Blog: We Gather

Category: Uncategorized

Putting Theology into Practice

Christine Mortlock, minister to children  and families, writes about her experience  as a first-year student in Education for Ministry. E very Tuesday evening at six o’clock, a group of people gather in the fourth-floor conference room at St. John’s for Education for Ministry (EfM), a four-year certificate program started at Sewanee in 1975. We share a snack and fellowship; we wrestle with our readings and challenging theological questions. Our literacy... Read More
at Monday, January 14, 2019
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Finding Home... Not a Moment Too Soon

An Epiphany reflection by the Reverend Mary Mackin In T. S. Eliot’s “The Journey of the Magi,” one of the wise men recalls a journey to a far country that he made in his younger days. “'A cold coming we had of it, Just the worst time of year for a journey, and such a long journey: the ways deep and the weather sharp, the very dead of winter.’” It was “a hard time,” he says, but they arrived “not a moment too soon.” I... Read More
at Monday, January 14, 2019
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Christmas is Coming!

As Advent draws to a close and we approach the celebration of Christ's nativity, be with us for our special services starting this Sunday! Children’s Christmas Pageant Sunday, December 23 at 5 p.m. followed by a hot-chocolate-and-cookies reception hosted by the youth! Christmas Eve ~ Monday, December 24   4 p.m. Family Holy Eucharist, Rite II * 5:40 p.m. Festival Music for Christmas Eve 6 p.m. Festival Holy Eucharist, Rite II * 9:40 p.m. Festival Music... Read More
at Tuesday, December 18, 2018
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Youth@Convention, 2019

My first Youth at Council (called Convention since the diocese has changed the name of the annual meeting) was January of 2002. I was in eighth grade and had no idea what to expect. Born and raised in Lynchburg, I was aware of Roanoke and had come down for family reunions in some of my earliest years, but was generally unfamiliar with the city. I never anticipated after my first experience with a diocesan youth event that some 15 years later I would be the minister to youth at the hosting site,... Read More
at Friday, December 7, 2018
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Worth the Wait

As we continue our journey through the season of Advent, the Reverend Whitney Burton reflects on the joys that come with anticipating. On a Saturday in July, my boyfriend Steven talked me into going on a work errand with him. I didn’t want to, I had better things to do, but he guilted me into it. So we headed to Lexington for the Hot Air Balloon Festival, to tag along with Steven for work; or so I thought. When we got there, it became clear that we were actually going up in one... Read More
at Thursday, December 6, 2018
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Outreach Challenge 2018: Help Us Meet a $20,000 Matching Grant

We’ve nearly reached the end of our 126th year of ministry from our corner of downtown Roanoke. For the last 12 of those years, a generous and anonymous parishioner has promised to match all contributions to the St. John’s outreach fund up to $20,000. So we extend that invitation to you! Whatever you give - $1 to $1,000, and anywhere in between or above – will be doubled. That means your gift has a little more power to change lives here and away. Here’s a look at... Read More
at Wednesday, December 5, 2018
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Fine Wines Supports Blood Drives at St. John's

In addition to providing wonderful fellowship for seniors at St. John’s, the Fine Wines are also committed to serving God and our neighbor. Thus, as a group, we will begin a new service project - helping with the bimonthly American Red Cross blood drive held at St. John’s every eight weeks on Wednesdays from 12 noon until 6 p.m. Coordinator Harriet Robison needs people to provide food and to serve as greeters and hosts to the donors. Those who can provide food are asked to make... Read More
at Wednesday, December 5, 2018
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Snow Days...

Winter seems to have arrived a little sooner than expected this year, and so we're publishing this reminder of our winter weather policies. If Roanoke City Schools are canceled, our offices will automatically be closed until 10 a.m. Prior to 10:00, we will make the decision whether to open for the remainder of the day, and will send that information out via social media and Constant Contact. As always, stay safe! Good sites for checking closures: The Roanoke Times WSLS Channel... Read More
at Tuesday, December 4, 2018
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It's Poinsettia Time!

