Who We Are
Our Mission is to Seek, Love, and Serve Jesus Christ:
SEEK a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and his family, the Church.
LOVE God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.
SERVE as disciples of Jesus Christ by loving your neighbor as yourself.
St. Stephen is the first or protomartyr (Acts 7:54-60) and the patron saint of our parish. A patron saint serves as a community’s spiritual protector and intercessor before God. Stephen’s name gives our community a public Christian identity, and his life serves as a spiritual inspiration for us. St. Stephen mirrored Jesus. Jesus was filled with grace and power, and so was Stephen; Jesus worked great signs and wonders, and so did Stephen; Jesus was interrogated by the Sanhedrin, and so was Stephen; Jesus forgave his persecutors, and so did Stephen; Jesus was crucified, Stephen was stoned. If our patron saint could pattern his life on Jesus, so can we.
Our parish community is Roman Catholic. Our roots can be traced directly and without interruption to Jesus and his apostles. We are in communion with the Bishop of Rome, the Pope, and part of the universal or worldwide Church, and accept its teachings and traditions. Regionally, we belong to the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis and accept the teaching authority of our Archbishop.
We are a congregation or assembly of baptized believers, disciples and followers of Jesus, Christians, People of God, members of the Body of Christ, people who hold the same religious convictions and worship together.
There are two St. Stephen’s parishes in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, ours and one in south Minneapolis. “Anoka” designates our particular parish.
We Have Developed a Set of Core Values That Align With Our Mission to Seek, Love, and Serve Jesus Christ.
We believe Jesus, came in love, came to seek and to save through his cross and resurrection. Evangelization seeks to bring people into an encounter with Jesus Christ, leading them to a decision to trust, follow him and become his disciple. It is directed to those outside of the Church, but also aimed at those within the Church who know about Jesus but do not know him personally. Evangelization is the task of all the baptized.
We value a personal relationship with Jesus.
We believe the Eucharistic celebration is the source and summit of our life. Our communal and personal worship honor God.
We value excellence in our worship.
We believe the Bible is the inspired, infallible Word of God that has relevance for our daily lives. Jesus calls us to repentance and to be converted to Him. Faith is a personal, intimate encounter with Jesus in community of others, to experience His closeness, His friendship, and His love. Discipleship is a “Faith for Life” endeavor which includes catechesis, growing in faith, knowledge, prayer, and identifying God given gifts.
We value deeper conversion to Christ.
We believe our Baptism forms us into a family that is constantly nourished and renewed by the sacraments, which teach us to love one another as Christ loved us. We strive to build a Catholic Community where people are open and authentic, especially about their need to grow and change.
We value growing together in holiness.
We believe the Holy Spirit has prepared works for us to do that will advance the Kingdom of God. God calls us to serve both our parish and also beyond: in our family, our community, our country, and the world.
We value God’s call to serve and are eager to respond.