Welcome to the St. John's Blog!

St. John's Episcopal Church is located on the northwest side of Chicago, in the Old Irving Park neighborhood. You can learn more about us at our official web site. We hope you'll join us!

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Monday, June 29, 2009

A visit to Genesis Growers Farm

{Group from St. John's}

Yesterday, we had the opportunity to visit Genesis Growers for a farm party. I would estimate that 60+ people attended. Farmer Vicki kindly gave a tour around the grounds and then we gathered for a bountiful potluck. Sorry, no pictures of the amazing food... I was too busy eating. It was a great afternoon!
A little background: The Genesis Group has partnered with Genesis Growers, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm south of Chicago. St. John's is a three season drop-off site (April-December). The weekly drop-offs include local, farm fresh vegetable and fruit shares, eggs shares and on occasion, chicken shares. If you'd like more information on our CSA partnership, please leave a comment.
Psalm 24:1 (NIV)
1 The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it;

Nancy & Julianne and I at the Gay Pride Parade on Sunday. We never found the other Episcopalians so we marched with Chicago Theological Seminary and behind the Lutherans. Turns out the Episcopalians were just behind us about 15 minutes - they handed out 5,000 cards with St. John's listed, along with others. So we had fun and our friends did all the work!
p.s. sorry about the hat (shade won over fashion!)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Another Look at Pre-1926 St. John's

Here's a good look at St. John's before the changes listed in the prior post were made. Notice the Advent window on the Kostner side. The rectory was already there, but it wasn't the rectory at the time.

Another picture from Hugh's collection. Thanks, Hugh!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A Trip in the St. John's Time Machine

Here's another fascinating picture of St. John's from about 100 years ago, courtesy of Hugh, whose father was a choir boy and is in the picture. Click on the picture for a better look.

I think we had those same choir robes until a year or two ago, when the Pence Fund bought new ones.

Behind the group is what was, until 1924, the church entrance on Byron Street. The big Advent Window, "Presented by the Children's League of the Holy Child – Advent 1888," was over on the Kostner Ave. side of the building. That window was moved to its present location in 1924, when the church entrance on Kostner was constructed and the church was stuccoed. The smaller stained glass windows hadn't been installed yet – they didn't show up until the 1960's and 70's.

We can date the picture to the period 1908-13 because the rector is clearly Howard E. Ganster, who served in those years. You recognized him too, didn't you?

Rev. Ganster went from St. John's to Christ Episcopal Church in Waukegan, where he served many years. There is a municipal swimming pool in Waukegan called the Howard E. Ganster Pool. I kid you not.

But what about the top picture? Can this possibly be a photo of the choir? There are 51 people here! Where did they sit? But if it's not the choir, why are they wearing robes?

Do we still have that cross? And what's with the mortar boards on the women?

Ideas, anyone?

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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Julianne, Deacon

An impressive contingent from St. John's (Suellen and I counted 21) made its way to St. James Cathedral downtown today to witness Julianne's ordination to the Diaconate.

Through the kindness of David and Matt, who are real photographers, I was permitted into the press box to take pictures of the event. I learned at Heidi's ordination that the press box has THE best seats in the house – except there are not really any seats (a small price to pay).

At the beginning of the service Julianne was "presented" to Bishop Lee by Kara and three good folks from the Church of St. Paul and the Redeemer, as were the other Ordinands by their own presenters.

"Jeffrey, bishop in the Church of God, on behalf of the clergy and people of the Diocese of Chicago, we present to you Julianne Buenting to be ordained a deacon in Christ's holy catholic Church."

After all the Ordinands were presented in this manner, the congregation knelt and the Ordinands prostrated themselves for the Litany for Ordinations (you'll find it in your copy of the BCP).

The Ministry of the Word followed, with a thoughtful sermon by Rev. Juan Reed, who began by reflecting on his own ordination more than 30 years ago when, he said, "the Bishop laid his hands on my full Afro."

The Cathedral choir, supplemented by volunteers from parishes around the diocese, sounded fantastic. If you look closely, you'll see Cheryl:

Then it was on to the business at hand: ordaining the new Deacons:

After which the new Deacons assisted with the Eucharist:

Who's that at the far end of the communion rail above?

And before you knew it, it was time for coffee and posing with the Bishop:

After the service, a bunch of us headed over to the Elephant & Castle to celebrate with Julianne and her parents. It was a great day.

Congratulations, Julianne! St. John's is blessed to have you.

Julianne will be ordained to the priesthood on December 5. I sure do like that press box.

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Friday, June 5, 2009

Future Leaders

Last Sunday "The Quest" class learned about the Eucharist by dressing up as priests and practicing the words and gestures of the liturgy.

St. John's children are like those from Lake Wobegon - they are all smarter, funnier, and more beautiful than any other children in the world!

Reading the prayers:

Washing hands:

They said their arms got tired!
You must need to do weight training to be a priest!

Ringing the bells for the Sanctus: