Phone: 417-881-3073

2645 E. Southern Hills Blvd | Springfield | MO 65804 

The Spirit Of Adoption Parish Retreat

It is The Spirit Of Adoption that empowers us to call God, Abba. When we are filled with the Holy Spirit we become powerful and humble in Christ. The true authority comes from knowing we are the children of God and nothing on earth can shatter that. All the differences in the world melt away when we share the Spirit Of Adoption.

This parish retreat is to encourage those who are called to lead a Christian life to become followers of Christ and not just the fans as seen many times. Parish retreat will include time for study, prayer, fellowship, fun, laughter, recreation, outing, walks, talks and celebrations in one of the best places in the world to be in, Eureka Springs, AR.

Italian Dinner Benefit for the Youth Group

Join us for an Italian dinner hosted by the St. James Youth on April 14th from 6-8 PM at St. James
Tickets can be purchased from our youth or Haley Sanderson. The cost is $10 for adults or $5 for children 3-12. 
There will be entertainment throughout the evening and an opportunity to interact with the youth you are helping to support.
This event is open to the public.
Please just make sure you purchase tickets so we know how much food needs to be prepared. 
If you are unable to attend, please reach out to Haley Sanderson, St. James Youth Leader, or Josh Trader, Diocesan Youth Ministry Coordinator, to donate.
With love,
The St. James Youth Group

Happy Easter!

Celebrate your Easter with a service at St. James!  Alleluia, Christ is Risen!

Saturday, March 31 at 7:30 PM    Easter Vigil and Holy Eucharist

Sunday, April 1 at 10:00 AM         Flowering of the Cross                                                                                                       (bring flowers from your garden!)

                              at 10:30 AM        Easter Service with Festal Holy Eucharist


Join us this Holy Week!

Continue your Spiritual Journey by joining us for special services this Holy Week!

Monday, March 26 at 6:30 PM    Holy Eucharist of the Reconciliation

Tuesday, March 27 at 6:30 PM    Holy Eucharist of the Renewal

Wednesday, March 28 at Noon    Healing Service with Holy Eucharist

                                    at 6:30 PM    Tenebrae Service (no Holy Eucharist)

Thursday, March 29 at 6:30 PM   Maundy Thursday with Holy Eucharist,                                                                    Foot washing & Stripping the Altar

Friday, March 30 at 8:00 AM        Morning Prayer

                                          at Noon     Stations of the Cross

                                    at 6:00 PM     Stations of the Cross

                                    at 6:30 PM     Good Friday Service with Holy Eucharist

Saturday, March 31 at Noon          Holy Saturday Liturgy at the                                                                                             Columbarium (in the Chapel)


Mass Murder in Churches—What to Do?

In short, “run, hide, or fight.”  I have participated in several training sessions on how to respond to an “active shooter.”  This is a difficult topic to deal with in church, but we all know that such things happen in churches and, at the same time, we have some reluctance to talk about what to do.  They happen in schools, too, so even our young children are familiar with the possibility and with what to do in the event of a “lock-down.”  Conversations are ongoing among several members of our parish about preparing a plan to deal with mitigating this threat (and other risks as well).  The following points will serve as an initial plan of response that should improve our chances of survival.


First, when you become aware that someone is shooting, run.  During any emergency, most people run to the door through which they entered.  That door might be blocked by the shooter or it might be blocked by other people trying to run.  It is best to always notice all of the exits whenever entering a building or room—make a habit of it.  In our worship space, there is an exit to the left of the lectern at the bottom of the stairs.  It opens to the north and the parking lot.  Run north and scatter between the houses.  Another exit is to the right of the pulpit.  It opens to the south.  You will need to turn the deadbolt above the doorknob.  Get in touch with 911.  If you are being shot at while running, don’t run in a straight line.  It is much harder to hit a moving target than a stationary one, so your chances of survival have improved just because you are moving.


Second, if you cannot run away, then hide.  Find a closet, utility room, or other space. If the shooter has to go looking for people, then his rate of killing has slowed and more people are likely to survive.  If you have gone into another room, such as the conference room in the church office or the gift shop, consider barricading the door.  If the shooter comes to that door, then jump out the windows.  All of our windows are new and easy to open.  The sliding part, after opening, can be lifted out.  You might break some bones, but students at Virginia Tech who did this survived. 


