The season of Lent which begins next Wednesday, Ash Wednesday, is traditionally a season of increasing devotion in the life of the church. The season presents the opportunity for members of the church to recommit to the practice of the faith through increased reflection on scripture, fasting, self-denial, and repentance.
Many of us, me included, grew up in families or in churches that placed an emphasis on repentance: getting things right with God and turning away from evil - as though God needed satisfaction or appeasement before an Easter deadline.
In truth, God is always ready for us to deepen our relationship with God, not out of fear, but out of love. The God who loved us into being longs to be in a relationship with us. That relationship is characterized by freedom, joy, and love: the freedom to be ourselves in a relationship with God, the joy that comes from putting our trust in the promise of God’s future, and the love that invites us and supports us to become more loving, more generous, more faithful believers. Lent is not a season of turning away from bad habits but towards a deeper relationship with God and one another.
This lent, St. John’s is offering a few opportunities to grow in your relationship with God and your journey of knowledge and love. They are enumerated below, but they include: Sacred Ground, the church’s anti-racism curriculum, on Monday nights; a Wednesday study on prayer grounded in James Martin’s lovely new book “Learning to Pray;” and a journey through Lent with the poetry of Mary Oliver.
Details follow below. I hope you’ll consider joining us!
Join us for our traditional Ash Wednesday Service marking the beginning of Lent this Wednesday. This year because of the COVID pandemic we will be offering two services: noon and 7:30 pm. The noon service will be exclusively online over zoom streamed to our website and Facebook. The 7:30pm service will be an in-person service in the church.
At 12 noon: Online Ash Wednesday Liturgy - Zoom Link.
Wednesdays in Lent at 7:30 pm February 24, Mar 3, 10 & 17 On Zoom
Let’s be honest. We talk a lot about prayer. So much so that, if you lack any confidence in your ability to pray you might be intimidated. Others talk about their prayer life as a rich conversation with God and a transformative part of their day. Some of us can barely remember to pray a “Thank You” to God at the ...
The Nominating Committee for the 2021 Vestry elections will be accepting suggestions for candidates for Vestry from members of the parish until February 21st. We will be electing three members to fill a three-year term upon the completion of the service of outgoing Vestry members Vasana Hildebrand, Barry Grace, and Nina Muller.
The requirements to be considered for a three-year term on the Vestry include: regular attendance at services, active financial support of St. John's and a concern for the well-being of St. John's Church. The Committee will present a slate of candidates to be voted on by the members of St. John's at our Annual Meeting on Sunday, April 18.
For many years St. John's has been a partner with the Hungtington Interfaith Homeless Initiative (HiHI) to feed, house, and clothe homeless men during the long Long Island winters. This year the program has continued with additional challenges due to COVID.
This week HiHI has asked its partner congregations to invite donations to support the men in this cold and wet winter. HiHI is looking for donations of the following items FOR MEN:
Boots (sizes 8-12)
Blankets (twin or full)
If you have items on this list that you can donate, please consider bringing them washed to the church over the next two weeks and leaving them in the Parish Hall Entrance on the table left for that purpose. We will make sure they get to the men.