Every so often we all need a ‘pep talk.’  With Fall activities in full swing many of us have obligations, activities and responsibilities that keep us constantly on the go.  Looking at the parish register and finances, it is easy to see our parish family is running full speed- we have swings in attendance of around 75 people on Sundays and we are nearly $30,000 behind in faithful giving.  One Sunday we are almost overwhelmed with Sunday School attendance and the next is very thin.  These drastic shifts say a tremendous amount about the lives that make up the Saint John’s family.
I found it to be a law that when people get stretched thin and very active, they sacrifice things that are good and even essential for their wellbeing in order to keep pace.  People sacrifice good nutrition and family meals… they forgo exercise and time for recovery and renewal… they spend themselves in order to keep obligations and activities.  So, the things that are most essential to health and happiness are the first things to go- I think it is so because in those things we are accountable only to ourselves.
The same law applies to the things of God.  When people get very busy the first thing to go is time spent in prayer.  When people are stretched thin the first, or at least the easiest, activity to forgo is Church.  When I ask about this, it is not uncommon to have as a reply, “God understands,” or “I think about God so it is OK.”  In our prayers, and especially at Church, we receive the Grace of God in ways that occur in no other activity or place.  Again, the things that are most essential to our health and wellbeing- our very life, are cast aside because we are accountable to ourselves and to God.
I truly and firmly believe that time spent in prayer and giving time to corporate worship are some of the most important things we can do… that time is healing, enkindling, enlightening and life giving because of the forgiveness we receive.
I hope we all will consider these thoughts as the days of Fall march onward.  Don’t forgo those things that keep you fit and strong, don’t forgo the things that allow you life and love.  

Fall Confirmation Class
Questions about God?  Looking to join St. John’s?  Want to refresh your knowledge of the faith?  We are going to offer Confirmation classes during the Sunday School hour.  If you are interested in learning more about the Christian faith, join us at 9:30 in the parish hall.

The Episcopal Church Women Of the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi

Bishop Kee Sloan
XI Bishop of Alabama
November 13-14 at Gray Center
Cost: $120/135 (double/single)    $45 (day only)
Please register by November 1
Kee Sloan is the 11th bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama ‒ elected in January 2008 as Suffragan and becoming Diocesan in January 2012. Formerly from the Diocese of Mississippi, Bishop Sloan served at St. Peter’s, Oxford; All Saints’, Grenada; Church of the Incarnation, West Point; Holy Cross, Olive Branch; and St. Timothy’s, Southaven.

In both dioceses, Bishop Sloan has been involved with Special Session Camp programs and served on numerous medical mission trips to Honduras. In the larger Church, he has been a member of the General Convention Committee on Liturgy and Music, and the Standing Commission for Liturgy and Music.

Ladies Bible Study

Our Ladies Bible Study is off to a great start!!  Meetings are held Thursdays at 1:00pm. in the parish hall and ladies are welcome to bring a brown bag lunch.  We are using the book: “Living a Life of Balance”. We would love to have you join us. 

Upcoming at St. John’s
October 21        Feast of St. Luke    5:30pm – Mass;  6:15pm – Pot-Luck Parish Dinner
November 1      All Souls Requiem Mass – 6:00pm; followed by reception
November 18    Harvest Mass – 5:30pm Mass; 6:15pm Parish Dinner
December 6       Saint Nicholas visit 10:30 mass
December 6       Advent Lessons and Carols  6:00pm
December 7       Ladies Christmas Fete-11:00am; luncheon to follow at the home of Celeste Vial
December 20    Greening of the Parish

Sign up to feed our E.Y.C.
We need your help feeding our E.Y.C. members on Sunday evenings beginning at 6:00 p.m. at the parish.  There is a sign up sheet located on the board in the sacristy hallway with dates that are available.  For more information, contact the Parish Office.

Imagine a child in a far away land who has never had a picture book or a story book.  With your help, a child can learn to read.  We at St. John’s are participating in the Miles of Pennies fundraiser with Church Periodical Club to help provide children with books.  Did you know:
     16 pennies = 1 foot
5,280 feet = 1 mile
$844.80 pennies = 1 mile
We need your help collecting pennies.  Save your pennies!  Ask your neighbors, parents, grandparents, and co-workers for their pennies.  There is a collection jug in the parish break-room.  Let’s fill it UP!

A Chance To Say Thank You
If you look in your pew rack you will find a blank ‘thank you’ note. You are encouraged to write  to someone- maybe an acolyte who has done a great job… maybe someone who helped with a parish dinner… perhaps someone who said a prayer for you… or someone whose work is behind the scenes and goes unnoticed and unthanked.  When you write your Thank You note- seal it in the provided envelope and put the persons name on the front of the card and then place the card in the offering plate, or on the back table as you leave.  The office will make sure the Thank You is posted in the mail or gets to the person you wanted to thank.

Connecting Ministry
We here at Saint John’s love reaching out to others and letting them know that they are loved by God, held in prayer and remembered.  Our Pastoral Care Committee, E.Y.C. and Daughters of the King society would love to write notes of encouragement, send small care packages and simply let others know that they are prayed for and remembered.  If you have a loved one who is shut-in, a college student or in the military, follow this link to fill out the form and let us stay in touch with them!  The form is here:  http://stjohnslaurel.com/?page_id=2037

A Tip O’ The Biretta
  • To Pat Bailey for teaching our 4th – 6th grade Sunday School class this past Sunday.
  • To Wendy Herring and her committee for the delicious meal for the Feast of St. Michael parish dinner.
  • To Carolyn Ruth Stancill for the beautiful floral arrangements for the Feast of St. Michael.


For the Year Actual Budget Over/Under
Pledges $ 214,508 $ 240,940 $26,432
Plate $ 19,725 $  9,994  $ 9,731
Other $ 27,647 $15,244 $ 12,403
Total $ 261,880 $ 266,178 $  4,298
Expenses $327,620 $ 316,871 $ 10,749
BUDGET TOTALS $ 65,740 $ 50,693 $  15,047
O God, our heavenly Father, make the door of this Church wide enough that all who need human love and fellowship and a Fathers care may find it, and narrow enough to shut out all envy, pride and uncharitableness.  Here may the tempted find help, and the sorrowing receive comfort.  Here may the careless be awakened to repentance, and the penitent be assured of your mercy.  And here may all your children renew their strength in You, and go on their way rejoicing.  Through Jesus Christ Our Lord.  Amen.
Saint Johns Episcopal Church
541 North 5th Ave./ P.O. Box 1766
Laurel, MS 39441
601.428.7252 Office
601.422.7388 Mobile

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