PARISH NEWS for Wednesday, October 9, 2019
The Wonder of a Pale Blue Dot
By Sanford David Weir
Pale Blue Dot #1
Pale Blue Dot #2
It is almost impossible to see in the first picture above, but there is a tiny blue dot in the photograph as indicated by the white arrow. The second picture is an expanded view of that section, but as you see it is still a very fuzzy point. You may think you do not know what this pale blue dot is, but you would be mistaken. You are quite familiar with it. The photograph was taken in 1990 by NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft. The pale blue dot is the planet Earth.  The astronomer Carl Sagan said this of the famous Voyager’s photograph:
“There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.”
As Episcopalians, we publicly acknowledge and celebrate God’s mastery and rule over the earth and the universe. This happens each time during Eucharistic Prayer C when the Priest says, “At your command all things came to be, the vast expanse of interstellar space, galaxies, suns, the planets in their courses, and this fragile earth, our island home.”
 During St John’s 2019 Pledge Drive you are invited to shift your attention a bit. Lift your eyes upward, towards the majesty of God’s universe. For when you do, you may begin to believe in the:
Have you received your pledge card?
The pledge cards for 2020 have been mailed out. Please prayerfully consider what God is calling you to give this year. God has given us everything we have and everything we are. How do we show God our gratitude for all that God has done for us? One way is to support St. John's, by giving a financial pledge to support the work of the church. The biblical tithe is the standard amount of giving. Some of us are there, others are working toward that goal, a little at a time. Wherever you are on that spectrum, know that, although the church needs your financial support, it's the giving that deepens your relationship with God. Pledging is something you should do for you, and to enhance your spiritual life. Some of us may not have the financial resources to pledge much, but giving of your time and talents is another way to give back to God.
    When you receive your pledge card, please prayerfully consider what God is calling you to give in 2020. We ask that you consider increasing your pledge, even by 1% to move toward that 10%. God lets us keep 90% of all that God has given to us and asks for only 10% in return. The ingathering of the pledge cards will be Sunday, November 3.

Week 2 of Stewardship
The graphic shown here illustrates some of the ways that St. John's touches the community - around us, and in the world.
CENTREVILLE DAY IS SATURDAY, OCTOBER 19......and so far only 2 people have signed up to help and 3 people have signed up to provide baked goods to sell. This is a fund raiser for us as well as a chance to let the community know who we are and what we do. If you can spare two hours on that Saturday to sit at our table or if you can provide baked goods or snacks to sell, please sign up on the sheet in the breezeway. The vendors set up their tents and tables starting at about 7:00 AM. If its a cool morning, they enjoy buying coffee from us! Some visitors like to see the inside of the church, and its good to have someone in the church to tell them a bit about our history. It's a fun day! Please sign up to help out!
FALL KICK-OFF: Through the United Thank Offering (UTO), the Episcopal Church Women (ECW) supports a ministry to send grants to help those throughout the world and in our own communities. With prayers of thanksgiving and the outward sign of coins in the Blue Box, special projects can be accomplished to serve those in need through grants. In-Gatherings are held twice each year, in the Spring and Fall, the seasons that represent new growth and harvest times.

Every penny collected from the Blue Boxes is sent out in a grant. Overhead expenses of UTO are paid through the Memorial and Gift Trust Fund at the National Church, as well as a stipend from the Episcopal Church. The UTO ministry is a collaborative work among the ECW Board, the staff at the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, members of the Executive Council, our Bishop and the Office of Mission and Outreach at the Diocese of Virginia, and each and every one of us who make the UTO a part of our lives. It is a ministry of the whole church!

This is our kick-off of the Fall 2019 campaign as the little Blue Mite Boxes are available to the congregation. As we share our daily thankfulness and prayers for the gifts that God gives us, place a coin in the Blue Box. For those who wish to support the UTO by cash or check, we will collect the boxes and envelopes during Service on October 27.
"Change in the little blue box changes lives"
Your prayers are needed - Two weeks ago, long time parishioner Jim Scott was involved in a bad car accident. He was medivaced to Fairfax Hospital where he spent several days in the ICU. Last Monday, he was expecting to be moved to Mount Vernon Hospital to begin rehab. He has several injuries and faces a long road to recovery. Please keep Beth and Jim in your prayers.

Many thanks go to Dave Parker and Tom McDermott for repairing several outlets that were not working, and repairing our outside spot lights.

Coffee Hour - As this Sunday is the second Sunday of the month, the choir will provide the Coffee Hour snacks.

