A Place of Vision
The Parish of St. Thomas is a congregation in the Diocese of Western North Carolina offering inclusive, intelligent, and innovative liturgy, music, and Christian formation for people of all ages. As an outreach of the church, The Abbey of St. Thomas enlivens connection within our broader community.
In the spirit of the monasteries of our Celtic spiritual forebears, The Abbey is a center of learning, community development, and service. We offer a space for gathering and celebration, for sharing thought-provoking information and transformative conversation, and for discernment of wise action. Our prayer is that The Abbey of St. Thomas be a place of vision where a different world, a world intended by God, is lived out.
Thomas, our patron saint, is credited with spreading the good news of the Way of Jesus in India. We resonate with the spirit of him whose faith was released when Christ offered him authentic, compassionate, embodied experience. Thomas found his mission – to bring God to life in his own ﬂesh, in the place to which he was called.
Likewise, we seek to embody Christ with integrity in our place – the resilient and resourceful mountain community of Yancey County. In friendship with those whose forebears settled in Appalachia long ago and with those who have been drawn here more recently, we recognize the image of God. May all our stories, gathered and given within the rich and venerable heritage of these mountains, attest to our faith, deeply grounded in the Holy.
A Place of Sharing
Community is built when neighbors respect and embrace one another. We invite differing perspectives without judgement, choosing to learn from each other and to grow in mutual appreciation and exchange. We emphasize the importance of sharing local traditions, be they food and feasting, dance and music, prayer and ritual, storytelling, or the arts, both visual and performing. The Abbey provides opportunities for dialogue and increased understanding, and all that brings our community together in a life-afﬁrming way. We invite all our neighbors to
participate in this venture of friendship.
OUR PRINCIPLES OF COMPASSION
Believing that equality, diversity, and the practice of welcome are just and powerful community resources, we reject any form of discrimination based on individual characteristics or circumstances.
For us, this includes socio-economic or educational background, age, differing physical or developmental abilities of any kind, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, political opinion, ethnic or national origin, and religion or belief. We celebrate our common bond as human beings and partner with all people of goodwill in our community.