Saint Mark's Episcopal Cathedral

1245 Tenth Avenue East
Seattle
Washington
98102
Senior Pastor: 
The Right Reverend Greg Rickel
Denomination: 
Episcopal
It Is One of The Most Amazing Services I Have Been to in a While!
5

Hands down one of the best services I have attended in a long time. This service was full of liturgy and tradition, the kind that you could feel from the time you walked in the door. Upon even approaching the door, there was so much respect for this sacred place that the room was in complete silence. Being that the church was located on Capital Hill, there was a whole variety of people that came to this compline service. The greatest part of it all was that everyone was just mixed in with everyone else. There were no divisions, homeless people sat with the wealthy and vice versa. There focus was not on their differences, but instead upon God and their hunger to know him. The community was amazing to watch, but the cathedral itself could take your breath away by mere appearance alone. Around the room were many traditional symbols and artifacts that expressed God in many different ways. One could have come and just walked around the room and felt the presence of the Lord. But it didn’t end there, the service began and the voices of the monks were beautiful. If one closed their eyes, they might get a vision of what heaven would look and sound like someday. The service ended and I left that service more alive than I had been in a long time. In recommending this church to others I would suggest that one must go if they are anywhere near the cathedral or Seattle on a Sunday night.

Comments

5

This was an evening service that everyone entered in silence and then listened to the brothers sing. If I could rate higher for singing I would.
St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral really does an incredible job being culturally relevant. With the rise of postmodernism, which has included the shift back things that are ancient, the service we attended was doing just that with the singing by the brothers of the church, which was just beautiful music. And it was evident by the fact that the entire sanctuary was filled by people of all different kinds of ways of life. People now especially need something to be “spiritual” in order for it to be relevant for their lives. And this service did just that by giving the sense of the divine while listening to the singing.
This church also has a lot of emphasis on evangelism. This was not the in your face trying to convert you to Jesus kind of evangelism otherwise many of the people who were there at the service would never have come back. But it was creating an atmosphere where people could come and relax wherever they wanted to and experience a sense of the divine. And I imagine the atmosphere created in this service would maybe create an openness in some of the people there to come to one of the other services St. Mark’s offered at other times of the week.
But one the other side, there did not appear to be much congregational development in this service. This service seemed to solely exist to provide an environment for people who might not go to a church any other time. But it did not attempt to actually develop the congregation of people there. People ended up seemingly feeding their consumerist desires for something that they feel is relevant to them.

3

I had the opportunity to attend a compline service at this cathedral on a Sunday night. For me this was a little odd as I have never attended a service like this before. I am still not sure what I think about a service like this. It was difficult for me to understand everything that was going on. However there seems to be something significant going on in this church because before the service started the whole cathedral was filled with people. They seem to be going for some reason, I only hope it is to become closer to God. I was a little disappointed with some of the people that showed up, I’m not sure if they showed up because they were made to show up or because it is just in their blood to show up. Some people did not seem to take the service seriously, there were several younger people that were playing games on their cell phones or listening to their iPods. However once again, this church seems to be attracting people to its service, I hope they continue to draw people to them.

4

While most of the churches that I have reviewed have similar styles, or approaches and such, this one does, just not at 9:30pm on a Sunday night. The demographics are amazing as one may notice the high schoolers who think it's 'cool' to be there while they are sitting right next to the bum who just walked in off Broadway, and he is sitting right next to someone who has attended St. Mark's for over 50 years. What draws people to it? Why? I can not answer those questions, but personally I know that if there was ever a need to refocus and be silent it would be on a Sunday night. It is a great time of personal reflection, filled and driven by a strong liturgical background through song, and really, what other place can you connect with some many different people seeking truth in so many different ways? It is a time to listen, to reflect, and to be still and I think that resonates with people in today's fast paced world. There are no distractions (other than your own or the person sitting next to you), the structure of the building demands respect and honor to God, and we find ourselves sitting, heads in our hands for a solid thirty minutes, given the opportunity to let God speak. Who knows what other people what away with, but something draws them there. Something, or someone.

