St. Andrew’s by-the-Sea is a congregation in the Episcopal Church, which has around 2 million members in the United States and additional members in sixteen other countries. We are part of the worldwide Anglican Communion that embraces a “middle way” approach that was originated in 16th century England, defining a middle ground between the polarities of the day - Roman Catholicism and Puritanism. The Episcopal Church continues to chart a middle way through the issues of this day. We define our faith through reason, tradition, and scripture. Rather than telling people what to believe, we provide safe places for questions and struggles of faith.
Consequently, as our Bishop Knisely says: “Episcopalians are not unanimous in our views, but in the Episcopal Church we find our unity in common prayer, not common opinion.” Our character is deeply based in our ability to include a diversity of perspectives and we welcome questions, doubts, and dialogue as we try to become more faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.
St. Andrew’s began as a very small mission church on Sakonnet Point 100 years ago to serve the needs of the local fisherman and the many summer residents in the area. Over the years, the church grew and became a much larger part of the community. We have moved twice in that time, each time to a larger facility and now have a wonderful location in the center of Little Compton that is called The Commons. We attract parishioners from several towns, including Westport, MA and the southern part of Tiverton. Our average Sunday attendance is around 50 which is a great size because it isn’t hard to get to know most everyone.