Clergy & Staff

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Clergy

The Reverend Dr. Adam J. Shoemaker

The Reverend Dr. Adam J. Shoemaker

Rector

Contact Reverend Dr. Shoemaker at ashoemaker@ststephenschs.com 

Adam received a bachelor’s degree from Boston University, a Master of Divinity from Harvard Divinity School, a Diploma in Anglican Studies from the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, and has completed the Doctor of Ministry program at Duke Divinity School. His dissertation addresses a pivotal moment in the unique history of St. Stephen’s. The title of his dissertation is “Building Community Across Walls: A History of an Integrated Church amid a Gentrifying Neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina.” 

Adam formerly served as Rector of Holy Comforter in Burlington, NC where he led a mission-oriented congregation that, under Adam’s leadership, opened the first bilingual pre-school in Alamance County, NC. Prior to his tenure in Burlington, Adam served as the Assistant Rector at Christ Church in Andover, MA. where he had oversight of youth and children’s ministries. Adam has also served the church as a missionary to Brazil (2005-2006) and speaks conversational Portuguese. 

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An active member of the Charleston community, Adam is currently involved with the Charleston Illumination Project and the Charleston Area Justice Ministry. He is also an active member of the Mayor’s Clergy Advisory Council. Adam serves as Dean of the Charleston Peninsula Deanery in the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina and is currently a member of Diocesan Council. He was also elected a Clergy Deputy from South Carolina to the 80th General Convention of the Episcopal Church. In the wider church, he is a member of the Bilateral Commission on the relationship between The Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil. He was also selected to participate in a pilot program of the Episcopal Church focused upon racial healing through the Absalom Jones Center in the Diocese of Atlanta. 

Originally from the New York City area, Adam is married to the Reverend Courtney Davis-Shoemaker and they have three children. In his free time, Adam enjoys sports of all kinds, travel, and exploring the streets of Charleston.  

The Reverend Laura Rezac

The Reverend Laura Rezac

Associate Rector for Children & Youth Formation

Contact Reverend Laura at
lrezac@ststephenschs.com

Laura received a bachelor’s degree from Agnes Scott College and a Master of Science in chemistry from UNC Chapel Hill. While in graduate school for chemistry, and later as a visiting lecturer at UNC, she discerned a call to ordained ministry in the Episcopal Church. She graduated from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific with a Master of Divinity in 2020. Laura formerly served as a Youth Minister at the Chapel of the Cross in Chapel Hill, NC, where she oversaw the Episcopal Youth Community, taught confirmation classes, and led mission trips, pilgrimages, and retreats of all kinds.

 

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Prior to joining St. Stephen’s, she served as a seminarian and transitional deacon at St. Andrew’s On-the-Sound in Wilmington, NC. Laura also has extensive teaching experience as a university lecturer, middle school teacher, and informal educator. Christian formation of children and adolescents is a keen interest. Other professional areas of interest include Christian contemplative practices, global partnerships in the wider Anglican Communion, and environmental stewardship and spirituality.

Originally from western North Carolina, Laura studied in Japan for three semesters during college, and spent time in South Africa as a seminarian. She is married to Chris Rezac and they have one four-legged child, a gangly Doberman named Ichabod Crane. Laura and Chris enjoy exploring state parks, sea kayaking, and cooking for friends and family.

The Reverend Courtney Davis-Shoemaker

The Reverend Courtney Davis-Shoemaker

Assistant Priest (Worship, Pastoral Care, and Family Ministry)

Contact Reverend Davis-Shoemaker at cdavisshoemaker@ststephenschs.com

A native of Asheville, NC, Courtney attended Dickinson College in Pennsylvania.  Prior to going to seminary, she was an Operations Manager at for a destination management company in Vail, CO.  In Boston, MA she worked as an event coordinator at Trinity Church in Copley Square and a development officer for the US Fund for UNICEF.  In 2005, Courtney began her studies at The General Theological Seminary in NYC, and was ordained a priest in 2009. She has served parishes in North Carolina and Massachusetts, and was campus minister for Lutherans, Episcopalians, and Friends (LEAF) at Elon University. 

 

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Currently Courtney works eight hours a week at St. Stephen’s and also serves the Diocese of South Carolina.

