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Emmanuel Episcopal Church

40 East Church Street, Adams, NY 13605
(315) 232-2916

Worship Sunday: 9:30am

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“Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:12

Parish Profile

We are a small parish located in rural Jefferson County, NY, about 60 miles north of Syracuse. Our church is 169 years young . We have begun our search for a priest to serve our congregation on a part-time basis.

We are an active congregation of committed Christians, looking to serve God, each other and our community. We have been blessed by the services of our parish priest, Fr. Jerry Wichelns, for the past three years, and we also have many active lay-led ministries. Among these: lay-led morning prayer services, a men’s fellowship group, a women’s Bible study group, a women’s prayer group, adult and children’s education and pastoral ministries to the ill and infirm. Members of Emmanuel also coordinate many outreach ministries, including community dinners, rummage sales, a Christmas bazaar, Operation Christmas Child, providing Christmas stockings to underprivileged children, and Livemore Ministries, an ecumenical women’s fellowship organization.

We are seeking a passionate spiritual leader who is interested in getting to know us, learning our stories and joining our faith community. We look for skills that include biblical preaching and teaching and the ability to help people apply scriptural truths to their individual lives. We would also like a priest who will provide counseling and who has a heart for pastoral care.

We see ourselves as a warm, welcoming community that is excited about growing spiritually and adding new people to our congregation. We encourage you to contact us if you are interested in learning more about this position.

Our Church Community

Our people: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” – John 13:34

Emmanuel is a congregation of believers who love God and love their neighbors. Our desire is to follow Jesus and grow into the people he wants us to be. Parishioners care about one another, support one another and enjoy our fellowship together. We are active in the local community. We welcome newcomers and visitors with open arms. We look for ways to build the Kingdom of God and serve the needs of his people. Emmanuel is ecumenical and works cooperatively with other churches in the community.

Emmanuel believes in the meaning of its name – “God with us.” Our worship is spirited, prayerful, reverent. We have about 20 families active in church life and twice that number affiliated with the church. Our average attendance for 2017 was 33. Though Emmanuel’s numbers currently are small, our active members are diligent and involved in the life of the church. We are focused on spiritual growth and believe there is potential for numerical growth as well. Most of our members are 50 and older. Yet we offer nursery care during Sunday services and Christian education for all ages. We love kids and seek ways to welcome all people, including young families, into our fellowship. Emmanuel is economically diverse.

Our parish life is not without challenges – we desire greater attendance, wider participation in parish activities and more young families and children. We keep looking for ways to serve the needs of our area – drug addiction, rural poverty, struggling families and other problems that touch our community. How the church can be an effective force for healing and good is a question that occupies us constantly.  

Our ministries: “There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.” – 1 Corinthians 12:5

The parish: Lay eucharistic ministers, readers and acolytes participate in every service. Lay people lead Morning Prayer one Sunday every two months or more. Lay eucharistic visitors take communion, friendship and news to shut-ins and the ill and infirm. Music, both traditional and modern, is important to the parish: our organist and choir director has served Emmanuel faithfully for years and our choir just celebrated its 25th anniversary. We have a faithful Altar Guild and cleaning staff who keep the church beautiful in all seasons.

Emmanuel’s warden and vestry view their work as a ministry and are dedicated to serving the parish.

Fellowship and outreach: Emmanuel lay people lead three ecumenical groups that meet at the church: a men’s fellowship Bible study; a women’s Bible study and a women’s prayer group. One of our members organizes events for Live More Ministries, a women’s fellowship organization.

The church holds community dinners, rummage sales, a Shamrock Supper and a Christmas bazaar.

One of our members works year around for Operation Christmas Child, gathering items in all seasons and providing stockings of gifts to underprivileged children at Christmas.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets at the church three evenings weekly.

Emmanuel belongs to the South Jefferson Ecumenical Council and joins other churches to provide Vacation Bible School and participate in events such as the Crop Hunger Walk.

Our building: “I was glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.’” – Psalm 122:1

Emmanuel has completed major building projects recently, re-siding the church building this spring, painting rooms in the Education Wing and installing new carpet there this summer. That follows other efforts – painting the sanctuary and replacing the stained-glass windows a few years ago. Much work has been done in recent years to make the Rectory a pleasant place to live.

St. Luke’s by the Lake: Emmanuel oversees a chapel on the shore of Lake Ontario in Henderson Harbor that provides a stunningly beautiful place to worship for parishioners and summer visitors alike. Services are held there every Sunday in July and August from 7:45 to 8:30 a.m. The Ecumenical Council holds a Galilean Service there each summer as well. Emmanuel parishioners prepare the building and grounds at St. Luke’s for these purposes. Our priests traditionally have led Holy Eucharist services at the chapel and Emmanuel lay people serve there each summer.

The Surrounding Community

“You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst forth into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” – Isaiah 55:12

Adams: Adams is a village of about 2,000 people in Jefferson County of northern New York state. It is a small town in a rural area, friendly, family-oriented and community-minded with little crime. Dairy farming has been the staple industry here for years and Great Lakes Cheese in Adams is a major manufacturer. There is some logging locally and several small businesses. The area has good schools and, to some extent, the schools are community centers and major employers. Correctional facilities in the area also employ many people. The nearest city is Watertown, population 33,000, 15 miles to the north. Northeast of Watertown is Fort Drum, home of the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division, the nation’s most-deployed soldiers. Expansion of the base in the last 30 years has enriched the local economy and added new people to the community. 

The North Country: Northern New York, called the “North Country” by residents, is a beautiful part of the world. To the west of Adams 10 miles is the eastern shore of Lake Ontario. The St. Lawrence River and the Thousand Islands region are 45 minutes north by car. To the east is the rugged Tug Hill Plateau, the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains which form the largest state park in the country. Gorgeous scenery can be found everywhere in our region which is blessed by lakes, rivers, fields, forests and mountain peaks. Tourism is another major industry. Recreational opportunities abound – hiking, camping, swimming, fishing, hunting, boating, snowmobiling, skiing, snowshoeing and horseback riding are some of the offerings.Salmon fishing in Pulaski

Henderson Harbor

Adams Country Club

Cultural opportunities are available as well, particularly in Syracuse and Watertown but also in small towns and villages throughout the region that boast summer concert series and other activities. Canadian cities Kingston and Ottawa, Ontario, and Montreal, accessible by car, offer many interesting venues. One finds excellent opera and theater in Syracuse. The acclaimed Orchestra of Northern New York performs in Watertown, Potsdam and elsewhere in the region. The Stanley Theater in Utica presents many top performers in a variety of genres. There are several colleges in the region, including Jefferson Community College in Watertown, St. Lawrence University in Canton, Clarkson College in Potsdam and state university campuses in Oswego, Canton and Potsdam.

In short, there is no end to cultural and educational opportunities in Northern New York.

High school sports are followed enthusiastically in local communities. Syracuse University basketball is a passion with many people. Watertown is home to the historic Red and Black semi-professional football club, the Watertown Wolves pro hockey team and the Watertown Rapids collegiate baseball squad. St. Lawrence University and Potsdam College field Division 1 hockey teams. Olympic athletes train for winter sports year-round in Lake Placid. In the summer, Syracuse is home to the Syracuse Chiefs, a Triple-A Minor League Baseball affiliate for the Washington Nationals.

Our region has many fine restaurants.


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