Mission, Vision, and Values
Who We Are
St. James is a mission parish of the Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, a people whose hearts are lifted up to the Lord through sacred music and beautiful liturgy, fully devoted to the fullness of the Catholic faith, a vibrant community welcoming to all.
The community here in Jacksonville has been placed under the patronage of St. James the Greater, known especially for his wide ranging evangelization and as the first apostle to be martyred because of his zeal and effectiveness in spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.
St. James exists to evangelize those who are and who will be coming into full communion with the Catholic Church.
Our vision is to create a place of worship that fosters sacred art and music, encounter and learning, service and charity to those in need, in order to be a blessing to those inside and outside of the community. Imagine a parish where you can come and pray with our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament night or day, study sacred Scripture, participate in workshops, retreats, and classes for adults and children, and easily access the sacrament of confession. Imagine a place where hurting individuals, families, and marriages are renewed and built up. Envision what it would be like to be part of the group that builds a beautiful English style gothic church with soaring architecture designed to lift the mind to heaven, the gospel set in stone proclaiming the goodness of the gospel for generations to come. We seek to build a community with the warmth, simplicity, beauty (exemplified in the Shire as illustrated in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings), a place where the quirky, the odd, and the outlandish are all brought together in a place of belonging. This is the vision of St. James and what we seek to build here in Jacksonville.
Reverent Prayer and Worship: The mission of St. James is particularly experienced in the celebration of the liturgy, which features a distinctive musical and pastoral inheritance influenced by Anglican traditions of worship now brought back into the Catholic Church where they first originated prior to the Protestant reformation. This includes a strong tradition of praying the Daily Office which is a form of the Liturgy of the Hours with a distinct Anglican patrimonial beauty and sacred poetry. These prayer and worship traditions show forth the diverse expressions of one faith joined together in the Catholic Church
Helpful Teaching, Unabashedly Proclaimed: St. James follows the tradition of biblically rich and magisterial preaching set forth by those who laid the groundwork for this structure within the Catholic Church such as St. John Henry Cardinal Newman and Fr. Frederick William Faber. Fr. Mayer, our pastor, works hard to prepare well structured, helpful homilies that foster growth in holiness and speak unabashedly to the issues of the day while bringing together teachings from the Scriptures, the magisterium, and the saints. Check out some of the most recent homilies here on the website.
Joyful and Welcoming Evangelization: Following the example of our patron St. James the Greater who boldly proclaimed the gospel, we proclaim the message that with Christ, joy is constantly born anew, that those who accept his offer of salvation are set fee from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness! To those who feel far from God and the Church, to all those who are fearful or indifferent, the Lord, with great respect and love, is calling you to be a part of his people! Everyone is welcomed into the family here at St. James, the young and old, rich and poor, quirky and awkward, disoriented and confused, black and white, men and women, all together bearing with one another in love as we encounter Jesus Christ who fills our hearts.
Dedicated Community: Relationships and community life are at the core and identity of who we are. The Ordinariate was erected in the Catholic Church as a result of groups of Anglicans who asked to come into the Church as communities. We are dedicated to fostering relationships by sticking around and being with one another after Mass, eating together through organized potlucks and ministry with children and parents, and serving the greater community together.
Loyal to the Magisterium: We accept and uphold the teachings of the Church as they have come down to us through the ages, guided by the Holy Spirit through the living magisterium of the Church, the Pope and the Bishops in union with him. We are loyal to Pope Francis and his vision for the Church: joyfully proclaiming the gospel, caring for the environment, upholding marriage and family life, and not only accompanying the marginalized, but bringing them into fraternity and dreaming and planning together about the community and life we are creating together.
Open to the Holy Ghost: Like the Blessed Virgin Mary who was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit in response to her yes, and following the example of the disciples who were enflamed by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, we seek to say, “Lord, whatever you want, we will do it,” giving him full permission to work and move in and through our lives and through the St. James community. We are open to whatever gifts and charisms that he may give to his people for the building up of the Church. Come Holy Ghost.