Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 52 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, November 16, 2015

A prayer for St. John's Church - Rector's Rambling for November 15, 2015

One-hundred-fifty-six years ago on Tuesday, November 17, the chapel of St. John’s was dedicated by the Bishop of the Diocese of Michigan, and officially began her offering of public worship on both Sundays and weekdays.
It is hard to imagine that this part of Detroit was “out in the country”, with this particular corner being an apple orchard when purchased, in April of 1858, by Henry Porter Baldwin, founder and patriarch of this parish.  Before he called together his neighbors in December to propose starting a new parish, he had purchased this land, and had commissioned plans for a chapel, a church, and a rectory.  When he invited that group of people into his home (then located where I-75 is now, across Woodward from the church), he already had plans and was looking for supporters for the project that came to fruition as St. John’s, of which we are inheritors.
The St. John’s Historical Committee has been busy going through the archives and setting up displays.  Recently they found a prayer for St. John’s Church, written by Fr. Faber, Rector of St. John’s from 1905 to 1914, which is as important today as it was 110 years ago!
Almighty God, who feedest Thy flock and callest Thine own by name, look down in mercy upon our parish, that we may be cleansed from all our sins, and serve Thee with a quiet mind.  Hallow and bless to us the sacraments and services of Thy Church.  Inspire our clergy to show forth Thy truth by their preaching and living, and daily to minister according to Thy will.  Keep our communicants in singleness of heart, from unbelief and worldliness, giving them grace, both in their homes and callings, faithfully to confess Thy Holy Name.  May all our children be taught of Thee.  Bring back all such as have erred, and draw to the cross those who are hardened by sin.  And, we beseech Thee, heal the sick; comfort the sorrowing; relieve the distressed.  Move Thy people to give as Thou hast given to them; fill the workers with the Spirit of power, of love, and of a sound mind; and while we plant and water do Thou give the continual increase, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.