For the most up-to-date information on scheduled activities, please call the parish office at 202-363-4119. If the automated attendant answers the phone, select option 9.
During periods of inclement weather, a liberal leave policy will be in effect for staff. So, while the parish may be open, individual activities, meetings, etc. may still be cancelled due to a staff member’s inability to get safely to the church. It’s best to call the parish office for current information.
On weekdays, St. Columba’s follows the DC Public Schools. If they are closed, the parish is closed and all activities are cancelled (same for delayed openings). All activities scheduled before the delayed opening time are cancelled. All activities beginning after the delayed opening time will occur as scheduled.
On Sundays, while individual activities (Forum, Sunday School, meetings, etc.) might be canceled, worship services will occur as scheduled (except in very extreme conditions) and parishioners are asked to use their best judgment as to whether they can safely get to church. Call for the most up-to-date operational information.
4201 Albemarle Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20016
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September through May:
Mon. through Thurs.,
9 am to 5 pm
Fri., 9 am to 4 pm
June through August:
Mon. through Fri.,
9 am to 4 pm.
Please note that clergy are generally off on Fridays.
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Columba, or “Columcille” in Gaelic, was a 6th-century Irish monk who was exiled to an island off the west coast of Scotland called Iona. (Iona is the Latinized form of the Hebrew name Jonah, which means dove—as does Columba in Latin.)
Accounts differ about what caused Columba to leave his beloved Ireland. The story we tell most often is that Columba, who had a passion for books, was accused by a local abbot of copying a monastery’s prized copy of a Gospel without permission. In the trial that ensued, Columba was ordered to surrender the copy he had made. He refused, inciting a battle in which many died. Overcome by remorse, Columba sailed from Ireland with 12 monks, swearing that he would stop and build a new monastery only when he could no longer see his homeland.
The community Columba founded on Iona became the center for an early, northern renaissance in which books, art, music and culture were preserved in the face of the encroaching “dark age.” Columba and his monks were vigorous and tireless missionaries who did much to keep Christianity alive in Europe.
For more on Columba, stop by the Craig Eder Library on the second floor of our building, where there is an entire section dedicated to our patron saint and Celtic roots. Don’t have time to browse? Check out our online catalogue in advance to see what books we have to offer.
The banner image of a boat comes from one of our stained glass windows. Look around next time you're at church and see if you can find it.
Photo: Wayne C. Fowler