Report from the Priest-in-Charge for the Year 2020

 

2020 was challenging for everyone. At St. John's, it was also a year of accomplishment.

 

After two years of flux, we stabilized our clergy circumstance, including adding lay leaders of Morning Prayer and providing pastoral care.

 

The addition of monthly Morning Prayer brings back a dimension to our worship that went missing after the 1979 Book of Common Prayer came out. It is and will be a welcome restoration. We "do give thee most humble and hearty thanks."

 

In worship, we instituted a two-pronged response to the virus that we believe is unique to St. John’s. First, we developed an in-person liturgy, one that is both a full eucharist with consecrated host, and includes many strict protocols to assure safety. We added a soloist to sing our music for us.

 

Second, we upgraded our audio visual technology to provide top-quality live streaming and recording. As a result of this both/and approach, our total "attendance" grew to beyond pre-pandemic levels.

 

We offered a new Wednesday Bible Study program.

 

We elected a new Junior Warden.

 

We restored our wonderful Meneely bell to working order; we had our magnificent Schantz pipe organ tuned; we repainted the narthex; we did extensive repair and refinishing on the exterior; we did landscaping in the memorial garden.

 

As importantly as anything, we maintained our longstanding commitment to substantial outreach to six different agencies serving those in need.

 

So, last year, we did more than duck for cover. This year we are looking to add to the Vestry; rebuild the website; replace the road signage on Routes 41 and 44; grow our outreach commitment; as COVID circumstances permit, revive our Healing Service; restore and refresh our coffee hour.

 

We don’t know what 2021 will bring, but I am excited. What makes St. John’s so special, and what makes me so happy to be here, is the spirit of its people. People who care deeply about this place and each other and serving God. You all are a joy.

 

God bless,

Rev. Chris

 

 

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