Introduction to Sunday’s Hymns: December 20, 2020

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On Thursday, December 17, Canon Michael Kleinschmidt introduced the hymns to be sung at the morning and afternoon liturgies this coming Sunday, December 20, 2020, the Fourth Sunday of Advent. This introduction was presented live on Facebook.

The hymns discussed are:

  • Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord [Hymn #437]
  • The angel Gabriel from heaven came [Hymn #265]
  • O come, O come, Emmanuel [Hymn #56] a few words about this Sunday's organ voluntaries, the upcoming Pageant of the Nativity Reprise, and the liturgies from Christmas Eve and Christmas day.

Note that there will be no Hymn Preview for the next two week. The next installment will be streamed live on Thursday, January 7!

Join us in the future on Thursdays at 4 p.m. for another live hymn chat! Just visit the cathedral's public Facebook page at the time of the broadcast—if you "follow" the cathedral on Facebook, you should receive a notification when we're live.

New Year’s Eve from Saint Mark’s Cathedral

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The very first post on the Online Community Life page of the cathedral website, created in March of 2020, was this post announcing that, while the cathedral building may be closed, the outdoor labyrinth was still open and available to all. Since then, the labyrinth in the lawn in front of the cathedral building has remained a valuable resource for cathedral members, Capitol Hill neighbors, and passers-by alike.

The labyrinth at Saint Mark's is closely tied to New Year's Eve. Every year since 1999 a large canvas labyrinth has been laid out in the cathedral nave, inviting all to engage in this ancient spiritual practice as the old year passes away and the new year begins, in candlelight and accompanied by local musicians. This offering has been enormously popular through the years, often attracting over 1,000 people. In 2019, the event was advertised as "Seattle's most peaceful New Year's tradition," but the overwhelming turn-out made the jam-packed nave feel somewhat less peaceful than expected! Clearly, the offering fills a need felt by many people, including those not otherwise connected to the cathedral community.

This year, because remaining physically distant while walking the labyrinth at the same time as others is practically impossible, a formal Labyrinth Walk Event cannot be offered, even on the outdoor labyrinth.

However, the cathedral would like to honor this longstanding tradition by extending an invitation to walk the outdoor labyrinth on December 31, at a time of your convenience. The labyrinth is open 24 hours a day—use common sense, remain masked, and do not form a crowd. To echo the indoor offerings of prior years, the labyrinth will be adorned with candles and (electric) luminarias later in the evening, weather permitting.

The other aspect of the annual New Year's Eve observances at Saint Mark's is the Midnight Eucharist for the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus—normally offered on a small altar table placed at the center of the indoor labyrinth at the stroke of midnight as the new year begins. The select few who have participated in this service in the past can tell you that this is a very special liturgy, using a unique form of the Holy Eucharist not employed at any other service in the cathedral's annual cycle. Although there will be no indoor labyrinth, this service will be offered via livestream at the stroke of midnight as usual, and all are invited to participate, wherever you may be.

2018 New Year's Eve Labyrinth Walk

Christmas Eve Resources and Activities for Kids!

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This year, we will be celebrating the birth of Jesus together from home! 

Your family may participate in one of the Cathedral services together through a computer or TV, following along with the service leaflet, or you might choose to light candles, sing and pray and read scriptures together on your own. You might even choose to act out the story of the Nativity! It doesn’t matter how you choose to celebrate Christ this year on Christmas Eve. What matters is that our celebrations remind us that nothing stops Christ from coming to be with us—not a pandemic, or a closed cathedral, or anything else!

Below, you’ll find a Christmas Eve activity pack intended for elementary school-aged kids to explore the story of Christmas. Simply print it out at home and offer crayons or a pencil during the live-streamed service. Enjoy the beautiful music, take in the good news, and know you do so with many other families who are participating in various ways from their homes, too.

Click on the image to download.

If watching a livestream doesn’t work for your family, you can also use this very simple at-home worship guide for reading, singing and praying together to remember the story of Jesus’s birth. This brief service can be engaging even for very busy little children, and simple enough for the most uncertain singers!

Click on the image to download.

We know that children are more attentive than we realize, and that any way we engage them with the Christmas story from home is powerful and formative. Adults are not nearly so attentive, but worship from home is still powerful and formative for us, too! So go ahead... make room for Jesus to be born at your house, and rest in the grace of your belovedness to God, and to us here at Saint Mark’s.

Merry Christmas!

