To be an Episcopalian or not to be an Episcopalian, is that the question? As part of our vestry meeting, we are reading and discussing a book titled "People of the Way, Renewing Episcopal Identity". Our readings so far about the history and legacy of the Episcopal Church has included discussion of how churches have evolved and changed over time. Part of this change includes all churches, like St. John's, trying to define the mission of the church, expand the congregation and be relevant in today's society.
Let me use some questions (thanks to Mother Cosman who used these headings to organize the activities and programs of our parish on the back of the bulletin)! In using two of these questions we may be able to see why we are Episcopalians, as well as what is also important to our faith as Christians;
Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons and loving your neighbor as yourself?
Will you strive for justice and peace among all people and respect the dignity of every human being?
So the answer to the question is not to be just an Episcopalian but to strive to be a good person, a Christian who respects all and devotes oneself to making the world a better place.
Jeff Linton Vestry
Transforming the World with God's Love
During the Easter season I am reminded of the power of God's love. God loves us so much that he was willing to give his son Jesus to a broken and flawed world. He endured suffering and death to bring us that message of love and on Easter showed us that love that forgives all has the power to save us all.
God's has empowered all of us to transform this broken world through the spreading of his love. We all have experienced that transformation; in big ways and in small ones. Over the spring and summer we invite you to share your stories of God's transforming love by decorating hearts that will be part of a community work of art on the garden walkway wall. This is a project for both children and adults.
Think about these three questions: Where have you taken God's love into the world? Where have you received God's love? Where have you seen others share God's love? You can use pictures, words or both to illustrate that love on a heart. You can use paints, crayons, photos, glitter... anything you can think of. Take as many hearts as you want and feel free to share this project with friends and family.
Godly Play, Red Door Youth & Rhythms of Grace Updates
Godly Play: After our yearly story on Easter Eggs April 8th, our Godly Play class will be focusing on our stories called, "Seeing Jesus in a New Way" during April. These are the stories of the appearances of the post Resurrection Jesus by his followers. We will continue in May with comparisons of the Good Shepherd and World Communion and stories of the Apostles and the early Christian Communities.
Red Door Youth: Our youth group is open to all acolyte age preteens and teens. We will meet Thursday, April 26th at 4:00PM in the parish hall. We are asking for names and address of all of our college student members. Please email Linda at: email@example.com with any particular treat/item they love to have/eat. We will be making exam care boxes to send to them.
Rhythms of Grace Confirmation Class: Our Rhythms confirmation class is in it's final few worship experiences and we are awaiting a date for our confirmation. Many of you have asked to know that so you can support these young men so we will keep you posted as to time and date.
Linda Snyder Christian Formation Specialist
UPCOMING CALENDAR EVENTS TO NOTE:
APRIL/MAY/JUNE @ ST. JOHN'S
Open Door Soup Kitchen May 19th at St. James' Winsted Red Door Youth - April 26that 4:15pm Vestry Meeting - April 26th following Eucharist Quarterly Parish Update Meeting - April 29th at 11am. Please join us. May Collection - We are in need of St. John's Little Free Pantry supplies.
Addiction: What Can We Do About It? Forum, April 28 at Christ Church Cathedral, Hartford. Join the Faith Behind Bars and Beyond Ministry Network for their annual conference at Christ Church Cathedral in Hartford on April 28 8:30 a.m. - 1:45 p.m. Panel discussions, short video presentation, lunch conversations, presentations on self care, loved-ones support, and more! Please register for by sending email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Invisible Patients - Documentary by Candy Flaherty's daughter Jessica MacLeod. It tells the story of Jessica, a nurse practitioner and 4 patients she cares for in Evansville, Indiana - May 20th at 11:00am. Please RSVP to Candy at email@example.com.
Annual Northwest Region Convocation - Saturday, June 23rd, at White Memorial in Litchfield. Everyone is invited for our 2nd Annual Northwest Region Convocation. More information to follow as we get closer to the event.
Open Door Soup Kitchen - Join our team for May 19th at St. James in Winsted. (9:00am-1:00pm)
Bell Ringers - sign up to toll the tower bell for worship to begin our 9am worship.
Coffee Hour Volunteers - Show hospitality by hosting our social time together following worship. Co-hosting with another person or family is encouraged.
GARDEN SCHOLARSHIP - Accepting candidates for the 2018 St. John's Garden Scholarship as of March 15th, see detailed info regarding the scholarship posted on the bulletin boards and call Norma Pappalardo 860-944-5541 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to sign-up to become eligible.