St. John's Episcopal Church - Centreville, VA

Parish News - January 10, 2024

To St. John's Parishioners and Friends:

I was happy with Sunday's sermon. Maybe some day I'll give it.

I wanted folks to imagine that God's words to Jesus at his baptism (Mark 4:11) were being said in some way to them: "You are my beloved child. With you, I am well pleased." How cared for must Jesus have felt then? How empowering must that have been to hear that, to know that in that moment? How might we act if we knew just how loved and empowered we were? I might be less busy, I offered. The supposedly beloved of God seem to spend so much time proving how beloved they are. The truly beloved would just enjoy it, be beloved, and do the amazing things beloved children of God do, wouldn't they? So, my sermon would have gone, you can afford to do less of the things that drain you spiritually and more of the things that give you life. God is pleased, so you can stop trying. You are beloved. Be beloved.

As a new priest with all sorts of things to prove to myself, and God, and everyone else, I woke up Sunday with a choice: power through a stomach flu, or call in sick. I'm grateful to Deacon Steve - thank you! - for officiating worship on a moment's notice and allowing me to take a sick day. You and I are beloved, and God is pleased. We don't have to make ourselves sick or, worse, get a bunch of people sick, to prove it.

Save the date!

Annual Meeting, February 4, 10:30 AM. We gather after morning Eucharist to attend to the annual business of the church, including the election of new Vestry members. If you are or have been discerning a call to Vestry service, please contact me in the next week as we are forming a slate of new Vestry members for election.

Pancake Supper, February 13. Let there be pancakes! For dinner! Do you really need details? Our annual Shrove Tuesday celebration happens February 13. Save the date, and the details will be set shortly.

Grace and peace,


The Rev. Kevin Laskowski


St. John's Episcopal Church


rooted in abundance logo

St. John's Episcopal Church is Rooted in Abundance, our theme for our 2024 pledge campaign. Rooted in Abundance, we draw on the rich tradition of the Church, on the history of Centreville and St. John's, and on the good things God has done for each and all of us. Rooted in Abundance, we follow Jesus Christ to ever greater things (John 1:50, 14:12) and more abundant life (John 10:10). Read letters from our stewardship chairs and priest-in-charge.

Thank you to all those who've already made their commitment for 2024. Our draft budget for 2024 to be approved this month includes funding for outreach, music, web development, and significant savings to cover maintenance of this historic property for future generations.

The greater our pledges, the more we can be sure all this and more is part of St. John's mission in 2024. If you haven't already, please prayerfully consider your own financial contribution now. With your pledge, you'll become part of our offering of healing, hope, and hospitality to all God's people:

  • Healing: worship God and proclaim the Good News of God in prayer (worship and liturgy), sermon (proclamation online and off), and song (music ministry).
  • Hope: form disciples of Jesus Christ, of all ages, in word (Christian education) and deed (mission and outreach)
  • Hospitality: steward our historic building and grounds for our parishioners, ministry partners, and beyond

Join us now!

Why We Give

Parishioner Jean Makurat writes:

St. John’s welcomed me in a little over 20 years ago. I was struggling spiritually and needed healing and direction. 'Healing, hope, and hospitality' isn’t just a catchy phrase – that really is what St. John’s is all about, and I’ve been blessed to call it my church home ever since. In my own home, bills have to be paid, floors swept, things repaired, etc. The list never seems to end; but by taking care of these responsibilities, I make my home safe and sound, and somewhere I love to be. St. John’s is my church home, and its parishioners my church family. Each member has certain talents and skills that they use to keep our church safe and sound, and somewhere lots of people love to be. I am blessed to be able to help support St. John’s in a variety of ways, including financially. I’m not as hesitant as I used to be about giving my time, talent, or treasure (even if it hurts a little), because I think I finally understand the first verse of the 23rd Psalm. The Lord is indeed my shepherd - He guided me to St. John’s, after all! As long as I trust Him and follow Him, I can rest assured that I shall not be in want.

Caroline Machen wrote to her husband in 1850, when the church was built: would be delightful to have you here at the opening of the new church - Dr. May is to preach. I think you will like the interior of the building. Mr. Lockwood had exerted himself to the upmost in its erection and I feel & [sic] that you will also, that every effort should be made by those will be benefitted [sic] by his untiring labors to aid him by paying up their subscriptions. I believe, my dear Husband, that our crops would be more abundant & everything we undertake will succeed better by paying $50 to the Church than by the application of any amount of guano to the soil - we owe a large debt to our Maker; can we expect to prosper till it is paid? "Give unto the Lord the first fruits of all thine increase so shall they arms be filled with plenty and thy presses burst forth with new wine." Have we been sufficiently careful to perform this duty? We believe, let us hereafter endeavor more faithfully to show our faith by our works...

Read more from parishioners here.


Pledgers who've requested giving envelopes in the past, those envelopes are available at the church. Please pick them up.


