The Epistle - Thursday, June 25

Read the latest issue of the church newsletter: The Epistle - June 25, 2020

A Message from the Rector, Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Dear St. John’s Family,

The more things change, the more they stay the same, it seems. Both change and continuity seem to be before us right now. Some parts of life are moving back toward normal right now, with restaurants, hair salons, and retail stores get back to business. Some Christians are gathering for worship again, particularly our Roman Catholic neighbors. Plexiglass shields will be between their priests and people at Communion, and all will be wearing masks as they gather in gyms and halls, six feet apart. There are hints in their practice as to what we may have to be content with when our time to gather comes.

As it stands now, our bishop has suspended in-person worship through May 31 and will consider options for enlarging in-person worship when DHEC has posted 15 consecutive days of declining numbers of positive COVID-19 tests. We have had some days of consecutive declines, always followed by a day or more of increase, for some time. It is hard to speculate when that point may be reached. I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

Our worship life continues online, as do Bible studies and opportunities for fellowship. We’ll do what we can by these means as long as we have to. Please stay involved in the Body of Christ in these ways, trying as they may be. And experiment with them as you need to. I was with my family instead of at church last Sunday, when Fr. Scott was preaching. When all had been rustled from their beds and fed at 9 am, we worshiped using parts of the 8 am service recording. I had the boys read the lessons and then we listened to Fr. Scott’s good sermon. Then we prayed for the church and for the world, and I was pleased to hear my sons pray from their hearts. Think about what you might do to nurture your own spirituality and that of your household with the resources St. John’s is providing. One size doesn’t have to fit all.

We may need a measure of your understanding in the days ahead, as Michelle Rabon completes her long and faithful service as our Director of Parish Operations. We will post the position for applications this week but will be without a lead administrator for a while. The restrictions on our ministry make this a better time than some to be short-handed, but we will miss Michelle’s steady hand in the days ahead. I know you will be understanding of any bumps we experience. If you haven’t, please let Michelle know how much her work has benefited our ministry. I look forward to seeing the difference she will make at Still Hopes.

Most of St. Paul’s letters to young churches conclude with a section of exhortation, in which he encourages them to fight the good fight, to run with endurance, to discipline the will and the body. Philippians 4 says, “Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think on these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.” We are in such time, a time of keeping on keeping on and remembering what was and what can be again, in the great goodness and love of God.

Think on these things and keep on doing the things you have learned and received in Christ. Nicholas+

A Change in Parish Staff & A Note from Michelle Rabon

Dear People of St. John’s,
 
We are losing a valuable member of the St. John's staff to an Episcopal neighbor. Michelle Rabon, our Director of Parish Operations, has accepted the position of Director of Life Enrichment at Still Hopes. The job includes the opportunity to work with seniors, a passion of Michelle's, as well as managing a large staff and multiple programs.

I know we will all celebrate this significant advancement in Michelle's work, while regretting the loss of her many gifts at St. John's. We will miss her hard work, attention to detail, warm spirit, and her willingness to serve. Michelle has moved St. John’s forward on many fronts, particularly in building systems that have proven vital to our ministry during the pandemic. She has wrangled technology, facilities, and finance for us for many years, all in positive directions. Our loss is Still Hopes' gain. Michelle's last day will be May 20. 

We are still processing this news. Celebration and farewell are a little hard right now, but we will find some ways. You can certainly send Michelle a note at St. John’s or at her home address, 214 Valley Vine Court, Irmo, SC 29063.

God continually gives us opportunities to grow and change. We are thankful for the season Michelle spent with us and for her new challenges.
 
Grace and peace, Nicholas 

 

A note from Michelle...

It has been an amazing 10-year journey at St. John's. Through managing parish events; property issues, property renovations, expansions and campaigns; sewer back-ups and floods; leading IT and technology advancements such as live-streaming and upgrades to new software (ShelbyNext Giving, Financials and Membership) and lots and lots of hardware for Wi-fi and network connectivity; launching new communication strategies with the Good News ministry team - new website, online newsletter, videos -- not to mention steering and guiding through lots of transition; and yes, even burials and weddings on my own with guest clergy -- I hope I have served you well. At the very least, I leave you with some solid advances in infrastructure to propel the church forward in its future endeavors with the incredible members of the property and finance ministry teams. 

Most importantly, I leave you with a team of incredible, proficient, competent, and creative staff in Administration. None of the work accomplished during my tenure would have been possible without the drive and expertise of head sexton, Tony Taylor, and his hard working crew members Jeannette, Renee, Rosemary and sweet Mr. Isaiah; or the leadership of past finance administrators Barbara Catoe, Lori Anderson and your current fun and experienced finance officer Rhonda Gardner; as well as parish relations coordinators Bryana Close, Dan Benardo and our current parish administrative assistant, the very organized Megan Griffin. It has been a pleasure to work with these teams of people, alongside your outstanding program staff and clergy. I have learned so much from all of them, from all of you (too many to name here - much love to so many beautiful and good St. John's people who lead, support staff, and do the REAL work of the church). Each has made me a better professional, given me such joy, and filled my servant heart daily. 

I have loved and adored being a part of your family at St. John's. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you, your parish and all those in between.  

In peace, 

Michelle Rabon

12 Days of Beautiful - Come plant flowers in the garden beds. Sign up this week!

Come plant flowers, prune, weed, and mulch garden beds during 12 Days of Beautiful. Presented by the Property Committee, work in different areas of the church grounds practicing social distancing. Choose one of three times - morning, afternoon or evening - from Monday, May 4 through Friday, May 15. Sign up your family (ex: The Bell Family) friends (ex: G. Bell & Friends) or yourself (ex: Gene Bell). Bring your garden gloves, gardening tools and protective gear. Flowers, mulch and water provided. Sign Up Here