Newsletter for April 19, 2018

Sunday, April 22
Fourth Sunday of Easter
8:00 a.m. Spoken Holy Eucharist
9:30 a.m. Christian education for children and youth, Faith Forum for adults
10:30 a.m. Choral Holy Eucharist
3:00 p.m. Springtime Chamber Music Concert (see details below)
Preacher: The Reverend William J. Eakins
  • Child care will be provided from 10:15 a.m. to noon. There will be Christian education for children and youth at 9:30, and Word Alive during the service. Middle and high school youth will meet in the St. John’s Room instead of downstairs due to basement flooding from Monday’s storm. The basement is now dry but some clean-up remains to be done.
  • The Faith Forum will be an update from Bill Eakins on St. John’s new community garden project—see details below.
Click here for a service preview – Besides a preview of the service music and bulletin for upcoming services, this link also provides access to sermon texts, podcasts and live-stream service videos.
In collaboration with a local non-profit, Jessie’s Community Garden, we are in the beginning stages of starting our own community garden. Using the ample space south of the sexton’s home behind our church, we will be planting seedlings in six raised beds in mid-May. The beds are a generous gift from one of our parish families, for which we are most grateful.
Come to this Sunday’s 9:30 Faith Forum to learn more about this exciting project. We will also have a garden blessing immediately after our 10:30 a.m. service on Sunday, May 6. (Note: This is a date change from earlier announcements.)
Whether you’d like to take on an ongoing job, such as scheduling volunteers or helping with publicity, or spend a few hours planting, weeding, watering and harvesting, we need your participation! Sign up to help at the Faith Forum or coffee hour, or contact the parish office.
Congratulations to our 15 confirmands
Sunday, April 15, was a wonderful occasion, with Bishop Ian Douglas here to preach, celebrate, meet with the Vestry, and confirm 15 members of St. John’s. Please congratulate these newly confirmed young men and women, who give so much to the church as acolytes, choristers and enthusiastic participants in our Christian education and youth ministry programs.
Spring 2018 Music at the Red Door Events
A Springtime Chamber Concert on April 22 (this Sunday!) at 3 p.m. features the Fa-Re-La duo (Tanya Anisimova on cello, Pi-Hsun Shih on piano).
The St. John’s Youth and Adult Choirs will sing Choral Evensong on April 29 at 5:00 p.m.
The Whiffenpoofs from Yale University, the world’s oldest a cappella group, will perform on Friday, May 4 at 7:30 p.m.
The next Pipes Alive! organ concert on May 6 at 12:30 p.m. features Ezequiel Melendez from the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford. A light soup lunch will be available for those who stay after church to attend the concert. The final Pipes Alive! concert on June 3 will feature Susan Carroll from Asylum Hill Congregational Church.
All Music at the Red Door events are free and open to the public, and donations are accepted. Please come and invite a friend.
Click on photo to see a promo video for the April 22 chamber music concert.
An important announcement from the Director of Religious Education
Dear St. John’s Families and Students,
I am writing to share that at the end of this program year I will be retiring as the Director of Religious Education (DRE). Rev. Susan Pinkerton is working with our wardens and the Vestry to form a DRE search committee as a first step in hiring a new DRE in the near future.
We will continue to offer quality Christian education in the meantime and we look forward to your help in doing so. It’s exciting for St. John’s to begin a new chapter – as one door closes, another opens!
On a personal level, I have been a member of St. John’s since 1998. This is our church home. The Babbitts are not leaving St. John’s! But as my oldest daughter, Christine, is headed to college this fall, I am looking forward to enjoy an occasional weekend college visit!
Please mark your calendars to attend our listening sessions about our children’s and youth programs. We want to hear from you!
Weds. April 25th 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Youth Program in the St. John’s Room
Sun. April 29th 11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Children’s Program in the Christian Ed wing
Sun. May 6th 11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Children’s Program in the Christian Ed wing
Janet Babbitt
Women’s book discussion, Tuesday afternoons
Women Together, a fellowship group for women from local Episcopal churches, will begin a new four-week series on April 24. The series will feature the Gospel of John and The Only Necessary Thing: Living a Prayerful Life by Henri Nouwen. Women Together meets on Tuesdays from 3 to 4:15 p.m. in the Reception Room at St. John’s. New members are always welcome! For more information, contact Sarah Kieffer at
Upcoming Faith Forums on April 29 and May 6
On Sunday, April 29 at 9:30 a.m., Professor Kristine Larsen of Central Connecticut State University will share a unique piece of St. John’s history. As author of Women Who Popularized Geology in the 19th Century, Professor Larsen studied the life of Delia W. Godding, St. John’s first church school teacher as well as a poet, artist and science writer. Come learn more about Ms. Godding’s legacy here at St. John’s and beyond.
On Sunday, May 6 at 9:30 a.m., Rabbi Stephen Fuchs, head rabbi at Congregation Beth Israel until his retirement, will preach at both services and also speak at the 9:30 Faith Forum. His Faith Forum presentation will focus on his latest book Who Created God? and Other Essays. He will have books available to purchase and have signed.
Blessing Bag donations: Blessing Bags are small bags of necessities that we offer to people in need who come to St. John’s looking for help. We are always in need of the following:
  • Small size toiletries: Toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, body wash, soap, deodorant, wet wipes
  • Non-perishable single-serving snacks: Fruit sauce, dried fruit, trail mix, granola bars, cookies, crackers, candy bars, small bottles of water or juice.
  • Clothing accessories for both men and women: Durable socks, hats and gloves in cold weather
Please leave Blessing Bag donations in the marked bin in Hubbard Hall.
Food Pantry donations: While the first Sunday of the month is our “official” collection day for food donations, you may bring them in any Sunday. The food is delivered once a month to the Grace Seventh Day Adventist Food Pantry on Prospect Avenue. They particularly need protein sources (such as peanut butter and tuna), dry cereal, and canned fruit and vegetables. They also have limited refrigerated space for donations of fresh fruit and vegetables. If you’d like to donate fresh produce, please let Ellen in the parish office know so that we can make sure that a St. John’s volunteer can deliver it to the food pantry ASAP. Please leave non-perishable food donations in the wagon in the back of the church.
Mark your calendar for these upcoming community events
Camp Washington Open House, April 22 at 3 p.m. Check out our beautiful diocesan camp in Litchfield County at this Sunday’s open house and cookout. For more information about the Open House and summer camp, visit
“Talking about Faith and Politics” at the Connecticut Forum, April 25, 7:30 p.m. at the Wadsworth Atheneum. Get more information and purchase tickets here.
Syrian Ma’amoul Cookie Making Class, May 5, 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at St. James’s Episcopal Church: Syrian refugee Ghosoun Alansari will teach you how to make traditional ma’amoul cookies. A suggested donation of $25 covers the class along with tea, a cookie mold and extra dough to bake at home. RSVP by emailing by May 2.
Grace Episcopal Church Dance Party: Our Episcopal sisters and brothers at Grace Episcopal (55 New Park Avenue) are celebrating their 150th anniversary with a dance party on May 5 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. The Ray Gonzalez Salsa Orchestra will provide music, and the Glastonbury Arthur Murray Dance Studio will provide dance instruction. All ages are welcome, and light refreshments will be served.
Pray for St. John’s parishioner and choir member Cait Semanie, who began a hike of the Appalachian Trail on Saturday! While she has had to endure our cold and damp “spring” weather and waterproof matches that didn’t quite live up to their name, she reports that so far the hike is going well.
Categories: Blog