Nativity Pageant Reprise in Pandemic, hosted by Dean Thomason

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 20, 7 P.M., via YouTube live premiere; Community Zoom afterparty to follow.

Missing the Christmas Pageant this year? The delight of little angels, the sweet sounds of children’s voices, Magi processions, and three choirs gathered? Want to sing your carols as part of the experience? Pageants are an ancient way of telling the sacred story—a way that nourishes us deeply.

Join Dean Thomason and others in the cathedral community as we experience a prayerful telling of the Nativity through the familiar cycle of readings from scripture, with musical reflections and congregational carols selected from the cathedral's pageants of 2015, '16, '17, '18, and '19.

Then, let's gather together in a Zoom "afterparty" to share our thoughts as we turn into the week that leads to Christmas. All are welcome.

Download the service leaflet here.

Watch the video premiere on YouTube at this link: or in the player above.

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Personal Prayer Time in the Cathedral for Advent

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Register for a 20-minute time period.

  • Wednesdays, December 2, 9, 16, or 23 between 12 and 2 p.m.
  • Sundays, December 6, 13, or 20 between 12:30 and 2:30 p.m.

There are two slots available in each time period. A party of individuals from the same household may claim a single slot.

or call Erik Donner at 206-323-0300 x217 for a reservation.

Personal Prayer Time in the Cathedral is for anyone who wishes to come into the Cathedral nave for quiet, prayerful reflection during Advent. Although the building remains closed for public gathering, the reopening plan allows for personal prayer to happen in the nave following safety protocols. Clergy will facilitate these personal prayer times on Wednesdays and Sundays during this holy season.

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Advent At Home, 2020

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This simple form of evening worship is intended to be used during the lighting of the Advent wreath or other table candles at home from November 29 to December 24. It can be used at the daily evening meal, or another time. The entire form will take no more than five minutes.
The beauty is in the simplicity and repetition for people of all ages. Repeating these words together centers them in our heads and hearts, and draws us into the longing and anticipation of the Advent season, so that we might experience the joy of Christmas with deeper gladness. You will need three purple or blue candles, one pink candle, and some trimmed evergreens to encircle them. This homemade wreath may be placed at the center of the dining table or another suitable gathering place.
This service is based on An Order of Worship for the Evening, found in The Book of Common Prayer 1979, p. 109. The BCP may be found online here.
UPDATE: Each week of Advent, the Saint Mark's Prayer Podcast for Children and Families will release an episode presenting the service below in audio format, featuring some familiar voices from the Saint Mark's community. For Week 1, there is an additional bonus episode with an "instructed" version of the same liturgy, interspersing comments and explanations about the various elements. Subscribe wherever you get your podcasts, or listen to the episodes embedded at the bottom of this page!


A leader begins by saying the antiphon of the week, or:
Light and peace in Jesus Christ our Lord.

All respond:
Thanks be to God.




November 29–December 5

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has dawned upon you.


SECOND WEEK OF ADVENT: “Prepare the Way”
December 6–December 12

Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.


THIRD WEEK OF ADVENT: “Testify to the Light”
December 13–December 19

The Lord has done great things for us, and we are glad indeed.


December 20–December 24 (Advent ends at sundown.)

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.




On the final seven nights of Advent, December 17 through 23, there are special antiphons appointed for evening prayer each evening. These are called the “O Antiphons,” and they form the basis of the verses of the hymn “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” and of the O Antiphons Liturgy offered at Saint Mark’s each year. Read more about the O Antiphons here.

1. "O Wisdom" (December 17)
2. "O Adonai" (December 18)
3. "O Root of Jesse" (December 19)
4. "O Key of David" (December 20)
5. "O Rising Dawn" (December 21)
6. "O King of Nations" (December 22)
7. "O Emmanuel" (December 23)



Short (2-minute) video reflections on the theme or antiphon of each week have been created by Saint Mark community members! Week 1: Michael PereraWeek 2: Tallulah Campbell • Week 3: The Nelson Brown FamilyWeek 4: Matt Briggs & Victoria Szydlowski.  The videos will be added here each week. All the videos may also be found here.


A reader reads the following, or another appropriate passage of Holy Scripture:

If I say, “Surely the darkness will cover me, and the light around me turn to night,” darkness is not dark to you, O Lord; the night is as bright as the day; darkness and light to you are both alike.
—Psalm 139:10–11



All pray together:

God of all the ages, rouse us from sleep, and form us into a watchful people, so that, at the advent of your Son, we may be prepared, bearing witness to your light, and eager to receive you. We ask this through your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit. Amen.



