St. John's Episcopal Church

Welcome to the E-Notes!

October 4, 2017 

How Not to be Forgotten
   On the night of April 18th, 1775, it is doubtful that Doctor Joseph Warren was thinking much about the legendary role he would play in American History.   He had received a disturbing report that the occupying British Military were about to march on Lexington, Massachusetts. He feared that this meant that the British were about to arrest the two American Patriot leaders, John Hancock and Samuel Adams.  
   Doctor Warren, however, was prepared and he had a plan. He would call on a person he trusted to shout the warning of the impending British attack. Someone under the cover of darkness would gallop on a horse from Boston to Lexington and alert the American Militia. The man Doctor Warren assigned to this vital mission was none other than.... William Dawes. William Dawes may not have been the name you were expecting but it has been said that he was the first rider that went out that fateful night. It was almost an hour later that Paul Revere received instructions to make his ride to Lexington. So why do we remember Paul Revere so well but not so much William Dawes?  
   Part of the answer is that Paul Revere, unlike William Dawes, was a social person. Revere's silver smith business and pub carousing made him well known. Dawes on the other hand was a tanner whose business often took him on solitary trips out of Boston. So, while William Dawes rode directly to Lexington and did not stop, Paul Revere would stop and talk to all the American Militias he knew along the way resulting in more midnight riders being dispatched. It was Paul Revere who even arranged for the Sexton and two Vestry members of the Episcopal Christ Church in Boston to hang those famous lanterns in the church steeple.
   It has been said that Jesus spent more of his time talking with people than he did praying to God. Indeed, a careful reading of the Gospels shows Jesus's most frequent self -reference is as not as the Son of God but as the Son of Man. Maybe this means Christianity is best experienced not just as a solitary event but within a community of faith. All St John's parishioners have opportunities to interact with one another. Perhaps the St John's 2018 Pledge Drive will allow you time to think about how you would like to get to know other members better. For when you do you may find:

   Second in a series 
  Written by David Weir, Senior Warden
The St. John's Stewardship Campaign for this year is named "To You All Hearts Are Open." Here is the link to the Weekly Bulletin Insert for this campaign, which is a reflection based on the Gospel reading for Sunday, October 8:

Openings available the next few Sundays for Altar Flowers! This is the be st time of the year for planting,  
so now is a great time to provide flowering plants for the services, which then can be put in the front flower beds!  

as LEM, Crucifer, Lector, Usher, Verger, Torch Bearer at a Sunday Service.

click here:
You will receive an automatic reminder a few days in advance. ( If you would like to become an altar server, please see the Rev. Carol Hancock.)

for coffee hour after the Sunday Service in the Breezeway.

 click here: 
You will receive an automatic reminder a few days in advance. Coffee hour is an important part of fellowship - staying connected with each other and welcoming newcomers.

for a Sunday service throughout 2017.

click here:
You may sign up here to donate the flowers to be used on the altar for each of the Sundays in 2017. Click to read additional info before signing up.

All Saints' Day, November 5
All Saints' Day is always November 1, but the celebration of it is usually moved to the next Sunday. This year, we will celebrate All Saints' Day on Sunday, November 5. It is a time to remember all the saints who have gone before us, and to remind ourselves that we, too, are the saints of God, doing God's work in the world. It is customary to read the names of those who have died in the past year, as well as the names of our loved ones who have died. If you would like to have the names of your loved ones read aloud during the All Saints' Day service on November 5, please send those names to Carol Hancock.
Deadline for brick orders and payments is October 8!                                                   
Have you been thinking about a memorial brick? "Buy a Brick" Fundraiser!
Buy a brick in honor of, or in memory of a loved one; to celebrate a wedding, confirmation or baptism at St. John's, or an anniversary; as a memorial to parents, grandparents, and other relatives or friends.   Here is an opportunity to purchase a brick to be embedded in the front walkway! Each brick can have the person's name, date and a small symbol if desired.

