St. John’s Episcopal Church in St. Louis: a shining example of “resilience and the capacity to rebuild”

Newest in Transforming Churches, Changing the World series

[November 8, 2012] St. John’s Episcopal Church in Tower Grove, St. Louis, MO calls itself Historically Progressive. The rector adds to that, calling it “resilient.”

St. John’s, located in the Diocese of Missouri, is the focus of a new video in the groundbreaking series, Transforming Churches, Changing the World. Produced by the Episcopal Church Office of Communication, the video is available here or

In 2004, when the Rev. Teresa Danieley arrived at St. John’s, there were 20 members “in survival mode.” Less than a decade later, the church is a foundational member of the area, boasting a diverse congregation, home to a thriving Farmers Market which serves the surrounding neighborhood, and host to many community programs, including the Peace Meal Program and an immigrant and refugee women’s program.

Built in 1841, Danieley points to the altar which survived an 1896 tornado. This, she believes is a “symbol of resilience and capacity to rebuild.”

“We see time and time again with this series that congregations being faithful to their local contexts are attracting and retaining newcomers,” noted explained Mike Collins, Episcopal Church Manager, Multimedia Services. “St. John’s is no different. It’s a community full of families, younger people and those who are looking for a spiritual home.”

Transforming Churches, Changing the World
The purpose of the Transforming Churches, Changing the World video project is to present identifying characteristics of healthy churches with a focus on ministry and outreach.

Previous videos include Thad’s in Santa Monica CA (Diocese of Los Angeles), Christ Church, Philadelphia, PA (Diocese of Pennsylvania), Trinity Cathedral, Phoenix AZ (Diocese of Arizona), St Paul & the Redeemer, Chicago, IL (Diocese of Chicago), St. Jude Wantagh, NY (Diocese of Long Island), and St. Martin’s in the Desert, Pahrump, NV (Diocese of Nevada): here or

St John’s:
Diocese of Missouri:
The Episcopal Church:
On the web:
St. John’s Episcopal Church in St. Louis: a shining example of “resilience and the capacity to rebuild”



Lenten Reflection for Wed 2/27/2013

Christ the Saviour (Pantokrator), a 6th-centur...

Christ the Saviour (Pantokrator), a 6th-century encaustic icon from Saint Catherine’s Monastery, Mount Sinai. NB – slightly cut down – for full size see here (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



Psalm am: 72
pm: 119:73-96 Jeremiah 3:6-18
Romans 1:28-2:11 John 5:1-18


“For this reason, the Jews persecuted Jesus and sought to kill  him because he had done these things on the Sabbath
  —-John 5:1-18

There was a time when the world – believers and non believers – honored
Sunday as a day of worship and a day of rest. People believed that we are
supposed to “be good people” on Sundays (even if we did not subscribe to
this belief the other days of the week). Stores and business were closed on
Sundays. You did not go to work, you could not go shopping and there
were very few if any civic activities to attend – so people went to church.
Over time – laws, customs and traditions changed and gradually businesses
added Sunday shifts, stores and restaurants are open on Sundays and we
can now catch a Sunday matinée at any performance venue. Our hectic
lifestyle tells us that if we can’t get it done the other six days of the week,
we can still get it done on Sunday. We have learned to take advantage of
all that is available to us on Sundays. But does doing such make us less
than holy? If we are true believers and followers of Christ, we know that
effective ministry and worship is not just reserved for Sundays – but everyday
that we have an opportunity to serve, to give, to help and to love.
“Jesus said to them: My father is at work to this very day and I too am

Christyan Seay
Lover of the Arts




Published in: on February 27, 2013 at 12:29 am  Leave a Comment  
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Lenten Reflection for Tue 2/26/2013

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Dietrich Bonhoeffer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Psalm am: 61, 62
pm: 68 Jeremiah 2:1-13 Romans 1:16-25
John 4:43-54

“I can no longer condemn or hate a brother for whom I pray, no matter how much trouble he causes me. His face, that may have been hitherto strange and intolerable to me, is transformed in intercession into the countenance of a brother for whom Christ has died.”  —-Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Published in: on February 26, 2013 at 12:24 am  Leave a Comment  
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New Episcopal Resources – Stories of Transformation

English: Shield of the US Episcopal Church, co...