Remember or honor a loved one with a poinsettia this Christmas! Make your check payable to St. John’s Episcopal Church for $20, and send to the church, attention Lisa Cayse. Order form can be found online at stjohnsroanoke.org under “Upcoming Events” (click on the link here ). Print and mail to PO Box 257, Roanoke VA 24002. Read More
at Tuesday, December 4, 2018
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Vestry nominees, 2019

Sunday, December 2 we host our annual meeting, with the Reverend Eric Long's state of the parish address and voting for the 2019 vestry slate (there will also be an opportunity to vote during the 5:00 Gathering service). Please be with us in the parish hall at 9 a.m.! Following is our slate of vestry nominees. Thomas Bass Works in sales and marketing for the oil industry At St. John’s for 13 years; Sunday School teacher, ushering team; board chair for Family Service of... Read More
at Tuesday, November 27, 2018
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The Legacies of Family

The Reverend David Olson reflects on our saints that have gone before,  our stewardship of what they have left behind and what we leave to the future. Before I left, my grandmother handed me a clear plastic bag, I could see that inside of it was a large amount of tightly folded papers that looked like they were starting to fall apart, the paper flaking away and collecting at the bottom of the bag. “These are for you,” she said. “I think you will appreciate... Read More
at Wednesday, October 31, 2018
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St. John’s Outreach is About Joy

This reflection by Gates DeHart is one of a series of videos this stewardship season focusing on the ministries that St. John’s parishioners make possible through their gifts and resources. You can watch these videos on our YouTube channel . For the past 25 years, I have been coordinating a program for homeless families here at St. John’s under the aegis of Family Promise of Greater Roanoke. Every three months, four families comprising of no more than 14 individuals, spend a... Read More
at Friday, October 5, 2018
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Becoming Stewards of Life

A reflection from the Reverend Eric Long   "The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.”  –Genesis 2:15   The day before Hurricane Florence hit, a parishioner came into my office, someone who owns property directly in the path of the storm. One would think she would be consumed with worry about her vacation home. Instead, I had to bring it up, after which she waved it off with indifference. Many... Read More
at Monday, October 1, 2018
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CYP and T.R.U.E. Receive Grants

The Kiwanis Club of Roanoke has awarded grants totaling more than $2,000 to two of St. John’s ministries. Community Youth Program (CYP) received $1,250 to cover the costs of hosting the Kids’ Farmer’s Market. “We held three farmer’s markets on-site during the 2017-2018 school year,” says CYP executive director Jackie Smith. “Each kid took home 10 pounds of fruits and veggies – they use play money to buy the items from volunteer... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Sunday, September 30, 2018
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Perspectives Urban and Personal: New Books with Local Connections

At a time when it seems increasingly difficult to separate the political and the religious and when friends and neighbors are polarized along partisan lines, In the Midst of the City: The Gospel and God’s Politics collects sermons and essays both political and religious by former St. John’s rector Barkley S. Thompson, now dean of Christ Church Cathedral in Houston, Texas. The book, released by Bright Sky Publishing, views politics, patriotism and national concerns through the... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Saturday, September 29, 2018
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CYP: Two New Roles, Two Familiar Faces

Community Youth Program (CYP) has undergone some staffing changes as former executive director Kathleen McEvoy heads to graduate school in Georgia. Jackie Smith, previously serving as program coordinator, steps into the role of executive director, and we see a familiar face back with us in the position of program coordinator – Kenny Nguyen, who worked with CYP in 2016-2017 through AmeriCorps. “After his year of service  with CYP as an AmeriCorps volunteer he took a job... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Friday, September 28, 2018
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Announcing: Music on the Corner, 2018-2019!

