By Maurice L. Harris & Contributors
WOODSTOCK, VT – St. James Episcopal Church in Woodstock is writing a new chapter in its shared ministry story. The Rev. Amy Spagna has accepted a call as the congregation’s full-time rector, effective November 1, and will begin presiding over worship services on Sunday, November 17.
Barbara Johnson, senior warden, explained that the search process took two years, but there were several attributes about Amy that led the search committee to finally bring things to a close. “For a start, Amy is a very accomplished musician,” Barbara said. “The music program at St. James has been one of its hallmarks, and our congregation likes a variety of liturgy, including sung liturgy.”
Barbara added, “We also were looking for someone with an interest in developing Christian formation for all ages. In addition, it was important to us that the new rector would want to live in the rectory and be a visible member of our community.”
Both Amy and Barbara remarked that there is a strong, local interfaith collaboration that could benefit from the participation of St. James clergy.
Regarding her new church family, Amy commented, “I’m really excited to work with folks who take the mutual ministry process seriously. Their understanding of how clergy and lay people work together is important to me.”
Amy holds a Master of Sacred Theology degree from The School of Theology at The University of the South and a Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Latin and Greek from Randolph-Macon College.
Amy has experience working with youth in her career prior to becoming a priest, and as a priest. She was a high school Latin teacher in Northern Virginia for 10 years, has organized a Vacation Bible School, and has led a children’s chapel and youth groups. Amy has sung in church and community choirs most of her life. She plays the flute and has recently been studying the piano. Besides music, Amy enjoys cooking and baking and sharing that gift with others.
In a letter to the people of St. James released earlier this month, Barbara thanked the members of the church’s Ministry Discernment Committee and the Rev. Lisa Ransom, interim rector, for their hard work. The letter also announced a Celebratory Coffee Hour, following the 10:00 a.m. service on November 10, to recognize the MDC and bid Lisa farewell. A Celebratory Welcome potluck for Amy will take place following the 10:00 a.m. service on November 17.
St. James is located at 2 St. James Place, Woodstock. Sunday services are held at 8:00 a.m. (Rite I) and 10:00 a.m. (Rite II with choir). All are welcome. For more information, call 802-375-9952, visit the website at www.stjameswoodstock.org or the Facebook page.
In the featured photo: The Rev. Amy Spagna.