Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Conference will be held in San Francisco from November 11 – 18, 2023. Elected leaders and nearly 30,000 delegates will participate.   

Getting to and from the cathedral will be impacted.    

If you plan on attending any services, activities, or events at Grace Cathedral during this period, please allow additional time to get to the cathedral and home, as street closures and rerouted public transportation will be in place. 

To help you get a sense of what these traffic delays may look like for your area, view the map and read more about the potential heavy traffic zones.  

The page will be updated periodically, so please continue to visit it. 

Join the volunteer children’s chorus and sing along with the professionals on stage during this wildly popular Christmas production at Grace Cathedral! We welcome all young people of the community ages 5 – 16 to participate. You do not need to have any experience – just be willing to sing, dance, have fun, and wear a costume! Rehearsals will be held at Grace Cathedral in Gresham Hall from 6-7 p.m. on Wednesdays in October and November (no rehearsal on November 22) with a mandatory dress rehearsal on Tuesday, December 12 from 5:30-7 p.m. 

Sign up here!  Children’s Chorus Form | Presto! Interactive Opera

On September 3, the cathedral is presenting a staged reading of a short play, PIKE, which tells the story of James A. Pike (1913-1969), who served as Bishop of the Diocese of California from 1958 to 1966. While not without controversy, among his many accomplishments were the completion and consecration of Grace Cathedral, ordaining the first woman deacon, and inviting Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to preach shortly after the Selma-Montgomery march. Pike was considered as “one of the greatest prophets of all time — perhaps one of the greatest Episcopal ministers of the 20th century.”  Learn more about the inspiration behind the event from the playwright Kathleen Kinsolving.

What is a staged reading?

A staged reading is where actors perform a play in front of a seated audience with scripts in hand (very similar to a radio play). There are no props, sets, or costumes; it’s not a fully staged production with a 10-minute intermission. As an audience member, you are invited to savor the playwright’s words through the actors’ performances. PIKE will include a slide show as a visual guideline.

What inspired you to write PIKE? 

Several years ago, I was teaching high school seniors Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes, which included the line, “I think my father is like the Holy Trinity” – I immediately remembered how Bishop Pike questioned this concept, which was one of the reasons he was a controversial figure. A lightbulb went off over my head: “You need to write a play about him.” Not long after this divine inspiration, I began my research. 

Why is Bishop Pike so important?

He was a theologian visionary, very ahead of his time.  Bishop Pike wanted to do away with outdated ideals in order to keep the Episcopal church alive.  He rejected an honorary doctorate degree from Sewanee University because they didn’t accept African American students.  In 1965, he called on his clergy to participate in the Selma-Montgomery march and later invited Dr. King to preach at Grace Cathedral. Bishop Pike also instigated the push for womens’ ordination, giving permission for deaconess Phyllis Edwards to be the first woman to perform the Holy Eucharist. Finally, he honored gay clergy by reinstating these fired priests to their original posts.

Register today for PIKE: A Staged Reading on September 3 at 7 pm.

Kathleen Kinsolving grew up in the Bay Area during the 1960s, which influenced her to write about Bishop Pike. She also penned her father’s biography, Lester Kinsolving, a worker-priest (and Pike’s legislative assistant) who investigated Jim Jones and the People’s Temple in 1972 for the San Francisco Chronicle. She is an English teacher, poet, film essayist, and screenwriter and is currently writing a play about Irish hunger striker Bobby Sands. 

On March 13, our Canon Pastor, The Rev. Canon Mary Carter Greene, gave the opening invocation at a small gathering for President Biden in San Diego. During their conversation, President Biden asked that Grace Cathedral pray for him and mentioned his abiding affection and respect for the Episcopal Church for our commitment to social justice.

Here is the Prayer of Invocation for an Evening with President Biden:

Gracious God,

Source of all that we are,

Draw our attention to your presence.

For this is no ordinary day.

On this day, at this hour, in this sacramental moment,

we come together giving thanks and asking your blessing.

