Chapel & Faith

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Our chapel services are intentionally structured for the students to build community, for learning to take place, and for God to be worshipped.  Children who come from faith traditions other than Christianity are valued, and their traditions are respected.  As we say at the end of every chapel service, "You go to your house of worship, and I'll go to mine, but we'll all walk along together. Thanks be to God."

Programmatically, St. John's incorporates worship from the Book of Common Prayer, 1979 into weekly worship services.  Through the rites of Morning Prayer and Holy Eucharist the Episcopal faith is shared and taught within the context of worship.  In spirit, St. John's fosters the Anglican ethos that Creation belongs to God and we have been given minds to explore and discover the gifts, structures and wonders of creation.  Much of worship is led by children, and visitors will find them reading the scriptures and prayers.  Our choirs also sing in the services.  Parents and family members are invited to join us at any time.  Early Preschool 2-year-old classes experience chapel and music in their own building at a time more suitable for their age group.

In addition to chapel, children who are 3 years - 5th grade attend a religious education class once each week. St. John's uses the internationally acclaimed Godly Play, a Montessori style of spiritual formation. It has three main elements which speak to the whole child and teach biblical literacy, theological inquisition, and liturgical action. Children are told either a sacred story, a parable or a liturgical lesson, and then are led by the storyteller to wonder. They are free to play with the story materials and develop art responses to the stories. 

Godly Play is very quiet and contemplative. Many say it is transformational. It is ecumenical in nature, and is used by Southern Baptists, United Methodists, Church of Christ, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Quakers, Non Denominationalists on most continents in the world. 
 

St. John's Episcopal School was born from the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest, and the Church of the Heavenly Rest loves St. John's and continues to provide for and support the School. The majority of the Board of Trustees of St. John’s Episcopal School is Episcopalians and they are also members of Heavenly Rest. Heavenly Rest supports the School financially and holds various scholarship endowment funds with the Heavenly Rest Foundation. Each year a member of the Heavenly Rest vestry serves as a liaison to the SJES Board of Trustees. The Rector of Heavenly Rest is a non-voting member of the Board of SJES. The clergy of Heavenly Rest serve as chaplains to SJES and lead Wednesday worship. Whenever possible the students, faculty, and staff of St. John's are integrated into the worship, education, fellowship, and outreach of the Church of the Heavenly Rest.