About Us

About us St. James in-the-Hills ChurchWho Are We? 

We are members of the Anglican/Episcopal Communion. As Episcopalians, we are a community of faith that honor our past, meet the needs of the present and work for the future. The Episcopal Church derived from the Church of England, and we share our faith and order as it is set forth in the Book of Common Prayer. We uphold the Catholic tradition and at the same time have a Protestant attitude. Our faith is in Jesus Christ as Savior. We believe Holy Scripture to be the Word of God and to be the primary source of doctrine. We also believe in reason as the gift of the Holy Spirit and tradition as the wisdom of generations past.

The Episcopal Church style of worship is liturgical, with formal rites for public worship. We have seven Sacraments. Two of them were instituted and ordained by Jesus: Baptism and Holy Eucharist. The remaining five were not commanded directly by Christ, but play an important role in the development of our faith in the Lord; these are: Penance, Ordination, Confirmation, Matrimony, and the Ministry of Healing.

The structure of the Episcopal Church has Jesus Christ as its head, followed by ordained ministers such as Bishops, who can trace back their consecration to the Apostles, and who are responsible for a Diocese (a group of Parishes). Priests preside over the Parish and Deacons assist the priest in parish work. The Church is also governed by a Vestry that consists of parishioners elected at the Parish Annual meeting, and Lay People who are also ministers of the Church.

History of St. James in-the-Hills Episcopal Church

The idea of planting a second church in the city of Hollywood was conceived at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Hollywood. The first service for the newly developed mission was held on October 8, 1961 in the Oakridge School Cafeteria in Hollywood. The mission started with twenty-three faithful families. The people appointed by St. John’s to the mission committee were James Harris, Robert Reidenbach, Michael Rutecky and William Hanes.  In 1962, the vestry of St. John’s recommended the approval of St. James as a mission to the Dioceses and on May 1 of the same year, mission status was granted. On May 4, 1969, St. James was admitted to parish status at the Diocesan Convention.

St. James first vicar was Fr. Edward Pennel Jr., who served from July 1, 1962 to November 1, 1964. He was succeeded by Fr. Edward Manning, November 15, 1964 to February 1, 1967, later by Fr. Norman Feaster, June 1, 1967 to October,1992. Upon Fr. Feaster’s retirement, The Rev. Glenda Ruppe Melnyk and the Rev. W. William Melnyk were called as rectors. They served from July 1,1994 to December 31, 1997, Fr. Ramón Aymerich was called as rector on December 24, 1998. He served until December 2003. In the process of seeking a new rector, Bishop Onell Soto became the interim and he shepherded the parish from December, 2003 to July 31, 2005. On August 1, 2005 the Rev. Fr. Orlando J. Addison became rector and served until January 27, 2013.