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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.

Please fill out this welcome form to connect with us.

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

 

Service Times

Beginning on Trinity Sunday, May 30, 2021, worship will be open to anyone without pre-registration or distancing requirements. We will continue requiring that worshippers be masked for now. 

Our schedule of services will remain the same throughout the summer:

 - 9:00 a.m. (English) in the church

 - 10:30 a.m. (English) in the church

 - Noon (Spanish) in Nourse Hall

Communion in one kind (i.e. wafers) will be offered at the main altar, although we will happily bring communion to those for whom steps are challenging. 

Masked hymn singing both indoors and outdoors will be permitted, and music will be supported by a soloist and organ. 

On-line worship services in English and Spanish are available on Sundays beginning at 8:00 a.m. on our YouTube channel.

 

 

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 9:00 to 11:05 a.m. during the program year (September to May) for infants and children under 3 who aren’t quite ready for our 2s & 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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Faith Talk - Meaning and Choice

Meaning and Choice

Posted by The Rev'd Deborah Meister on

Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks - Scholar - LargeLast Thursday, I found myself in the audience of a panel in which Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, former Chief Rabbi of England (technically, former Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth), discussed the issue of religion and violence with former Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, American University’s Chair of Islamic Studies, and with another scholar of Judaism. Rabbi Sacks was promoting his newest book, Not in God’s Name: Confronting Religious Violence, and since his books are always worth reading, I picked up a copy.

In it, I found these words: “Science, technology, the free market and the liberal first-amendment-area-243x366democratic state have enabled us to reach unprecedented achievements in knowledge, freedom, life expectancy, and affluence….But they do not and cannot answer the three questions every reflective individual will ask at some time in his or her life: Who am I? Why am I here? How then shall I live?…The result is that the twenty-first century has left us with a maximum of choice and a minimum of meaning.” Or, as I might add, we live amid a minimum of inherited meaning; the meaning we need to thrive is, increasingly, meaning we need to construct ourselves.

But this work of constructing meaning is inherently ambivalent. In one sense, it is the project of our lives: to figure out who we are, how we want to live, and why. If we open ourselves to those questions, they will engage us at our deepest level, compel us to be open to the world and to the opinions of others, drive us to grow and to change throughout the course of our lives.

Doing it alone, however, is no fun — and neither is living it alone. We need conversation partners to find meaning, and meaning itself becomes thin if we have no one with whom to share it. A truth that is merely personal (as in, “this is true for me”) is not very satisfying, nor does it enable us to build a coherent society. A nation made up of people who live parallel lives is a much poorer place than one in which people are in deep relationship around shared convictions. That’s why the word “religion” derives from religare, which means, “to bind together”; religion is a matrix of meaning that unites us, rather than dividing us from one another.

The truth is that, while the institutions of our time do, indeed, emphasize choice over meaning, it has always been the case that people needed to do this work for themselves. No one simply inherits a faith or a system of values without questioning it, engaging it, and making it personal. Brave people do this work in a way that opens them to the world, but people who are essentially frightened, who see the others as fundamentally flogging-00-passiondangerous, are more likely to cling to forms of meaning that define truth narrowly, divide the world into dark and light, and equate difference as danger, not as gift. After all, the Bible records many seekers of truth who had a wide range of conviction about what was truly pleasing to God; it was only Pilate who asked, dismissively, “What is truth?”

Every Sunday, people stream into the doors of my church, seeking good answers to these questions. And they find there a multitude of ways to engage them: opportunities to help those in need, classes, music, discussion groups, relationships with people they did not choose, and with whom they have to live. Week after week, they enter into a living engagement with a spiritual tradition that has endured for millennia. They do not always accept its teachings, but they wrestle with what they have inherited, and they do that work together.

And you, how do you find meaning? What are the things that you live for? What are the things you would die for? With whom do you share your convictions? With whom do you live your heart?

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