The Advent wreath is now lighted, lighting one blue/purple candle during the first week, two candles during the second week, and so on.

The pink candle is lighted on the third week.



Conclude by saying or singing the evening hymn, known as the Phos hilaron, one of the oldest Christian hymns, first recorded in Greek in the 3rd century.

O gracious Light,
pure brightness of the everliving Father in heaven,
O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!
Now as we come to the setting of the sun,
and our eyes behold the vesper light,
we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices,
O Son of God, O giver of life,
and to be glorified through all the worlds.

Saint Mark’s Congregation & Evensong Choir

from The Church of the Apostles, Seattle

8 members of the Saint Mark’s Evensong Choir

Saint Mark’s Evensong Choir

setting by Owain Par, sung by the Cambridge Chorale


If dinner follows immediately, say together the mealtime blessing for Advent:

Holy God, we give you thanks for this meal, and for the One who is, and is to come among us. Make us steadfast in faith, joyful in hope, and constant in love. We pray this in the name of your son Jesus, in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

2020 Advent Video Reflections

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The Advent at Home page contains a form of private or family prayer which engages with an advent wreath in your own home. Each of the four weeks of advent is given a special theme: Keep Awake (week 1), Prepare the Way (week 2), Testify to the Light (week 3), and Here am I (week 4). Below you will find brief video reflections from Saint Mark's Community members, prompted by each of these themes.

Please check back on this page–the reflections for future weeks will be posted here as the become available. Feel free to add your response in the comments below.

Week 4: Matt Briggs and Victoria Szydlowski

Week 3: The Nelson Brown Family

See the complete schedule of Advent liturgies and events:

Introduction to Sunday’s Hymns: December 13, 2020

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On Thursday, December 10, Associate Musician John Stuntebeck introduced the hymns to be sung at the livestreamed service of Holy Eucharist at 11 a.m. this Sunday, December 13, The Third Sunday of Advent.

The hymns discussed are:

  • Savior of the nations, come. [Hymn #54]
  • Hark! A thrilling voice is sounding [Hymn #59]
  • Hark! the glad sound! [Hymn #72]

Join us in the future on Thursdays at 4 p.m. for another live hymn chat! Just visit the cathedral's public Facebook page at the time of the broadcast—if you "follow" the cathedral on Facebook, you should receive a notification when we're live.

Christmas Hymn Sing with Canon Kleinschmidt and Dean Thomason

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 27, 4:30 P.M., via Zoom

Dean Thomason and Canon Kleinschmidt’s Hymn Sings are quickly becoming a favorite pandemic pastime! For this Christmas Hymn Sing, they invite you to join in singing hymns and carols via Zoom. Do you have a favorite carol that celebrates the birth of the Christ child? This is your chance to carol with the Saint Mark’s Community.

Requests are encouraged, from any hymnal. Make your hymn request here (one per person, please!) by December 26.

Zoom link here.

Ornaments of Advent at Saint Mark’s

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Did you know? Just as we light a new candle in the wreath each week of Advent, so the cathedral altar also changes each Sunday...

Cathedral Sacristan and Head Verger Michael Seewer sends an email several times a year to those at Saint Mark's involved in liturgical ministries, including both practical announcements about scheduling, training, etc., as well as spiritual reflections and items of more general interest. In his Advent newsletter, Michael included interesting information about the Advent "paraments" (matched set of seasonal vestments and decorations) and the 2020 Advent wreath—information which may be new to many community members, and deserves a wider audience. Thank you, Michael!

The Advent Paraments

Each year for the four weeks of Advent, the nave is adorned with our Advent set of paraments. This set of Sarum blue, purple, and rose paraments (which includes altar hangings and vestments) was lovingly crafted years ago by Steve Hartwell, a beloved member of Saint Mark's Community for many years.

Steve made the original set using wool and dupioni silk in jewel shades of blue, purple, and rose. He designed the multi-color borders used on the altar frontal and on the vestments (chasuble, tunicle, and dalmatic). Remnants of the fabric when the set was originally created were kept for future use. Years after the set was originally made, the altar was enlarged, and Jo Ann Bailey stepped forward to add a larger layer (the royal blue layer in the back) so that the frontal fits the enlarged altar better.

One special tradition of ours with this frontal is to add an additional layer to the frontal each week. On the first Sunday of Advent, we start with the original jewel-toned border layer visible. The second week of Advent, the purple layer is added, the third the royal blue, until by the fourth week of Advent the final light blue layer is made visible. This coincides with the tradition of adding additional O Antiphon banners each week in front of the reredos.

Since the pandemic, we have begun using a burse and veil to "vest" the chalice each week. You may notice this placed in the center of the corporal on the altar at the start of service. We did not have a matching blue burse and veil for our Advent set, and so Jo Ann Bailey has once again stepped forward with her talented eye and has crafted a burse and veil using remnants from the original parament set. This Sunday, the second Sunday of Advent, will be our first Sunday using this new burse and veil.

We are grateful for the talent of Steve Hartwell who lovingly crafted this beautiful parament set for us many years ago. We are also grateful for the passion and creativity of Jo Ann Bailey, who helps us to maintain this and all of our paraments, and who has made this new burse and veil and others this year to match our other parament sets. These beautiful additions to our worship space help to remind us of the changing seasons, and to remind us that we are called each week to worship "in the beauty of holiness."

Editor's note: Steve Hartwell died in May 2011 after an illness. The following note appeared in the service leaflet for his funeral liturgy:

We use today the Cathedral's Advent set of vestments. The liturgical color normally used for funerals is white, the color that marks our celebration of Jesus' promise of resurrection. However in some traditions, such as the Sarum rite, a community would use its best and finest vestments for a funeral regardless of their liturgical color. Of all the vestments Steve designed for this community, he felt that the Advent set was his best work and it is the favorite of many people in this community.

The 2020 Advent Wreath

We are grateful that, even with the continued Cathedral closure, the Saint Mark's flower guild continues to grace us with their talent and care by providing flowers and plants to beautify the nave. We are especially grateful this year for the time that Ray Miller dedicated to crafting our Advent wreath, a must-have for the season of Advent! [Editor's note: The making of the Advent wreath was another task overseen by Steve Hartwell for many years, and taken over by his partner Ray following his death.]

This year's wreath was crafted using clippings from the Cathedral Close, as well as some plantings along the Greenbelt. The evergreen branches are juniper, and the small branches with red fruit are from the hawthorn plant at the north end of the close. The yellow and green leaves are from a shrub along the northwest side of the close. This shrub is known as euonymus, or maybe specifically golden euonymus.

Ray designed the wreath with the alignment mindful of the fact that we light the rose candle on the third Sunday of Advent, known as Gaudete Sunday. We are grateful to Ray for crafting this wreath. And thank you also to Beatrix Roemheld-Hamm for her leadership of the flower guild, and for all of the many ways the flower guild team brings beauty to the nave!

Ray Miller and Steve Hartwell

Christmas 2020 Memorials and Thanksgivings

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Support the Cost of Evergreens and Poinsettias for the Cathedral Nave

Although the traditional greening of the nave will be smaller than usual, green boughs and poinsettias will still grace Saint Mark's this year. You are once again invited to underwrite the costs of greenery as a memorial or in thanksgiving for a loved one. There are four ways to give:

  • mail a check to the cathedral office (memo: Poinsettias)
  • online through (select "Christmas Memorials and Thanksgivings)
  • through the Venmo mobile app (@saintmarkscathedralseattle; comment "Poinsettias")
  • or by contacting Erik Donner in the cathedral office: 206-323-0300 x217

Donations received by December 20 will be acknowledged in the the Christmas service leaflets.

The Cathedral Archives: Preserving the Cathedral’s Story for Future Generations

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Update (June, 2021): Alexa's time with us has now come to an end, but her work here has made a contribution that will endure. Thank you, Alexa!


As anyone who has ever ventured into the crypt of Saint Mark’s will tell you, the cathedral is in possession of an enormous quantity of documents and artifacts, from all periods of the parish’s existence. In fact, such historical material has not even been confined to the crypt—it could be found in filing cabinets, closets, and storage areas located throughout the building. Some of this is valuable historical material, constituting an authentic physical link to our forebears in this place. Other material contains information the cathedral is legally obligated to preserve. And some of it belongs in the recycling bin.

The task of collecting, identifying, cataloguing, organizing, preserving, scanning, and (when necessary) discarding this mountain of documents has been an important agenda item for Dean Thomason and the cathedral leadership for many years, but it is a task that requires dedicated time, space, funds, expertise, and a great deal of labor. Now, thanks to a generous gift from The Rev. Canon Pat Taylor in memory of her late husband Jim, the collaboration of The University of Washington Information School, and Diocesan Archivist Diane Wells, this long-deferred need is at last being addressed.

Canon Taylor’s gift has made it possible to engage Alexa Minasian, a UW graduate student in Information and Library Science, to take on this task as an intern. This relationship is mutually beneficial—she receives course credit for her work in the cathedral, and certainly not every librarian has had the opportunity to create an institutional archive from scratch while still in graduate school! In the last few weeks Alexa has already proven to be a great gift to the cathedral, and she has a fascinating life story. (See her interview, below.)

Diane Wells, Archivist and Records Manager for the Diocese of Olympia, is serving as mentor to Alexa and is overseeing the project generally. In addition, the project is guided and advised by many members of the community of Saint Mark’s, including longtime member Walter Stuteville, Director of Operations Jim Pannell, Lawyer Judy Andrews, MOHAI Curator of Collections Clara Berg, and others.

The new Cathedral Archives is located in a part of the cathedral crypt (basement), that has served many purposes through the years, including Sunday School room, Child Care Center, Youth Room, Art Storage, and general storage room. (The Youth Room has been moved back to its previous location, a newly-refurbished Cathedral House Room 209.) The space will include secure filing cabinets for documents, museum-quality storage for more fragile artifacts as appropriate, a terminal to access scanned documents and archived digital files, as well as a generous workspace for those doing research with the material.

When the cathedral building has fully reopened, the archives will be opened by request to those who need it. But even if you never have a reason to enter the room itself, the entire community benefits from the creation of an organized and accessible archive. Everyone who feels a connection to Saint Mark’s is also personally connected to an institution with roots in the nineteenth century, and to an epic story of the survival and transformation of that community over the course of 130 years. There is much to be proud of in that history, as well as much to learn from, and The Cathedral Archives will house the material evidence of the truth of that story. By the grace of God, it will preserve and protect that story for the generations to come.


Who are you and where are you from?

My name is Alexa Minasian and I am from Los Angeles, California.


What got you interested in library/information sciences? 

I became interested in Library/Information Science through my love of books and reading.  Pursuing this degree will allow me to be around books all the time.  My love of reading helped me overcome learning disabilities when I was in grade school.  I was diagnosed with Childhood Aphasia. I was a late talker (age 5), and my parents began to search for a reason.  Aphasia is a language processing issue. Most of my grade school and junior high school years I received after-school tutoring to overcome the disability.  I was told to read, read, read.  And, I learned to love reading.


What are your primary areas of interest/specialization in your UW degree program?

I do not have a primary interest in my pursuit of the degree at UW.  There are so many interesting areas:  public library, special library, archiving, collection development and information architecture to name a few.  I find all of them to be fascinating and want to continue to learn more about these specialties.


What are your plans after you have finished at UW? 

Initially, my plans were to become a librarian in a public library.  However, I now feel there are many areas I would be happy to work in, including archiving.


Can you describe the work you’ve been given to at Saint Mark’s?

I was brought on to Saint Marks to assist in archiving cathedral documents, materials, and other records. This has involved surveying hundreds, if not thousands of files within boxes that have not been reviewed in decades.  To date I have organized the files by topic, started a discard log, and begun to plan how the archive will be organized and arranged.  A discard log is for items that may not be archived and discarded.


What interests you the most about the Saint Mark’s project in general? What worries you?

What I find particularly interesting is organizing the diverse amounts of records I am reviewing into a workable, functioning archive. The subjects I have come across are varied and range from investments to detailed event planning records. I am excited at the challenge of organizing such a divergent and important collection. What worries me is there is so much information to get through and somewhat limited time.


What’s surprised you since you started working on the project?

I am surprised at the depth and scope of the records and materials in archival consideration. There are numerous different types of records and many of them are highly detailed and specific. I was also surprised that there are so many copies of the same document.


Can you talk about one particularly interesting document or artifact that you have come across so far?

An unexpected artifact that I found was a signed letter from Desmond Tutu to Saint Mark’s Cathedral. I have found records of the affiliation between the Desmond Tutu Foundation and Saint Mark’s working on this archive, but seeing the letter put into perspective the partnership.


Your perspective on Saint Mark’s Cathedral is unique, since you’ve never known the building or the community pre-pandemic. What has your overall impression of the place been?

My overall impression is that Saint Mark’s is an institution that genuinely cares about engaging and supporting the Capitol Hill and surrounding Seattle neighborhood. I was heartened to see many instances and occasions of events and other types of gatherings organized to help address a need and/or concern of wider community members.


Anything else you’d like the Saint Mark’s community to know? 

I am honored and excited to be in charge of facilitating the beginnings of Saint Mark’s archive.

An Advent Message from Dean Thomason

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Please take a moment to watch a brief video message from Dean Steve Thomason, reflecting on the season of Advent that is about to begin, and highlighting a few of the cathedral's upcoming offerings.

See the complete schedule of events, and stay up to date with the changing situation at:

Advent Hymn Sing! Hosted by Dean Thomason and Canon Kleinschmidt

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 4:30 P.M., via Zoom
Dean Thomason and Canon Kleinschmidt's first Hymn Sing was so much fun, they've decided to throw another one! They invite you to join in singing Advent hymns and carols via Zoom. Do you have a favorite hymn that expresses the Advent themes of longing, hope, and expectation? This is the occasion! Requests are encouraged, from any hymnal. Make your hymn request here. Join via the Zoom link here.

“A Life On Our Planet” Watch Party

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 5–7:15 P.M.

 "A Life On Our Planet" Watch Party, Sponsored by 20s&30s and Creation Care ministry

Celebrate a greener holiday season. Join the 20s30s and Creation Care for a watch party via Zoom to view and discuss David Attenborough's documentary, "A Life On Our Planet."  We'll share observations and eco-friendly ways to keep the season festive while thinking about how these actions can become practices that open us to deeper spiritual connections. Prior to the film, we'll send participants vegetarian friendly appetizers from our own Chef Carolina. Questions? Email Emily Meeks (

Register using this link.

See the trailer below:

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Introduction to Sunday’s Hymns: December 6, 2020

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On Thursday, December 3, Canon Michael Kleinschmidt introduced the hymns to be sung at the morning and afternoon liturgies this coming Sunday, December 6, 2020, the Second Sunday of Advent. NB: Due to an internet interruption, the first video ended prematurely. The presentation is completed in PART 2.

The hymns discussed are:

  • Hymn #65, "Prepare the way, O Zion,"
  • Hymn #75, "There's a voice in the wilderness crying,"
  • Hymn #76, "On Jordan's bank the Baptist's cry,"
  • Hymn #272, "The great forerunner of the morn," a few words about this Sunday's organ voluntaries.

Join us in the future on Thursdays at 4 p.m. for another live hymn chat! Just visit the cathedral's public Facebook page at the time of the broadcast—if you "follow" the cathedral on Facebook, you should receive a notification when we're live.

Blossom Abundantly—SSC Storytelling Fundraiser

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 12–12:30 P.M. (during regular virtual coffee hour), via Zoom.

The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad; the desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice with joy and singing.

— Isaiah 35:1–2a

JOIN US December 13 at 12 p.m. for a half-hour storytelling fundraiser that showcases how corps members continue to “Blossom Abundantly” in SSC.

Come and be inspired as corps members share stories of growth and formation. Discover the hopes and goals of this year's cohort, and hear how they are following the Way of Jesus.

Join using this link!

At the event, you will be invited to make a recurring donation in support of the Seattle Service Corps. Check out the tiers and rewards in the flyer below (click to enlarge, or download here):

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Ministry Celebration & Blessing for Canon Cristi’s Departure

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SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 12:30 P.M., via Zoom

Ministry Celebration & Blessing of Canon Cristi's Departure

Following the Service Corps presentation, during regular Virtual Coffee Hour on December 13, there will be a farewell blessing of The Rev. Canon Cristi Chapman and a celebration of her ministry among us, on the occasion of her final Sunday at the cathedral.

Join using this link!

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Thanksgiving Day Eucharist and Virtual Community Gathering

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Join Canon Nancy Ross and Canon Jennifer King Daugherty via livestream at 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day for a service of Holy Eucharist, with prayers of gratitude for the abundance of the harvest and all the blessings of this life. Music will be offered by Canon Kleinschmidt and Associate Musician Rebekah Gilmore.

VIRTUAL COMMUNITY GATHERING WITH DEAN STEVE THOMASON: THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 11:30 A.M.–12 P.M. (following the livestream Eucharist), via Zoom

NOTE: Feel free to join in early—Dean Steve and Kathy Thomason will be in the Zoom room from about 11:15 a.m.

