tradition.
  • Prize human reason as a gift from God.

Because human reason is a gift from God, the willingness to express honest doubts and questions is an important part of the Christian journey in this community. 

In our effort to draw closer to God, we also seek to practice spiritual disciplines, or “Holy Habits,” because they help sustain our relationship with God. These disciplines include:

  • Overcoming the spiritual challenge of being possessed by possessions. 
  • Setting aside personal time each day for prayer and study.
  • Coming together for regular worship as a community.
  • Engaging in Sabbath time, time we set aside as necessary for our personal spiritual rest and refreshment.

While these are important aspirations, the human reality is that we are all works in progress, and we all need to support each other with humility, affection, and good humor.

Q. What can you tell me about sunday services?

A: There are two Sunday services -- a smaller, quiet service at 8:30 am and a larger service with music at 11:00 am (In the summer the late service is an hour earlier at 10 am). Both services include readings from holy scripture, a sermon, prayers, and Holy Eucharist (Communion).

Q. What should I expect during the service?

A: Our services are based on the Book of Common Prayer (the red book in the pew rack), but for convenience, everything you need to know to follow along is in the service leaflet or on your phone with the QR code provided in the narthex. Basically, we pray, we listen to God’s Word and to a sermon, we confess our sins and ask for forgiveness and the grace to do better, and we experience union with Christ in the Eucharist.

Q. What should I wear?

A: There is no dress code. Comfortable and casual is the norm. Shorts, suits, and dresses are equally welcome and sometimes occupy the same pew.

Q. What Am I Supposed to Do?

A: The short answer to draw near to God. The longer answer is do what feels right and is comfortable for you. 

Standing or kneeling? This is a question that has perplexed guests and members in Episcopal churches for generations. Whether to stand or kneel is a matter of personal piety and individual preference. Look around you to see what other folks are doing – you’ll see a variety. God doesn’t care. And neither do we. 

Holy Eucharist commemorates the Last Supper when Jesus asked the disciples to take bread and wine in remembrance of him. We do use real wine; we use separate chalices for those who wish to drink from the common cup and for those who prefer to intinct (dip) their wafer. Please know that it is not “required” that you receive the wine to be completely communed. Additionally, anyone may come to the rail for a blessing – place your arms across your chest as the priest approaches.

Q. Is it okay to bring my young children to the service?

A: Absolutely! Children are always welcome at worship services (and there are quiet activity bags for their enjoyment at the rear of the church). If you or your child needs a stretch break, the service is broadcast in the parish hall. Additionally, childcare is available in the nursery on Sundays for infants through preschool from 9:45 am through the end of the service. The nursery is staffed by experienced providers who are happy to play with and care for your child. Whoever you are and wherever you may be in your own spiritual journey, we invite you to join us.

Q. What about Sunday School?

A: For adults, there is Good Shepherd and the World. Featuring both in-house and guest speakers, GSW covers a variety of topics with no homework required!  Wildlife rehabilitation, Islamic calligraphy, Fountain City history, hiking the Appalachian Trail, the mysteries of Monarch butterflies, the challenges of being a public defender, pastoral care in the ER, understanding family systems -- the list goes on. Good Shepherd and the World explores the fascinating, wondrous, and challenging world we live in.

For children and youth, there is Godly Play (preschool through 2rd grade), Club 345 (3th through 5th grade), and Middle School (6th through 8th grade) and High School (9th through 12th grade).