St. Thomas School was founded by St. Thomas Episcopal Church. Although the School is now fully independent with no parochial affiliation, we maintain the historical tradition of Chapel as one of our hallmarks.
We gather each morning for a community meeting in Chapel, where time is set aside for listening and doing the important “inner work” or reflection that allows us to bring deeper meaning to our lives. The primary focus of Chapel is on developing character, leadership and presentation skills, shared core values/virtues, and an understanding of world religions all within a school-wide community that emphasizes a sense of belonging and inclusion and celebrates diversity.
While each Chapel gathering is different, the program continues to include some aspects of the original Episcopal liturgy. For example, the Lord’s Prayer is often recited, and students sing the Venite. These serve as “anchor points” or points of predictability and an invitation into mindfulness. More than anything, they reflect our shared history with St. Thomas Church.
As we learn together and teach one another as a diverse and inclusive community, St. Thomas School:
- Strives for justice and peace among all peoples, and respects the dignity of every human being
- Works to be a comprehensive, inclusive community with respect for all beliefs
- Values reason as a way to true understanding
- Embraces honor, tolerance, and intellectual curiosity
- Provides a safe and open community in which students can wrestle with the big questions that life presents
- Recognizes that developing empathy is essential in order to have a diverse, equitable, and inclusive learning environment
Chapel serves several purposes: