October was a busy month for The Gathering Place and its team, with lots of fun as well as meaningful conversations taking place.

On one Friday evening a group of 17 young adults and their families came together for an informal meal and a casual time of hanging out in the back playground area. Three of St. John’s “not-young-adult” members, including the Crists and Traci Kropp, joined them, while also cooking and serving hot dogs and side dishes. It was a beautiful evening and such a good time that we plan on doing it again soon. This is a great opportunity to bring together folks of all ages, and bring together people from St. John’s with those from the wider community. Please consider joining us next time.

Our other big event was the Holy Heartbeat (re)Treat which took place at Transfiguration Center on a beautiful foggy and still Saturday morning. Sarah Porto did a wonderful job leading us into a time of reflection and sharing with lots of opportunity to either take part in the exercises or just sit and be present with the rest of the group. As with the young adult gathering, the group of 20 included many St. John’s folks, mixed in with a number of community members. We are truly becoming a church without walls, who minister and serve “whoever you are and wherever you are on life’s journey…”.

In addition to these special events, a number of church groups continue to meet on the first floor of The Gathering Place, including the Christian Education Team and the new Made to Worship group. If you or your group want to schedule a time, please let Allison know so she can get it on our calendar.


I also want to give a shout out to Zoe Darner. After high recommendations from Liz Fessler, she was hired to clean The Gathering Place every two weeks. She’s doing a beautiful job and it’s so good to know that the space gets a thorough going-over regularly. We also appreciate how everyone who uses TGP tidies up after themselves so it is always ready for the next visitor. Thank you everyone.


Here’s to lots more of the good times.


Mary Ann Crist and The Gathering Place Team

Ashley Reed, Bethel Adkins, Ginny Beamish, Keith Kropp, Sarah Porto, Glenn Lytle