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Welcome

Welcome to St. Alban’s Church! Every Sunday, and most days in between, people gather in this place to worship, to learn, to grow, to share the joys and struggles of our lives, and to seek God’s grace in the midst of our lives. We do not come because we have it all figured out, but because we are seeking light on the way. We come as we are and welcome one another.

On this website, you can find information about our worship, our classes for people of all ages, membership at St. Alban's, and about how we seek to make a difference in this world. We warmly encourage you to join us for a Sunday service or for some of the many other events that happen here. You belong at St. Alban’s.

Contact us with any questions. Call (202) 363-8286 or email the church office.

Service Times

SUNDAY SERVICES (after Labor Day through May)
8:00 a.m.       Holy Eucharist: Rite I (spoken)

9:00  a.m.      Holy Eucharist: Rite II

                        Children's Chapel

11:15 a.m.      Misa in Español (Little Sanctuary)

11:15 a.m.      Holy Eucharist: Rite II (Rite I during Advent, Christmas, Lent, and Easter)

WEEKDAY SERVICES
Monday, Wednesday, & Thursday, 9:00 a.m.  Daily Morning Prayer

Tuesday, 7:30 a.m.                                    Holy Eucharist: Rite II

Directions

St. Alban’s Episcopal Church is located next to the Washington National Cathedral at the corner of Massachusetts and Wisconsin Avenues in the northwest section of the District of Columbia.

From either direction on the north loop of the Capital Beltway/I-495 follow signs for Route 355/Wisconsin Ave south toward DC. St. Alban’s is located on the left just before the intersection of Massachusetts and Wisconsin Avenues NW. Make a left onto Lych Gate Rd before you reach Massachusetts Ave. As you enter the drive, the church will be on your left and Satterlee Hall and the Rectory on the right. Stay on Lych Gate until it becomes Pilgrim Rd.

From any Virginia main in-bound thoroughfare (George Washington Memorial Parkway, I-395, Route 50, I-66), follow signs to Rosslyn and take the Key Bridge from Rosslyn north across the Potomac River into Georgetown. Go right on M St, left on Wisconsin Ave. St. Alban’s is located on the right just after the intersection of Massachusetts and Wisconsin Avenues NW. Make a right onto Lych Gate Rd after passing Massachusetts. As you enter the drive, the church will be on your left and Satterlee Hall and the Rectory on the right. Stay on Lych Gate until it becomes Pilgrim Rd.

Parking is available on Pilgrim Road Monday-Friday after 3:30 pm and all day Saturday and Sunday. Parking is also available in the Cathedral’s underground garage for a fee Monday- Saturday and for free on Sunday.  You may also park on neighborhood streets according to DC parking signs.

What to Expect

Visiting a church for the first time can be a bit daunting. So we have tried to put together the answers to some of the questions you’re likely to have and to ensure that you find a warm welcome here. Click on the questions to learn more.)

How do you worship?

What time are services on Sunday morning?

How long do services last?

Where can I park?

Do you offer programs for children?

What should I wear?

Do you have provisions for the differently-abled?

For Your Kids

Children’s Ministry

At St. Alban’s Parish the formation of our children is a high priority.  While we know that a significant amount of a child’s faith comes from the home, we aim to provide excellent children’s formation throughout the year to complement the formation that is ongoing in a child’s life.  Our goal is to help children easily point to the love of God in their lives.

Worship: Children’s Chapel meets at the start of the 9:00 a.m. service in Nourse Hall. Children join the congregation in "big church" at the Peace, in time for Eucharist.

Education: All church school classes resume the Sunday after Labor Day with our annual Open House. Instruction starts the following Sunday. 

Nursery care: Child care is available from 10:15 to 11:05 a.m. for children under 3 who aren't quite ready for our 2s and 3s class.

Learn more about Children's Ministries


Youth Ministry

Four teen groups participate in formation classes at St. Alban’s on Sunday mornings.  We use the nationally recognized Episcopal curriculum “Journey to Adulthood," or J2A.  J2A has two guiding principles: 1) Manhood and womanhood are gifts of God; and 2) Adulthood must be earned. This is a strong program with over 50 youth participating, many of whom engage in a wide variety of ministries at St. Alban’s. Two or three adults mentor each of the groups for two years, sharing their own faith journeys and forming strong bonds of fellowship with the participants. 

Worship:  St. Alban’s Teen Service Fellowship starts at 9:00 a.m. and is a separate service just for our teens held in the Little Sanctuary at St. Albans School. This interactive service offers teens time to talk about life, the Gospel, and to celebrate Eucharist together.  The teens return to "big church," before heading to their classes at the conclusion of the 9:00 a.m. worship service.  Friends are always welcome.

Learn more about Youth Ministries

The Episcopal Church

As Episcopalians, we follow Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. We believe in the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We believe God is active in our everyday lives through the power of the Holy Spirit.  

