St. John the Divine is where my faith began. My earliest memory is of attending Catechesis of the Good Shepherd as a preschooler. Catechesis encouraged my questioning and prepared me for learning and fellowship in high school and college. I learned that God can handle my questions and doubts.

Growing up as a chorister in the Children’s Choir from kindergarten to fifth grade taught me to love music. Today, singing hymns in a church or Taizé service is both an expression of praise and a form of prayerful meditation. The three Canterbury Pilgrimages I took with the choir sparked my interest in traveling, and in the decade following I traveled to several countries with friends, school groups, and a non-profit organization. Throughout my childhood, the people and the ministries at SJD introduced me to the basic tenets of Christianity and the importance of having a faith community.

In college, I connected with the Episcopal Student Center at the University of Texas. Late night discussions with friends at the Student Center emboldened me to think more deeply about difficult, gray issues. For the past year I’ve been a member of our Young Professionals (YoPro) group. We gather in homes, restaurants, the Chapel, and all over Houston to know God and each other. I’m learning how to listen to God’s voice through meditation on his word. Through the YoPro ministry I have found friendship, belonging, and a deeper relationship with the Lord.

Each ministry that I have been a part of has helped prepare me for the next stage of my life. God reveals himself to us and transforms us through these ministries. It doesn’t matter if you were baptized here or if you are brand new, everyone can find a place to grow at St. John the Divine. The Life Groups, services, and classes at St. John the Divine are like a river, always flowing. No matter where you are, you can put your foot in here and find somewhere new to start.

-- Elizabeth Toedt

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