Weekly Dispatch, August 17th, 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 Facebook
  • Men’s Morning Prayer – Tuesdays at Variety’s at 7:30am
  • Vestry – Thursday, August 18th, at 6:00pm at the Church
  • Evening Prayer and Bible Study – Wednesday, August 24th at 6:30pm, TBD
  • Eagle and Child – Thursday, August 25th at 7:00pm at TBD
  • Gospel Play and Policy Training – Sunday, August 28th, After Church

A Message from Fr. Joe

Dear Friends in Christ,

For many of our children, and especially those working in education, this is the beginning of a new school year. When I was a child, the beginning of the school year felt fresher and newer versus New Year’s Day. New teachers, new classroom, new school supplies, maybe new friends, and learning new subjects. Newness was simply in the air. As a parent, our oldest was getting Goosebumps on the way to his first day of school. He said he was both nervous and excited.

When new things are on the horizon or upcoming, these are common emotions we experience. We might be nervous, perhaps even anxious, when something new begins. We don’t know what to expect or we wonder if things will meet our expectations. We might be excited because newness can inspire hope. We become hopeful for what might be. As a priest and rector, I find myself holding together both emotions too. While there is nothing liturgical about the beginning of a new school year, there is something within the culture of any church when God’s people are collectively moving in their new school year phase coming out of summer. What kind of newness can we anticipate?

In our children’s catechesis we have a few more weeks left in Exodus and will soon transition to Gospel Play. Our training day on Gospel Play and our Policy on Sexual Misconduct Prevention will be significant steps in sharpening the spiritual care of our children. We are also currently working on catechesis for the youth in our church. If you would like to be a part of that process, please let me know. As many of you know, our space is becoming less suitable to the needs of the church and the ministry we desire to do. The Vestry is currently in conversations with multiple churches and looking at other spaces to consider where we might go next. While this is a vestry decision led by the rector, we will seek your input and voice moving forward. We want to be sure that in any move we make, we are moving together. Finally, we are taking one step at a time with our approach with an idea I proposed in the parish letter some time ago: Rule of Life Groups. There is some interest but would love to begin conversations with those desiring to lead or be a part of these kinds of groups. Again, these are small groups with intentional commitment to each other through various formational and missional practices. As I converse with more of you, I would love to gather more information to lead us towards the formation of these groups.

Nervousness and excitement; appropriate emotions with the newness of ministry realized through the Holy Spirit in the people of God. I invite your continual prayers for St. John’s, and to prayerfully reflect on how the LORD might use you in some new way in His church. He is doing wondrously new things, bringing new people into our midst, and opening new opportunities for each of us to participate and serve.

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

    Holding God's Word as Sacred by Dcn. Chad

    A message from the series "Sermons from Lectionary Texts." In a culture which seeks to erase taboos around anything and everything, what does it look like to reverence God's word in the face of so many interpretations that seem like anything but reverent? What does it look like to truly hold God's word as sacred, and what does this mean for how we understand the nature of God's Word in and of itself? Our Deacon, Chad Sanner, sought to address these questions this Sunday, teaching on the false prophets of Jeremiah, and how God's message to humanity meets us on his terms, rather than our own.

    Read more
    Join us every first and third (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. We are reading Confessions by St. Augustine. This is a classic work of Christian spirituality and will make for great fellowship and discussion together!
    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.

    Gospel Play and Policy Training

    If you would like to serve in our children’s ministry in any capacity, please attend this training day on Gospel Play (children’s catechesis) and our policy regarding sexual misconduct prevention. This will be immediately following church on Sunday, August 28th, and we are planning to provide lunch. Also, we will provide childcare to give us focused time together. Please let Fr. Joe or Maggie know that you plan to attend.

    Men’s Morning Prayer

    Every Tuesday morning, 7:30am at Variety’s, the men are invited to pray Morning Prayer together. The prayers typically last for about 30 minutes, but guys are certainly encouraged to stick around for fellowship, coffee, and even some bacon.

    Summer Catechesis

    We are starting a whole new summer catechetical focus for adults and children. Adults will prayerfully and thoughtfully engage the Canticles of the Prayer Book. Each week we will study specific canticles in their place for prayer and their context in Holy Scripture. We also hope to learn how to sing some of them.

    Our children will hit the pause button on Gospel Play and begin a new summer curriculum called Storymakers. Each child will have their own booklet of activities and engagement with a biblical narrative. This summer we will focus on the Exodus. If you miss a week, you can totally bring your booklet home with you and engage at home or on vacation.

    How Can I Serve at St. John's?

    There are plenty of ways to serve at St. John’s and we would love for you to join in on what God is doing in the church. Below you can see all the different ways to serve. No special skills required, simply a willingness to learn and grow in service.

    Acolyte Ministry – Carrying the cross, assisting at the table, and learning more about the Anglican Way.
    Altar Guild – Preparing the Lord’s Table for Holy Communion before the service and developing a sense of holiness in worship.
    Readers – Approaching God’s Word with boldness and declaring it to the people.
    Hospitality – Providing food, setting up and cleaning up the area, and making space for all people to feel welcome and belong. We also hold special events throughout the Church calendar preparing feasts together.
    Gospel Play – Experience catechesis with our children with interactive materials enhancing biblical narratives within the liturgical calendar. It is a lot of fun!
    Ushers/Greeters – Welcome people as they come to church, especially newcomers, handing out bulletins, and passing the plates for the offering.
    Music – We would love to expand our music ministry with your various gifts. Do you play an instrument? Are you a gifted singer? Come join the team!

    We hope to develop these ministries with more lay leadership. In the meantime you can contact Fr. Joe, Dcn. Chad, or Maggie if you interested in participating or even taking leadership in these various ministries.

    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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