Connect to God   
Revitalizing our House of Prayer for All People This past Sunday there were presentations and in-pew surveys about the upcoming capital campaign we will be conducting in collaboration with the diocese. You will be hearing more about the campaign once our consultants from the diocese complete the feasibility study. The focus of the campaign at St. John's is on "Revitalizing our House of Prayer for All People," with a special emphasis on repairing our bell tower. One of the areas of the campaign I am most excited about is considering ways we might renovate the choir and altar area to enhance the experience of worship, music and community while preserving the aesthetics and architectural feel of the church.

The current choir and altar area, called the chancel, was built in 1952, and was designed for Morning Prayer, not Eucharist, as the primary service on Sundays. We now celebrate Eucharist every Sunday. The choir seating is in fixed pews and takes up more space than is needed by the choir. Additionally, there is no exit on the pulpit side of the altar rail and the distance from the altar to the front pew is almost one third of the length of the church sanctuary. There is little flexibility for concerts or weekday prayer services.

The vestry is working with the preeminent liturgical design consultant in the Episcopal Church to develop a master plan for the chancel that will guide the vestry in making wise decisions about our worship space that will best serve worship and music at St. John's for at least the next 50 years. We are looking at how best to configure and renovate the chance to best serve the current and future needs of St. John's while preserving the architectural character and aesthetic of the church. A chancel renovation committee is working with the liturgical design consultant and we will be presenting multiple plans to the congregation for feedback. Enhancing the flexibility of the chancel space while maintaining the feel of the church is a primary concern.

The ultimate goal is to strengthen, enhance and support how we connect to God and each other in our worship at St. John's. As Episcopalians, how we pray shapes us.

There will be numerous opportunities to learn more and provide input during the process. In the meantime, please don't hesitate to contact me with any questions.

God's Peace,
The Rev. Chris Rankin-Williams, Rector
email Rev. Chris   
Connect to Community 
Easter Egg Hunt: St. John's is hosting an Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, 4/15 from 11-12p.m on the front lawn. Volunteers needed to hide eggs. If you are interested in joining us, please email Tom Fregoso, Youth Minister 
Planting Seeds Sunday
We hope to instill in our children a valuable lesson in life that planting seeds of faith is like planting seeds in soil. Sunday, 4/23 after the 10AM service, we invite all children to come in their garden clothes, bring your garden tools & gloves, and watering can. We will plant vegetable, herb and flower seed. After planting, we will have a picnic in the church lawn. If you are interested to share food, please email Sandra Pathik, Director of Children's Ministry

This Sunday's Music: Click here to learn about what David Montgomery, Director of Music, has to say regarding the organ music selected for this Sunday's 10am service.

Summer Adventure Camp 2017 This year's theme for the  St. John's Summer Adventure Camp is "Maker Fun Factory: Created by God. Built for a Purpose." Adventure Camp is a half-day program for kids ages 3 through 12 years old, where they can explore faith with art, music, and games. The dates are Monday, 7/31 thru Friday, 8/4, from 9am to 12pm and is held here at the church. Recruitment for adult and youth volunteers is ongoing. For more information, please email Sandra Pathik, Director of Children's Ministry. To enroll on line, click here.

Youth Group Corner C lick here for Youth Group weekend info and here for in-depth Youth Group news. If you are new, please see our clergy for free latte cards, or come by our coffee corner for a free latte. Have a great weekend! If you have any youth questions please email Tom Fregoso, Youth Minister.   
Connect to Service
Get your hands dirty at Gilead House . . . A large family has moved out of their space at Gilead House (transitional housing for homeless moms and kids) and we need help cleaning, repairing and repainting. We'll provide the supplies, just come ready to work. Saturday, 4/22 and Saturday, 4/29 from 9am-noon. Email Rev. Ginger for details.

Congratulations to Sheila Dutton, St. John's member and volunteer of the month at Gilead House.  She has been serving as a mentor for a mom since August 2016.