The mission of the Church is to restore all people to unity with God and with each other in Christ. The Church pursues its mission as it prays and worships, proclaims the gospel, and promotes justice, peace and love. The Church carries out its mission through the ministry of all of its members.

We uphold the Bible and worship with the Book of Common Prayer. We believe the Holy Scriptures are the revealed Word of God. In worship we unite ourselves with one another to acknowledge the holiness of God, to hear God's Word, to offer prayer and praise, and to celebrate the Sacraments. The Celebration of Holy Eucharist is the central act of worship in accordance with Jesus' command to His disciples. Holy Communion may be received by all baptized Christians, not only members of the Episcopal Church.

The Episcopal Church is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion with 70 million members in 165 countries.  The word "Episcopal" refers to government by bishops. The historic episcopate continues the work of the first apostles in the Church, guarding the faith, unity and discipline of the Church. Both men and women, including those who are married, are eligible for ordination as deacons, priests and bishops. 

We strive to love our neighbors as ourselves and respect the dignity of every person. We welcome all to find a spiritual home in the Episcopal Church.

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The Daily Cup - Practicing Resurrection

Practicing Resurrection

Posted by The Rev'd Emily Griffin on with 2 Comments

I think I’m finally ready to write about forgiveness. Some things I can only see this side of Easter. As you may know, my Lenten book this year was Miroslav Volf’s Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace. Like many in the book group who tackled it, I found it a challenge – for reasons I couldn’t quite name at first.

I could pick apart his view on atonement, but I won’t. That wasn’t the true source of the rub. There’s too much both to praise and question in the book to be thorough here. To get to the heart of the matter:

For Volf, “To forgive is to give wrongdoers the gift of not counting the wrongdoing against them” (p. 130). The wrongdoing is not excused; it’s condemned as unjust and then forgiven. OK - so far, so good.  

He rightly notes that forgiveness is not fundamentally about our own healing, but is a genuine gift to the one who hurt us.  He also rightly adds that we are capable of forgiving only because we’ve been forgiven by God, and it is only through God’s strength (acknowledged or otherwise) that we can accomplish it. It may not happen fully for us on this side of eternity.  Volf recognizes that we may need to channel God’s forgiveness long before our feelings follow and admits that we cannot and should not forgive exactly as God forgives – because we’re not God.

So what’s my problem? It’s in Volf’s depiction of life post-forgiveness. He concedes that actions have consequences, and that we sometimes need to enact what he calls “discipline” in order to mitigate future harm. There are times when, for safety’s sake, we cannot afford to forget. But in his well-intended desire to release the wrongdoer from retribution and guilt and in his hope for restored relationships, he strays at times farther than I think the Gospel warrants. In his words, “When we forgive, we acknowledge the offenses and blame the perpetrator. But then we treat the person as if the offense did not happen. To forgive means most basically to give a person the gift of existing as if they had not committed the offense at all” (p. 175).

That kind of erasing the record wrongly implies that we can turn back time – that no real death has happened. And in most cases when deep hurt has occurred, something has died – whether it’s our expectations or hopes or the future we once imagined. What comes on the other side of death is not resuscitation – a restoration of the way things used to be – but resurrection. And while we cannot say what God-given resurrection will look like in advance (or how long it will take – we can stay in Holy Saturday for a long while), what we can say with certainty is that the new life will not be exactly like the old. It will be genuinely new – with new possibilities for everyone involved.

Volf is absolutely right that the Greek root for “forgive” has to do with releasing something. When we release someone from being defined by the wrongdoing he or she has committed against us (and may, in Desmond Tutu’s words, choose to renew or release the relationship in the process), then we’re both released and free to live into a different future. When we refuse to forgive, we both stay bound to a past we can’t change. Easter promises so much more for us than that.

Perhaps this is part of what poet Wendell Berry means when he advises us to “practice resurrection.”*  God knows, we can’t raise ourselves from the dead; we can’t raise anyone else either. But by extending God’s forgiveness, we clear the space for God to do what only God can. In thanksgiving for all the signs of forgiveness and new life we find this Easter – the ones we can imagine and the ones we can’t yet…

Peace,

Emily+

*This line comes from “Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front.” Provocative, but a worthy read.

Comments

Eileen Davis April 24, 2017 9:40pm

What an honest assessment of a subject that's so hard to assess --- forgiveness, and then what? That's the problem. Now I have to read the book! Thanks for reference to that fine fine poem. Every one of us needs that poem. Especially today.

Jo April 27, 2017 11:17am

As one who greatly struggled with this book, I very much appreciate your reflection. It seemed that every time I got a passage to cling to, it got challenged in subsequent writing. Your patient "translation" helps. (Eileen, I'd be glad to loan you the book.)

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