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Montgomery News
A hometown paper
Montgomery Township
and Rocky Hill, NJ

Wednesday May 24, 2017


Montgomery News Directory

New Pastor at Rocky Hill Trinity Episcopal Church

The Rev. Dr. Johan Johnson has accepted the call to serve as the new Vicar of Trinity Episcopal Church, Rocky Hill.

Father Johan, who is also happy to be called "Father J," or, for basketball fans, "Dr. J," brings a wealth of experience to Trinity both as a pastor and educator. He comes from a long line of Episcopal priests. Father Johan's brother, late father and grandfather were all ordained. Presently, he also serves as the Chaplain of the Peddie School, in Hightstown, where he resides with his wife Gabriela and two daughters Madeline and Elizabeth, who are, respectively, seven and five years old. There, he also coaches the JV tennis teams and teaches a humanities course.

For 16 years, Father Johan served as the Rector of the Episcopal Parish of St. Martin's & St. Luke's in Harlem, a parish of 500 members. While there, he co-founded a challenging, independent K-8 school for children of all socio-economic backgrounds. Earlier, he provided pastoral care as the Chaplain at St. Mary's Episcopal Center in Harlem, a forty-bed residence for people with AIDS.

Father Johan was the founding Head of the Trinity Episcopal Day School (now known as Trinity Academy) in Hartford, Connecticut, a school founded to provide equal opportunities for underprivileged children to a quality education. He worked, as well, at the Portledge School on Long Island and New Canaan Country School in Connecticut in admissions positions.

Father Johan looks forward to getting to know and serve the community, noting "I am really excited to be getting back to parish ministry, which I have done my whole career, in conjunction with my school work. It provides me with a deeper understanding of what families and young people are going through."
Trinity Episcopal Church, Rocky Hill is the "Little Church with the Big Heart" located at 1 Park Avenue in Rocky Hill. Sunday services are held at 8 and 10 am.

Blawenburg Church Brings Back Montgomery National Day of Prayer Service

Thursday, May 4 is National Day of Prayer. In years gone by, the various houses of worship in town would gather together for a joint inter-faith service to celebrate the event. The practice stopped a decade or more ago, presumably for no other reason than the lack of an organizer.

But this year, Blawenburg Church will host just such an inter-faith service. The whole town is invited, regardless of faith. Starting at 7:30 pm, on Thursday, May 4, worship leaders from Christian, Jewish and Muslim congregations will offer messages of peace and unity.

"We've talked about doing this for a while," said Rev. Jeff Knol, minister at Blawenburg Church. "It's another way for us to reach out beyond ourselves. We really hope to see people from around town and from other faiths join us on May 4."

"When we see the violent images on TV of the horrible way humans treat each other, we sometimes feel powerless," said Dr. David Cochran, vice president of the church's governing board. "We may feel there is nothing we can do. We can't intercede in every conflict or stop every violent incident, but we can pray for peace and unity."

Everyone is invited, no matter your faith.

If you have questions, you can call the church office at 609-466-1832, or send an email to BlawenburgChurch@gmail.com , or friend the church on its Facebook page.

The historic church on Route 518 is a partner in ministry with New York's Marble Collegiate Church. Its regular worship services are at 10 Sunday mornings.