(Photo: James M. Stanton)
The sixth largest Episcopal church in the United States will soon begin looking towards expanding its facilities to accommodate its growing Texas-based congregation.
The Church of the Incarnation of Dallas will be announcing Sunday the results of their capital building campaign, "Lift High the Cross", which is also the name of an early 20th century hymn.
The Incarnation's congregation has increased by 35 percent since 2008, with a regular attendance presently around 1,300, but expected to reach 2,000 within ten years.
Anthony J. Burton, Rector of The Church of the Incarnation, said in a statement that despite the encouraging numbers his congregation's focus "is not about growth, but changed lives."
"Size does not make a church better, but if its clergy and parishioners are sensitive to the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives, God can cause their work in His name to grow a parish that is a resource of great blessing to its community and denomination," said Burton.
Based in the Uptown neighborhood of Dallas, The Incarnation is looking to add three new buildings: another worship facility, a welcome center, and an educational facility.
The "Lift High the Cross" campaign's financial goal was $25 million. If successfully reached, it would make The Incarnation's capital campaign one of the largest accomplished by any Episcopal congregation in the twenty-first century.
Founded in 1879 as the Cathedral Chapel of the Incarnation, Church of the Incarnation is part of the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas.
The Right Reverend James M. Stanton, bishop of the Dallas Diocese, told The Christian Post about the appeal of Church of the Incarnation and why he believed it was growing.
"Incarnation appeals to young couples and individuals in its immediate urban area, as well as drawing people from the Park Cities and North Dallas," said Stanton.
"It provides different 'styles' of liturgy grounded in sound preaching and teaching, but its fastest growing service is the traditional service of Holy Communion done in the language of Cranmer's Book of Common Prayer."
Stanton also told CP that Church of the Incarnation was not the only congregation in his diocese that was growing.
"Over the last ten years, the Diocese has planted several new congregations (six) and all have demonstrated rapid growth," said Stanton.
"The key to their growth is worship well-done, attention to preaching and teaching, and engaging new members in mission and outreach to their communities. They are being the Church."