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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

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 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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Love One Another

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03.24.16

Love One Another

    Series: Lent

    Speaker: Jo Turner

     

    God be in my head, and in my understanding;
    God be in my mouth, and in my speaking;
    Amen

    This is my homily; it is not a sermon--what we see and do here tonight is the real teaching, the true sermon. I am a layperson, so the words I share are my thoughts as one of you.

    This is some week.  Throughout the church year, we listen, read, learn, praise and pray, and now so much of our faith story is boiled down into one week.  So much to grasp.  So much to understand.

    And yet this evening’s gospel, and the events it recounts, is about laying bare the fundamental truth of Jesus’ life--why he came to us, and the commandment he leaves with us. We already know that Jesus had been through a difficult week since coming to Jerusalem. And because he knew that his time on earth was coming to a close, and gathered his friends for the Passover meal. During supper, before breaking bread with his disciples, Jesus took off his robe and wrapped himself in a towel, that he might wash the feet of his followers. 

    It was common act of hospitality to provide guests with water so they could wash their own feet.  But to humble one’s self to wash another’s is something else.  I imagine it felt like an uncomfortable intimacy to the disciples: their Lord coming to them as a servant.  We may be a little uncomfortable tonight as we engage in this re-enactment, but probably nothing like the disciples felt.

    If I place myself in that room, I can imagine my incredulity, wondering, like Simon Peter, how Jesus--the great teacher we had been following--could display such awesome vulnerability. Our Master took off his robe!  He comes before us unadorned.  We take off our sandals, in which we have walked many miles with Jesus.  Our feet are caked with the soil of the fields, the grime of the crowded city during the festival of Passover, and certainly the smells of the animals that crowd the way.  And now our Master takes our feet in his hands!

    Could I ever be so vulnerable?  And what must I be cleansed of to receive Jesus’ gift -- this intimate, radical act of love?

    This evening at St. Alban’s, we all might think about what is clinging to us that needs to be washed clean. Soon we will watch the stripping of the altar, symbolizing Christ being stripped of his very life. What must we lose to be spiritually naked?  Perhaps it is pride, or fear, or addiction, or anger… or complacency.  Only I know what needs washing from me, and only you know what needs washing from you, so that we all might be fully receptive to hearing and acting on the new commandment Jesus gives us: It doesn’t sound complicated. 

    Jesus says: “…love one another.  Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” 

    This is a tall order, and it’s the last commandment Jesus gives us.  I am painfully aware that it is almost impossible to fulfill when we remain wrapped in what we cannot relinquish--our ego, dependency, jealousy, whatever it is--if we cannot see Jesus and be seen in our washed-through and unadorned state.  This commandment requires that we lose something to gain the life God has in mind for us. Living out this commandment is how we become fully human, as our Christ was, and maybe just a little divine. By truly loving one another, says Jesus, everyone will know we are his disciples.  It becomes who we are!  And this holy love marks our lives and endures all things. 

    Poet Sarah Rossiter says this in her poem, “Maundy Thursday:

    Kneeling on Boston Common, it’s the foot --

    Naked, resting in my lap with clean towel,

    Socks, warm water waiting, that tells me

    This is what happens after a cold winter

    Of deep snow when you’re homeless in

    Dirty socks and cracked shoes that don’t fit:

    This foot, bloody, swollen, toes deformed,

    I wash gently, first one, then the other, and

    Never have I felt so close to Jesus, his feet,

    Bare, pierced, bloodied, nailed to the wooden Cross.

    -----

    On Maundy Thursday evening 45 years ago, I sat with my mother at my father’s bedside.  My Dad was dying of a malignant brain tumor, and in those days before hospice programs, we chose to take him out of the hospital against medical advice, so that he might shed his life at home, layer by layer, in our presence and with our care.  Over those last few days, we two exhausted women watched him first shed his ability to speak, then shed his ability to drink, and then his ability to respond to our touch. 

    For our part, we had to incrementally let go of the belief that being alive is everything; we had to be bare before what was inevitable. We tenderly bathed him. Then we held him as his skin became mottled and cold, and until the next breath did not come.  And there was no more life.  We sat there for the longest time in the quiet, feeling lost.  And then my mother said, “But the love is still here.”

    After our foot washing this evening, we will come together for the Eucharist, the Lord’s Supper--then experience the stripping of the altar.  I invite you to enter into all of it, fully and prayerfully.  Then we will walk silently to the garden, our Mt. of Olives.  It will be dark. In this darkness, let us lay open our hearts with an anguished Jesus as he prays.

    Love will be there.  And it will see us through these three days until it bursts forth in glory.  This commandment, this giving and receiving love, is what will carry all of us through the dark gardens of our lives, through its stripped-bare moments. Jesus has been there and has told us how.  Lose whatever binds us, and love one another.  Dive clean-feet-first into love.  It’s how we’ll get by.  It’s how we can live the life that Jesus suffered and died for 

    “Love one another.  Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples.” 

    In the name of the God who created us, who saves us, and who is with us today.