Holy Innocents' Episcopal Church


Rector's Corner

Church of the Atonement

  • The Rev. Dr. Bill Murray
  • Dec 17, 2019
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60 years ago, Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church chose to help grow the kingdom of God by working to plant two congregations. Those communities would become Church of the Atonement and St. Peter and St. Paul Episcopal Church. Both of those churches have had rich and diverse ministries.

In the last few years, Church of the Atonement has struggled. They have tried all sorts of ways to reach out to the community and grow in faith but their numbers have slowly decreased. They rebranded themselves as Highpoint Episcopal Community Church, went to part-time clergy with a wonderful and gifted priest, the Rev. Ruth Pattison, and tried finding alternative revenue streams with art galleries and even a small apartment. This past Sunday, they announced that January 12, 2020 will be the last Sunday for their community.

I share all of this with you because I have been in discussions with the leadership at Church of the Atonement to help them find a place to land. I have shared that we are a larger community but just as loving and hopeful and caring. I have assured them that they would be very welcome here- and could bring some of their traditions with them that might revitalize parts of our community as well. For instance, they have a wonderful tradition of having a dinner together every Monday night. I pray they will come and help us revive that hospitality and connection for our community.

More than anything, I invite your prayers for our sisters and brothers in Christ. As they say good-bye to a building they have loved for 60 years, as they say farewell to a unique community they know so well, as they bid one another safe travels to new havens, I pray that they will find that as Episcopalians we are all in this together. We are not just a collection of individual churches that all act independently but a community in Christ that is called to love everyone- and especially open our doors to our friends and family. Pray with me for Atonement. Pray with me for Holy Innocents’. Pray with me for a way to show the world that we can be Christ’s church together.