Accept our thanks for this remarkable gathering, for our hosts, for Megan and Allan and their boys, and hear our deep gratitude for the people who prepared and served the food we will eat, along with all the others who made our being here possible.

As we give thanks, we ask your blessing on each of us, on those in our hearts, those depending on us, and for those who have no one to speak for them.

In this time together, we pray that the needs and dreams of the voiceless and the powerless, as well as our own interests and hopes would be known and met with your favor.

As we gather easily and in safety, keep us ever mindful of this privilege, and enable us and our leaders to end violence and oppression of all kinds.

Finally, we give thanks for and ask your continued blessing on President and Mrs. Biden. Help President Biden and all the leaders of this country to continue guiding us forward with discernment, decency, courage, and hope. Continue to bless our country, that the United States will soon find accord among its people and realize its dream of equity and Justice.

This is no ordinary day, and your presence makes that so.

To the glory of your name for ever, Amen.

Grace Cathedral will celebrate the Feast of All Souls on November 13 at the Sunday 11 am Choral Eucharist.  This is when we gather to remember beloved friends and family members who have died, joining our prayers with theirs in the communion of saints. Your gift honors the memory of your beloved dead and extends the good works begun during their earthly pilgrimage. * 

As part of that service, the Cathedral Choir of Men & Boys will perform Mozart’s majestic setting of the Requiem, joined by a full orchestra and soloists. The Very Rev. Dr. Malcolm Clemens Young will preach. 

Mozart began composing the Requiem in 1791 but died before he could finish the piece. In the final days of his life, as his health continued to deteriorate, he told his wife that he felt he was writing it for his funeral. We had a chance to catch up with Gabriel Fanelli, our Choirmaster, to tell us more about the Requiem service and particularly what to expect from the Cathedral Choir of Men & Boys performance.    

Tell us, what will people expect from this year’s Requiem service musically? 

This piece explores the full range of emotions that come with loss: some movements express grief, anger, and confusion, but there are also moments of peace, assurance, and hope. While the Feast of All Souls is a time to pause, look back, and remember those who have passed, I hope the music also encourages attendees to look ahead and continue to share the gifts and the spirits of those we love but see no longer. 

I understand there are different choices of music that can be performed during a Requiem service. Why was Mozart chosen this year? 

Since Mozart died before he could finish his Requiem, we will perform a version completed by musicologist and composer Robert Levin. As such, it beautifully encapsulates the spirit of honoring the legacy of those who have come before while continuing to share and build upon the beautiful things they have left us. 

Do you have any advice for anyone who may have never attended a Requiem musical performance, particularly anything to look out for? 

Simply allow yourself to be in the moment. Let the music help you examine your pleasant or difficult feelings and use this as a time to step out of your day-to-day life. Music isn’t something that needs to be understood intellectually – if you let it into your heart, you’ll discover it can touch and move you in a way that nothing else can. 

The choir has already been working hard rehearsing for this day. Here is a sneak peek as they rehearse the “Dies irae” movement of Mozart’s Requiem.: 

* Tributes received by Monday, October 31, will be recognized in the Requiemservice leaflet and will combine with tributes received by Monday, November 7, for a full listing on our online  Remembrance Page.

The campaign to eliminate involuntary servitude for people incarcerated in California from the state constitution is on hold until the legislature reconvenes in January. Efforts to stop forced labor wherever it exists are ongoing in other forums. On October 6, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco will hear the appeal of a $23 million judgment in favor of asylum seekers and other immigrants in an immigrant detention center in Tacoma, Washington, operated by The Geo Group. This multibillion-dollar corporation runs dozens of similar facilities around the United States and globally. Before the judgment was handed down, Geo was paying detainees $1 per day for doing laundry, cleaning, and preparing food.