English: Shield of the US Episcopal Church, colors from The shield was adopted in 1940. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Stories of Transformation: Worship, Witness & Work in the Black Community
This important offering is a series of stories shared from the personal experience of the writers – a seminarian, theologians, parish priests, activists – and is a direct response to the conversation among the young people about the place and role of storytelling in the family


Prepared by the Episcopal Church Office for Lifelong Christian Formation and the Office of Black Ministries, Stories of Transformation is recommended for congregational use by clergy and lay leaders who want to approach faith formation work in the context of the black community, providing readers the opportunity to go deeper into the stories of the black community.


“These stories illustrate the rich heritage of a community with the tension between experiences of deep sadness and the abundance of joy inform how the black community celebrate their relationship with God,” noted the Rev. Canon Angela S. Ifill, Episcopal Church Missioner for Black Ministries “This is not just for those ministering in black community. It is a gift to all Christians giving us a significant opportunity to get a glimpse into the life of the black community.”


Stories of Transformation are available here or

For more information contact Ifill at


The Episcopal Church:


On the web:
New Episcopal Church resources focus on older adults, faith formation



Because you Asked – Prayers of the People

English: A prayer in the Western Wall.

English: A prayer in the Western Wall. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Prayers of the People


26 August  2012


Friends in Christ,
God invites us to hold the needs of our sisters and brothers
as dear to us as our own needs.
Loving our neighbors as ourselves,
we offer our thanksgivings and our petitions
on behalf of the church and the world.



For all people in their daily life and work, especially today we pray for those who are facing employment, foreclosure, and eviction or loss of health insurance;

For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for those who

are alone.


For this community of Uptown Harrisburg and those that struggle to make ends meet here, and especially today we pray for the people who came to St Paul’s door this week seeking our help

For our nation, and the world especially in the Sudan, Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan;

For all who work for justice, freedom, and peace.


For the just and proper use of your creation;

For the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression.


For all who are in danger, sorrow, grief, addiction, sickness or any kind of trouble;

For those who minister to the sick, the friendless, and the



For the peace and unity of the Church of God;

For all who proclaim the Gospel, and all who seek the Truth


For Katherine our Presiding Bishop, Nathan our Bishop, for Kate our Priest, Anne our Deacon, Sarah and Mark our Wardens and

For all bishops, priests and other ministers;

For all who serve God in his Church.


For the special needs and concerns of this congregation.


Especially we lift you before you Adrian that he may be surrounded by your light. Hear us Lord

For your mercy is great


For Steven  as he leaves on a deployment to Afghanistan.  Hear us Lord

For your mercy is great


For all those going through life transitions – new jobs, new schools, new homes, new directions, new babies, or even moving into the final stages of life – let them surrounded and comforted by your light and love. Hear us Lord.

For your mercy is great


For all who have experienced rape, incest or sexual abuse that they may find comfort and healing. Hear us Lord.

For your mercy is great


Look with compassion on all parents and children who are lost, stolen, pressed into military service, forced into slavery or have run away. Let not their hope be taken away. Grant them comfort and courage that their relationships  may be restored. Hear us Lord.

For your mercy is great


For all those needs we name before you in our hearts. Hear us Lord.

For your mercy is great



We thank you, Lord, for all the blessings of this life.




We thank you for our health and the health of our families. We will exalt you, O God our King;

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


We give thanks for Fred, Ben, Todd and for all who help us make a joyful noise unto the Lord. We will exalt you, O God our King;

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


We give thanks for teachers, bus drivers, crossing guards, cafeteria works, janitors and all who care for our children each day. We will exalt you, O God our King

 And praise your Name for ever and ever.


For you are a God of abundant love and covenant faithfulness who brings us new mercies every morning. We will exalt you. O God our King

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


For other blessings and thanksgivings that are too personal to speak aloud but that we name before you in our hearts. We will exalt you, O God our King.

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


We pray for all who have died, that they may have a place in

your eternal kingdom. Especially those listed as our remembrances for August



Lord, let your loving-kindness be upon them;

Who put their trust in you.


Hear our prayers, God of power,
and through the ministry of your Son
free us from the grip of the tomb,
that we may desire you as the fullness of life
and proclaim your saving deeds to all the world. Amen.


