WELCOME TO SAINT JOHN’S CHURCH

Welcome to St. John's Church, Lafayette Square—a vibrant historic Episcopal church located across from the White House. We invite you to join with us for worship, Christian fellowship and outreach.

History

From our organization as a parish in 1815 to today, St. John's Church has provided a powerful symbol of faith in the heart of our nation's capital.

Mission

At St. John's, we believe Christ is calling us to be a renewed church in a changing world. In worship, education, parish life, and social action, we seek to expand our horizons by serving God by loving one another.

Clergy & Staff

Meet St. John’s diverse and engaging clergy, vestry and staff.

Service Times

St. John's offers several opportunities on Sundays and during the workweek for you to join us during worship. All are welcome.

Directions & Parking

Located at the corner of 16th and H Streets in Northwest Washington, St. John's is near the McPherson Square and Farragut North Metro stations. Limited street parking is available; free valet parking is offered for certain hours.

Rector Transition

On October 17, 2017, the Rev. Dr. Luis León, rector of St. John's Church, announced his retirement in May 2018.
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Service Times

 

St. Johns web photos

Weekdays

12:10 p.m. Holy Eucharist with Homily (excluding National Holidays) with special noon services on Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday; and Good Friday.

7:00 p.m. Latrobe Fellowship meets on the first Wednesday of the month (September-June) for Holy Eucharist with Homily and Music followed by a program.

Weekends

Regular Service Schedule

7:45 a.m. Sunday: Holy Eucharist with Homily. A simple service without music. The service includes a homily (a shortened sermon).

9:00 a.m. Sunday: Choral Holy Eucharist with sermon.  The Parish Choir and eight staff singers from the St. John’s Choir provide worship music.

11:00 a.m. Sunday: Choral Holy Eucharist with sermon. St. John’s Choir provides worship music.

Valet parking will be available from 9:30 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. for Sunday services.

What to Expect

During the program year (from the weekend after Labor Day through Memorial Day) we have three morning services, and one afternoon service in Spanish. In the summer we have two morning services and one afternoon service in Spanish. All services include the Scripture readings for the day, a sermon, and communion – the sharing of the blessed bread and wine. We call the service “Holy Eucharist,” but other churches may refer to it as “the Service of the Table” – “Mass” – “Holy Communion” or “The Lord’s Supper.” You can find the readings for each Sunday – which we call the Sunday Lectionary, on the calendar here. Each of our services has a distinct flavor, and everyone is always welcome!  You can expect to be greeted by a friendly usher, who will give you a bulletin and answer any questions you may have.

7:45 a.m. Service – This is a small, peaceful, quiet service. There is no music, which adds to the meditative mood of the service. Our Rector (the Episcopal Church’s word for the head pastor) sometimes calls this service “The Lord’s Breakfast.” It usually ends around 8:30.

9:00 a.m. Service – This service is an abbreviated choral Holy Eucharist. The Parish Choir, which consists of volunteers from the Parish and professional singers, leads the music. We choose either a reading from the Hebrew Bible or the Letters of the New Testament, and a reading from the Gospels (The 11:00 a.m. service includes all three readings). Many people who come to this service stay for the Adult Forum at 10:00 a.m.

11:00 a.m. Service – This is our largest service, including a choir, organ music, and usually a sizable attendance. Music is led by the St. John’s Choir, who are all professional singers. The service is joyful and energetic, and often includes quite a few families with young children. Church School classes for children ages 3-12 are held during the service. The Church School starts at 10:45 a.m., and the teachers bring the children to the service to join their families for communion. For teen Church School students, the group meets in a designated location in the church to hear the sermon together, and then proceeds to the Parish House for discussion until the end of the service.

How Will You Know What to Do at the Service?

If you are familiar with the Episcopal Church, you’ll recognize the service right away as a traditional, Rite 2 (modern language) service. If you’re not familiar with the Episcopal Church, don’t worry! Our Order of Service is a step-by-step guide printed for every Sunday service with each reading, tradition, song, and process. You’ll be able to follow along, and we hope you’ll find our worship joyful, beautiful and meaningful.

At the 7:45 a.m. Service, we have a small bulletin that will refer you to the pages in the Book of Common Prayer so you can read along and participate as you’d like. The Book of Common Prayer will be in the pew rack in front of you.

St. John’s Church was built nearly two hundred years ago, in the time before indoor plumbing. There are no restrooms near the entrance of the church. To find a restroom, you need to go into the hallway connecting the church to the Parish House. There is one restroom here with a changing table. Another restroom can be found in the reception area, and more restrooms are located downstairs in the Parish House, near the dining room. (You can also find changing tables in the nursery). To get to the Parish House you can enter through the door to the north of the altar area, or use the ramp outside on the north side of the church to access the restrooms.

Is St. John’s Accessible to People with Disabilities?

A handicap accessible ramp is available near the left side of the church’s front doors on 16th Street. Clergy are happy to bring communion directly to someone; just let an usher know if you need that assistance.


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