Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 51 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Monday, April 08, 2013

The Saints and St. John's - Rector's Rambling - April 7, 2013



After the grand celebration of Easter Day last week this Sunday’s celebration will not be as fancy.  No brass accompaniment, and the choir is not at full strength this week either.  And as I write this I am assuming we will not have quite as many in the pews today as we did last week.  But remember that Easter is a SEASON, not just a day.  We celebrate for 40 days, until the Feast of the Ascension on Thursday, May 9th.  So be sure to keep greeting one another with “Alleluia, Christ is Risen!”  “The Lord is Risen indeed, Alleluia!”
This past week, on April 2nd, the Church celebrated the Feast of Blessed James Lloyd Breck.  This is of particular interest to us since he preached here at St. John’s Church on Easter Day in 1864.
St. John’s was an early parish of the Oxford Movement, to restore the sacramental, catholic nature of the Worldwide Anglican Communion.  Jackson Kemper, missionary bishop of the Midwest and founder of Nashotah House, preached at St. John’s several times, including to consecrate his successor, our first Rector.  Breck was the first Dean of Nashotah House and missionary to Minnesota and California.  When Bishop Armitage died, his successor, James DeKoven, had his election nullified by the other national church dioceses because of his now common understanding of the nature of the Church.  Kemper, Breck, and DeKoven all preached here at St. John’s and are all on the Episcopal Church’s calendar of commemorations.
So there may not be as many in the pews this week as last, but we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses past and present!