St. John in the Wilderness

White Bear Lake, MN

If it’s not about love, it’s not about God

The Most Reverend Michael B. Curry

Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church

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Sunday, September 18

  • 8 am Holy Eucharist (In-person)
  • 8:45 am Connection Hour
  • "Why Church?" Forum in Parish Hall
  • 10 am Holy Eucharist (on Boxcast here)
  • 11:45 am Vestry Meeting

Monday, September 19

Tuesday, September 20

Wednesday, September 21

  • 6 pm Wednesday Worship - Healing Service (Sanctuary)
  • 6:45 pm Transformed by the Word Bible Study (Parlor & Google Meet)

Thursday, September 22

  • 8 am Morning Prayer (Google Meet)
  • 9 am The Gathering Respite Program
  • 6:30 pm Liturgy Planning Team

Friday, September 23

  • 8:30 pm Compline (Google Meet)
  • 11:30 am Ladies Who Lunch at Manitou Grill
St. John's Full Public Calendar

Letting Go

The Annual Rummage Sale at St. John’s is quickly upon us. This has become a noted event in the life of our parish for a number of reasons, and each year it raises money that is used for purposes that are beyond the scope of our annual budget. It is also an opportunity for us to take stock of the stuff of our lives and to throw out that which we no longer need or want. I have come to appreciate and to take advantage of the opportunity.

Discerning what to donate and what to keep is always a challenge, and like many of you, there has been more than one occasion when I have donated something only to need it just a few days after I have let it go. Nonetheless, the discipline of annually evaluating what possessions I choose to carry with me on my life’s journey is something that I have come to deeply value.

We actually need so very little, don’t we? Food, shelter, clothing… that’s about it. And there are certainly other things that add much to our lives. For example, my life would be much diminished without books or recorded music or a canoe. A car, while not absolutely necessary, certainly provides a convenience upon which I have become all but utterly dependent. Nevertheless, so much of what finds its way into our homes adds little to the quality of our lives and actually steals much of our life energy. And it is that which we are invited to release.

The Bible tells the story of Jesus sending his disciples out to proclaim the good news to surrounding communities and to minister in much the same way that he himself had been ministering. When sending them out, Jesus instructs them to “carry no purse or bag or sandals.” Eugene Peterson’s Message translation puts it this way: “Travel light. Comb and toothbrush and no extra luggage.” The implication is that if you run into something that you need, God or other generous people will provide. By traveling light, we get into the practice of trusting God and relying on other people. Further, both the wisdom of others and our own experience tell us that trust in God and interdependence with others is a good thing. Upon their return, the disciples give a report on how it went to trust in God and rely on others. “Then Jesus said, “When I sent you out and told you to travel light, to take only the bare necessities, did you get along all right? “Certainly,” they said, “we got along just fine.” (Luke 22:35)

Still, it’s hard to let go. I know. It’s hard for me, and my hunch is that it’s hard for you too. But if we are willing to take the risk to release some of the material things from our lives that are adding little value, we will learn once again that God never fails to provide. And we learn that most people are genuinely good and generous. In times such as these when so much seems uncertain and mean, those are good lessons to learn. Ultimately, letting go of material things is an excellent practice for us as we learn to release the whole of our lives into God’s loving and never-failing hands.

~Father Art

Read 'Thoughts about our Faith', Fr. Art's blog here.

Fall Worship & Formation at St. John's

Note the time changes!!

Formation, Forums, and Fellowship starting September 18th


8 am Holy Eucharist

8:45 am Connection Hour: Formation, Forums, & Fellowship

10 am Holy Eucharist


6 pm Worship service (3rd Wednesday - Healing Eucharist)

6:45 pm Transformed by the Word Bible Study

Welcome, Maggie!

I am so pleased to announce that we have called Maggie DeSmet to be our new Coordinator of Rising Generations Ministries! Maggie will be working with the St. John’s staff and parishioners to provide opportunities for children, youth, and young adults to experience the love of God. She will be raising up, training and supporting volunteers to work with the Sunday School for children and Youth Group for those in Middle and High Schools. She will also be connecting with young adults who are still in our midst or who are in local colleges. Of course, many of you know Maggie as she was raised up at St. John’s and has been a part of our common life for many years. We are excited to have Maggie join our staff and serve God and the people of St. John’s in this new capacity. Welcome, Maggie! 

You can reach Maggie at Watch for communications and info from her coming soon!

Fr. Art

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Welcome to Linda Brandt

We are delighted to introduce to you our deacon intern, Linda Brandt. As part of her preparation for the ordination to the diaconate, Linda is required to learn what it means to be a deacon in a parish outside of her own. We are fortunate to have her with us as she brings many gifts including an enthusiastic call to serve Jesus in the world. Linda will begin vesting and joining the rest of the altar party on the last Sunday in September. She will be scheduled as a lector and Eucharistic minister along with being an acolyte. Linda will also help us with a project as we explore our gifts and interests and where St John in the Wilderness is called to be in our community. We invite you to read Linda’s letter to learn more about her. Welcome Linda!

Hello St. John in the Wilderness,

I am so excited to be at my first parish as an intern. I found that “retirement did not suit me” and I asked God what might be in store for me and here I am after several years of discerning my call as a deacon. I graduated with a master’s in ministry (MAM) from General Theological Seminary in May 2021. I am now in my second year of classes with the School for Formation at ECMN. My sponsoring parish is the Cathedral of St. Mark with Dean Paul Lebens-Englund as my guide. At St. Mark’s I sang in the choir for 38 years in addition to being on the Vestry and other leadership posts. Last year I was on the committee for the Wednesday nights Racial Justice Adult Education.  

