'St. Thomas’ in Bath, the welcoming Episcopal church behind the red doors, is a community of disciples-in-training who strive together to care for others by following the example of Jesus Christ, and to provide a space where everyone can find and be found by God.'
For years, St. Thomas Episcopal church members have taken seriously their faith's call to care for anyone in need.
Last spring, the parish partnered with Catholic Charities Steuben's Turning Point to set up raised bed gardens in the back churchyard to grow fresh vegetables for the food pantry. The project also brought in other agencies and businesses in a community effort to provide food for the hungry.
The effort was so successful plans are under way to add three more gardens for the 2011 growing season.
The garden project is only one aspect of the church social justice outreach.
Church leaders say their church lives its mission statement each and every day.
The lower level of the church's Parish House includes the AIDS Rochester Southern Tier Satellite. The church also hosts meetings by Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Literacy Volunteers, Bath Peace and Justice Group, League of Women Voters of Steuben County, and the Sierra Club.
Training sessions of Guide Dogs for the Blind, and quarterly retreats of the women's a cappella chorus, Rochester Rhapsody also take place on church grounds.
The church offers many worship and social opportunities for the community, including regular church services, service groups within the church, home visitations, concerts, parish suppers open to all, study groups for adults and Vacation Bible School for children.