• Welcome
  • What to Expect
  • Children & Youth
  • Worship Schedule
  • Directions
  • Contact
  • Greetings,

    Welcome to the Episcopal Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea, a community of people from all walks of life discovering the joy of knowing and following Jesus Christ. We gather on Sundays to hear the sacred stories of God’s love and to be spiritually nourished in sharing Holy Communion. Then, inspired by our fellowship, we strive to make God's love a living reality in our lives every day. At Bethesda, Sunday is the high point of the week. So, look around our web site. Then come and join us on a Sunday morning soon.

    Peace, The Rev. James Harlan, Rector

  • Every Sunday is where the life begins at Bethesda. We celebrate the Holy Eucharist with glorious liturgy and music. We also celebrate Holy Eucharist during the week and offer a healing service on Wednesdays. All baptized Christians are invited to participate in the Holy Eucharist when visiting Bethesda-by-the-Sea. It is not necessary to be a member of the Episcopal Church in order to receive Holy Communion. Persons who have not been baptized are welcome to come to the altar rail and kneel to receive a blessing. Cross your arms on your chest as a sign that you will not receive Communion. Click here for our service schedule.


  • FROM I-95

    Take the Okeechobee Blvd East exit (70). Travel East on Okeechobee Blvd to the Intracoastal Waterway. Cross over the Intracoastal Waterway, and continue going East to the second light (South County Road). Turn North (left) onto South County Road, and travel 1/2 mile. The church will be on the Right.


    Click here and scroll to Directions and Parking Information.

  • Having the faith of a child

    Children and youth bring such wonderful life and energy to our community. Bethesda offers a warm welcome to every child, whether parents prefer to bring their children into the worship service, or put them in the special children's worship (when available), or let them enjoy the nursery. We strive to create a place where even our littlest members know that God loves them, where all of us can grow in our faith, and where parents can find their own sense of peace and support.



  • God is Love

    Our worship is formal, intimate, transcendent, reflective, fun, and inspiring. As we celebrate our life together, we focus on God's love for each and every person and encourage one another to seek that loving presence of God. We have communion as an integral part of every service where we share together in a simple meal of bread and wine. While our worship may not be entirely familiar, we encourage everyone to join in as they are comfortable. Read more here.


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Sometimes in our culture, people seem to expect church to be like a theater performance to entertain us or a spa to make us feel better or a seer to make decisions in our life that are too hard for us to make. 

And while worship can, at times be entertaining, healing, and informative, we are not at the center of worship, God is. At Bethesda we want worship to be like nothing else we do in our week. We hope when we walk into church we are uplifted spiritually and pulled out of our culture’s tendency to self-centeredness, deeply moved and called to share in God’s mission to love and serve in all that we do. In worship all of our differences fade, and we become one as we share in singing God’s praises and as we partake in a sacred meal of bread and wine that becomes the body and blood of Christ.

Worship at Bethesda is formal but need not be stiff. While many people prefer to wear their “Sunday finest” for church, others prefer to dress more casually. As God loves all, Bethesda welcomes all. 

Bethesda’s worship follows a structure that may take a few weeks to learn for someone unfamiliar with the Episcopal Church. The structure enables us to be participants in a celebration, not spectators at an event. All are encouraged to join in however they are comfortable.

Further, many parishioners serve in particular roles that are described in the pages in this section. Some ministries might well speak to some individuals reading these pages and lead them to inquire about sharing in ministry.

Finally, links to more reading about worship in the Episcopal Church are offered below. The single greatest delight of Bethesda’s parish life is to share in the praise and worship of the God who loves us all.

  • Here is a series of pages from the Episcopal Church's web site explaining the basic elements of our worship and sacramental life.
  • Anglicans Online provides some wonderful introductory resources, not only about worship, but also about Anglicanism in general. This page offers some thoughts about worship; the site is worth browsing.
  • The Episcopal Church's Book of Common Prayer can be found here.
  • Forward Movement, a ministry of the Episcopal Church, offers rich resources for daily prayer and meditation, including an online daily meditation written by diverse members of the Church, as well as daily Morning and Evening Prayer that can be customized to follow the various options in the Book of Common Prayer.
  • To find the readings for Sundays or weekdays coming up, the Lectionary Page provides them in the translation Bethesda uses in worship.


For More Information

Contact us at (561) 655-4554 or e-mail us at