Thanks to all who are contributing to our Easter Baskets for homeless families and housebound seniors! Please drop off your baskets to Rev. Ginger's office either this Saturday, 4/8 from 10am-12pm or on Palm Sunday.

Serve hot meals and share conversation with those in need of food and community at the St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room. St. John's serves every second Saturday of the month from 10:30am-1pm. To volunteer or learn more, contact Becky Hlebasko via email or phone, 415.846.1589.
Connect to Lent & Holy Week
Palm Sunday is this Sunday and is the beginning of Holy Week. On Palm Sunday we celebrate Jesus triumphal entry into Jerusalem and also hear the Passion Gospel. Palm crosses are distributed at all services. The 10am service begins outside with the liturgy of the palms and a procession into the church. The passion narratives in the gospels have a troubled history of fueling Christian Anti-Semitism when the "Jews" are blamed for killing Jesus. Contextually, "the Jews" refers to some Jewish leaders of the time, not all Jews as a people. In our dramatic reading of the Passion Gospel the congregation plays the role of the crowd, a reminder that following of rejecting Jesus is an ongoing reality for Christians

Easter Altar Flowers
Remember or celebrate a loved one at Easter with a donation for flowers. To donate, please contact Nancy Strauch via email or at 510-237-5021. Submissions due this Sunday, 4/9.

Maundy Thursday Agape Meal
We gather on Maundy Thursday, 4/13 in the Parish Hall at 6pm for a simple dinner and service of worship that makes the events of the night before Jesus' crucifixion present to us. We remember the Last Supper as we share an Agape Meal - a service of Holy Eucharist integrated with a meal, modeled on that Last Supper. After the Agape Meal we enter the church and remember how Jesus washed his disciples' feet. We strip the altar in a powerful symbolic preparation for Jesus' death and begin a vigil watch at the Altar of Repose representing the garden of Gethsemane. The Maundy Thursday service is one of the richest and powerful of the entire church year. Note: Tuesday night Dinner Church is canceled during Holy Week.

Pray for an Hour
Jesus spent the night before his crucifixion in the Garden of Gethsemane. As he prayed in the garden, Jesus asked his disciples to "keep awake one hour with me" and to "sit with me as I pray." Come to the Church for the Altar Watch from 8pm Holy Thursday thru 11am Good Friday. To signup, click here.

Christ and Culture
 At a time when the world around us seems to be going crazy, how are Christians called to respond? Do we practice acceptance? Withdraw and take care of ourselves? Resist and oppose? Join us for a discussion on Sunday, 4/9 in the Fireside Room at 11.30am.

Podcast Lent Lecture Series "Demons in the Desert: a Lenten Sojourn" by the Rev. Dr. Vincent Pizzuto can be found here
Holy Week & Easter at St. John's
Palm Sunday: April 9
8am: Service with Blessing of Palms in the Church
9am: Family Service with Blessing of Palms in the Parish Hall
10am: Service with Procession of Palms in the Church
Maundy Thursday: April 13
6pm: Agape Meal in the Parish Hall
8pm: Altar Watch begins in the Church
Good Friday: April 14
11am: Altar Watch ends
Noon: Good Friday Service in the Church
7:15pm: Optional introduction to Labyrinth
7:30-8:30pm: Drop in for Labyrinth Walk
Holy Saturday: April 15
7pm: The Great Vigil of Easter in the Church
Easter Day: April 16
8am: Service with Holy Eucharist in the Church
9am: Family Service in the Parish Hall
10am: Service with Holy Eucharist in the Church
8a: Eucharist in the Church
9a: Family Eucharist in the Parish Hall
10a: Eucharist in the Church
7.15a: Meditation in the Chapel
6pm: Dinner Church in the Parish Hall
2nd Thursdays of the Month
Noon: Eucharist in the Chapel   
St. John's Episcopal Church 
PO Box 217 
14 Lagunitas Road 
Ross, CA 94957