The legal issues in the case on appeal differ from the anti-slavery initiatives that have already passed in three states and will be on the ballot in five more states in November. The businesses that operate immigrant detention centers cannot rely on involuntary servitude and slavery exceptions in the state and federal constitutions to justify forced labor by detainees because penal exceptions don’t apply to asylum seekers and others who have not been convicted of any crime. Legal distinctions aside, there is little or no practical or moral difference between the way immigrant detainees and prisoners are compensated. Class action lawsuits have been brought around the country, including ones filed recently in California seeking damages on behalf of detainees in two Geo-operated facilities for wage theft, unjust enrichment, and forced labor in violation of federal and state laws. Gay Crosthwait Grunfeld, counsel in one of the California cases, explains that the detainees have no natural choice except to work under the threat of sanctions. “It’s shocking. These workers are forced to do an eight-hour shift for $1 a day. That’s a blatant violation of California minimum wage laws and other labor protections.” (Ms. Grunfeld is a member of Grace Cathedral’s congregation.)

Whether the Court of Appeals will uphold the Washington jury judgment is an open question. The Ninth Circuit recently ruled that a California law phasing out private prisons and detention facilities doesn’t apply to ICE facilities. Some good news is that the California Attorney General has filed a brief in support of the plaintiffs in the Washington case. There is reason to hope. Let us offer our prayers for advocates working within the legal system, judges, legislators, and all who seek to make the ideals in our constitution and laws a reality not only for the powerful and protected but for all.

Grace Cathedral makes a difference in people’s lives. Through Grace, you can make a difference while connecting with others in service and fellowship. 

Grace Cathedral has a vast family of ministries, some devoted to our worship and congregation life and others in service and partnership with our neighbors. Every year, one Sunday in September, the Grace community comes together to celebrate these ministries and the Grace congregation over food, fun activities, informal conversations, and information sharing. This year, Congregation Sunday will be held on September 11 in person, on the plaza, and immediately following the 11 am service. 

Congregation Sunday answers questions like “How can I get involved?” “How can I get more involved with Grace?” and finally, “How can I get to know my fellow Grace congregants better?” So many people want to contribute their time and talents to make the world a better place. Congregation Sunday pulls together concrete ways to volunteer and get more involved in the cathedral’s work while connecting directly with others in the Grace community and beyond. 

This is a time to learn more about the many ministries and programs at Grace! Ministry representatives will be on the plaza for one-on-one conversations about their work: Where and when do they meet? How much time do they involve? What’s the level of commitment they require? Some, such as the Stitching Ministry, meet a few hours every two weeks, while others, like Dinner with Grace, provide regular sign-up opportunities to volunteer as your schedule permits. Over coffee and snacks, you can browse the tables, learn more from fellow Grace congregants, and explore ways to get more involved. 

Here are some of the ministries that will be at Congregation Sunday: 

Bayview Mission – Bayview Mission is a Special Mission of the Episcopal Diocese of California with strong support from Grace Cathedral. It provides enrichment services and meets basic needs for families with infants and toddlers, seniors, and foster care groups in the Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhoods. 

Carillonneurs – Carillonneurs, or bell ringers, share in the expression of music as worship. Experienced keyboardists (piano, harpsichord, organ) and bell ringers play the cathedral carillon (bells) before and after worship and special services. 

Congregation Council – The Congregation Council is a group of elected representatives that promotes community, identifies needs, and provides a voice to congregation concerns. 

Dinner with Grace – Dinner with Grace builds community, engenders empathy, and combats loneliness through volunteer-prepared healthy meals shared with individuals transitioning from homelessness.   

Docents – Docents lead tours describing the cathedral’s history, architecture, stained glass, and other features. 

Education for Ministry – EfM is a small-group-based program of lay education in the Bible, church history, and theology that meets from September to June. Participants develop deep friendships, a way of looking at things through a theological lens, and leadership skills. 

Labyrinth Guild – Supports monthly candlelight Labyrinth Walks and other events. 

Men of Grace – Committed to supporting one another, Men of Grace conducts various activities to deepen faith and provide service to the cathedral and broader community. 

