The Mission of St. John’s Episcopal Church is to glorify God by growing in Christ’s love and sharing that love with others through worship, fellowship, and service.
Choral Holy Eucharist is held on Sundays at 9:30 a.m.
Our parish is led by our ministry team, consisting of our Priest-in-Charge, The Rev. Canon Barbara Price, and our lay leaders Mary Ellen Aureli and Karran Swayze. These leaders, and others, comprise our vestry, who serve St. John's by keeping St. John's ministry vibrant, alive and centered around our Lord, Jesus Christ.
Our young people are offered opportunities for spiritual growth through parish and diocesan activities such as youth group meetings, camps, conferences, retreats and other programming. We also have adult bible studies and classes for those preparing for the sacraments of baptism and marriage.
Our members are involved in local, national and international outreach ministries, including
- Care-N-Share Food Pantry, Ransomville - weekly food collections and financial support
- Community Missions of Niagara Frontier Inc. - personal care kits and financial support
- Baskets of Caring, Village of Youngstown Christmas outreach
- Lewiston-Porter Counseling Services - emergency funds for discretionary use by the counseling staff. We also support our Lew-Port families in need by providing school supplies in September and gift cards at Christmas
- Partnership For Mission and Outreach, the official outreach arm of the Episcopal Diocese of Western New York
- United Thank Offering
- Episcopal Relief and Development
We use a variety of methods to stay in touch with parishioners, friends and the wider community. We publish a monthly newsletter, "The Saint" which sent out to the parish via email or snail mail. Our digital presence includes our Facebook page and our website. Our telephone number, 716-745-3369, is checked regularly for messages, and the recorded message includes telephone numbers for our priest and our parish leaders if there is an urgent need to contact the the church.
We are part of the Episcopal Dioceses of Western New York & Northwest Pennsylvania led by The Rt. Rev. Sean Rowe., Bishop Provisional of Western New York. We are also members of the Anglican Communion in the United States, and are part of the third largest group of Christians in the world. St. John's is governed by a set of bylaws, found here.
We believe in following the teachings of Jesus Christ, whose life, death, and resurrection saved the world.
St. John’s traces its history back to the first Anglican services held in Western New York. Nearby Fort Niagara fell to the British in 1759 during the French and Indian War, and Anglican services replaced Catholic services in the chapel of the French Castle. These services are thought to be the first Anglican and the first Protestant services held in all of Western New York.
As the settlement grew around the Fort in the 18th and 19th centuries (now the Village of Youngstown and the Town of Porter) several faith communities were formally organized, including St. John’s Episcopal Church in 1868. The original congregation met in private homes and for a time shared worship space with a Methodist congregation in the Brick Church on Main Street, now a residence.
The present church building was built in 1878 on land donated by Ordnance Sgt. Lewis Leffman. Sgt. Leffman was one of Niagara County’s most well know personalities, and when he died, his obituary appeared on the front page of the New York Times. The Visitor’s Center at Old Fort Niagara has a display featuring Sgt. Leffman, who served the Fort for over 40 years. Many of the original members of the church were attached to the Fort’s garrison, and assisted with the construction of the church.
St. John’s was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990. It is only one of a few “carpenter” gothic churches in Western New York with an active congregation. The board and batten siding is original, and the church’s 19 stained glass windows, representative of several eras and styles of church window design, bring light and color into the church. Several of the oldest windows were recently restored, and parishioners have worked hard to ensure that the church is preserved for future generations.