Courtney loves to spend time with her family and she also enjoys traveling, exploring the many restaurants of Charleston, and reading.  Courtney and Adam’s children- Malcolm, Aubrey and Hannah- also keep her busy.

The Reverend Gregory L. Smith

The Reverend Gregory L. Smith

Deacon (Mission and Pastoral Care)

Contact Reverend Smith at gsmith@ststepehnschs.com

The Rev. Gregory L. Smith, a Vocational Deacon, was ordained in 1999. As deacon, he assisted in liturgy, pastoral care and Christian education in three other Episcopal parishes within this Diocese: St. Peters, Old St. Andrews and St. Francis. A deacon is called to serve all people, particularly the poor, the weak, the sick and the lonely. His deaconate community ministry includes: Executive Director of Crisis Ministry, (a homeless shelter now called 180 Place), a hospital chaplain; Manager of Pastoral Care Roper/St. Francis, until his retirement in 2011. Prior to being ordained, Greg had a business career for 35 years, 25 in senior management positions.

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Greg is married to Lyn Smith. Their family includes a son and daughter-in-law who live locally, a daughter and son-in-law who live in NC, and four young grandchildren.

Greg works with the Rector and congregation on the ongoing renewal efforts of the congregation. As Deacon, his primary responsibility is to work with laypersons in developing and implementing ministries within the Church, including Outreach and Christian Education. Specifically,

In addition, Greg assists the Rector in Liturgy on Sundays, Holy Days, and in other services such as baptism, weddings, and funerals. 

The Reverend James Pecoy

The Reverend James Pecoy

Deacon (Pastoral Care and Christian Education)

Contact Reverend Pecoy at jpecoy@ststephenschs.com

Deacon Jim transferred to the Diocese of South Carolina in March of 2022 when he accepted a position as Finance Manager for a local company here in Charleston. He is a fairly new Deacon, just ordained in September of 2020. Jim’s passion is in the Liturgy and serving the poor and the sick.

Quoting from his patron saint, Saint Lawrence: “The poor and sick are the treasures of the church.” Jim lives by this quote in his secular and sacred life.

 

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St. Stephen’s is blessed to have the services of retired Episcopal clergy who help as celebrants and preachers.

The Reverend Bill Coyne

The Reverend Bill Coyne

The Reverend Elsa Mintz

The Reverend Elsa Mintz

St. Stephen’s Music Ministry

Wayne Helmly

Wayne Helmly

Music Director

Wayne has served as our Organist-Choirmaster since 2010. Additionally, Wayne is a public school music teacher and an active recitalist.

For information about St. Stephen’s Choir, please email Wayne.

Dennis Shuman

Dennis Shuman

9 am Musician

Dennis Shuman, originally from Northwest Georgia, studied music at Loyola University New Orleans and Boston University. Dennis plays piano and sings for the 9 am Family Service and sings in the choir for the 11 am service. When not working, Dennis enjoys DIY projects and a new found hobby of woodworking. 

For information about 9 am music, please email Dennis

Staff

Amanda Rucker

Amanda Rucker

Parish Administrator

Prior to joining St. Stephen’s, Amanda taught special education students in grades K-2. Parish Administrator since 2014.

Email Amanda

Michael Shewan

Michael Shewan

Verger

Micheal has served as a verger since 2017. As the verger, Michael leads the church procession, assists the clergy, and guides the service participants.

Email Michael

Betty DePriest

Betty DePriest

Nursery Caregiver

Betty has been the nursery caregiver for over 10 years. She recently retired from a 25-year career teaching pre-school.

Email Betty

Dorothy Holland

Dorothy Holland

Youth Minister

A native of Charleston, Dorothy has extensive experience in youth ministry and has worked as a youth minister in Episcopal churches for all of her adult life.

Email Dorothy

Vicki Anthos

Vicki Anthos

Wedding Coordinator

As well as our Fellowship Hour organizer, Vicki is our wedding coordinator here at St. Stephen’s. She also has her own business as a florist here in Charleston.

Email Vicki

 

Griffin Hall

Griffin Hall

Livestreaming

Griffin has a bachelors in Physics with a minor in Maths and currently works in an atmospheric science lab studying ice. Outside of being the coolest kid on the block (literally), he does all the livestreaming for the 11 am service. His hobbies include: gardening, video games, ponies, long walks on the beach, pina coladas, and getting caught in the rain (comes with working in a cloud lab).

Email Griffin