Seniors with Grace – The cathedral’s seniors are a diverse, stimulating community of seasoned people aging with Grace. We gather to learn, grow, stay healthy and enjoy each other’s company – and everyone is welcome. 

Ushers Guild – The ushers welcome and manage the flow of worship services by helping with seating, taking the collection, and guiding people during communion. 

Women in Community – Gathers monthly for mutual support and fellowship, building friendships among women drawn to the Grace Cathedral community. 

We hope to see you there!  

Dear Grace Cathedral community, 

Your voice matters! We invite you to share your thoughts and priorities with us in the 2022 Congregation Survey. Your input is very important as we continue to reimagine church with courage, joy, and wonder.    

This year, we have added some new questions based on feedback from the congregation and have re-imaged ones from years past. We estimate the total completion time to take 30 minutes if all questions are answered. The respondent’s information is confidential.   

Please plan to complete this survey before August 18.   

We look forward to sharing the result at our September Town Hall Meeting.  

Gratefully yours.
Grace Cathedral  

We recently established an elevated visitor program when we were able to reopen the cathedral during non-service times. We are joyfully welcoming thousands of new and old friends and offering them the opportunity to learn about Grace Cathedral, its history, our community, and our treasures.

We recently launched our Cultural Membership program which will offer a new way for both congregants and more casual visitors to Grace to expand their engagement with our cathedral through discounts and special access to a robust schedule of art and cultural offerings.  

Join soon to become a Charter member! And take advantage of special savings – all congregants of Grace Cathedral and churches within the Diocese of California will receive a 20% discount for any Cultural Membership (check your email for a promo code). As always, we thank you for your support. 

Sightseeing Experience: 

What is it? 

Experience the wonder of Grace Cathedral. Enjoy our newly engaging visitor journey that features the cathedral’s history, its place as a San Francisco icon, building elements, and art from our collection, including works by Gabriel Loire, Charles Jay Connick, Ansel Adams, Narcissus Qualgiata, Keith Haring and Lorenzo Ghiberti.  

A sightseeing admission fee allows you to explore the cathedral at your own pace. The curated self-guided (through interactive touch screens and wall labels) is included with admission. For a slightly higher fee, an hour-long docent tour is available. Currently, we offer a “Highlights” tour with both options and other themes will come soon. Additionally, we have added translations to the self-guided tour (currently in Chinese, Korean, and Spanish with more to come) to be even more inclusive and welcoming.  

I am a congregant of Grace Cathedral or a church in the Diocese of California, do I have to pay admission? 

No, current congregants of Grace Cathedral or a church in the Diocese of California just need to identify as such at our Welcome desk and they will have complimentary sightseeing access for entry and our self-guided tour. We look forward to receiving your feedback on our new visitor experience.  

Why are you charging others to enter the cathedral? 

We do not charge for those attending a service or for private prayer or meditation. If you visit to look around, you will need to pay a sightseeing fee.  

To run the cathedral on a day-to-day basis and preserve it costs over $16,500 each day. This includes the costs for pastoral services and care, visitor security, wear and tear on our building, and upkeep of facilities for our visitors. In addition, there are repairs and restoration work that need to be done on the building, funding for arts, culture, social justice, and education programs. 

Cultural Membership FAQs: 

What is it? 

Grace Cathedral Cultural Membership is an annual program for the Bay Area community and beyond. Members will enjoy special access to a robust schedule of arts and music events, exhibitions, and cultural offerings while supporting the institution in its visionary and diverse activities and initiatives. 

The Cultural Membership program allows our visitors to become part of Grace, even if they don’t attend church here. We offer varying membership levels to fit each individual or household.  

Those joining now will become Charter Members of this new annual program.  

What are the benefits? 

All cultural members receive free sightseeing admission to the cathedral, discounts on select arts and culture programs, digital membership cards, and more. Visit here to see additional benefits at higher levels.  