My call to the diaconate came after a lifetime career as a public health nurse. These years brought experience in the vulnerable communities of the homeless, mentally ill, high-risk pregnancies, elderly, post-correctional and for the final 20 years, HIV/AIDS. I founded the Rural AIDS Action Network (RAAN) of Minnesota in 1992 and developed a twelve-region model to provide support, prevention, and case management for those outside of the Twin Cities metropolitan region. I also worked with the American International Healthcare Association (AIHA) teaching HIV Case Management in Russia, Estonia, and Ukraine.  

At home my husband of 50 years,Tom, is my partner in all the fun things we love. Biking is very big. We love to cross country ski. I enjoy playing the piano, gardening, weaving, and singing. We have two grown married daughters and three grandchildren in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Decorah, Iowa. Our leisure time is usually spent at our cabin near the Brule River in Northwest Wisconsin.

I have just returned from a Seminar to study the work of Archbishop Desmond Tutu in South Africa. My ethics professor leads these twice a year. You will be hearing about this in a future sermon, I am sure.

As a first step I will want to get to know you. My background as a public health nurse will come creeping out in all kinds of ways. I look forward to hearing your stories and “what keeps you up at night”.  

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Kids Hope

– a mentoring program for elementary school-aged children in the White Bear Lake School District. We volunteer at two schools tutoring and walking with students who need a companion. Our Kid’s Hope coordinator is Dave Seitz. You may reach him via email here or 651-468-5494.

Rummage Sale -- October 5th

We are now accepting your rummage!

Beginning Sunday September 18th, but NOT before, please put your no-longer needed but sellable items and treasures in the northeast corner of the parish hall behind the left-hand, big movable divider. 

NOTE:No TVs, computers and/or computer parts, microwaves, mattresses, furniture or other large items as they don't sell and we must pay to have them hauled away.

Work organizing, pricing, and marking will begin after the 10:30 service Sunday, October 2nd and continue through Wednesday, October 5th.


Lunch for workers will be provided Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Rest on Thursday.

Clean-up Saturday at Noon 'til about 1PM.

Sale dates and times are as follows:

Parishioners only, Wednesday, Oct 5th, 6-8PM,

Closed on Thursday, Oct 6,

Public sale, Friday, October 7th, 9AM-3PM,

Public $2.00/bag sale Saturday, October 8th, 9AM-Noon.

Any questions, please call Lynn Gadbois cell 651-270-8934, or leave a message at 651-260-5529.

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Weekly News and a Weekly Message from Bishop Loya

The Episcopal Church in Minnesota also has a weekly e-news, where you can read a message from Bishop Craig Loya, (or sometimes a special guest author), and read about what is happening in the Episcopal Church in MN and beyond! A great way to stay connected and learn about our church outside the walls of St. John's. 

To receive the ECMN news go here, scroll to the very bottom right and sign up.

Read this weeks stories from ECMN

Join your fellow Episcopalians from your mission area for a time of prayer and fellowship. Canon Kelsey Schuster and representatives from ECMN Council will preview the budget that will be considered at the 2022 Convention and review other items coming before convention this year. This will be your opportunity to ask questions, consider the ways that the budget reflects our shared values as a diocese and as a mission area, and offer feedback. This gathering will be particularly useful for lay and clergy delegates to convention.

Follow this link to register: October 15: East Metro

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Parish Family Prayer List

Charlie R, David G, Diane R, Greg B, Holly, Jan G-T, Janet K, Janni K, Jeff W, Jeffrey C, Jim D, Karla C, Kathy S, Kimberly, Kevin O, Larry K, Lorna C, Marcella S, Marilyn K, Mark K, Michael M, Melissa S, Nancy H, Pat P, Rick S, and Members of the Armed Forces.

For those who are mourning.

Click the button or email prayer@stjohnwilderness to request prayers and to be added to the parish prayer list. The list is renewed monthly.

How can we pray for you? Click here to let us know.

Morning Prayer & Compline

Join us on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 8 AM for morning prayer and

Monday and Friday evenings at 8:30 PM for Compline.

Both prayer services are held via Google Meet. All are welcome.

Go here to find the Google Meet info for Morning Prayer & Compline
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The Collect

Grant us, Lord, not to be anxious about earthly things, but to love things heavenly; and even now, while we are placed among things that are passing away, to hold fast to those that shall endure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Readings for the Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost, Proper 20

Our current Health & Safety Protocols

  • St. John’s encourages all of its members to get vaccinated and boosted as soon as possible.
  • If one feels sick or has the typical symptoms of Covid-19, we ask you to worship with us online.
  • Masks are optional while inside all parish buildings for those who are boosted and vaccinated. For those who are unvaccinated and for your own protection, we recommend that you worship with us online or that you continue to wear your mask while inside our buildings. If conditions change and we experience another surge of Covid-19, we may have to alter our protocols and ask our members and guests to wear masks once again.
  • While seated in the Church or in the Parish Hall, we recommend that all maintain an appropriate physical distance from those outside of your household.
Visit our Website

St. John In The Wilderness Episcopal Church

2175 1st St. (Clark Ave. at 1st St.)

White Bear Lake, MN 55110-3462

1 (651) 429-5351

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