Keenly aware of the fact that this Thanksgiving Day will be different for many of us than other years, all are welcome to gather via Zoom following the livestream service of Holy Eucharist for a time together, to enjoy each other’s company, sharing a few stories along the way. Dean Thomason will host. Settle in with a cup of coffee or tea, or a nibble of something if you like.

Join using this link.

Introduction to Sunday’s Hymns: November 22, 2020

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On Thursday, November 19, Associate Musician John Stuntebeck introduced the hymns to be sung at the livestreamed service of Holy Eucharist at 11 a.m. this Sunday, November 22, The Last Sunday After Pentecost and the Feast of Christ the King. He also discusses the hymns for the 10 a.m. liturgy on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 26. The Hymns discussed are: "" (#), ""(#555), and "Now thank we all our God" (#397).

The hymns discussed are:

  • Crown him with many crowns [Hymn #494]
  • Lead on, O King eternal! [Hymn #555]
  • Now thank we all our God [Hymn #397]

Join us in the future on Thursdays at 4 p.m. for another live hymn chat! Just visit the cathedral's public Facebook page at the time of the broadcast—if you "follow" the cathedral on Facebook, you should receive a notification when we're live. Please note there will be no Hymn Introduction next Thursday, November 26. Happy Thanksgiving!

Mirabai Starr Returns to Saint Mark’s

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UPDATE: The leaflet for the concluding liturgy of this event may now be downloaded here:


SATURDAY, DECEMBER 5, 9:30-11:30 A.M., via Zoom (no fee; registration required) Hosted by Saint Mark's Episcopal Cathedral.

Luminous Night: A Spirituality of Loss, Grief, and Hope

Renowned interspiritual teacher Mirabai Starr returns to Saint Mark’s on December 5 to offer a virtual workshop on loss, grief, and hope.  She will share teachings from the mystics of various traditions that illumine the connection between loss, spiritual longing, and reframing the future. The teachings of the sixteenth-century Spanish saints Teresa of Avila and John of the Cross show us how we may approach the radical mystery that often accompanies loss and lament as a spiritual opportunity rather than as a problem requiring a solution. By engaging a contemplative approach, we cultivate an environment of emotional refuge and deep peace in which we can name and offer our burdens to the Holy One.

Our time together will include poetry and contemplative reading, deep dialog in small breakout groups, writing exercises, and a closing liturgy. We especially invite those who are grieving any kind of loss or those who find the holiday season a painful or difficult time. We will gather via Zoom. The event is free but pre-registration is required. Register for the workshop here. For more information, contact Canon Jennifer Daugherty at

Robert and Laura Ellen Muglia Present the Largest Gift in Saint Mark’s History

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Read Dean Thomason's message to the parish regarding this exciting news.

More information about the future of the St. Nicholas property can be found here.

Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral Receives an Extraordinary Gift

SEATTLE, WA— Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, Seattle, has received a major gift from long-time cathedral members Laura Ellen and Bob Muglia. Seventeen years ago, the cathedral joined with The Laura Ellen and Robert Muglia Family Foundation to acquire the St. Nicholas Building, a historic school building immediately adjacent to the cathedral. In August of this year, the Muglias gifted their share of that joint venture to the cathedral. A small gathering took place Sunday, October 25, on the St. Nicholas grounds, at which the Muglias were recognized publicly for the first time as “silent partners” in the ownership of the property. To acknowledge and celebrate their recent gift, the Rev. Steven L. Thomason, Dean and Rector of Saint Mark’s Cathedral, said “This is the sort of legacy gift that frames the mission of a church across generations, and for that we are exceedingly grateful.”

Laura Ellen and Bob Muglia’s visionary leadership and extraordinary generosity were key in the acquisition of the St. Nicholas property in 2003, as an LLC partnership. Their original gift totaled $5 million.  The historic building has provided classrooms, auditorium space, and resource rooms for the cathedral parish, as well as space for two local non-profits, Bright Water Waldorf School and Gage Academy of Arts. The sublease income has been used to benefit the St. Nicholas property, including maintenance, improvements, and debt reduction.

At the October 25th event, a plaque honoring the Muglias was unveiled on the St. Nicholas façade. In her remarks at the event, Laura Ellen Muglia said, “Participating in this project has been a blessing in our lives. It is our fervent hope and prayer that having full access to this historic and beautiful property will enable the people of St. Mark’s to chart the next stage of how they want to live, love, and serve in the world.”

