About St. Mary's Syrian Orthodox Church
Welcome to the web page of St. Mary's Syrian Orthodox Church in College Park, Maryland. We believe that baptism and the Lord's Supper are ordained by the Lord Jesus himself - baptism as a symbol of entrance into the body of Christ and the Lord's Supper a regular reminder of the death, resurrection, and return of Christ. Baptism symbolizes the believer's death to sin and new life in Christ. Those baptized are done so in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Together they are simultaneously God's pledge to us, divinely ordained means of grace, our public vows of submission to the once crucified and now resurrected Christ, and anticipations of his return and of the consummation of all things.
We believe that from all eternity God determined in grace to save a great multitude of guilty sinners from every tribe and language and people and nation, and to this end foreknew them and chose them. We believe that God justifies and sanctifies those who by grace have faith in Jesus, and that he will one day glorify them - all to the praise of his glorious grace. In love God commands and implores all people to repent and believe, having set his saving love on those he has chosen and having ordained Christ to be their Redeemer.
About Jesus Christ: We believe that Jesus Christ is God's Son and was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died on the cross, was resurrected from death, and ascended to heaven where he sits at the Father's right hand. We believe that Jesus will come again to claim his bride, the church. (John 3:16; Matthew 1:18; Romans 5:6-11; John 20:24-31)
About Separation of Church and State: We believe that each local church is self-governing, and must be free from interference by any external ecclesiastical or political authority; that every human being is ultimately responsible to God in matters of faith and life; and that each person is free to worship God according to the dictates of his/her conscience. We further believe that governments are established by God; that Christians, as good citizens, should be subject to governing authorities insofar as possible, recognizing our greater allegiance to God and His kingdom in matters wherein human authorities conflict with clear, biblical mandates.