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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 - Pondering Mary

Pondering Mary

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

What are the first words or images that come to mind when you think of Mary, the mother of Jesus? We spent some time last weekend at the Advent Retreat pondering this – the brief glimpses we get in the Bible vs. the Mary we’ve inherited over the centuries. For many of us, she had morphed into this unattainable ideal of selfless motherhood, of perpetual youth and beauty. We could spend lifetime comparing ourselves to her and always come up short. No wonder so many either deify or dismiss her.

Whatever our images of Mary, they tend not to fit the image we’re given in the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55). It’s one of the most subversive songs in all of Scripture – so upending that for a while in the 1980s the government of Guatemala banned its public recitation. Here Mary chooses to believe that nothing is impossible with God – that the might of government and business won’t always make right, that the strength of God is best shown not in vengeance but in mercy, that the way things are is not the way they will always be. The proud will be brought down someday, and God will lift up those made low. It’s a powerful, startling faith claim.

We also spent time looking at how she has been pictured in Western art. As Kathleen Norris points out in her book Amazing Grace, “depictions of Mary as a wealthy Renaissance woman do far outnumber those that make her look like a woman capable of walking the hill country of Judea and giving birth in a barn” (p. 118).

In considering Michelangelo’s Pieta, for example, it’s tempting to focus on the unrealistic portrayal of a middle-aged woman and criticize the seeming deification of youth. But look a little deeper (as one of our retreat participants pointed out) – what you’re also seeing is the strength of a woman capable of holding her adult son with one hand. She’s holding death in her arms, and yet what comes through to us is a seemingly boundless love. What’s that, if not strength?

A lot of times we’re encouraged to view Mary as the model female, but I’m not sure that’s helpful. She’s no more the symbol or type for all women than is any one male in Scripture a symbol or type for all men. Not all of us are mothers, for one; not all of us are called to be. We find our identity in all sorts of ways. We’re sons and daughters, friends, parishioners, professionals…we need a lot of different models to figure out how to live into these roles. Perhaps Mary is not so much the model female as a model follower of God, period. In agreeing to be Jesus’ mother, she consents to something she doesn’t fully understand and lives into it for the rest of her life. Sounds like faith to me.

The truth is – we know so little of her story (in her own words, anyway) that we perpetually read into her story our own joys and sorrows – the inexplicable hope we feel at the birth of our children, the grief we feel when we’re inevitably called to let them go. She carries a lot for us.

What kinds of things does she carry for you this Advent? A knowledge of your pain from the inside? A message of love or compassion that might be hard to receive elsewhere? What does Mary mean for you?

Peace,

Emily+

Comments

Bob Sellery December 9, 2016 2:34pm

Emily, thank you for this objective view of Mary.

John Daniel Reaves December 11, 2016 4:08pm

Of the Magnificat, Bishop Dixon, Of Late, told us that Karl Marx said that he had never written or advocated anything that subversive.

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