The 2018-2019 season of Music on the Corner has been announced - five concerts between October and May, including guest conductor and composer Dan Locklair for our annual All Saints’ concert on November 2. We’ll precede that concert with an informal talk and Q&A with Locklair, and the Saturday rehearsal on October 27 will be an open rehearsal, a great opportunity for composers, conductors, music teachers and students to experience this work. The season: October 5: Blow It... Read More
at Monday, September 17, 2018
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Fall Classes: Practicing Faith in Our World

Every day, I read the news. I scan through six or eight news sites at my desk, wanting to stay informed personally but also wanting to understand what people are experiencing, seeing and hearing. There are so many issues out there, important issues that need to be talked about, but it also seems to have become increasingly difficult for people to do that in civil and patient ways. Events and emotions are supercharged. Conversations are angry and loud and people from all sides of these issues... Read More
at Monday, September 17, 2018
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It started with Handel...

A history of Music on the Corner... The vision began with a well-loved choral work, Handel’s  Messiah , in Advent of 2000. In a community of talented musicians, St. John’s Episcopal Church, in downtown Roanoke on the corner of Elm and Jefferson, founded a music series with that legendary oratorio. Nineteen seasons and 91 concerts later, Music on the Corner has deepened the musical fabric of Roanoke. Music on the Corner brings to rich life the music of Brahms, Puccini,... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Wednesday, September 12, 2018
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Seeking Sunday School Teachers!

Are you interested in teaching Sunday School at St. John’s? We are looking for a few new teachers to add to our great roster! The time commitment is low – you teach about once every four to six weeks. This ministry is a wonderful way to share your love of God with our children. Spark House’s Whirl curriculum clearly guides you through the lessons and crafts, and another adult will always be with you in the classroom. If interested, please email Chrissy Mortlock, Minister to Children and... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Sunday, September 2, 2018
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Calling All Young Singers!

Calling all kids! The St. John's Music Academy (K-5) and the St. John's Singers (grades 6-12) are getting ready to launch their new year. Do you have children/teens or grandchildren interested in music? Here's more information on both programs – register now for this great year-round program of learning, creativity and singing in worship. The St. John's Music Academy is for children in grades K-5 and meets on Wednesdays afternoons, 4:30-5:45. A valuable part of children's... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Wednesday, August 15, 2018
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A Final Report from General Convention 79

St. John's parishioner Billy Kingery was one of our diocesan deputies for The Episcopal Church's 79th General Convention in Austin, Texas this year. He reflected on his nine days there for the August Record : This is my sixth General Convention and each has been different – different challenges, different opportunities. This year our deputation had old and new faces, but still a sense of collegiality, respect and, most of all, the desire to listen to each other and hear what each valued... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Sunday, August 12, 2018
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Seeing More when We Slow Down

I'm a trail runner. Which means that when I am able to find the time to run, I like to run on trails – roots, rocks, dirt, hills and all.  The woods are where I find peace and I use running down a trail as a way to clear my mind and exhaust my body. It's how I keep myself sane in the midst of a typically insane schedule. So I'm a trail runner – but not today.  Today I am walking down this trail – slowly walking down this trail, I might add. I can see two of my children out ahead of me... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Sunday, August 12, 2018
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August 19: Back to School Donations and Backpack Blessings

The kids who are part of the Community Youth Program and Congregations in Action communities need supplies for back to school – on Sunday morning, August 19, please bring donations – see the list below. Also on that day, we'll be blessing backpacks – kids, bring along yours and you'll receive your very own tag with a prayer on the back of it! August 19 is the day of our parish picnic. Come to the 10:00 for blessing of the backpacks, school donations and to meet our new minister to... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Wednesday, August 8, 2018
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General Convention: Making History with the Holy Spirit

Billy Kingery, a parishioner at St. John's, is a deputy to General Convention this year, and sends this reflection from Austin, Texas. The Holy Spirit has been soaring these past six days. She’s been swooping down and whooshing us up, sometimes brushing us gently with the softness of her feathers and sometimes gripping us fiercely with the sharpness of her toes. I felt the brush and the grip during this General Convention as we witnessed history and we’ve made history. And I’ve seen it... Read More
Posted by Cara Modisett at Thursday, July 12, 2018
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