A Baptist church?
St. Charles is a diverse, welcoming congregation in Uptown New Orleans celebrating God's grace on the Avenue for more than 120 years. We are as varied as our historic city, and yet we value gathering together for community, worship, and sharing the life of faith. And we’re Baptist.
When people get to know us and look back at that Baptist title, the questions usually follow, “Why are you Baptist?” and “What kind of Baptist are you?”
St. Charles is an ecumenical congregation in the Baptist tradition. This means our members come from many backgrounds, and our worship often reflects traditions across denominational lines. We hold onto our Baptist tradition in a couple of ways that we feel are very important.
The first has to do with each individual’s journey of faith. We believe each person is free to approach God without a priest or pastor as a mediator. We believe persons are free to make their own personal decisions on matters of faith and be responsible for them. We are free to study the Bible as individuals and exercise scholarly interpretation of Scripture, as led by God's spirit. We may not agree on every conclusion we draw, and we value those differences dearly.
The second has to do with governance. As far as national governments and religious traditions go, we believe in the separation of church and state. Similarly, we understand the local church to exist freely, under the authority of Jesus Christ, to shape its own life and mission through the congregational contributions and decisions of its members.