Where do I find my membership number? 

Your membership number is key to receiving discount benefits online. Please find it: 

  1. In your membership purchase confirmation email 
  2. On your saved digital membership card 
  3. Email or come to the Welcome Desk Mon-Sat 10 am-5 pm for assistance.  

Where can I find my digital cultural membership card? 

  1. Download the eMembership Card App. Go to the App Store or Google Play Store. Search for the “eMembership Card” App and download.  
  2. Select the Grace Cathedral tile and touch “Find My Membership Cards.”   
  3. Enter your membership ID number (from your confirmation email) and your last name, then download your card.   
  4. We suggest keeping your card handy by saving it in your wallet or taking a screenshot; you should also save the app. The card gives you easy access to your membership number (needed to purchase discounted tickets online).  For Rose-level members and above, your guest or yoga passes are accessible in the app. 

For questions regarding these instructions, please email  

What is TILT? It is a celebration of light and music on the Summer Solstice.  TILT honors our planet, as it leans towards the sun on the longest day of the year, and it also describes what we think you will experience with this concert – a different angle on music – especially music heard in sacred spaces.  

TILT launched in 2020, and because we could not gather in person, we partnered with cathedrals across the country to present an online offering of beautiful music in beautiful spaces. We so enjoyed our partnerships over the last two years that we have continued that tradition this year, and we are excited to open the cathedral doors for an in-person experience this year.  

The experience begins with The Warm Up, a reception with a signature TILT cocktail, local IPAs, and bistro bites. Our host, Grace Cathedral’s Vice Dean, Greg Kimura, will introduce our partners through films of beautiful music from their unique settings across the globe (learn more about our partners here).  

Then enjoy an intimate performance as the sunlight fades from the glittering stained glass windows. Our wonderful artists are rising opera stars Amitai Pati and Esther Tonea, and pianist and producer Ronny Michael Greenberg. 

 Samoan tenor Amitai Pati recently made a spectacular European debut as Nadir (Les pêcheurs de perles) at the Philharmonie de Paris. The French critics commented, “Amitai Pati performs a moving Nadir, endowed with a superb tenor voice, ideal in the role” (Toute la culture, March 2020) and “The young singer makes a sensational debut in Paris” (Forum Opéra, March 2020). A former Adler Fellow, he returns to San Francisco Opera this month as Don Ottavio in a new production of Don Giovanni, conducted by Bertrand de Billy. 

Praised for her “powerful, gleaming tone, effortless precision, and expressive immediacy,” Romanian-American soprano Esther Tonea has appeared in concerts and recitals across North America and Europe. Adler fellow and former participant in the Merola Opera Program, she won the Metropolitan Opera Eric and Dominique Laffont Competition in May of this year. 

Pianist, Opera Coach, and Producer, Ronny Michael Greenberg is a leading innovator in the world of performing arts. A native of Montreal, he has toured internationally performing in opera houses and concert halls including the War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco, the Vienna Konzerthaus, Carnegie Hall, Montreal’s Place des Arts Theater, and across Italy, New Zealand, and Hawaii. A full-time member of San Francisco Opera’s Music Staff, he is also the CEO & Artistic Director of Taste of Talent, a San Francisco Bay Area nonprofit organization that showcases the connective power of music and art through sensational experiences, and promotes entrepreneurial empowerment of artists. 

For TILT, the program will include “Night” by Florence Price, “Ah! Love But A Day” by Amy Beach, music from Roméo et Juliette by Charles Gounod, and more! 

Join us for TILT In-person on Monday, June 20, 8 to 9:30 p.m.  and online from June 21 through 26 at 

What is TILT? It is a celebration of light and music on the Summer Solstice.  TILT honors our planet, as it leans towards the sun on the longest day of the year, and it also describes what we think you will experience with this concert – a different angle on music – especially music heard in sacred spaces.  

