Weekly Dispatch, September 28th, 2022
facebook twitter instagram 
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
  • Choristers/Bible Study/Evening Prayer – Wednesdays at 6:30pm at Church
  • Eagle and Child Thursday, October 6th, at 7:00pm at TBD

A Message from Fr. Joe

Dear Friends in Christ,

When I was in college, it was typical for me to jump around from church to church. I wanted to get to know what was out there, even if it didn’t look like the church from home. This continued into graduate school, but I remember when I decided to “hang my hat” with a local congregation.

There were two things that captured me towards membership. First, the Gospel in Word and Sacrament was the consistent message in the pulpit and within the overall mission of the church. It was a place I wanted to invite people because I knew this message was for them as much as it was for me. Second, I felt connected to the people. I actually wanted to be around them, even if there were times I disagreed or didn’t always like them. How can one feel connected to people despite those things? The common ground was our baptized identity and shared hunger for grace. Everyone was wounded in some way, and they were surprisingly open and honest about themselves. They took a leap of faith and each of us was founded by God’s grace, not just for ourselves, but drawn to give it to one another. It was beautiful.

Becoming a member of a local congregation is no small thing. It is even more than hanging your hat. It is a conviction of calling and belonging to a place of worship. Our calling is first and foremost that God has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light. This is calling is the power of the Gospel declaring that through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, we have been brought from death to newness of life. Such life, renewed by the Holy Spirit, is realized through the Church. This wider sense of calling helps us find our place where the Spirit leads us on a local level. The discernment of one’s calling to a local church is accomplished through prayer (especially with family members), participating in various opportunities at the church, and getting to know the people and clergy. Discernment is always helpful with others to process with you, and more importantly, to pray with you. But what does it mean to belong? And what might this look like at St. John’s?

Belonging is a mutual relationship. It is one where we give and receive from one another. The first marker of belonging is baptism. All members are to be baptized in the Name of the Triune God. We don’t fuss about the mode of baptism or even when to be baptized, so long as one is baptized with water in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Baptism is also tied to one’s belonging to the Faith once delivered. Therefore, it is the expectation of every member to grow in the Faith revealed in Holy Scripture, articulated in the historic creeds. This means a commitment to continual catechesis and formation in the Body of Christ.

As we are called to the Triune God in baptism, we come to worship Him as often as we are able, to receive His Holy Word and the Sacrament of His Body and Blood. Worship is integral to our belonging at St. John’s. In receiving all the gifts of God in Word and Sacrament, we are also called to give back to the LORD in our treasure, our time, and our talent. All of these areas belong to Him, and we are invited to enjoy such gifts and give them back to Him and to one another. These three areas speak into our love for each other, but also our mission to spread the Gospel to all.

Finally, belonging at St. John’s means a pursuit of holiness. In our baptism, we renounce the world, the flesh, and devil, but we know such repentance is continual. We humble ourselves to the authority of Holy Scripture, which reveals all things necessary to faith, life, and salvation. We rely upon each other, especially the shepherding of our clergy, to direct us to holiness of life, renewed repentance, and the power of the forgiveness of sins.

One of the ways to further commit yourself to St. John’s and your overall participation in the wider church is through confirmation. In the book of Acts, we witness the empowering of the Holy Spirit upon the already baptized, through the laying on of hands by the apostles, to be brought further up and further into the mission of the Church. We follow the same pattern and believe confirmation to be a significant formational step for members of St. John’s. While not required to be a local member here, confirmation allows you to participate and serve in a variety of ways in the church. But more importantly, confirmation opens yourself to the renewal of the Holy Spirit in your calling and belonging to the local and wider Church.

I say all these things because I want to do the best I can to help you discern these things. As you can see the details of the blurb below, we are offering a special fellowship time for those discerning membership and/or confirmation at my house. Even if you have a minimal conviction towards membership and confirmation, I highly encourage you to come. At the very least, to enjoy some good food together.

Also, we will be recognizing new members on the Sunday after All Saints (Nov. 6th). If you already submitted your membership application, we would like to formally welcome you, invite you to participate in a brief liturgy on membership (provided ahead of time), and for us all to pray for you. If you have any questions or would like to talk one-one, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. And to all our members, remember your calling and be refreshed in your belonging to St. John’s.

We are in this 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 Great Chasm by Fr. Joe

    A message from the series "Sermons from Lectionary Texts." Jesus was a remarkable storyteller. But His stories were designed to speak into the hearts of the hearers. Last Sunday we heard a vivid story of the rich, poor, Hades, and heaven all speaking to the hearts of the self-justified religious folks but also to the needy hearts of sinners. There was much to unpack, but always Good News to hear.

    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.

    Interested in membership at St. John’s?

    Perhaps you have worshiped at St. John’s, and even participated in a variety of events or fellowship opportunities, and you are discerning if you are called to membership in the local church. What would that look like? What is the benefit of membership? What can I expect? If you would like to explore membership and other questions you might have, Fr. Joe is hosting a fellowship lunch at his house on October 23rd after church. There is no pressure, but simply an invitation to ask questions, discern the Lord’s calling for yourself, and learning more about St. John’s. Please RSVP by October 20th by emailing Fr. Joe.

    Fall Cetechesis (Adult, Youth and Children)

    Sunday Catechesis begins a new series for all ages on Sept. 18th. For the adults, we will focus on praying the biblical narrative of Creation, Fall, Redemption, and Consummation. It will include sharpening our biblical theology with various texts, and also imagining how the Scriptures can form our prayers with the various collects of the Prayer Book to be our guide.

    Youth (ages 11/12-18) are invited to their own catechesis upstairs in the Vestry room. Similar to the adults, they will engage the biblical narrative giving them a framework for reading the Bible. We hope this can be a ministry we can grow and develop over time.

    On the same date, our young children will return to their catechetical formation of Gospel Play. This is an interactive approach where we are helping our children catch the Gospel throughout the biblical narrative and experience it through the Church calendar.

    Choristers/Adult Bible Study/Evening Prayer

    We are very excited to announce the beginning of a new ministry with our children along with a new Wednesday night pattern! Our children will begin their own choir aka choristers. Alyssa and Karen will be the leaders of this ministry. The adults will have an informal book study discussing the classic work Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the night will conclude with Evening Prayer together. This new “rule of life” group will begin on Wednesday, Sept. 21st and continue every Wednesday at 6:30pm at the church. If you have any questions, please contact Alyssa or Karen.

    Music in the Community!

    October 23, 4 pm at St. John’s Anglican in N. Canton
    Our fall Keys to Artistry student recital!

    November 6, 3 pm at University of Mount Union’s Presser Recital Hall (in the Giese Center for Performing Arts)
    Piano Keys: Maira’s Mount Union university students are joined by our advanced Keys to Artistry students for a fall celebration!

    November 13, 4 pm at St. John’s Anglican in N. Canton
    Eric and Claire play an intermediate piano recital. Come hear this talented young sibling duo play music of contemporary composers as well as Haydn, Chopin, and more!

    December 18, 4 pm at St. John’s Anglican in N. Canton
    Our Winter Keys to Artistry student recital! Enjoy holiday favorites and other special music.

    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.

    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.

    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

    Connect with Us on Social Media

    facebook twitter youtube 
    Email Marketing Powered by MailPoet