Last Sunday's Sermon

Rev. Kevin had the sermon Sunday but was out sick. You can renew your baptismal vows along with us, and view the service here.

View First Sunday after Epiphany: the Baptism of Our Lord Jesus Christ on January 7 here, and look for new sermons as always here.

Upcoming Readings for the Second Sunday after the Epiphany

Let us prepare our hearts and mind for worship:

First Reading: 1 Samuel 3:1-20 

God calls Samuel to ministry and Samuel listens, despite the overarching habits of the contemporary culture to ignore the Word of God.

Response: Psalm 139:1-5, 12-17

God knows each of us intimately. God knows our acts before we do them, our form before we had one.

Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

Freedom in Christ is tempered by wisdom, humility, and devotion to God. Our freedom has cost God dearly; in gratitude, let us use our bodies for God’s glory.

Gospel: John 1:43-51

Jesus calls his disciples Philip and Nathanael to ministry, preparing them for amazing sights and challenging experiences.

Join Us In Person or Online

Join us in the historic church at 9:30 AM Sunday or watch live via YouTube. Additional links to the livestream, worship bulletin, and lectionary class are sent Saturday and also available on our website.

New Worship Customary

Bishop E. Mark Stephenson has updated liturgical guidelines for the Diocese of Virginia. Remember: "individual communicants may not dip their own hosts or bread in the wine." The minister will intinct for you, if you so desire. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact Rev. Kevin.

Interested in Confirmation, Reception, or Reaffirmation? Save the Date for Bishop's Visitation

The Rt. Rev. James J. "Bud" Shand will visit St. John's on Pentecost, May 19, 2024. Bishop Shand is the retired Bishop Diocesan of the Diocese of Easton (Maryland), served as Chairman of the Board of the Virginia Theological Seminary, and is now the newest Visiting Bishop here in the Diocese of Virginia. If you're interested in Baptism, Confirmation, Reception, or Reaffirmation on Pentecost with the Bishop, or what these things might mean for you, please contact Rev. Kevin.


Adult Lectionary Forum

Join us Sundays in-person in the church library or online via Zoom to discuss the day's lessons.

Education for Ministry (EfM)

Education for Ministry (EfM) is a unique four-year distance learning certificate program in theological education based upon small-group study. St. John's EfM group is underway on Wednesday nights. Contact Walt Cooner for more information.


tree of life dinner 2023-10-10

Serve Meals at the Katharine K. Hanley Family Shelter

St. John's will be serving meals at the Katharine K. Hanley Family Shelter every second Tuesday of the month. Sign up to join us February 6 or contact Deacon Steve for more information.

Bring donations for our local family shelter to church or drop by the office.

Their needs may be found on their In-Kind Donations Wish List through Amazon.

Western Fairfax Christian Ministries

St. John's is a founding partner of Western Fairfax Christian Ministries, which provides food and financial support to more than 600 local families every month. Please continue to bring donations of food and more to Sunday services, or drop at the church office.

Centreville Immigration Forum

CIF provides immigrants in need with the means to improve their lives and become more integrated into the community, improve communication and cooperation among all groups serving immigrants, and build community recognition of our strength in diversity.

The Shepherd's Center of Western Fairfax

The Shepherd's Center needs drivers and support for local seniors.


Prayer Requests

If you would like to add yourself or someone you care about to our Sunday prayer list, please contact clergy or the church office.

Prayers for the Holy Land

Many prayers have been offered in the wake of terrorist attacks by Hamas and the outbreak of war. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry called for prayer again as an Anglican hospital in Gaza was destroyed. The Presiding Bishop and Pope Francis have both called for ceasefire, return of hostages, and humanitarian aid as the conflict continues. Pray along with Archbishop Hosam Naoum of the Episcopal Diocese in Jerusalem:

O God of all justice and peace we cry out to you in the midst of the pain and trauma of violence and fear which prevails in the Holy Land. Be with those who need you in these days of suffering; we pray for people of all faiths - Jews, Muslims and Christians and for all people of the land. While we pray to you, O Lord, for an end to violence and the establishment of peace, we also call for you to bring justice and equity to the peoples. Guide us into your kingdom where all people are treated with dignity and honour as your children for, to all of us, you are our Heavenly Father. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.


Sunday Services

Additional readers and ushers are needed. Sign up here.

Coffee Hour

We gather after worship for food and fellowship. Assist with snacks here.

Altar Flowers

Dedicate the altar flowers in thanksgiving or in memory of a loved one here.

Tree of Life

Help us feed hungry families. Sign up here.


Have any photos or short videos from St. John's events? Send them to us.

Support St. John's

With your online contribution, you are part of St. John's offering of healing, hope, and hospitality to all God's people. Click the GIVE button below or text STJOHNSCENTREVILLE to 73256 to make a one-time or recurring donation to St. John's Episcopal Church.

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