Please take a look at the bricks already in our front walkway. Engraved bricks are $75, which includes 3 lines (60 letters) of engraving, or 36 letters with a choice of a symbol (shown on form.) Order forms are on the back table in the church, and in the Breezeway. Payment is due when you turn in the order. Please make the check out to St. John's.
What would you like your brick to proclaim?
Please sign up to provide altar flowers, coffee hour snacks, and help with Sunday services
You can sign up online! Just scroll further up this page to the sign up block. Click on "altar flowers" or "coffee hour" or "altar servers" and sign up for the date you want. We really need YOUR help. If you would like to be a lector, crucifer, usher or Lay Eucharistic Minister, please let Carol know. Training is provided.

Centreville Day is Saturday, October 21
Centreville Day happens right here in the St. John's parking lot! We would like to sell baked goods and some crafts as we did last year, so please start baking and making crafts you would be willing to sell at Centreville Day. We will need many volunteers that day and the sign up sheet is in the breezeway. We will need volunteers to staff our table to sell coffee, crafts and baked goods, and volunteers to give tours of the historic church. We will have the Pet Blessing available all day (bring your pets!) and Jo Chandler will bring her spinner and give demonstrations. Many thanks go to Nita Amar who is donating a quilt she made for us to raffle off. The quilt will be on display for the next few Sundays. And the highlight of Centreville Day will be our own Mildred DeBell riding in the parade in a convertible as the Grand Marshall!!!!
Funeral Planning
No one likes to talk about their funeral or their final arrangements. But it makes it so much easier on the family if the persons wishes are known. We will have a class on "Planning Your Funeral" on Sunday, October 29 at 10:50 AM in Carol's office. This will be an opportunity for us to go through the Burial Office in the Book of Common Prayer and see what the choices and options are so you can plan your funeral.
Statement from Bishops United Against Gun Violence Following the Las Vegas Shooting
Bishops United Against Gun Violence, a group of more than 70 Episcopal Church bishops working to curtail the epidemic of gun violence in the United States, released this statement today:
October 2, 2017-We share in the grief and horror of people across our country and, indeed, around the world in the wake of last night's mass shooting in Las Vegas. We have spoken with our Bishops United Against Gun Violence colleague and brother in Christ, Bishop Dan Edwards of the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada, and we have offered him and the people of Nevada our prayers and promises of assistance. We stand in solidarity with the diocese and the people of Nevada as they cope with this massacre.
It has become clichéd at moments such as these to offer thoughts and prayers. But as Christians, we must reflect upon the mass killings that unfold with such regularity in our country. And we must pray: for the victims, for their loved ones, for all who attended to the victims in the immediacy of the shooting, for the first responders who do so much to mitigate the awful effects of these shootings, and for the medical personnel who will labor for many days to save the wounded. We must also enter into the sorrow of those who are most deeply affected by our country's cripplingly frequent outbursts of lethal gun violence. We must look into our own hearts and examine the ways in which we are culpable or complicit in the gun violence that surrounds us every day.
And then, having looked, we must act. As Christians, we are called to engage in the debates that shape how Americans live and die, especially when they die due to violence or neglect. Yet a probing conversation on issues of gun violence continues to elude us as a nation, and this failure is cause for repentance and for shame. It is entirely reasonable in the wake of mass killings perpetrated by murderers with assault weapons to ask lawmakers to remove such weapons from civilian hands. It is imperative to ask why, as early as this very week, Congress is likely to pass a bill making it easier to buy silencers, a piece of equipment that make it more difficult for law enforcement officials to detect gunfire as shootings are unfolding.
Even as we hold our lawmakers accountable, though, we must acknowledge that a comprehensive solution to gun violence, whether it comes in the form of mass shootings, street violence, domestic violence or suicide, will not simply be a matter of changing laws, but of changing lives. Our country is feasting on anger that fuels rage, alienation and loneliness. From the White House to the halls of Congress to our own towns and perhaps at our own tables, we nurse grudges and resentments rather than cultivating the respect, concern and affection that each of us owes to the other. The leaders who should be speaking to us of reconciliation and the justice that must precede it too often instead stoke flames of division and mistrust. We must, as a nation, embrace prayerful resistance before our worse impulses consume us.
We join with the people of God in fervent prayer that our country will honor those murdered and wounded in Las Vegas by joining in acts of repentance, healing, and public conversation about the gun violence that has ripped us apart, yet again.
(Congregations across the country were invited to ring their bells at 12:00 noon on Tuesday, October 3, in mourning for the victims of the shooting in Las Vegas. St. John's participated in ringing the bell.)
A Prayer Attributed to St. Francis
Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.
Book of Common Prayer, page 833

