St. John held its first Recovery Eucharist on June 3, 2012, at 5:30 pm, and it became a monthly service occurring on the 2nd Sunday. The liturgy for this service was developed by the Recovery Ministries of the Episcopal Church. Incorporated into the service are AA prayers and the Twelve Steps. The liturgy is not only beautiful, but it is deeply comforting and healing for everyone whether they are associated with a Twelve Step Recovery Program or not. Lovely Taize songs normally enhance the worship and meditation at this service.
Part of the mission of the Recovery Ministries is to raise awareness about the redemption and grace found in recovery. Perhaps you’ve always wondered what the Twelve Steps are all about. Or perhaps you are very familiar with them because you or a loved one are in a Twelve Step Program. Either way, we hope you will come and see how God’s unfailing mercy is woven within them.
When Bill W. and Dr. Bob (the co-founders of Alcoholics Anonymous) first met, they used meetings of the Oxford Group to help them stay sober. The Oxford Group was an Anglican faith community that was developed at Oxford University. Dr. Sam Shoemaker, an Episcopal priest, helped start the Oxford Groups in the US, and he also helped Bill W. and Dr. Bob develop the Twelve Steps in 1938.
Through a resolution introduced at the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, every diocese in the Episcopal Church is to set aside one Sunday as Recovery Sunday. There is an awareness within the church that the AA meetings that take place in churches all over the country are excellent examples of grass roots Christianity in action. The church honors this and celebrates it. AA and all Twelve Step Programs offer a gift to the church, and Recovery Eucharists are a way of saying “Thank you.”
Our former vicar, Mo. Beth Hoffmann, traveled to St. Stephen in Newport and St. Luke in Walport to do Recovery Services there, and preached at a special Recovery Service at St. Timothy in Brookings with others from St. John on November 14, 2014.
Although we are not offering this service during our period of transition between permanent clergy, we hope to make it available again in the future.
We do have Twelve-Step groups meeting regularly here at St. John. You are invited to call the church office to learn the times and days of these groups.
(Artwork used by permission of the artist, James Curtis)