The Muglia Family Foundation has now gifted outright to Saint Mark’s Cathedral their share of ownership in the St. Nicholas property. The ultimate goal for acquiring the St. Nicholas site was, in their words, “to promote the vision, mission, strategic plan, and charitable purposes” of Saint Mark’s. Their generous gift furthers that missional goal. The entire cathedral community is deeply grateful to them.

Alternative Giving 2020: Online Christmas Giving Tree

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The generosity of Saint Mark's parishioners to the 2020 Alternative Giving opportunity was overwhelming. The cathedral ended up sending more gift cards to Casa Latina and Lowell Elementary than they asked for! For Lowell Elementary and Casa Latina, you gave $14,700—for a total of 588 gift cards, and that does NOT include gifts to Mary's Place (which collected donations directly). Know that our friends at Casa Latina and Lowell were so heartened—responding a resounding “WOW” and “That’s incredible!” THANK YOU to all who gave this year!

Yes! Saint Mark’s is still sharing Christmas joy with families from Casa Latina, Lowell Elementary School, and Mary’s Place even though we can’t meet in person! This year, we need donations for gift cards.


Donations for Casa Latina, Lowell Elementary School, & Mary's Place

Our neighbors have asked that Saint Mark’s provide gift cards rather than physical gifts this year, for safety’s sake—so we are asking you for donations here to purchase a $25 gift card for each child for Casa Latina and Lowell Elementary School to distribute to their families. (We invite you to donate to Mary’s Place directly.)

In this year of so much hardship, your generosity means even more to these wonderful families, and the gifts cards will help parents provide food and toys for their children for the holidays. So instead of taking a tag from a tree, please think of how many children you might “buy a Christmas present for” and donate online here by December 7 so that we can provide the gift cards with plenty of time for families to shop! You may also donate by mailing a check to Saint Mark’s (with “gift cards” in the memo line), using the Venmo mobile app (@SaintMarksCathedralSeattle; put "gift cards" in the comment), or by calling Erik Donner at 206.323.0300 x217.

Photo: Last year's Giving Tree in Bloedel Hall.

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“Pop-Up” Eucharist for Small Groups

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UPDATE: With the current surge in COVID cases, Pop-Up Eucharists have been postponed for safety’s sake. Please check back in the New Year, for rescheduling when it is safe to gather again.

The cathedral buildings are closed, but the Saint Mark’s community remains active, connected, and committed to the spiritual journey together. As we turn toward Thanksgiving, Advent, and Christmas, one new way to give thanks to God and nurture our common life is through hosting a “Pop-Up” Eucharist!

Parishioners are invited to gather a masked, socially distanced small group outdoors (5 or fewer people, or 10 or fewer if on Saint Mark’s lawn) for a simple Eucharist with one of the priests. This 20–30-minute service could take place anywhere—a private backyard, a park, or the cathedral lawn, for example. Just ample space for distancing requirements. The parishioner host ensures a table for the altar and chairs for all participants, and the priest will bring the rest. Gather together to share communion!

Watch Canon Daugherty's brief video introduction:

If you’d like to host or participate in a “Pop-Up” Eucharist, please contact Canon Jennifer or any of the priests.

Participants will be required have their temperature taken upon arrival, as well as sign a waiver confirming that they have had no recent COVID symptoms or potential contact with COVID cases. Participants must remain masked and distanced at all time. 

“Blue Christmas” Candlelight Prayer with Clergy

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UPDATE: At this time, all the slots on Thursday afternoon have been claimed. Please call Erik Donner at 206-323-0300 x217 to schedule an alternative time to come to the nave.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 17, 4–8 p.m. by reservationor another day by appointment;.

Saint Mark’s has a long-standing tradition of holding space for “Blue Christmas” – prayerful care and companionship for those who find the holiday season a painful or difficult time. This year, we offer two particular opportunities to offer grief and lament to  the Holy One who loves us. A Saturday morning workshop and liturgy, Luminous Night: A Spirituality of Loss, Grief, and Hope with interspiritual teacher Mirabai Starr is December 5.

And Blue Christmas Candlelight Prayer with Clergy is the evening of December 17, where you are invited to come to Saint Mark’s for 20-minute prayer sessions. Prayer sessions will take place  in the quiet and peace of the cathedral nave. There are two slots available in each time period, and a party of individuals from the same household may claim a single slot.

While there, you may pray on your own or light a candle to remember a special person, people, or to acknowledge other intentions you hold in your heart. If you desire, you may also talk privately with a clergy member (masked and distanced).

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