Weekly Dispatch, August 11th, 2021
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St. John's Weekly Dispatch, v. 2

St. John's Schedule

  • Catechesis Hour - Sundays at 9:00 am before Church
  • Holy Eucharist - Sundays at 10:30 am at Church and via Zoom
  • Evening Prayer - Wednesdays at 6:30 pm via Zoom
  • Vestry Meeting - Thursday, August 12th, at 6:00 pm at Church
  • Cana Vox Meeting - Friday, August 13th, at 7:30 pm at Church
  • Men’s Breakfast - Saturday, August 14th, at 8:00 am at The Archibald's Farm
  • Charity Concert - Friday, August 20th, at 7:00pm at Church
  • Charity Concert - Saturday, August 21st, at 4:30pm at Church
  • Women’s Afternoon - Saturday, August 21st, at TBD
  • Eagle and Child Meeting - Thursday, August 26th at 7:00 pm at Joshua Boquist’s House
  • Parents’ Night Out - Friday, August 27th, at 6:00 pm at Church

A Message from Chad

Dear Friends in Christ,

Grace and peace to you all on this hot and muggy week. This is a relatively calm week in our life together, so I just wanted to remind you quickly of two events happening this week. Cana Vox will meet at the church as usual on Friday to discuss the importance of fatherhood. Also, to the men of St. John's, remember to mark your calendars for this Saturday at 8:00am for our August Men's Breakfast. Details will be forthcoming on this event, and if you have any questions, you can reach out to me anytime this week.

Looking further into the future, also I wanted to remind you all of the two remaining charity concerts which will take place at the St. John's on August 20th at 7:00pm and on August 21st at 4:30pm. These are fun-filled and kid-friendly events with music and dancing, all to benefit our own Maira Liliestedt's childhood piano academy in Romania who recently suffered the loss of a beloved piano teacher due to Covid-19. So come to have fun, to see and hear some wonderful art, and to benefit a good cause!

As we make plans to gather for these events and the many others we host as a community, even for worship on Sunday mornings, it is important for us to reflect on why we do this. In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul lists what have come to be known in the Christian faith as the "theological virtues." These virtues are faith, hope, and love, and they form the bedrock of the Christian ethical life. Our collect for this week mentions these virtues as well, prompting us to ask God for an increase in them, and while it is usually intuitive for us to ask how these can be increased on an individual level, it is sometimes less common for us to ask how these virtues grow on the level of a community. So I want to offer just a few brief reflections on how these virtues might grow in us at a place like St. Johns.

First, we grow in faith simply by showing up. We gather together, on Sundays in particular, to profess a faith that we did not create, but that has been handed down to us. As we proclaim and affirm this faith together in the historic liturgy of the church, we are actually learning together about the God in whom we put our faith, and why he has proven himself worthy of our trust. As we learn who God is by hearing and reciting the scriptures, we are able to trust in him more, and in this, we grow in faith.

Second, we grow in hope when we are reminded of the reality towards which our lives are ultimately pointed, which is Jesus Christ. This is why St. John's exists: we are here to point one another to Jesus Christ, and this act of pointing itself is an exercise of hope. It is an action which sets our eyes beyond the burdens and temptations of this world, to the reality that finally lies beyond it and is greater than anything it has to offer. If we want to be a hopeful people, we must fix our attention on Jesus Christ.

Finally, we grow in love when we obey the God who has first loved us. We partake of God's love in the Eucharist, being reminded of the perfect sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for his church. This sacrament fans a flame of love in our hearts kindled by Christ's sacrifice, signifying this very love in visible fellowship with one another.

Friends, it has been the goal of St. John's to be a community which grows each week in faith, hope, and love ever since our very first meeting in 2017. We have grown tremendously strong in these last four years, but as our collect reminds us, this is a process which does not end. So as you pray this collect in the next few days, remember your brothers and sisters at St. John's, and let us continue to seek these virtues together as we gather with one another each week. As we do this, we will find that we have become a people ready and eager to obtain the promises God has made to us in Jesus Christ.

Almighty God, give us the increase of faith, hope, and love; and, that we may obtain what you have promised, make us love what you command; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

God's Peace,
Chad Sanner

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

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    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.

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