Weekly Dispatch, January 26th, 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
  • Gasbarre House Blessing – Friday, January 28th, 6:30pm
  • Vision Charette – Sunday, January 30th, 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,

As most of you already know, we have moved our Vision Charette to this Sunday after church. Lunch will be provided and we encourage children and adults to spread out and sit with each other. Our desire is to make this an intergenerational event where all ages listen to each other’s voices for the future of St. John’s. Remember, we are asking two big questions:

First, who are we? What are the key values of St. John’s or the essentials that make us unique Second, where are we going? This is a question of vision and future ministry. It will also open conversations around pursuing our own property that can move us forward in our new vision and future ministry. This is an exciting time to be a part of St. John’s Anglican Church, and you get to be a part of her future.

Remember, we are the Body of Christ. Let not the hand say to the foot, I don’t need you. Each of you is remarkably gifted and can contribute in so many ways to the overall health of the church. But most importantly, our gifts are given by the Holy Spirit to express and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

It is a particular word that surprises sinners because it announces God's disposition towards you. It is a one-way love and favor towards you, not because you have your faith or virtues all lined up, but because Jesus’ flesh and blood given for you was truly enough. In Christ Jesus, you are reconciled to God, no longer condemned, fully justified, fully forgiven, and given new life by the Spirit. As we dream together, keep this Gospel word in front of you, and imagine how your neighbor and future generations can receive this word for them as it is for you.

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

    Epiphany in Nehemiah by Fr. Joe

    A message from the series "Sermons from Lectionary Texts." We continue in the season of Epiphany with another surprising manifestation of God’s grace from our OT reading in Nehemiah. God’s people have come home from exile to a desolated city, yet they are a people whom God delights in. Despite their current situation, they are hopeful for the future and the same is true for us.

    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.


    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.

    Annual Meeting

    Why do churches hold annual meetings? What’s the point? The Annual Meeting is designed to empower you, as a member to give questions, concerns, voice, and even vote for certain matters in the church. All are welcome to attend, but only members are allowed to vote. We will give more details on membership in future dispatches, but all members should mark their calendars for February 20th after church. We will provide childcare too. The meeting should not last more than an hour. One of the major items on the agenda is voting for two new Vestry members. More information on nominating Vestry members is forthcoming, but I would ask you to pray who you might nominate to serve on the Vestry.

    Gospel Play: Questions and Answers

    Gospel Play is a rich approach towards catechizing our children. It is highly interactive and imaginative, focusing on passing down the consistent word of the Gospel not only with our children but with one another. Many volunteers who have experienced Gospel Play, noted how much the Spirit revealed to them the Gospel and deepened their faith. I thought it might be helpful to be even more direct with what we need and how you can serve.

    What would be my role in Gospel Play?
    There are two roles: Teacher and Host. The Teacher will lead the lesson for the day. Their main responsibility is preparing and teaching. The Host welcomes the children into Gospel Play, sits with them throughout the lesson, supports the teacher, and assists with the provided activity.

    Do I need to come up with the teaching for the week?
    Nope! We have everything prepared for you. We provide the teaching and instructions for each Gospel Play session. We also provide an activity connected to the lesson. You simply need to read ahead of time, come 10 minutes earlier to prepare, and ready to welcome them into the space.

    Do I need to know everything about the Bible?
    We can always learn and grow more in the Scriptures. Gospel Play and our children will probably teach you more than you think!

    Do I need to volunteer every week?
    You can volunteer as much as you want. But we ask you to consider committing to at least once a month or you can even choose a season of the Church (Lent, Easter, Ordinary) and simply commit to it. Your willingness to serve is what we need.

    Do I need special training?
    Fr. Joe will meet with each volunteer to go over the approach in leading Gospel Play. Also, volunteers will be trained in our diocesan safety policy guidelines for sexual misconduct prevention. Each volunteer will be required to have a background check too.

    I hope this addresses your questions, and even helps you to discern your service in this ministry. Please contact Fr. Joe or Maggie to be a part of Gospel Play!

    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

    As of right now, we are still on for the Gasbarre House Blessing with Bishop Mark. It is this Friday, the 28th at 6:30pm. All are welcome to come, please e-mail Fr. Joe and he will send you his address. Light refreshments will be provided. If you would like your house blessed, please let Fr. Joe know and can set up a time to schedule one.

    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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