5

The compline service, as I found out later, means prayers before bed. For what it was meant to be I give it an enthusiastic 5! The service was very quiet with a choir doing chants and some songs... when the apostle's creed was chanted the whole congregation rose (without cue) it was awesome to see a bunch of teens, twenty and thirty-somethings participating in something so liturgical... and old! Friendliness and preaching was not really applicable for this rating, there was no sermon, I was greeted but for the most part you walk in and immediately focus inward. The Cathedral was stunning. The thing I found most interesting was the kind of attendance the compline service attracted... it was mostly the "lost generations" that we unfortunately don"t see enough of in church (I'm 22 & wish the church could learn to relate & be more relevant to my age group). I'm not sure what a normal Sunday morning service would look like here but some staff said the attendees are much different. I'd be interested to attend a Sunday service but I can definitely advise going to compline!

5

Words don't quite describe St. Marks Cathedral in Seattle. I attended their Sunday night compline service, which starts at 9:30p. As I walked in, there was natural sound barrier that I crossed. No one told me to be quite, nor was their a sign that told me to shut up (although, later I found out their really was...). This was a sound barrier of reverence. I felt like I need to take off my sandals (Moses anyone?). As I walked in, I literally lost my breath. I became lightheaded as I looked at the huge, huge ceilings in this old, old cathedral. As I walked around the dim, candle lit area I noticed the eclectic people that surrounded me. One of the most amazing things about this service was the freedom. People were sitting in pews, reading out a hymnal, people were off in the corner cuddled up in a blanket, people were face down in the front, and holding hands in the back. Everyone was doing all they could do to connect with this spiritual God. As I looked around, I could easily see that not everyone was like me. In fact, I was more the minority than anything else. Now, I would place a bet, that several people, actually, a lot people where not your typical Christians, in fact, I would assume that alot of them wouldn't even call themselves Christians, but rather followers of Jesus. The amazing thing about St. Marks Cathedral was that I have never seen so many people trying to connect with the spiritual. These people were craving it. I'm sure tons of them had no clue what Jesus was all about, nor do they know about salvation, redemption and/or prevenient grace (snares for the typical Christian), however, even though they might not have not exactly who they were worshiping, the were trying hard to connect to this "unknown God" that most people in your typical Church servce. In scripture we read about Paul's visit to a place called "Mars Hill". It's a temple dedicated to "The Unknown God", and it was surrounded by all different kinds of people who didn't know God, but could still feel him. St. Marks Cathedral really is Mars Hill.

5

This was one of my most favorite experiences on the trip. This was a time that I was able to not really do anything but really have peace during my worship experience. The cathedral was amazing as well as the brothers talent. There voices and prayers were some of the best and well sung that I have ever heard. This was one of the most memorable experiences of not only my trip here but also my life.

4

I absolutely loved this experience. There is something to be said about the wonder of tradition. The service I attended was done completely in chant (or whatever it should properly be called). The atmosphere was something that has to be experienced to truly understand. I would encourage anyone who can check it out, do so.

4

The service at Saint Mark’s was a beautiful one. I love attending Catholic churches because of the rich liturgy of the Church. When we came into the church building itself, I was shocked at the absolute beauty of the church building. I think that too many times churches leave out sacred space in their worship service, but this entire church was sacred space. Going in and sitting down, I just sat in the midst of what was about to happen and I meditated. For me, the whole night was about meditation. That is what I love about Catholic churches. I was not disappointed in the fact that a priest did not come out and deliver a message. However, I can see how a person could feel frustrated by such a service as this one. Unless a person is familiar with the way a catholic church’s service run, I can see how this would be very frustrating. However, if a person is familiar and is looking to simply sit and meditate on God, then this service is the one for you. A person can sit immersed in this service for hours and leave so very peaceful. There were so many people who came in and sat everywhere they could. When the main pews filled up, the side ones did, and then after that, everyone began to sit on the floor. I think this is the beauty of church in it’s early stages. The church was a place of refuge for those seeking to escape.

With all due respect, St. Mark's is NOT a Roman Catholic church.  In fact, in order to rate St. Mark's, you had to click on St. Mark's EPISCOPAL Church.  And it is, in fact, an Episcopal Church.  Not the same as Roman Catholic.  Felt compelled to point that out, since your entire review is based on the assumption you were in a Catholic church.