Greetings!
PARISH NEWS for Wednesday, December 11, 2019
CLEAN & GREEN THIS Saturday, December 14 , from 9 AM - 12 PM. We will have the " cleaning and greening " of the church: We will clean the Historic Church from top to bottom and then decorate the church for Christmas. Bring your cleaning supplies and join us from 9-12. This would be a good activity for students who need community service hours!
Donations needed for Christmas "baskets" - Each Thanksgiving and Christmas, we collect funds to provide "baskets", now food gift cards, to 10 families whose names have been given to us by Western Fairfax Christian Ministries. Our donations are low this year and we will not be able to provide each family with what we usually give. If you would like to donate, please turn in your donation this Sunday, or deliver it to the church office no later than next Wednesday, December 18. Envelopes are on the back table in the church. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Coffee Hour - As this Sunday is the third Sunday of the month, the Vestry will provide the Coffee Hour snacks.

Interested in becoming a Lay Eucharistic Minister? We are in need of several more LEM's to serve at the altar on Sunday mornings. LEM's lead the psalm and the Prayers of the People, help prepare the altar for communion, and administer the chalice. Training will be provided. Please contact Walt Cooner or Carol Hancock if you are interested. We need your help!

And we need your help soon! So far, no one has signed up for any of the positions (LEM, lector, usher) needed for the 9:00 PM service on Christmas Eve, the 9:30 AM service on Christmas Day, and for Sunday, December 29. Please scroll down this page and click on "Altar Servers" and sign up today! Thanks!

Wednesdays in Advent - Following the 6:00 PM service, we will gather in the library to talk about "The Way of Love - Practices for a Jesus-Centered Life." Our Presiding Bishop Michael Curry began this curriculum and often preaches about the way of love.There are seven intentional areas for leading a Jesus-centered life - turn, learn, pray, worship, bless, go, and rest. Not all of these have to be done every day, but these areas give us a pattern for our lives, somewhat like a rule of life. Join us the next 2 Wednesdays in Advent - tonight December 11 and 18 from 6:45 PM - 7:45 PM. Bring a sandwich or light dinner. On December 24, we will gather at our Christmas Eve services to welcome the Christ child.

Meditation from Episcopal Relief and Development - As we move into Advent, we're reminded of the song from the movie Urban Cowboy — "Looking for love in all the wrong places." We are bombarded at every turn with everything the retail world insists that we need — the right decorations, wrapping paper, Christmas cards, party invitations, recipes, music, gifts — everything we need for the perfect Christmas holiday.

If we look to the retail world, we are looking for love in all the wrong places. As Presiding Bishop Curry reminds us with the Way of Love, one of the important steps is to turn — to pause, listen, and choose to turn back to God from anything that has turned us away. Advent calls us to "go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways." In this broken world, we turn to God to find the path of true peace, the path of God's reconciling love.

May we all find the path of God this Advent season.

Donations for Christmas wreaths and flowers - If you would like to donate funds for Christmas wreaths and flowers, please use the envelopes that are on the back table in the church. Be sure to include who they are in memory of or thanksgiving for. We need to receive the donations no later than Friday, December 20 (though the sooner the better) so the names can be printed in the Christmas bulletins.

Christmas services - Our Christmas Eve services will be at 4:00 PM and 9:00 PM. At 8:45 PM, the choir will lead us in singing Christmas carols.The 4:00 PM service will include a children's sermon and nursery care will be available. The service on Christmas Day will be at 9:30 AM. All services will include the Holy Eucharist, sermon and music. The choir will sing at both Christmas Eve services. Please invite your family and friends to join us for this wonderful celebration of the birth of the Christ child!

Wednesday 6:00 PM services - We will not have the 6:00 PM service on Wednesday, December 25 and Wednesday, January 1. These services will resume on January 8.

Church Office - The church office will be closed on Wednesday, December 25 and Thursday, December 26.
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SUNDAY SERVICE
We can prepare our hearts & minds by reading ahead
for the Sunday Service lesson


The Third Sunday of Advent


December 15, 2019

9:30 AM

 The First Reading: Isaiah 35:1-10
The presence and redemption of the Lord transforms all things - deserts will become oases, the broken will become whole and fixed with gold. God's work completely turns around outcomes which seem hopeless.

The Psalm: 146:4-9, page 803, BCP

The Second Lesson: James 5: 7-10
Cultivate a grateful heart, and when sharp words of judgment come to your tongue, bite it. God's precepts are not complicated, but neither are they easy for our sinful hearts to submit to!

The Gospel: Matthew 11: 2-11
John the Baptist is at the end of the line of the prophets of Israel, pointing ahead to Jesus, the Messiah; and as Jesus's contemporary and cousin, John sits on the cusp of the new covenant that God makes with all nations through Jesus's life, death, and resurrection.
  ____________________________
 
CHILD CARE IS PROVIDED IN THE NURSERY  
(Rm. 205) 
During the Service
____________

JOINT SUNDAY SCHOOL: 10:30 - 11:30 AM
 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 

_________________________

THE ADULT LECTIONARY FORUM

MEETS EACH SUNDAY IN THE LIBRARY, FOLLOWING THE SERVICE 
  FROM 10:50 - 11:50 AM

The Saint of the Week for Forum Discussion:

Anna Julia Haywood Cooper (August 10, c1859- February 27, 1964). An educator, advocate and scholar, was married to Rev. George A.C. Cooper, the second African-American ordained to the Episcopal priesthood in North Carolina. After her husband's death in 1879, Cooper received degrees in mathematics from Oberlin College, and was made principal of the only African American high school in Washington DC. Critical of the lack of support black Americans received from the church, she wrote and spoke widely on issues of race and gender. At age 65, she became the fourth African-American woman to earn a Ph.D degree from the Sorbonne.

THE DIOCESE OF VIRGINIA

"Be still and know that I am God." 
(Psalm 46:11 )
 
Be Still. Slow Down. It's Advent.



VOLUNTEERING AT ST. JOHN'S
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).
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COMMUNITY
WESTERN FAIRFAX
CHRISTIAN MINISTRIES

"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:
OPPORTUNITIES
Reminder
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!

 Child of God
God sees you not unlike we see a child in a Christmas play. No matter how well the child acts, whether or not the child remembers his or her lines, whether the child picks up the cues or drops the props, we’re full of delight, compassion, encouragement, and gratitude for how well the child does. We are all children of God. And God adores us.
-Br. Curtis Almquist


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
ST. JOHN'S EPISCOPAL CHURCH | 5649 MT. GILEAD RD. , CENTREVILLE, VA | 703-803-7500
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