The Episcopal School in North Philadelphia

A place to encounter God, build community and grow personally.

Wherever you are on your journey of faith, the Church of St. James the Less invites you into community, dialogue and worship. Whether it is through prayer and worship, serving your neighbor, joining in music or sharing a meal, community transforms us and helps us to know God more. The Church of St. James the Less is a dynamic place where your questions can be asked, you will be accepted and support can be found. Join us.

Life in Community


As the principal act of Christian worship, the Mass invites us into the mystery of God: that God came to humanity in human form to live and die for the salvation of the world and that God continues to abide with us to enable, empower, and enliven us in the work of building up God’s kingdom. When we bring offerings of praise and thanksgiving to Mass, we pray that God will strengthen us to follow the most basic commandment: to love God and to love our neighbors as ourselves. LEARN MORE


The sacraments are “outward and visible signs of inward and spiritual grace, given by Christ as sure and certain means by which we receive that grace.” (Book of Common Prayer 1979) Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Marriage, Healing (Anointing of the Sick), Reconciliation, and Ordination are the 7 traditional sacraments of the Church. Burial of the Dead, is a service whereby the life of a departed loved one is celebrated and our sorrow is recognized. For information about sacraments contact Fr. Kellner.

Pastoral Care

Pastoral care consists of helping acts, directed towards the healing, sustaining, guiding, reconciling and nurturing of persons whose troubles and concerns arise in the context of daily interactions and exploring the big questions about life. Pastoral care aims to restore wholeness, offer coping strategies and develop new understandings to tackle life’s challenges. All of this is aimed to enable folks to develop their potential and live into the wholeness of their being.


Music is an integral part of Christian worship. Through music, we each offer ourselves to God, lifting our voices in songs of praise and thanksgiving. Music instructs us in our faith, as the words of hymns and choral pieces tell us the story of God and God’s people. Joining our voices in song, we become unified in our worship of God. The Sunday Night Community Choir leads the congregation in beautiful and meaningful music, under the direction of Javvieaus Stewart. Interested in joining the Community Choir? Please contact Ms. Stewart.


One of the main ways we come to know God is by living together in community. We share goods, resources, and time with each other through the Welcome Table. We enjoy fellowship with each other at dinner after Mass each Sunday and during Family First Fridays on the first Friday of each month. We celebrate together during special events including The Fall Festival, St. James Day, and our Jazz Concert Series. Through sharing life together, we grow in love of neighbor and of God.

The Welcome Table

The Welcome Table is a community of sharing, created to help families, friends and neighbors of St. James School obtain all that they need. A need is an essential or required item, for the thriving of an individual, family or community. Needs do not meet all our wants or desires, but provide us with the foundation needed to reach and obtain them. Learn more about The Welcome Table.

Living History – A Study of the Past Reveals What the Future May Hold

Servant Year member John E. Hager published a spiritual and photographic guide about St. James School’s parish, The Church of St. James the Less, designated a National Historic Landmark (1985).

In the guide, John shares an in-depth look at the church’s founding in 1846 and the purposeful choices made for the building’s design, construction, and use.

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