St. John's Episcopal Church - Centreville, VA
Parish News - April 14, 2021
Dear St. John's Parishioners and Friends:

As you know, Easter is not a day, but a season that goes until Pentecost, which is 50 days after Easter. During this time, we hear the stories of Jesus' post-resurrection appearances and his encounters with the disciples and others. It is not a time for just looking back, but looking forward, as the new ministry of the disciples begins to unfold.
I'd like to share a reflection with you, written by Beth Richardson in her book, "Walking in the Wilderness", a book of scripture and reflections that I used during Lent.
"What a life-changing morning for Mary Magdalene and the other disciples. Arriving at the tomb to prepare Jesus' body, she found the tomb open and Jesus' body missing. "I have seen the Lord," she tells the other disciples. Christ, though crucified, was alive and present with grieving disciples.
The risen Christ is our companion today in these times of wilderness. Christ is present with people in jails and prisons. Christ is present with the sick, the dying, and those who mourn. Christ is present with young and old who march in the streets, calling for justice for Black lives. Christ is present with migrants all over the world who are fleeing violence and poverty.
Christ stands with us as we face the challenges of growing old, as we struggle with the death of a loved one, as we stand face to face with injustice and evil. Christ calls our name, and we recognize his presence with us.
Holy One, you are present with us in our sorrow and despair, our joy and our hope. May I recognize you and call you friend. Amen."

Carol

These are pictures from our outdoor Easter service. It was wonderful to see parishioners we had not seen for a year! Thanks to David Weir, David Daniel Weir and David Parker for recording this service with all the wonderful music! If you were there but want to watch the service again, or if you were not able to come, please click on the link below the photos.
View the beautiful Easter Sunday Service by clicking https://youtu.be/PzqzO_NdWMA
Cleaning the Church & Planting the Easter Flowers
At some point, in the not-too-distant future, we will again be able to hold services inside the church. Now that it's all spic and span, and the front flower bed has new flowering plants installed, thanks to the following folks, we will be more ready to open the red front door!
A big thank you to: Dave and Penny Parker, John and Kristen Tucker, Marcia Evans, Marie McDermott, Beverly Taylor, Andrew Wade, Lisa Heller, Susan Davis, Larry and Susie Pike, who worked like crazy last weekend to get it all accomplished!
PARISH NEWS
Outreach: Ampersand and WFCM
 
Thank you to all of the diaper donors at St. Johns! The delivery took place April 3.  The Ampersand Pantry Project in Leesburg, VA, provides lunches from 11:00 to 1:00 p.m., seven days a week. Not only do they provide meals, but also pet food and diapers. On Saturday, April 3rd, the program crossed over 90,000 meals. The good news is that they have gone from providing about 300 lunches per day to 230 lunches per day. As people get back on their feet, the demand is less. John and Val Tucker, Elise Crawford, and Andrew and Lori Wade made the delivery and worked at the Ampersand Project for about two hours. Different tasks included dividing up the supplies in Ziploc bags as well as delivering (from a distance) to the cars in line to receive goods. Given that it was Easter weekend, flowers were also donated and given to the people in need. 
 
This project costs about $10,000 per week to run. The donors include local civic organizations, churches, an Islamic Center, corporations, and individuals. The program has just turned one year old and the diverse donor base have met the weekly need. It is an amazing grass roots project, that was timed perfectly with this pandemic.
 
Here, locally in Chantilly at Western Fairfax Christian Ministry (WFCM), the demand for food has not lessened. St. Johns continues to have intermittent food drives. However, until the next one, we accept food donations seven days per week in the box out front, as you enter the church. 
 
If you need someone to pick up any supplies or would like to give funds for someone else to make the food purchases, please contact the church office @ 703-803-7500.
 
 
Thanks, The Outreach Committee
Be a Sunday service reader, from anywhere!
During this time of covid, St. John's holds a Sunday morning prayer service which is "aired" on Sunday mornings at 9 AM. The readings are
...pre-recorded, and several parishioners have been doing a great job doing them, from different venues - no matter where they are! We welcome, need, and value your help! If you would like more information on how to do this, click here for the info page on SignUp Genius. Please sign up a week before the Sunday you would like to read, so we can get the readings to you and you can get your recording to David Weir by Thursday.
Every Wednesday, St. John's has a Service of Evening Prayer at 6 PM. It is a peaceful way to end the day, and it's now being held virtually. Here is the link to this evening's service:

Wednesday, April 14
ANNOUNCEMENTS
The link to the Sunday service is sent out each Saturday as usual. Then join us for the coffee hour from 10:00 - 10:30 and the Adult Lectionary Class at 10:30 AM on Zoom. The links will be sent out in Saturday's email to all.
"LIFT ME UP"
FACILITIES CAMPAIGN
A tremendous thank you to all who contributed to the Lift Me Up facilities campaign drive. Additional donations have made the new total: $48,000! Thanks to the generosity of the people of St. John's that will enable us to keep our building welcoming guests for many more years. Your faithfulness to the mission of St. Johns in this difficult year is an inspiration. 
Lisa Heller and Andrew Wade
SUNDAY WORSHIP & EDUCATION
The Adult Lectionary Forum
Now being held virtually via Zoom. All are invited to join in, following the virtual Sunday service. The links to the Forum and the service are sent out in a separate email on Saturdays.
We can prepare our hearts & minds by reading ahead
for the Sunday Service lesson

The Third Sunday of Easter
April 18, 2021

The First Reading:
Acts 3:12-19
 Peter speaks directly to the people’s complicity in the death of Jesus, and assures them that they will know God’s forgiveness if they repent.

The Psalm: 4, page 587, BCP
The Second Reading:
1 John 3:1-7
The Lord Jesus came to take away sin, and he calls us to resist the sins that persist in our lives.

The Gospel:
Luke 24:36b-48
 Jesus helps his disciples understand his resurrection, both by eating with them and tracing the Old Testament’s prophecies about the Messiah.
Online Contributions
 to St. John's
St. John's now offers three buttons for online donations via Tithe.ly. You may use the buttons below to go directly to Tithe.ly, or you may download the Tithe.ly app on your phone or tablet.
The Pledge payment button may be used only to make your pledge payment (after signing up to be a pledger, which may be done at any time in the year. See Carol or Vestry)
The Facility Campaign button may be used only for any contribution for the facility's buildings and grounds, or special facility campaigns.
The Donation button may be used for any other type of donation to St. John's. To designate a special purpose (i.e. Organ Fund, Ministry Partner payments, etc.) please send a note to sjeccentreville@aol.com.
Sermons from the Bishop's Online Chapel
Each week, one of our bishops or a member of the diocesan staff prepares and posts a sermon based on the Sunday's readings that can be used for online services. Here is the sermon posted for this past Sunday.
A Meditation for the Second Week of Easter

Amid the Wreckage
 
The beach after a storm is a place of wonders. With a mixture of anticipation and trepidation, I get up before dawn and go outside as the sun rises. I find
           A tree trunk lying askew, as if casually tossed by a giant hand
           Gaping holes and deep gullies in places they hadn’t been the day before 
           The sand stripped away in some spots and piled high in others
           Shredded beach umbrellas and bent chairs strewn every which way.
           
Amid the wreckage, life goes on. 
           Sandpipers continue their dance at the edge of the breakers
           Gulls cry overhead
           Pelicans dive and dolphins swim
Life goes on, changed and ever new. 
 
With a mixture of anticipation and trepidation, women friends of Jesus got up before dawn after a weekend of storms and went to the tomb as the sun rose. They found
           A stone rolled away, as if casually tossed by a giant hand
           A gaping hole that had once been closed and sealed
           The earth stripped away beneath the displaced boulder
           Grave cloths strewn and scattered every which way.
 
Amid the wreckage, life went on.
           Birds sang. Critters crawled. 
           And, so much more.
           Resurrection was revealed in the simple calling of a name:
           “Mary.” “Rabbi.” “My brothers.” 
Amid the wreckage, Christ is risen. Life prevails. Liberation is loose in the world.
 
In this Easter season, this time of wonder that transforms our world,
In this Easter season, as we begin to emerge from the wreckage of pandemic
 
Our Liberator shows us how to live with eyes wide open
           to see how the pandemic has changed the landscape
           to lament what has been lost and broken
           to witness the power of resurrection even in the wreckage,
           especially in the wreckage.
 
Our Liberator strengthens us to live with ears wide open
           to hear the pain and confusion of others
           to hear their stories of freedom and transformation
           to hear Jesus every time he calls us by name even in the wreckage,
           especially in the wreckage.
           
Our Liberator delights for us to live with hearts and minds wide open
           to celebrate how life goes on without demanding that it be the way it was before
           to find beauty in the brokenness,
           life amid the loss,
           wonder in the old and in the new.
 
Christ is risen. Life is changed. We are free. 
What will we do with our wild, wily and wonderful freedom?  

Bishop Susan Goff
Companion
Jesus comes and walks with us where we are, amid challenges and grief, amid darkness and despair, when we are bent under the weight of heavy hearts, when lips tremble and tears flow. This is Easter. Jesus comes to be alongside in our current pain and sadness. Jesus is alive here with us, compassionate and curious, an oh so human friend: listening to our heartache, sharing his own stories of suffering, and breaking bread together.
-Br. Luke Ditewig
My email address is stjohnscvpriest@gmail.com,
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, Rector
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