Download and read your copy of our newsletter, featuring the full holiday schedule.
Download and read your copy of our newsletter, featuring the full holiday schedule.
At Holy Communion, we follow University City Schools for weather closures. When the schools close, so do we.
Please be safe out there, and keep those who struggle to find shelter in your prayers.
Due to inclement weather, all schools and offices will be closed November 15, 2018. All staff members are excused, however, all custodians/maintenance are to report as assigned. All activities are also canceled including child care and the 7 p.m. Board of Education meeting. pic.twitter.com/Ga8BbvCRcR
— UCity Schools (@UCitySchools) November 15, 2018
Christmas is one of the Church’s great feasts. We celebrate God’s decision to dwell with us, to come among us in the person of Jesus. This year, we will mark the whole season of Christmas with special services. Join us as we celebrate.
Join us for a special music festival service Sunday December 16. Our choir and clergy will lead us in lessons and carols for the season as we turn from Advent toward Christmas. Read more.
Because Christmas Eve this year is a Sunday morning, we have a morning service. We’re taking this chance to observe a Blue(s) Christmas. We’ll have a Blue Christmas service this morning as comfort for those away from family or those missing loved ones no longer with us.
All children are invited to participate in our pageant. Children who want to participate are encouraged to come a little early (about 4:45p). The older children who are regulars at Holy Communion will lead the telling of the story, and any child that arrives (and who wants to participate) will be issued angel or shepherd costumes to join the holy band around the manger during the service. Read more and sign up for the pageant here.
On the Eve of the Nativity we gather in the dark night to hear the news that Christ has been born. The Choir and guest musicians will present Mårten Jansson’s festive Missa Popularis (which our choir gave its North American premiere this past Spring) and we will sing Silent Night by candlelight in the darkened church. Join us as we mark the coming of Emmanuel, God with us.
Christmas day we have a single Christmas day service at 10:30am. There will be a simple spoken Eucharist.
We will have our regular schedule of Sunday services at 8am and 10:30am. Adult Education and Sunday School will remain in recess.
On January 7 we resume our regular schedule of Sunday Services. Christian Education returns with an Intergenerational activity with crafts and breakfast focusing on the visitation of the Wise Men. The 10:30 service includes a procession of the Magi and their gifts, following the star. After the 10:30a service, the children get to break open the star (piñata).
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As we prepare for Christmas, we are mindful that many in our city are facing cold weather and difficult family circumstances. There are two gift drives going on concurrently at Holy Communion.
We are especially encouraging anyone coming to our Advent Party on December 2 to make a donation to one of the drives.
All gifts need to be turned in by December 16. Please turn gift cards into the parish office, or place them in an envelope in the offering plate.
You can find baskets ready to receive gifts in the main entryway. Please do not wrap the gifts, to make work easier for our sorters. Thank you for helping brighten this holiday season for someone in need.
Thank you to all who participated in our feasibility study. The results were strong. Our consultants remarked that the participation rate in the survey and the willingness to participate were far higher than they usually see for parishes. The health of our congregation and its generosity continue to impress! Based on the strong results, the vestry has voted to move forward with a capital campaign.
Based on the results of the study, the vestry also has determined to adjust the goal of the campaign. We tested a goal of $1.8 million. We have set a primary goal for the campaign of $823,000. While the goal we set is lower than the goal we tested, we also view this as a win. It is far better to set a realistic goal than to reach beyond our means. In the coming weeks we will be meeting with our architect and engineers to talk about scale and to select the projects we will be able to fund.
We anticipate launching the public phase of the campaign in early 2019, in time for the celebrations of our church’s 150th anniversary. In the meantime we will be building the capital campaign committee and growing the building committee, both of which will work with the vestry on the project. Thank you to all who volunteered to serve. We will need many volunteers to make this campaign a success!
You can read the executive summary of the feasibility study results by clicking here. (Full copies are available, on request, in the parish office).
You can watch below and see the slides up close by clicking here.
We are looking for angels, shepherds, and friendly beasts for our 2018 Christmas pageant. Sign up your children, grandchildren, (you can even invite your neighbors’ children to participate).
The pageant will be held during our 5pm service on Christmas Eve. All children will be invited to participate as they arrive at church, but if you can arrive 10 minutes or more before 5pm, it would be helpful.
Sign up today to let us know you’re coming!
The Season of Advent is a time of waiting, watching, and expectation. In counter to the cultural season of frantic preparation for Christmas by buying, shopping, and rushing, Advent invites us to slow down. This season asks us to think about our hopes and dreams for the world.
Our rector has written a short practical guide to advent on his blog. You can check that out by clicking here.
Follow the hashtag #adventword on social media for a digital Advent Calendar, you can even tag your own images with the daily word. This year the online advent calendar is being sponsored by the Society of St. John The Evangelist and Virginia Theological Seminary.
Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury speaks about Advent in the video below:
Our rector preached Sunday October 28, in response to the hate crime in Pittsburgh, the threats of “erasing” the trans community, and racism toward those who would claim asylum from Central America.
This year Holy Communion has set a goal of learning from and advocating with our trans/gender expansive community. We are currently working to develop programming and reaching out to potential partners in our region. There are already members of our congregation who identify as trans or nonbinary, but this conversation is new to many of us. Learning language and behavior that helps more fully welcome folks who identify beyond the binary will take work. Learning to stand up with the community will take commitment. We will do this work.
We will do this work because we believe every human being is created in the image and likeness of God. Too often faith is used as a reason for exclusion, for discrimination. Most importantly, we will do this work because our kids’ lives depend on this work. Our neighbors lives depend on our voices. Suicide rates in the trans community are among the highest of any group.
Jesus told his friends, “I came that you might have life, and have it in abundance.” At Holy Communion we believe diversity is an expression of God’s abundance. That is true of race. It is true of color. And it is true of gender expression. Diversity of gender expression and identity is a gift from God. Trans people are loved by God. Trans lives matter. Trans lives are a witness to the abundant love of God.
As we are working to develop our own programming for Holy Communion. We encourage folks to engage with Metro Trans Umbrella Group:
TransEpiscopal is a group of transgender and allied Episcopalians dedicated to fostering the full embrace of trans and nonbinary people, and our loved ones within the Episcopal Church and to inspiring faith-based advocacy for trans justice in the wider world. Their site holds all sorts of resources for people of faith to learn more about the inclusion of gender expansive folks.
In Latin America, the dead are remembered – and celebrated – in a unique way every year. Dia de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead) is celebrated on November 2, All Soul’s Day, with colorful, joyous altars filled with mementos and photos of the beloved to honor and remember those who have died.
Over the next weeks at Holy Communion, we will be decorating the chapel altar as we prepare to celebrate the Feast of All Saints and Dia De Los Muertos.
All are encouraged to bring a photo or other memento of a loved one who has died and place it on the altar. You are also welcome to light a candle in this special place. and take a few minutes to rest and remember all those important people who have graced our lives for such a short time.
We’ll bless the “ofrenda” on All Saints Sunday, November 4 during both services. Join us that Sunday at 9:15am for an intergenerational formation activity, exploring the roots of the holiday and finishing our decorations.