We are in need of two large coffee urns to borrow for Centreville Day. If you have one or know where we could borrow some, please let Carol know.

The Lane's Mill Chapter of the Daughter's of the American Revolution (DAR) has volunteered to clean the headstones in our cemetery on Friday, October 11 (rain date - October 16). They will receive careful instruction by a restoration specialist who knows how to clean them without damaging them any further. Many thanks to the DAR for choosing St. John's cemetery as the focus of their Day of Service.

Hurricane Relief Concert, 10/20
Sunday, October 20, 4-6 pm, Immanuel Chapel at VTS
The organist at Church of the Resurrection, Carol Sikkelee,, is organizing a concert for Sunday, October 20, to raise money for Hurricane Dorian relief via Episcopal Relief and Development . Performers are varied and all excellent. Free-will offering; reception after the event..

Make an Online Pledge Offering!
The new way to send your pledge offering! You can download the app to your phone, or you can click the link below, and use your credit card!
We can prepare our hearts & minds by reading ahead
for the Sunday Service lessons.  

The Eighteenth Sunday After Pentecost

October 13, 2019

9:30 AM

 The First Reading: 2 Kings 5:1-3, 7-15c
The Lord heals all who call upon him, and he is merciful to the humble.

The Psalm: 111, page 754, BCP

The Second Lesson: 2 Timothy 2:8-15
Those who choose to follow Jesus are called to a life of surrender and, often, of suffering. The more we train our attention on God, the less we will be irritated by what we're called to endure.

The Gospel: Luke 17:11-19
May we proclaim gratitude for God's great provision in all corners. If we do, we may be rewarded with remembrance for all time, as this leper is remembered for his thankfulness over millennia.

(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 9:50 - 10:40 AM 



  FROM 10:50 - 11:50 AM

The Saint of the Week for Forum Discussion:

Samuel Isaac Joseph Schereschewsky  was born May 6, 1831 in Tanroggen, Lithuania to Jewish parents, went to Zhitomeer, Russia to study for the rabbinate, did two years at the University of Breslau, Germany (where he converted to Christianity), and then emigrated to the United States, studying initially at Pittsburgh’s (Presbyterian) Western Theological Seminary before transferring to General Theological (Episcopal) Seminary. He received deacon's orders in St. George's Church, New York, July 7, 1859, from the first Bishop Boone, who ordained him to the priesthood in the mission chapel at Shanghai, October 28, 1860. priesthood and, in 1859, was sent by the Episcopal Church to China. There, from 1862-1875, he devoted himself to translating the Bible into Mandarin Chinese. 
     In 1875 he was elected by the House of Bishops to the missionary episcopate of Shanghai, but declined. Two years later he was again chosen to this office, and was with difficulty induced to accept his election as Bishop of Shanghai. Meanwhile, he received doctorates in divinity from Kenyon in 1876 and from Columbia the following year. In Shanghai, he founded St. John's University and began translating  The Bible  into Wen-li (a classical Chinese writing style). 
     Unfortunately, he soon developed Parkinson's disease, was largely paralyzed. His failing health compelled his resignation of his episcopate, which the House of Bishops accepted in 1883. Bishop Sam then devoted the rest of his life completing his Wen-li Bible, the last 2,000 pages of which he typed with the one finger he could still move. Aside from translating the  Old Testament  from Hebrew into Mandarin, Schereschewsky also served on a committee charged with translating the  New Testament  from its original Greek into Chinese. As though that were not sufficient, he translated the  Book of Common Prayer  into Mandarin and  the Gospels  into Mongolian, preparing a dictionary of that language in the process.
      Four years before he died in 1906, he said: "I have sat in this chair for over 20 years. It seemed very hard at first. But God knew best. He kept me for the work for which I am best fitted." Largely because of this quote, he has been chosen as the patron saint of the Anglican internet mailing list, aka the "cyberparish of St. Sam's.” Writing about Bishop Schereschewskyin 1888, Oxford Professor Max Müller hailed him as “one of the six most learned Orientalists in the world.”


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"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!

If we’re made in the image of God, if we’re One with God, then we were created as perfectly beautiful and infinitely precious. This can be very hard to accept, with our culture constantly reinforcing the false belief that our worth and our very identity is based on what we do, what we accomplish, how we look, or how much we have. The key is to start from where we are, loving ourselves just as we are, and eventually we will see ourselves as God sees us, which is pretty awesome.
-Br. Nicholas Bartoli
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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