PARISH NEWS for Wednesday, January 2, 2019

May this new year of 2019 be filled with the grace, peace and love of God for you, your family, and throughout the world.

  • Children's Sunday School class
The 2-4 year old Sunday School class will meet this Sunday, January 6 from 10:50 - 11:30 in room 215. Please invite your friends and neighbors to join us.
Nickie and Patrick Jones will be leading the class.

  • Offering envelopes

Your offering envelopes for 2019 are ready to be picked up and will be in the

breezeway on Sunday. Please pick up your envelopes so we can save the

expense of mailing them.

  • Epiphany and the end of the Christmas season
This Sunday, we will celebrate Epiphany, when we remember the coming of the wise men who have followed the star to find Jesus in the manger and offer him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh - gifts for a king. Epiphany, which is always on January 6, is 12 days after Christmas and is the end of the Christmas season. Because Sunday is the end of the Christmas season, we will take down the Christmas decorations right after the 9:30 service. Many hands make light work and all are invited to stay and help.

  • Ellen Strickland celebrates her 80th birthday
Some of you may remember Ellen Strickland who was a member of St. John's some time ago. Ellen's 80th birthday is coming up on January 8th. Her family is trying to collect 80 birthday cards for her!
If you're interested, please send a card to Ellen at Scott and Rana's address:
Rana Strickland, 117 Galaxie Drive, Fredericksburg VA 22407

  • New LED lights in the parish hall
The first phase of the LED installation in the parish hall was completed on Sunday. 48 LED tubes and 6 LED track-lighting lamps were installed. This should result in an about a $30-$40 a month savings on St John’s electric bill. Plans are being made to install more LEDs in the PHLL, probably sometime in February. Many thanks to those who participated: David Weir, Jim Heller, Lisa Heller, Tom McDermott, David Parker, John Tucker, Andrew Wade and David Daniel Weir.
  • Finding a new Ministry Partner
We will be looking for another Ministry Partner who might like to use the parish hall on Sundays, either morning, afternoon or both. If you know a group that might be interested, please let Carol know.

  • The countdown to the Pilgrimage to the Holy Land begins...
In 25 days, many parishioners from St. John's and Emmanuel, Delaplane, along with some family members and friends, will begin their pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The planning for this trip began about 18 months ago, thanks to the leadership of Andrew Wade (St. John's) and Lee Johnson (Emmanuel). We will visit sites where Jesus was born, ministered to people, and where he was crucified. We will be on this life changing pilgrimage from January 27 - February 8. Prayers of blessing for this trip and its participants will be held at the 9:30 service on January 27.

  • Wednesday evening 6:00 PM service will continue tonight.
We can prepare our hearts & minds by reading ahead
for the Sunday Service lessons.   

The Epiphany of Our Lord Jesus Christ

January 6, 2019

9:30 AM

The First Reading: Isaiah 60:1-6
God promises new hope for his people, Isaiah the prophet assures
the people of God that their current sorrow and suffering will be
restored to joy and stability.

The Psalm: 72:1-7,10-14; page 685, BCP

The Second Lesson: Ephesians 3:1-12
The good news of Jesus Christ is meant to be shared with and
known by everyone. God’s offer of restoration, revealed in Jesus, is
for all the world to enjoy.

The Gospel: Matthew 2:1-12
No matter your heritage, and no matter how you have come to know
about Jesus, the Christ, God wants you to be his child.

  FROM 10:50 - 11:50 AM
(Rm. 205) 
During the Service

 Each week, St. John's children join with our Ministry Partners: 
Wellspring UCC & Grace Baptist Church
Room 207/208

St. John's Sunday School class for ages 2-4, Room 215
Meets the first Sunday of each month from 10:50 - 11:30 

“The angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for see — I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord .’” (Luke 2:10-11) 

Do not be afraid. That is what angels say in Scripture - not only because seeing an angel is enough to strike fear into any faithful heart, but because this beautiful world can be a fearsome place. We feel fear as our work, church or family lives change, leaving us uncertain about the future. We face fear when we have heartfelt questions that no one can answer. We know fear as weather patterns change, bringing horrific fires, storms and floods. We see fear played out in the growing epidemic of opioid addiction and in mass gun violence. Fear threatens to be our constant companion. God knows it can overwhelm and cripple us. 

That is why God chose to be born as one of us in the middle of fear, in the darkness of night, in the bleakness of a world gone wrong.  In Christ Jesus, God chose to become our hope, our light, our joy. In Christ Jesus, God lived and died and rose again to show us that fear never has the last word, that light shines in the darkness, that love can and does and will prevail. 

Now that same love lives in us who choose to follow Christ Jesus and walk in his ways. Now that same hope abides in us, even when we face fear. Now that same joy is present in us to taste and touch and share. So as you hear the message of the angels this Christmas, may you be strengthened and inspired to become the message yourself. As you go Now Into the World, proclaim to others the good news you have heard and say to all, in word and in action, “Do not be afraid.”
A Blessed, Joyful and Peaceful Christmas to you.
 Your sister in Christ,

The Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff
Bishop Suffragan and Ecclesiastical Authority 
Episcopal Diocese of Virginia
  • Diocesan "Listening Sessions"
Bishop Susan Goff invites everyone to a "listening session" to hear what's on your mind and your vision for the diocese. Please register for the session you would like to attend.
Here is the schedule for the Recall and Reconnect Listening Sessions. You can click on a location to register.
Thursday, January 17, 6-8 p.m. Christ Church, Spotsylvania
Saturday, February 9, 1-3 p.m. St. Barnabas, Annandale
Wednesday, February 13, 5-7 p.m. Emmanuel, Woodstock
Saturday, February 16, 5-7 p.m. Roslyn Retreat Center, Richmond
Monday, March 4, 3-5 p.m. St. Margaret’s School, Tappahannock *

*We hope to broadcast this listening session via Facebook Live.
What we hear from each other in these sessions will shape subsequent opportunities for sharing as we deepen dialogue and grow in community. What we learn will strengthen us to go Now Into the World. Please do plan to be a part of this time. 
Faithfully yours,
The Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff
Bishop Suffragan and Ecclesiastical Authority 

  • Intercultural Summit offered by the Diocese of Virginia
Saturday, January 26, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Church of the Epiphany, Herndon
This year we will address some of the difficult topics – immigration, climate justice, poverty and more – that we encounter in our interactions both in and outside our churches. What do we need to know about these topics? How do they relate to our churches and intercultural communities? A variety of workshops will answer these questions. Register today.

Sign Up Here to be an altar server *, or to donate flowers for a Sunday service, or to bring refreshments for Coffee Hour after the service. * (if you're not an altar server, and would like to be a Lay Eucharistic Minister (LEM), a Lector, or a Crucifer, please see Carol).

"We know that food can be one of the most expensive items on a household budget list. Our hope is that in allowing our clients to visit once per month they will save enough money to pay for other expenses such as rent or utility bills."
I tems are collected weekly in the baskets at the front door of St. John's Church. For food list:
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!

God, Creator of all, who is otherwise beyond our grasp, takes on face and form as a child of Bethlehem. God is re-presented in our world, born just like we are, with hands and a heart and eyes, with desires and expectations and fears… and given a pronounceable name: Jesus. A name which both distinguishes him – that is, sets him apart from us – and at the same time opens a personal relationship between us, because we can know him and call on him by name.
-Br. Curtis Almquist

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, Rector
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