We have 4 new candidates for the Vestry who will be voted on during the Annual Meeting on Sunday, Jan. 21. Below are headshots & bios.
Stephen is an Oakland native who has lived the majority of his life in close proximity to his childhood home. Stephen was awarded an MTS degree from the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley, in 2018. This marked a career turning point and a long-awaited opportunity to become a chaplain. Raised in the Armenian Orthodox Church, he and his family joined St. John’s in 2013 and are active members. Stephen and his wife, Nancy Roscelli, have one daughter, Frances, who studies English Literature at SFSU.
Stephen thrives in the outdoors and especially enjoys reading, road cycling, and spending time at home. He is a proficient (some say gifted) napper and periodically undertakes art projects.
Jen came to the St. John’s community 10-15 years ago through music and mindfulness. She discovered St John’s while attending Music Together classes with her children in the Fischer Room and, after class, finding a quiet moment in the meditation garden. Her children, Jaden (15) and Keller (11), still sing in the Fischer Room with Ben every Tuesday, and Jen now offers a mindfulness and meditation group for youth.
Jen lives in Montclair with her husband Trevor and their two sons, dog, cat, and gecko. She works as a Clinical Psychologist in private practice in Oakland. Her professional roots are in juvenile justice and family therapy and she worked with children and families in the non-profit sector for 15+ years. Jen continues to specialize in trauma, anxiety, relationships, and grief and loss. Jen is interested in serving on the Vestry to help St. John’s continue to find creative ways to bring youth and families together in love and mindfulness.
Tom and I have been members of St. John's for about 40 years now, happily raising three children in this vital faith community. We are both retired attorneys and I still maintain an active practice in the East Bay as a real estate broker. During our many St. John's years, Tom served on the Vestry, and he and I ran a PEP Training Class (Parent Effectiveness Training) for parents of young children; together with the Felders, Millers, & talented others, we led a Canning & Jamming program every Friday night for a year!
I sang in the choir for 10 years, taught Sunday School for 6, was in charge of Tenant properties (reporting to the Vestry) for 2, ran two Auctions, and worked on the first-ever Comfirmitzvah Class with other epic parents of that year. My goal is to help re-vitalize some of those activities, reaching out to the wider Montclair community for more participants, and adding a theatre component to our St. John's life as well.
Given that I have not long been a member of St. John’s, I am humbled by the opportunity to serve on the Vestry and pray that what I lack in years I will make up in enthusiasm.
The Episcopal Church of my childhood was rich and formative, as was attending the Catholic Church with my beloved Irish Catholic grandmother. During college at UC Berkeley I ‘went east,’ exploring Buddhism and attending the Berkeley Vedanta Society where I met my Bengali husband. Through contemplative practice in Vedanta, Buddhism, and Christianity, I came to believe in the truth of all faith traditions whose mystics, free of dogma, speak the same language of love. Several years ago, I returned to the Episcopal Church, my forever spiritual home.
Though my marriage ended, I am blessed by my 28-year-old daughter, Marie, living in Santa Barbara. With graduate degrees in Public Health and in City and Regional Planning, my career zig-zagged through health care legislation, program development, contract negotiations, and health compliance. I am impassioned by the right to universal health care, the rights of immigrants, the undocumented, and trafficking victims, and anti-death penalty work.
Happily retired, I am (slowly) writing The Great American Novel as well as a memoir of my immersion into Indian history and culture. My dog Marley and I frequent the vast expanse of the East Bay hills that surround a beautiful and buoyant church called St. John’s.
St. John's Episcopal Church, Oakland
1707 Gouldin Road
Oakland, CA 94611
Sunday 7:45 am
Sunday 10:00 am (Livestreaming available)