Published in: on February 25, 2013 at 10:55 am  Comments (1)  
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The Wailing Wall

English: Wailing Wall Jerusalem 2011

English: Wailing Wall Jerusalem 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Wailing Wall is the name for the Western Wall at the foot of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the only remaining portion of the Temple Courtyard. Jews have been visiting the Wailing Wall for over 300 years to pray, to meditate, to morn, and to place their written prayers on slips of paper into the cracks and crevasses of the wall.  In the Chapel we have placed our own version of a Wailing Wall.  Built and used by New Hope Community during Advent, their prayers have now become the chain that hangs on the wall. You are encouraged today and throughout Lent to write or draw your prayers and tuck them into a spot on the wall. For Easter Vigil we will offer up all the prayers of both communities.

“Change” We “Can” Believe In



As a Lenten Discipline, the children of St Paul’s challenge us all to a program
called “Change We Can Believe In.” As stewards of the environment and our
resources, they ask us to take an empty can and at the end of each day in Lent


Empty Can

Empty Can (Photo credit: spike55151)


deposit your loose change in it and bring the can to church each week. They will
collect it and at the conclusion of the Lenten season, use it to buy Giant gift cards
that support the ministries of St Paul’s. The cards will then become available for
the rector’s discretionary fund to feed those in need. The collected cans will be recycled to
protect this “fragile earth, our island home. “





Lenten Reflection for Mon 2/25/2013

Psalm am: 56, 57, 58
pm: 64, 65 Jeremiah 1:11-19
Romans 1:1-15 John 4:27-42

Verse 29
Come, see a man, which told me all things that even I did; is not
this the Christ?  —-John 4: 27-42

This is a source of inspiration for all women: that we are called to be evangelists. Jesus reached out to a foreign woman, knowing that she would tell others.

We women spread the word when we bring our children to church, when we teach them to pray, to be mindful of the feeling of others.

We are evangelists when we pray for others, work as volunteers in and out of the church. We support our churches financially, so that they can continue to evangelize.
Hettie S. Love
Wife, Mother, Grandmother, Volunteer, Traveler, Book Lover

Published in: on February 25, 2013 at 10:02 am  Leave a Comment  
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The “Breakfast “Club” Tradition Continues

Uptown Chicago Grill (formerly Da Pits)

@ 2nd & Maclay Streets

9:30 am

Prompted by a question following worship on Sunday, the answer is. “Yes, the Breakfast Club continues.” Since early 2011 a loose collection of St Paul‘s members and friends regularly eat breakfast at Uptown Chicago Grill. 

Not actually a club, but St Paul’s members, families and friends meeting for good food and lively conversation.  No agendas – no meetings!  Bring your family and friends along – all are welcome.  Start out your busy Weekends with a great breakfast in a friendly atmosphere.

Most Saturdays between 9:30 – 11:30 am  you’ll find two or three neighborhood St Paul’s members eating at Uptown Chicago Grill, and you are welcome to breakfast with us any time it fits in your schedule. Just tell the staff you are from St. Paul.  They’ve come to expect us. There is always a table waiting. Hope to see you there.

Uptown Chicago Grill website:

Some Reviews:

Lenten Reflection for Sun 2/24/2013

Psalm am: 24, 29
pm: 8, 84 Jeremiah 1:1-10
1 Corinthians 3:11-23 Mark 3:31-4:9

While Jeremiah was still in his mother’s womb the Lord ordained him to be a prophet.  —-Jeremiah 1:1-10

At an early age, Jeremiah knew that he was called to be a prophet. But, because he was so young, he felt inadequate to fulfill his destiny. He struggled with this,yet the Lord told him to go and preach repentance and proclaim God’s love for them. God told him that He would put His words in his mouth and He would go with him whenever he spoke. He had to preach harsh and difficult messages and he did so through tears. As a result of his compassion for the people and his love for the Lord, Jeremiah became known as the “weeping prophet.”
Jeremiah was obedient and he preached to the nations. Many times he delivered his message with a heavy heart because the message grieved his spirit and he felt that it also grieved the Lord’s spirit. However, when the Lord called Jeremiah for this ministry, He also gave him a gift – “The Gift of His Presence.”
Veronica Grier,
Humble servant of God, wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, niece, cousin, God-mother, loyal friend.