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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 - What Holds Us

What Holds Us

Posted by The Rev'd Emily Griffin on

Floating unassisted is not my strong suit. Relaxing, staying motionless when I feel cast adrift, trusting that the water will carry me – I was never very good at that.

Maybe it’s because I grew up in landlocked Central New York. I didn’t spend much time in swimming pools at home, where a child could use the shallow end to get her bearings. I understand my family’s reasoning on that front, of course. Why invest in a pool when winter lasts from October to May?

During the precious few weeks of Syracuse sunshine, my stepfather used to take us out on Otisco or Oneida Lake on his boat. We’d speed off to points farthest from land and then put on our life jackets before we tested out the water. Or at least, that’s how I remember it. Given that I never really knew when I was out of my depth or what wildness might meet me in the lake, the life jacket always seemed a more reasonable means of floating than trying to go it on my own.

Besides, I drew comfort from the boat – not to mention the strength of my fellow passengers. I didn’t construct the boat; it reflected the craftsmanship of generations of folks who knew far better than I how to make something seaworthy. When I tried to water ski, it didn’t matter if I fell on my face. The boat would come around, pick me up and carry me until I was ready to be brave and venture out again.

In one of my favorite books, Jayber Crow, Wendell Berry describes the life of faith as one that “puts you out on a wide river in a little boat, in the fog, in the dark” (p. 356). That’s not as frightening as it might sound. I know that boats can leak, and should that happen, I do know how to swim. (Mom made sure of that.) Given enough time, I might even be forced to relax and float. But the option of the boat seems far preferable to me than always trying to go it alone.

There’s a tradition stretching as far back as Noah, likening a faith community like ours to a boat on stormy seas. Some of us know the storms all too well these days, but it’s the image of the boat that intrigues me now. This tradition is even reflected in our church architecture. We sit in the “nave,” which comes from the medieval Latin word navis, or ship.

My point? “Sometimes tradition holds us when we cannot hold ourselves.” So writes Pat Schneider in How the Light Gets In: Writing as a Spiritual Practice (p. 101). She finds various metaphors for religious tradition – at first, it’s “a life preserver in a stormy sea,” “the hand of a stranger when you’re drowning.” Later, its force becomes more constricting than freeing. Her images shift. Is religion a heavy cloak that protects you, but also grounds you when you’re trying to fly? Are its practices recipes we’re free to ignore? I find Christianity a more seaworthy vessel than she does. Still, amid all her unanswered questions, she affirms the potential power of a faith community – its prayers and its practices, its grounding in boundless love - to hold what we cannot hold on our own.

There’s comfort in finding our place in a boat we didn’t construct on our own. Our fellow passengers might annoy us at times; but they can also be the first ones to find us when we’re flailing. Thank God for the boats that hold and carry us and, if we let them, teach us how to float.

Peace,

Emily+

 

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