Student Life

Chapel

Book of Common Prayer, pp. 304-305

"seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself." 

Episcopal Identity

St. Margaret’s Episcopal School is upheld by the basic principles of our Episcopal tenets that individuals and institutions are called to strive for justice and peace among all people, and to respect the dignity of every human being. Episcopal schools are not solely communities for Christians, rather as ecumenical and diverse ministries of educational and human formation for people of all faiths and backgrounds. Episcopal schools also integrate religious and spiritual formation into the curriculum and life of the school community. Episcopal schools exist not merely to educate, but to demonstrate and proclaim the unique worth and beauty of all human beings.

Chapel

Led by St. Margaret’s Episcopal School chaplains, Chapel is an integral part of the student experience for every student nurturing character, grace, community fellowship and spiritual wellness. Every student participates in Chapel services weekly as a dedicated time in the school schedule for proclamation, celebration, solace and reflection of God’s goodness and unconditional love, and every person as a unique and special being created by God. Chapel services and the Church campus, including the Fountain Courtyard, meditation labyrinth and garden, are sacred and safe spaces always open to students and members of the St. Margaret’s community.
 
Chapel also reinforces the sacred in ourselves and everything around us, and encourages taking time to pause, reflect and appreciate personal truth and life’s authentic joys. It develops mindfulness and a deeper connection with individual spirituality and respect and care for others.
 
The student body, teachers and staff of each division gather as a community for Chapel as a part of the weekly schedule—Preschool gathers weekly, Lower School begins each day, Monday through Thursday with Chapel, Middle School gathers on Monday and Thursday and Upper School on Thursday.
 
Readings, prayers and homilies are thoughtfully selected and developed by the chaplains to reflect life of the school community as extensions of current and ongoing themes, conversations and lessons. Students have leadership opportunities to serve as acolytes or readers, and offer a homily that reflects upon the reading, and musical or dance performances. Through the ritual of Chapel, students also learn and practice the proper respect and decorum of a sacred space and learn to appreciate its place and value in their lives.
 
Several all-school Chapels dot the school year as important gatherings for the entire student body, faculty and staff, including Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Fall and Spring All-School Eucharist Services, and St. Margaret’s Day, which celebrates the school’s founding and namesake, St. Margaret’ of Scotland. The Christian holidays of Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Easter and Christmas are celebrated in Chapel as well as the observances and holidays of other faiths to represent our community. School is always closed to observe Christmas and Good Friday.

Eucharist

Basic Actions of the Holy Eucharist

  • Gather in the Lord's Name
  • Proclaim and Respond to the Word of God
  • The proclamation and response may include readings, song, talk, dance, instrumental music, other art forms, silence. A reading from the Gospel is always included.
  • Pray for the World and the Church
  • Exchange the Peace
  • All greet one another in the name of God.
  • Prepare the Table
  • Some of those present prepare the table; the bread, the cup of wine, and other offerings, are placed upon it.
  • Make Eucharist
  • The Great Thanksgiving is said by the Priest in the name of the gathering. The people respond-Amen!
  • Break the Bread
  • Share the Gifts of God
  • The Body and Blood of the Lord are shared in a reverent manner.
An independent preschool through grade 12 college-preparatory day school in Orange County.
St. Margaret’s Episcopal School
31641 La Novia Avenue
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
949.661.0108