St. John's welcomes members to get involved in the life of the parish through these and other ministries.
Acolytes at St. John's have served as part of a longstanding tradition that crosses generational lines. Typically beginning at age 10, youth start as acolytes-in-training and advance through the positions of server's assistant, torch bearer, crucifer, and server. Acolytes serve at the 10:30 Sunday service and all special services. The bishop holds an annual Acolyte Festival where acolytes gather from across the diocese for worship, workshops and fun. Upcoming trips may include visiting the Washington National Cathedral for either their annual Acolyte Festival or for West Virginia Day services. Youth and adults interested in joining this important ministry can contact the rector, acolyte masters or other acolytes.
The Altar Guild is a volunteer group whose purpose is to care for the liturgical objects, linens, vestments and altar hangings used in worship. It is a ministry of hospitality and service in that we "set the table" around which we gather to celebrate the Eucharist. Yet we are served ourselves as we quietly encounter Jesus while touching and preparing these holy elements.
The archives ministry includes the identification, collection and organization of material relevant to the rich history of St. John's. The team responds to requests for information preserved within the archive files, located on the second floor of the parish house, to parishioners and the public.
This ministry produces a weekly bulletin, "This Week at St. John's," which keeps parishioners up-to-date on weekly and upcoming events. Our monthly newsletter, "St. John's Interchange," is full of news and photos presented in an eight-page format. This ministry also maintains the St. John's website and Facebook page (St John's Charleston-no period after St), a vital source of information for the congregation and community.
Eucharistic ministers are members of the laity, who are trained to assist in serving Holy Eucharist. Eucharistic visitors administer the Holy Eucharist to parishioners who cannot attend services, using wine that has been consecrated by the priest. Lectors read the lessons and prayers of the people during worship services.
Greeters provide a welcome to worshipers every Sunday morning and at special services. They answer questions, welcome newcomers, and make sure everyone has a service bulletin.
St. John's Half-Act Players have been an evolving group of both professional and amateur thespians for the past few decades. Made up almost entirely of parishioners, with a few guest appearances over the years, the players entertain the local community at our every-other-year Madrigal Dinners on the second Friday and Saturday of December. The group has become so cohesive that members enjoy dinner together at monthly gatherings even in Madrigal's "off" years. The stained-glass panel that hangs in Hunter Hall, aka Deep Manor during Madrigals, was commissioned by the players as a gift to St. John's. Note that both masks depicted in the panel are smiling; there shall be no tragedy when the Half-Act players perform!
All are welcome! Bring a project you're working on. Newcomers, please bring a set of knitting needles size 9, 10 or 11 and we'll provide a skein of yarn. The Knitting Group meets on the first and third Saturdays from 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. in the Mollie Warwick Room 208.
The Parish Life Committee is a joyful band of saints who organize and host fellowship events for the parish. In addition to other special requests from the rector or vestry, our annual events include Shrove Tuesday Pasta Delights and Sinful Desserts, Easter breakfast, High Tea after Evensong, and the annual parish meeting breakfast.
St. John's Pastoral Care team encompasses both newcomer ministry and services for parishioners who have either a temporary or ongoing need for transportation, meals or visitation. Pastoral care members work closely with the rector, the greeters and the parish administrator with the goal of attracting new members and supporting and serving the needs of current membership. Team members are invited, but not required, to attend Evening Prayer together followed by a business meeting once a month.
The property team oversees and, occasionally, provides regular maintenance and repairs to the parish buildings, grounds and gardens. They seek to preserve the structural integrity and architecture of St. John's for future generations.
Members of this group meet on the second Thursday of each month at 1 p.m. to knit prayer shawls for parishioners and others.
St. John's ushers provide a welcoming presence at services and offer directions to both parishioners and guests. Their responsibilities include passing the alms basins, facilitating communion in an organized fashion and responding to individuals' needs and medical emergencies.
The Worship Team represents key ministries in the worship services: Eucharistic ministers, lectors, Eucharistic visitors, Altar Guild, acolytes, and clergy. The team plans the seasonal calendar, selects the Eucharistic prayers, drafts blessings and prayers of the people. The team also works on seasonal and other services throughout the year including sacramental services in the life cycle, cradle to grave. The Worship Team meets monthly on third Thursdays in the rector's office, 4:30 p.m.