Lower School

Chapel & Community Service

"Chapel gives me time to myself to think." - Third grader

Why Daily Chapel?

Daily chapel is at the center of our shared life together.  It is in this sacred time and space that members of the community gather to lift our hearts in prayer and praise to God.  The daily ritual of chapel gently cultivates spiritual disciplines such as silence and gratitude, and sets aside a space in the midst of our often busy and fast-paced lives to reflect on our lives and who God is calling us to be. 

What Happens in Chapel?

In chapel students might hear a homily from the chaplain, their teachers, or their classmates, they might enjoy a musical or artistic offering, they might celebrate the life of a saint, they might engage in a time of quiet contemplation, or they might have an opportunity to learn about and experience another faith tradition.  Students are given the opportunity to serve as acolytes, readers, and chapel musicians, and in the Middle and Upper Schools they may serve on leadership teams that help shape the chapel program.  In addition to daily chapel, special days in the Christian calendar such as Ash Wednesday, All Saints’ Day, and Easter are celebrated with services of Holy Communion.

How Are Other Faiths Included?

Worship at St. Andrew’s is rooted in the liturgical tradition of the Episcopal Church and the Christian story of God’s love and grace, but is also welcoming and inclusive of those who do not identify as Episcopalian.  Holy days from a variety of religious traditions are celebrated in chapel, and students from diverse faith backgrounds are encouraged to share about the rituals, prayers, and practices that they hold dear.  All students and staff attend daily chapel, and are invited to participate as they feel comfortable.

Community Service

Community Service at St. Andrew's is seen as a natural extension of the chapel program. As students hear the spiritual messages of compassion, service, and love, they are compelled to put these lessons into action through working to improve the world around them. Throughout the year students participate in a variety of in-school projects that are accompanied by intentional service learning and education about the social justice issues addressed.

Daily Worship

All are welcome and encouraged to attend daily worship. 

8:50-9:20 am - 3rd, 4th, 5th grades
10:05-10:30 am - 6th, 7th, 8th grades
11:10-11:35 am - Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd grades

Please submit prayer requests to LS & MS Chaplain Ashley Brandon.

Lower School Chapel Elements

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  • Lessons

    In grades 1-2 the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Bible are taught to students through storytelling. In grades 3-6 students hear lessons from Hebrew Scriptures, the Gospels, and the Epistles, following the Revised Common Lectionary. In addition to lessons from the Bible, students learn about Christian holidays, and the lives of the saints. Students also get the opportunity to learn about other religious traditions, and regularly hear from guest speakers about a variety of relevant topics.
  • Prayer

    Each day personal and community prayers are raised up during chapel time. As a result of this daily practice, students learn about the importance of prayer in response to the concerns and celebrations of life.
  • Music

    As an offering of praise to God, students learn age-appropriate liturgical music using the Hymnal 1982. Chapel music is accompanied by piano on most days and guitar on Tuesdays. On Wednesdays students have "Hymn Practice" with their music teachers, where they learn new songs and practice old ones. Students also get the opportunity throughout the year to hear chapel concerts from their peers and from guest performers.
  • Student Participation

    Beginning in the first grade, students serve as acolytes who are responsible for extinguishing the candles at the end of the service. In the third grade students also have the opportunity to read the Psalm appointed for the day. Students are also encouraged to offer their talents and gifts in chapel, such as reading a favorite book, telling about an important tradition or object, singing a song, etc.
     
    Students, parents, and faculty are supported in their spiritual and pastoral needs by LS/MS Chaplain Ashley Brandon and Head of School Sean Murphy.

Need More Info?

Contact:
- LS & MS Chaplain Ashley Brandon
- Director of Diversity Kendall Evans

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Located in Austin, Texas, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School is a private co-ed elementary, middle and high school for grades K-12. Students benefit from dedicated faculty, a challenging academic program, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.