We can prepare our hearts and minds
by reading ahead for the Sunday Service lessons 
October 8, 2017 
The Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
The First Reading:
Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20
Moses receives God's Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai; the people are afraid of what this means for their lives and habits. 
The Epistle:  
Philippians 3:4b-14  
Paul urges the Philippians to focus on what lies ahead in their lives in Christ rather than either resting on their laurels or fearing their past sins. 
The Psalm:  19
The Gospel:
Matthew 21:33-46
Jesus issues a warning in the form of a parable to those, in his age and ours, who would disregard God's compassionate provision. 
FROM 10:50 - 11:50 am 

(Rm. 205) 
During the Service
   Joint Sunday School
  Each week, St. John's children join
 with three of our Ministry Partners: 
Fairfax Chinese Christian Church, 
Wellspring United Church  of Christ
& Grace Baptist Church 
 for Sunday School 10:30  - 11:30 AM .  
We  offer 3 classes:
  PreK: Rm. 205;
 K - 6th grade: Rm. 207/208;
 7th - 12th grade: Rm 206
Dear All,

The senseless tragedy in Las Vegas has residents there lined up to give blood, and rightly so.  Everyone wants to help, however we can. The need for blood is constant all over the United States, and it can only come from donors like you.
We are hosting another blood drive on Wednesday, October 25th from 1:30 - 6:00 PM. I am writing to you because you donated at a previous drive at Paul VI or supported us in another way and because I know that you understand how important it is. Will you make an appointment to donate again? The link is here:  Schedule a Donation
This is the fastest we have ever tried to get a drive together. Can you help us spread the word? You can forward this email to people you think may be interested or you can just tell them to email us for more information. A few reminders: to be eligible to donate, you must be in generally good health, be at least 16 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds.  People are eligible to give blood every 56 days.  There are also travel restrictions and more specific criteria can be found here: eligibility requirements.  PVI students, regardless of age, will need signed permission.
Appointments are strongly preferred. Unfilled appointments can be filled by drop-ins but can't be guaranteed. I can make an appointment for anyone who emails me at Appointments are available every 15 minutes between 1:30 and 6:00. The appointment time is the time that Inova asks that you arrive.
Please make an appointment, forward this email, bring a friend and help save lives.  Thank you.
 Brent Kiefer

(Brent is a student at Paul VI High School in Fairfax. He is known to Tom and Marie McDermott and others in the congregation.)

Western Fairfax Christian Ministries
Please remember those who are hungry when you do your grocery shopping and
donate nonperishable food items to WFCM when you come to St. John's on Sundays.
You may put your donations in the baskets by the front door of the church. 

Western Fairfax Christian Ministries - 10th Annual Fellowship Dinner
WFCM is celebrating 30 years of service at its 10th Annual Fellowship Dinner at the Westfields Marriott, 14750 Conference Center Drive in Chantilly on Friday, October 13. The reception and silent auction begins at 6:00 pm with the dinner to follow at 7:00 pm. A minimum donation of $75 per person is appreciated. If you would like to attend, please let Carol know by tomorrow, October 5 (the registration deadline) so she can register you to sit at the St. John's table! The following people will be attending: David and Julie Weir, Carol Hancock, Bob Faithful and Susan Woods. Please join us for a fun evening and support Western Fairfax Christian Ministries!
Every Wednesday evening, we have a service of Holy Eucharist and healing at 6:00 PM. The service is about 30 minutes. It is a perfect alternative for those who cannot come to church on Sunday mornings, as well as a good spiritual boost in the middle of the week. Come join us!
Francis found himself identifying with those who would otherwise be among the least and last and lost, in whose presence he found Jesus was really and irresistibly present. If your heart has been broken open by Jesus, you suddenly find that you have deep things in common, even with those from whom you otherwise could be alienated.

My email address is,
and the office number is 703-803-7500.  
May our ministry together spread God's love to all whom we encounter.

       - Carol
       The Rev. Carol Hancock

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