Third, if the first two options are not possible, then fight.  How in the world can unarmed people resist a man with a firearm?  The point is to slow down the shooter’s rate of killing until the police arrive.  Episcopalians are especially well armed in this regard.  Throw prayer books and hymnals at him.  If many people do this then he will not murder as many people in a given amount of time.  This might sound like a sure way to die, and some will, but all of the mass shootings have shown that just hiding under a desk or pew will result in getting shot.  The Virginia Tech shooter even put targets in rows on the ground and was observed slowly walking by and shooting each one, which is exactly what he did to the students who tried to take cover under their desks.  If you fight and slow down his rate of killing, your chances of survival have improved and you have improved the chances of others too.


“Duck and cover” is precisely the wrong thing to do.  “Run, hide, or fight.”


I recommend this excellent and brief article from the Wall Street Journal.


Father Jonathan


November 2017 bulletins and newsletters at St. Peter & All Saints Episcopal Church, Kansas City, MO


The Power Of Compassionating

Wednesday, February 28th was our first Lenten Wednesday soup supper and Contemplative Mass. That’s because of the weather the week before. We had 30 people for the soup supper, study on Compassion, and then the Contemplative Mass. It was a beautiful celebration of community, study, and worship.

Angels prostrate before the human soul as within us we carry the breath of God was such a beautiful way of putting who we are and where we belong. When the speaker inspired us to become the hand, the heart and the mind of God, it was refreshing because it brought us the prayer of St. Theresa of Avila closer. We found common ground with the speaker even though he was a Muslim cleric and then we realized we are not far apart from each other at all. We just need to learn to be present, listen and be the compassionating compassionate, the Christ of the moment for the other.
After the contemplative worship a few people came to me and said, “wow, that was powerful.” Someone else said, “we need this more often.” “It is ok not to have hymns in worship.” The fact is we are all searching for some solitude in the midst of all our anxieties, fears and struggles. We are listening for the still voice that tells us gently where to go in life. Prophet Isaiah promises us, “Your ears will hear a word behind you, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right or to the left. ” Isaiah 30: 21
To practice compassion, we need to be still and know God within. Next week we will go into a time of Taize Prayer after the study of Compassion. Let us listen to the quiet voice that says, turn to the left or to the right.



How to Solve The mystery of Trinity!

We are now in the season of Lent. It is a time for a deeper look into our lives, and make necessary changes from within. Sometimes the changes we make are small and simple, but the impact they may have in our lives is greater and powerful. For example, taking a cup of coffee or tea or a glass of water on a regular basis may not sound like a big thing. But doing it at the same time on a regular basis will form a ritual, which will span into the rest of our lives.

We all need rituals of some sort to help us calm us in a chaotic world. Rituals have the power to settle us into some routines that sometimes we take comfort in when everything else goes haywire. So, finding that ritual is a big deal and makes that happen on a regular basis makes it even more transformative.

We are blessed with a community with rituals and practices of faith. Every time I think of church I think of the Holy Trinity. When I have trouble understanding what Trinity is, I now look into what church is. That’s because I think of Trinity as a community just the same way I look at the church.

Do I understand what church is? Nope. Not all the time. It is hard to understand all that happens in a community, but at the same time once we become part of the community on a regular basis we find the community of believers formative, transformational and at the same time challenging. Church will call us to look into ourselves deeper and harder if we are honest with ourselves.

So my call to you today is, *be part of your worshipping community.* The church is a place where we truly find ourselves. It is only then we will find God. Until we see who we are, we may not find who God is. God is always and will always be present in the community. The mystery of Trinity can be solved. It’s not that hard. *It’s a matter of letting God find us in the community. *

Spiritual Progressive Relaxation

Snow days are behind us. Or at least that’s my hope. I do miss seeing you all in church, and that has nothing to do with you, but with God’s act. I promise you; we cannot take insurance against God’s actions although there are companies that offer them when you buy electronics. God’s work is always beautiful, and it stretches our minds to see life differently. No insurance can “protect” us from being in God’s grace.
So today I want to invite you to allow the stretching of your minds to see how God is changing us as a community and as individuals. No spiritual change is possible without a personal transformation. No one becomes a better person remaining in the same place as before. The stagnant waters are always unhealthy, while the water that moves brings in new life and clean environment, and that is applied to Spiritual Life as well.
I want to invite you to allow the stretching process that is taking place at our church. New energy and new programs with new faces will only make us better people in the long run. This whole process of entering into seeing church life with new wonder is called “Spiritual Progressive Relaxation”. Remember this word when you participate in worship, liturgy, study and community life at St. James. Practice Spiritual Progressive Relaxation!

