Worshiping at San Francisco de Asis as an English Speaker:
Holy Communion Every Sunday in Spanish at 10AM, speakers of all languages welcome, but what’s the Spanish Mass like?
It can be intimidating to step out of the familiar and jump into a new cultural context, but at San Francisco de Asís, we pride ourselves on being as welcoming and kind to all people as St. Francis himself. No matter what your cultural or religious background, we would love to have you join us in prayer.
What are y’all saying?
Our worship is based on El Libro de Oración Común, known to English speaking Episcopalians as The Book of Common Prayer. Each community of faith does things a little differently than the next, but our worship will seem familiar to anyone who has ever attended an Anglican, Roman Catholic or Lutheran service before. The Episcopal liturgy is an adaptation of the most ancient rites of the Christian tradition and is meant to give you a little glimpse of Heaven here and now.
Our music is an (if we do say so ourselves) AMAZING blend of traditional Anglican church music and the astonishingly moving Mariachi tradition. A warning to those visiting from other communities: you may find it hard to return to Palestrina’s Agnus Dei after you’ve heard the Guerrero Family Mariachi’s version!
Sacramento — it’s not just a city in California
The staples of our Christian life together are the mystical experiences of God in the sacraments (or los sacramentos) of Baptism and Holy Communion. These are two of God’s greatest gifts to us, and we cherish them. Baptism is the inclusion of a person in the Body of Christ, and the Blessed Sacrament of Holy Communion is the reception of Christ’s body and blood. This, as St. Augustine famously remarked, is the only food that when eaten doesn’t become part of you; rather you become part of it. All Christians baptized in any tradition, from Eastern Orthodox to Southern Baptist, are heartily welcomed to share with us in this sacred meal.
If you are not baptized, we are nonetheless thrilled to have you join us. For us baptism doesn’t create a hierarchy of good people and bad people, or holy people and unholy people. Instead baptism is a special, life-changing experience of God to which all are invited. We cherish every human being as a beloved brother or sister, and in the mass, when all baptized Christians come forward to receive communion, we invite you to come forward for a blessing form our priest. If you’d like to learn more about what baptism entails, Fr. Bertie would love to let you know all about it!
While you’re less likely to see them on a Sunday morning, we also dearly value the sacraments of confirmation, ordination, holy matrimony, reconciliation (commonly called confession) and unction. If you’d like to find out more about these, or the nature of the sacraments in general — let Fr. Bertie know, as he’d love to set up a time to talk with you.
Last but definitely not least: ¡La Comida!
After our service, often called The Mass or La Misa, we have a phenomenally good, home cooked, Latin American meal: our parishioners spend days making tamales, pupusas, slow cooked stews and roasted meats — it’s a serious labor of love and if you don’t have a divine revelation of the Glory of God during the service, you just might over lunch. We call it La Hora del Amor. Leaving right after mass and missing lunch may not be a sin, but ’tis a very grave error indeed.