Hello, and Welcome to our St. Thomas Home Page!
On behalf of all of the wonderful Christians who are part of our faith community,thank you so much for visiting our Internet home! We encourage you to visit the various areas of the site to learn more about what we have to offer.
At St. Thomas, we do our utmost to provide gracious hospitality to all we encounter, both within the doors of our lovely church and outside in the world at large. Our aim at St. Thomas is stated clearly in our Vision Statement, and we urge you to click on the appropriate link here to learn what we strive to be about.
Our charming parish church has been serving Berea and the Southwest portion of Cuyahoga County, Ohio (the Cleveland area) since 1893 in this location, and for many years before that in others. We are nestled in the midst of the beautiful Baldwin-Wallace college campus and just one block from the quaint downtown historic district of Berea.
We cordially invite you to come and worship with us next time you are in the area! We very much look forward to personally greeting you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and introducing you to our active and growing community of believers at St. Thomas Episcopal Church!
Yours in Christ,
The Rev. Gayle Catinella Rector
Lenten Reflection of the Day
Friday, March 7, 2014
“'Why do we fast and you don’t see;
Fridays in the Christian tradition have always been a day to remember the cross. We see this tradition reflected in the Collect for Fridays used in Morning Prayer. It reminds us that Jesus “went not up to joy but first he suffered pain” and it calls us to walk in the way of the cross. One way Christians did this historically was to show solidarity with the poor by refraining from meat on Fridays. This developed at a time when meat was more of luxury than it is today with dollar menus in fast food chains. We could reclaim this tradition by finding new and relevant ways of connecting with the poor on Fridays. One way might be by participating in what is called the SNAP Challenge. We could do this by restraining our food budget on Fridays to $4.50 which is the average daily value of government food assistance. But perhaps we are called to completely re-envision our traditional practice for our local faith communities. Playing off of themes presented by Luiz Coelho, our Winter Convocation presenter, we could explore questions similar to these:
The Rev. Aaron Gerlach, Priest-in-Charge
On this day the Episcopal Church commemorates the life of Geoffrey Kennedy, poet and priest, who ministered to soldiers of the Western Front as a volunteer chaplain during World War I. In his poetry Kennedy reflected upon the reciprocal spiritual relationship he shared with soldiers in the midst of death. As a priest Kennedy experienced the fruits of the Spirit with the soldiers he served, seeing in their everyday heroism "the glorious madness of God." Ever mindful of his "unpaid debt" to those soldiers to whom he "owed God's peace" Kennedy remembered them in his poetry and advocated for Christian pacifism, a conviction born of his years in the midst of battle. By witnessing to the humor, heroism, and ultimate sacrifice of his brothers in arms, Kennedy reminds us that every soul is precious and that every human encounter, no matter how traumatic or troubled, presents the opportunity to both incarnate Christ and experience Christ in the eyes of the other.
The Rev. Lisa O'Rear-Lassen, Priest in charge
Improv and Holy Texts