Are you favored?

Are you a favored one of God? Mary did not expect to be favored one of God. Angel appeared to her and told her without a choice that she is the favorite of God. She only had a choice to say Yes.

To know if we are the favored one we need to look at the blessings we have received and that is the easy part. Many times it recognizes what a blessing is the hard part. Usually, blessings are pretty easy to recognize because we have an idea of what blessings are.

Here is what happened to Mary after she was called the blessed one. She was told that God had found favor with her and she needs to brace up and be ready for the incredible gift she is being given. Then she is told what that gift is. A child. She is not married yet. She is a teenager. And she has a child. There is no man involved. And we know how we will look at such a girl when she says she doesn’t know the man. She hadn’t been with a man.

The so-called blessing here is not a great social standing. Not a proper marriage. Not a good health and no morning sickness. It is that she is going to give birth to a child whose father is an innocent man and then he is going to be the son of God.

In our world today we will call such people delusional. Because we have an idea what blessings look like. The point is, blessed ones are those who can take the day as it comes. It is the serenity with which we can face the day as is planned by God. Blessedness is simply letting God do what God can do, and when God does it, we accept it.

There are several people in the Bible we read about those who were blessed and favored by God. Starting with Abel. He found favor with God. Well. Didn’t end well. Did it? He was killed by Cain.

Noah: Found favor in God’s sight. Well. That didn’t go too good because he had to figure out how to survive.
Abraham: I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you. He was invited to sacrifice his own child. That’s a bummer.
Joseph: God favored him and shown special love. Didn’t end well, ended up in the well.
Israel: God finds favor with the people of Israel, and therefore he brought them out of the land of Egypt. And then what happened? They wandered through the wilderness for the next forty years. Wow. That’s favor in God’s sight.
Job: Hmm… He was the favored one.

We have to redefine what it means to be in favor of God. And we probably need to open our eyes, shed our shells in the eyes and see where God is leading us.

St. Theresa of Avila would say “no wonder you don’t have too many friends. Those whom you love you break their every bone”.

However, once we see the favorability of God, we might choose nothing else. Paul the Apostle did. All the apostles took the favor of God and got killed for it except John.

God favors his chosen and gives them the wisdom to redefine their life. God makes it easy for people to see in death is life, in forgiveness is happiness and in letting go is the freedom.

So today I want to invite you to rejoice in this day and your call. Because is the best make up you can ever have. “Be like a tiny bird with a big song.” (Jerry Van Amerongen.) “One can never consent to creep when one feels the impulse to soar.” (Helen Keller).

Manger Around The Corner

We are right around the corner from the manger of Christ. We are eager to know what this new season brings to us and what can we be excited about. The birth of Christ and all the celebration that goes with it, in reality, is all about new life. We all love new life, and we all can put away those moments of darkness and depression behind and rejoice. Human beings love stress free, happy and joyful moments.

I want to wish you a merry, blessed Christmas. I want to tell you; we are in a new and exciting time in the life of St. James. We are growing and changing. We are becoming new every day. Christ is among us, and I want to encourage you to experience the Lord in the community. Belong and Believe!

We will launch a new website on Christmas morning. I had been working on this site for two months. We will announce the easy to remember address on Christmas Morning! I also want to share with you of the several new programs coming in 2018: Four new worship services each month, contemplative retreats through the year, musical offerings at various times in the year, Christian formation activities and more. There is now, even more, a reason for people to come to St. James and belong. We will provide more opportunities for those who are seeking a non-invasive, spiritually abundant community to belong. I need your help to spread the word. Share our new website with your friends, on Facebook and with those who are seeking a new community.

Once again a blessed and joyful Christmas. May the choicest blessings of the Little Child of the manger be upon you and your family.