Sunday, July 6, 2014

Fireworks 2014

St John's Episcopal Church, Sharon, PA - 6 July 2014

My return visit to St John's was radically different from the first visit. Everyone I encountered had a smile. A woman leaving directed another couple and I to the parish hall where the service was to be. That should be noted on the website.

Air conditioning led to the change of venue. That meant there were four rows of chairs on each side of the center "aisle" with the communion table at one end and a lectern at the other. Oh, the agony! People actually had to look at each other. At least one person is very unhappy about the situation. Isn't someone always?

I felt comfortable thanks to Grace Lutheran Church in Mendham, NJ where I directed the choir for awhile. They sit around the altar on four sides. It was disconcerting at first but it really ruined me - and others - for the typical us and them of rows of people facing the altar where the privileged do their thing. Grace is the only church I've been associated with where I knew everyone of the 100 or so. After all, everyone sees everyone else. I'll admit it is difficult to get used to.

Of course the organ was not present today but the piano was competently played and provided good congregational support. I was not happy that the Sanctus and Agnus music were not in the bulletin. Neither had standard H82 tunes or words. If the hymns are printed then all the music should be available.

Besides the "friendly" setup, there were people I knew including a long term friend to sit with. I was able to have a needed conversation with the woman who was disappointed by my last "review". She said they are working hard to change but it is difficult. Oh, don't I know!!! It may have been the setup, which I suspect, or the friends or the efforts but I felt very welcome today. Good work, St John's.

PS: Good sermon too.

Other visits listed here