TILT launched in 2020, and because we could not gather in person, we partnered with cathedrals across the country to present an online offering of beautiful music in beautiful spaces. We are excited to open the cathedral doors for an in-person experience this year, and we so enjoyed our partnerships over the last two years, that we have continued that tradition this year. 

Meet our partner, the Reciprocity Project, whose film, Weckuwapok (The Approaching Dawn), documents a coming together of artists, scientists and the Wabanaki people in Acadia National Park in Maine just before the summer solstice in 2021, to explore how the intersection of nature and culture can help shape a better future.  

The roots of the word Wabanaki can be found in the Passamaquoddy word Ckuwaponahkiyik, or “people from the land where the sun rises.” The Wabanaki peoples have lived in the land we call Maine for millennia. As the people of the dawnland, they consider it their responsibility to welcome the sun for the rest of the continent.  

Acadia National Park is the crown jewel of the North Atlantic Coast and protects the natural beauty of the highest rocky headlands along the Atlantic coastline of the United States, and a rich cultural heritage.  

Reciprocity Project’s Weckuwapok (The Approaching Dawn) is part of a short film series co-produced by Nia Tero & Upstander Project. Co-directed by Jacob Bearchum, Taylor Hensel, Adam Mazo, Chris Newell, Roger Paul, Kavita Pillay, Tracy Rector, and Lauren Stevens; the film features performances by Passamaquoddy (a nation of the Wabanaki Confederacy) citizens Christopher Newell, Roger Paul, and Lauren Stevens; Nipmuc citizen Hawk Henries; and multi-Grammy Award-winning cellist and Chinese American Yo-Yo Ma.  

Weckuwapok (The Approaching Dawn) – Trailer 
Yo Yo Ma gives a surprise concert at Acadia National Park 

Join us for TILT In-person on Monday, June 20, 8 to 9:30 p.m.  and online from June 21 through 26 at 

About the producers of Weckuwapok (The Approaching Dawn) 

For TILT, we are sharing songs and stories of gratitude for the sun from the film Weckuwapok (The Approaching Dawn).  

Reciprocity Project lifts up the value of reciprocity in Indigenous ways of storytelling through film, podcasts, and other creative mediums. Their aim is to create a paradigm shift that reframes our relationships to the Earth, other living beings, and one another. 

Nia Tero works in solidarity with Indigenous peoples who sustain thriving territories and cultures to strengthen guardianship of Earth and all beings.  

The Upstander Project uses storytelling to amplify silenced narratives, develop upstander skills (the opposite of a bystander) to challenge systemic injustice, and nurture compassionate, courageous relationships that honor the interconnection of all beings and the Earth. 

What is TILT? It is a celebration of light and music on the Summer Solstice.  TILT honors our planet, as it leans towards the sun on the longest day of the year, and it also describes what we think you will experience with this concert – a different angle on music – especially music heard in sacred spaces.  

TILT launched in 2020, and because we could not gather in person, we partnered with cathedrals across the country to present an online offering of beautiful music in beautiful spaces. We are excited to open the cathedral doors for an in-person experience this year, and we so enjoyed our partnerships over the last two years, that we have continued that tradition this year. 

Meet our European partner, Northern Lights Cathedral in Alta, Norway, where the sun rises on the solstice nine hours earlier than we see it here. 

Alta is above the Arctic Circle, and its frequent clear skies make it an excellent location for studying the aurora borealis, or Northern Lights. The “midnight sun” is above the horizon from May to July. Architectural firm Link, inspired by the night sky, designed a building shaped like a spiral that swings its way up the building to a clock tower. The cathedral, made of concrete with an outer layer of shimmering titanium sheets, was consecrated in 2013. 

For TILT, they are sharing music by their cantor Irina Girunyan on the organ together with her husband Nikolai Girunyan on the cello. The impressive organ has 29 stops and 1,800 pipes. 

Join us for TILT In-person on Monday, June 20, 8 to 9:30 p.m.  and online from June 21 through 26 at