St Alban’s Episcopal Church
Bolivar, Missouri
Tuesday, December 28, 2021

St John Jesus’ friend, Apostle, Evangelist

John the Evangelist
So why does the church celebrate St John right after Christmas – the day after we remember St Stephen, the first martyr, normally on December 27? Perhaps because he was such a close companion of Jesus, and the author of the gospel that declares the coming of Jesus as Light and Life. As you probably realize, John has no mention of Jesus’ birth – but only of what his coming into the world meant – and means. The power of the Incarnation to change everything for everyone, is everywhere in John’s Gospel.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it…
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.”

Collect for the Day
Shed upon your Church, O Lord, the brightness of your light, that we, being illumined by the teaching of your apostle and evangelist John, may so walk in the light of your truth, that at length we may attain to the fullness of eternal life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

What’s with the eagle? It’s John’s symbol. often carved on pulpits. The eagle is known for grace, strength keenness of vision and powers of flight, soaring upwards. It was also thought to be the king of the birds and believed to be able to look straight into the sun.

1 John 1:1-5We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life – this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us – we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ.

We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete. This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all.



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