Established in the mid-nineteenth century as Grace Church, and renamed after his death to honor Robert E. Lee who served as Senior Warden, our church has almost 500 communicants and an average Sunday attendance of about 225. We have worship services each Sunday at 8:00 and 10:30 AM and 5 PM. Sunday School for children and adults is offered between the morning services.
All Sunday services include the Eucharist. The 8:00 AM service tends to be traditional and contemplative, and has no music. An active and growing adult choir leads music at the 10:30 AM service. The 5 PM service, during the academic year, is primarily for students at Washington and Lee University and cadets from Virginia Military Institute. A contemplative Taize' Eucharist is offered on the 2nd Sunday of the month at 5 PM. At all services, we embrace Anglican traditions of worship while remaining open to alternative forms of meaningful worship inclusive of children, youth, church seekers, and long-time members.
We have a Vestry of 14 members, most of whom chair or serve as liaison to one or more of our parish committees. The staff consists of the rector; a director of Christian education and programs, a part-time college chaplain ; a director of music; a parish administrator; a part-time financial secretary; and a part-time sexton.
Our congregation includes many retired people; faculty, students and staff from our local colleges; and young professional families with small children. One-half of our communicants have attended R. E. Lee Church for 20 years or more, and about a third have been in the parish a decade or less.
We value a healthy sense of community, interaction among generations, and tolerance of a diversity of viewpoints among our members.
We pride ourselves on our Christian education programs for persons of all ages, our youth program, an active ministry to college students, a strong music program, and on our mission outreach, locally, in the diocese, and in the wider world. We are committed to our linked relationships with brothers and sisters in the Diocese of Bradford, England, Haiti, and in the Sudan.
For many decades, our parish has been a catalyst for efforts to address social problems in the Rockbridge community, founding, for example, the Rockbridge Area Relief Association, Meals for Shut-ins, and Yellow Brick Road Early Learning Center. Members of the parish have also been generous with their time and financial support for numerous other local and international causes, such as Habitat for Humanity, the Bishop Tharp Institute, Les Cayes, Haiti, and the Marc Nikkel School in the Sudan. We consider these activities to be a significant part of our Christian mission.