About the Cathedral
Church of St. Luke

CSL_BishopsGarden

Ancient Worship. Modern Thought.

St. Luke’s is an active, diverse, faith community that has been serving the people of Portland and the Diocese of Maine for more than 150 years. No matter who you are or where you might be in your spiritual life, you are welcome here!

Our 1867 cathedral is a historic treasure, filled with art and beauty including the American Madonna by Jean LaFarge and the Stations of the Cross by Portland artist Don Meserve. Our 1905 Emmanuel Chapel is remarkable in its architecture and intimate and beautiful space. Both the nave and chapel are frequently used for concerts, weddings, funerals, and other events for the Portland Community Our Christmas and Easter Worship Services, our Evensong Services, and choir are renowned across Maine. Our 1928 Skinner Organ is one of the best in the city and our organist and organ recitals are world-class.

We host a wide variety of worship services (both online and in-person). We offer education and spiritual formation for Pre-K through Adult, partner with other churches for both Portland and Diocesan-wide youth ministries (grades 6-12), and have our own young adult (20s/30s program) and adult programs. We have dynamic pastoral care and fellowship programs that reach out to nursing homes and hospitals.

We are home to two pantries, an active ministry to Haiti, and many other services to the wider community. We are welcoming to all and have been at the forefront of Marriage Equality, Immigration, Health care, Refugee Rights, Environmental Concerns, and other areas, often leading at city-wide events and activities.

We have over 50 concerts and music or arts events over the year and are the home of the Portland Rossini Club and the concert venue for many Portland-area groups including Renaissance Voices, the St. Mary Schola, and the Maine Pops. Our nave has been used for art shows, lectures, presentations, and other community events.

Dean, The Very Reverend

Dr. Benjamin Shambaugh

(207) 772-5434, Email Benjamin Shambaugh

If you remember that in the middle ages,  universities began around cathedrals, it might begin to make sense that in the Anglican tradition, the rector or pastor of a cathedral is given the title of “Dean.” A cathedral dean is the dean of the “college of clergy” of a diocese for the bishop (why a dean is the “Very” Reverend, while a bishop is the “Right” Reverend.)

St. Luke’s dean, Ben Shambaugh (he/him), is an Episcopal priest who has lived and ministered in New York, Chicago, Washington D.C., Paris, Barbados, and around the American National Parks system. In addition, he has been involved in development work in Africa, Haiti, and First Nation Reservations in the American West. He has also led study tours to the Holy Land.

Ordained in 1988, Dean Shambaugh has served four congregations. Prior to coming to Maine, he spent ten years as rector of St. John’s Church and School (home of African Palms) in Olney, Maryland.  In addition, he has a wide variety of mission experiences, including time as a chaplain at the National Cathedral in Washington, as Canon Pastor to the American Cathedral in Paris, and in his current position as Dean of St. Luke’s Cathedral here in Portland, Maine. 

Additionally, Dean Shambaugh enjoys working in the local community. He serves on the board of St. Elizabeth’s Jubilee Center, has served on the boards of Preble Street and the Religious Coalition Against Discrimination, and has taught as adjunct faculty on Bangor Seminary. He has been an advocate for marriage equality, ending hunger and homelessness, environmental justice, and indigenous rights. He has held numerous diocesan positions, including chair of the Standing Committee for the Episcopal Diocese of Maine and chair of the Maine Deputation to the Episcopal Church’s General Convention. He currently serves as an ACS Chaplain for the United States Coast Guard in Sector Northern New England and as Branch Assistant for District One, with oversight of ACS chaplains in New York and New England. He is sought out as a speaker and writer, regularly preaching at the Temple for Ocean Park (The Chautauqua-by-the-Sea).

He has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Northwestern University, an M.Div. from the General Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. from Seabury Western Seminary. 

Dean Shambaugh is married and has two grown children. He enjoys hiking and playing his tuba in the Maine Pops, a local community band.

Support Staff

Wardens and Vestry

Peter Bingham Gayl Anglin Joanne DeKay
Jamie Cough Jane Briggs Oscar Mokeme
Alfred Nyarwaya Dan McDonald

St. Luke’s Vestry (sometimes called the Lesser Chapter) is the governing body of the Cathedral Church of St. Luke. It holds formal responsibilities defined by diocesan canons and the Bylaws of the Lesser Chapter and operates much like a board of directors. 

Nine Vestry members (plus a Senior Warden and a Junior Warden) oversee the business and programs of the Cathedral throughout the year. Vestry members are nominated from active parishioners and elected at the Cathedral’s annual meeting for three years of service. Wardens are nominated and elected to serve staggered two-year terms. The Vestry meets monthly from September through June.