Read about the weekly rhythm of our parish life for the fall and beyond here.
Like other churches in the Diocese of Virginia and neighboring dioceses, St. Stephen's Church suspended Sunday services March 15 until further notice, to safeguard the health and well-being of all during the global COVID-19 pandemic. In response, St. Stephen's began producing weekly videos with prayers, Scripture, hymns, and a homily for each Sunday. In November, we shifted to a livestreamed service of Holy Eucharist at 9 a.m., followed later by in-person distribution of Communion (bread only). The livestreamed service is recorded so that you may watch it later, if you wish.
Can we worship in person?
All Episcopal churches in the Diocese of Virginia are prohibited from holding in-person worship indoors because of the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus. Some churches have been holding outdoor services for some time; even then, attendance is capped at a number based on the most recent public health data.
With that in mind, and with cold and inclement weather arriving, our staff have worked with our bishop to allow St. Stephen’s to pilot a way for parishioners to enter our beautiful church, not for full worship services, but for brief times of personal prayer and devotion, and to receive Holy Communion. This offering, from noon to 2:00 each Sunday, has proven enormously popular, offering much-needed spiritual refreshment for our parishioners. Our musicians, our sacred architecture, our gracious volunteers, and our devoted staff all contribute to a most holy, in-person experience each Sunday from noon to 2:00.
Our plan is to expand this opening of our worship space to weekdays, when conditions allow, and eventually to allow small groups to reserve large, indoor spaces in our parish house so that they can meet in person (masked, of course). We have been approved by the bishop to continue piloting such offerings for our parishioners, with the understanding that other parishes can learn from our experience and perhaps allow them to do the same in the future. If you wish to take advantage of these opportunities, you will sign up in advance using a link we'll provide on this page.
Sunday, November 29, 2020
- The sign-up for receiving Communion ion November 29 is HERE.
- The bulletin for this Sunday's service will be available here later this week.
- A link to "Wondering about the Gospel in Palmer Hall" will be posted here on Sunday.
- The livestream for November 29 is below.
- Looking for the Daily Morning Prayer livestream? It's here.
Livestream for Sunday:
The distribution of Communion will be offered from noon until 2:00 p.m. and from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m.
If you wish to take part in the in-person distribution of Communion, please sign up here, and read carefully the protocols and procedures in place.
- Signing up in advance.
- Using one entrance--the Three Chopt Road entrance (the west door)--to enter the church, and the north and south doors to exit. This will allow our ushers to ensure that the maximum number of people permitted in the building at one time is not exceeded, that we have an accurate list of those who attended (should contact tracing become necessary), and that people are able to maintain safe distance from one another.
- Wearing a mask at all times except the moment when you consume the bread.
- Maintaining distance of six feet or more from anyone outside your household, except when receiving the bread from a priest.
- Following the instructions of the ushers.
November 1, 2020, All Saints' Day | Program (PDF download)
October 25, 2020, Twenty-first Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
October 18, 2020, Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
October 11, 2020, Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
October 4, 2020, Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
September 27, 2020, Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
September 20, 2020, Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
September 13, 2020, Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
September 6, 2020, Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
August 30, 2020, Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
August 23, 2020, Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
August 16, 2020, Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
August 9, 2020, Tenth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
August 2, 2020, Ninth Sunday after Pentecost | Program (PDF download)
Earlier videos are available here.
Other resources for prayer and reflection at home: