St. John’s Episcopal Church celebrates 125 years

Roanoke, VA
Dec. 10 and 17
Event Title
St. John’s Episcopal Church celebrates 125 years
When does it start?
When does it end?
Event Location
1 Mountain Avenue SW
Roanoke, Virginia 24016
What kind of event is it?
Anniversary Celebration
Event Details
This weekend and next, St. John’s Episcopal Church marks 125 years in our corner of the world – specifically, the corner of Jefferson Street and Elm Avenue in downtown Roanoke.

As the country’s religious climate continues to shift, St. John’s has continued to thrive and give back to the community, as the home to Total Action for Progress’s Head Start and the Community Youth Program, both of which care for low-income and at-risk young people; partnerships with nonprofits including Family Promise of Greater Roanoke and Kimoyo, a ministry in Ghana with Kingdom Life Ministries; and a weekly aid program called T.R.U.E. – Temporary Relief of Unexpected Emergencies.

“We’re working to be a constant presence and a force for good,” says the Reverend Eric Long, rector of St. John’s since 2014. “There’s a way of being faithful without getting in the food fights. I love the fact that we are a downtown church, in the heart of the city, that this place is a living and breathing incarnation of faith.”

That downtown location means that those who enter its doors come from a range of backgrounds, seeking help, or sometimes just peace and quiet. “Every day we have people passing through our doors who are going somewhere else, people who are transient, who will come and sit for a while.” Outreach, both spiritual and practical, “has seeped into the DNA of this church.”

St. John’s celebrates its 125th on December 10 with a 9 a.m. program on the church’s history and a family-style lunch after the 10:00 service, and on December 17 with a second 9 a.m. conversation on the future of the church. Please contact the director of communications, above, for more information, photography or interviews.

St. John’s Episcopal Church is a downtown parish in Roanoke, Va. Founded in 1850, it has been located since 1892 on the corner of Jefferson and Elm. With a membership of 1,600 and average Sunday attendance of 500, St. John’s is one of 56 parishes in the Diocese of Southwestern Virginia, part of the worldwide Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion. The parish is online and on social media – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

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