Weekly Dispatch, January 12th, 2022
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St. John's Weekly Dispatch, v. 2

St. John's Schedule

  • Catechesis Hour – Sundays at 9:00am before Church
  • Holy Eucharist – Sundays at 10:30am at Church and via Zoom
  • Evening Prayer and Lectio Divina – Wednesdays at 6:30pm at Church
  • Vestry – Thursday, January 13th, 6:00pm
  • Vision Charette – Sunday, January 23rd, after Church (lunch provided)
  • Vestry Meeting – Thursday, February 10th, 6:00pm at Church
  • Annual Meeting – Sunday, February 20th, after Church

A Message from Fr. Joe

Dear Friends in Christ,

1 When the LORD overturned the captivity of Zion, *
then were we like those who dream.
2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter *
and our tongue with shouts of joy.
3 Then they said among the nations, *
“The LORD has done great things for them.”
4 Indeed, the LORD has done great things for us already, *
whereof we rejoice.

Psalm 126 is one of my favorite psalms. The psalmist’s cry is filled with joyful hope. He remembers what the LORD has done. He has overturned captivity and has done great things for us. The LORD has done great things for St. John’s Anglican Church. He founded us through the faithful commitment of the Hollons and various leaders who committed and still commit themselves to the life of the church. The LORD called you into this place along with families of children with more children on the way! The LORD called your first full time rector, Chad was ordained a transitional deacon and, Lord willing, to be a priest, and there are others discerning the call of ordained ministry in our midst. The LORD has done and is doing great things for us, whereof we rejoice. When we consider what the LORD has done for us, we cannot help but dream of what He will do for our future.

Our upcoming Vision Charette (January 23rd) is an opportunity to be like those who dream. We dream of what the LORD could do in His church and among His people, and how He can, by His Spirit, work through each of us in our time, talent, and treasure. Dreaming can be an exciting process because it frees us to imagine without constraint. When we dream, we don’t have to wonder how something is going to get paid. Yes, we have responsibilities when we agree to move forward in projects and campaigns, but we start from the place of dreaming and wondering. Does not the LORD do great things? Let’s trust Him, even in our dreaming.

In the Vision Charette, we seek to engage two key questions together: who are we and where are we going? Who are we? This is not to create an existential crisis, but for us to name the values of St. John’s and the essentials around our identity. This will help us to be consistent in our ministry together. Where are we going? As we confirm our values and sense of identity, what does it look like to move forward? This is where I hope we can dream even more together. Placing a vision ahead of us helps us to be forward thinking in our ministry. Therefore, answering the question of where we are going can bring clarity. A renewed vision clarifies what we are about and provides confidence looking down the road. Finally, there is a third question that will be engaged by the Vestry to better help each of us to participate and give flesh and blood to our dreams. If we are asking the question, who are and where are we going, then the Vestry will tackle the question, how are we going to get there? We will prayerfully reflect on how the Spirit worked through us at the Charette, engage the practical matters of living into the vision, and provide opportunities for each of us to participate in.

I can’t emphasize enough how much we desire everyone to come to the Vision Charette. Your voices, ideas, and dreams matter for the future of the church. Therefore, we also invite our children to participate who are a part of the covenant community of God with us. I hope you might catch an intergenerational spirit amid dreaming together.

Fr. Joe

If you would like to support St. John's during this time, you can give online by clicking the button below. You may also send a check to the following address:

PO BOX 36591, CANTON OH 44735

    The Mystery of Baptism by Fr. Joe

    A message from the series "Sermons from Lectionary Texts." Last Thursday we began a whole new season in the life of the Church: the season of Epiphany. Epiphany means revelation or revealing. Christ is revealing Himself to the world. On Sunday, we recognized the Baptism of our Lord where Jesus reveals Himself to be the eternal Son of the Father with whom He is well pleased. In this sermon, we engaged the divine mystery of baptism and the significance of Christ’s baptism not for His sake, but for ours.

    Read more
    Join us every second and fourth (usually) Thursday night for our Eagle and Child reading group! This is a group that meets to discuss and apply classic works in Christian theology from the likes of Lewis, Augustine, Bonhoeffer, and other important authors. Currently, we are reading The Love of Wisdom by Andrew Davison to discuss the history of philosophy as it relates to Christian theology and practice.
    Cana Vox is a discussion group that meets every other Friday where those, married or unmarried, who support a classical understanding of marriage can explore the controversial issues in a calm, deliberative setting that is not subject to the hostilities often found in today's public discourse on the topic. We seek to discuss thoughtful and gospel-oriented responses to the confusion surrounding marriage in our culture.

    This Sunday's Hymns

    This section of the dispatch contains samples of hymns and other music that we will be singing the this Sunday. If you come across any hymns you are not familiar with, these will be helpful for you to review so that you may sing with greater confidence and attention each Sunday. Happy singing!

    Christ Triumphant, Ever Reigning

    Come Down, O Love Divine

    All Creatures of Our God and King

    Let Thy Blood in Mercy Poured

    Songs of Thankfulness and Praise


    Throughout Epiphany we will focus on the creeds of the historic Church. What do we believe and why do we believe it? This will be very helpful for those discerning membership with St. John’s.

    Gospel Play

    We kicked off Gospel Play last Sunday and it was a hit! We also gave the parish a sample of Gospel Play, and we hope you will prayerfully consider volunteering to participate. We will provide for all of the training and resources you need, you simply need a willingness to jump in! We are working towards having two people scheduled for each Gospel Play gathering. One person will be the leader/teacher and the other will be the host. Please consider participating once a month or more, but also consider entering into a whole liturgical season with our kids. Please see Maggie or Fr. Joe with questions or interest.

    Evening Prayer and Lectio Divina

    Alongside our regular Evening Prayer we are going to implement Lection Divina or “Divine Reading.” This practice helps us focus our attention towards the Scriptures and relies upon the Holy Spirit to direct our hearts and minds to the text. We will be praying through the Gospel of Luke outside of the normal Lectionary readings. Come and rest in prayer and the Scriptures. Every Wednesday at 6:30pm.

    House Blessings

    Fr. Joe would love to visit each of you and offer a blessing over your household. Epiphany is a wonderful season to extend the blessing of Christ over our homes. House blessings can be as formal or informal as you would like. Do not feel you need to entertain or invite others, but obviously welcomed to do so. Fr. Joe would like to invite the whole parish to his home where the bishop has graciously offered to bless his new home. It will be on January 28th at 6:30pm. Please RSVP through e-mailing Fr. Joe for planning and sending out his address to you.

    Interested in Becoming a Member of St. John’s?

    Fr. Joe would love to take you out for coffee discussing your interest in becoming a member at St. John’s Anglican Church. Membership is wonderful step forward in affirming your sense of calling to the local and even wider church. If you have any interest in becoming a member or seeking discernment of membership, please reach out to Fr. Joe.

    The Daily Office

    Interested in a simple way to pray the daily office from the Book of Common Prayer? Follow this link for text and audio versions of the morning, noon, and evening prayer services taken directly from the 2019 ACNA BCP.

    Contact Fr. Joe

    I am here for you. If you would like to grab some coffee or other beverages, or would like a home visit, please don’t hesitate to contact me at: frjoe@stjohnscanton.org

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