St. Michael’s By-the-Sea Episcopal Church is the oldest church in Carlsbad. The historic chapel, built in 1894, is still in use for services.

As far as churches go, it’s kind of a beachy version of the ancient Christian Faith and is rooted in the Anglo-Catholic tradition.

Whether you’re in town for a week at the beach or a local pilgrim on a spiritual journey, you are welcome here!


Mass is celebrated at 9:30am on Sundays. A Spanish-language Mass is celebrated Sundays at 11:30am in the chapel.

The Sunday evening 4:00pm Jazz Evensong is held on the lawn.

Daily Morning and Evening Prayer are streamed online.

Daily Mass: Tuesday through Friday at 12pm and Saturday at 5:30pm inside the chapel.

I like to think of St. Michael’s by-the-Sea as a lighthouse. It is a beacon of God’s Truth and Love, perched on the edge of the map to illumine the pilgrim’s path with the true light that has come into the world, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Many faithful Christians have, and do, and will continue to call this place home. There are those who mind the lantern and love and serve God and others in this place. But there are just as many migrants seeking safe passage as they travel the road from brokenness to belief. They are on The Way, and St. Michael’s serves as a holy resting place to be refreshed and nourished.

Amidst the brokenness of humanity, and indeed, the brokenness of the Church, St. Michael’s beckons weary travelers to the beauty of this coastline, and the infinitely greater beauty of the life-giving and soul-saving gift of Our Lord Jesus Christ and his One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. He is the rock upon which this beacon is built. Whoever you are, and wherever you find yourself on your journey of faith, there is a place for you here.

Fr. Doran Stambaugh


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