St. Stephen's Episcopal Church
Jamaica NY

11432





Who we are

* WELCOME * BIENVENUE * BIENVENIDOS *

Welcome to Saint Stephen’s Church (Episcopal) in beautiful downtown Jamaica, Queens, New York.

We are a warm and welcoming congregation in the Episcopal (Anglican) Church.

We the congregation of Saint Stephen's Church(Episcopal) pledge to love and serve our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ through worship, prayer and the sacraments in the fellowship of the Episcopal Church. We promise to give willingly of our time, talents and resources, and commit our lives to His service by going out into the community and the world to seek and to serve those in need, and to share with them the Good News of the Gospel.

MISSION STATEMENT

'God in Christ, calls us to be a Christian community living in HOPE....

Honoring our ancestors,
Overcoming all obstacles,
Praying for guidance,
Evangelizing the world.'



Church Address

St. Stephen's Episcopal Church
89-26 168th St
Jamaica, NY 11432
United States
Phone: (718) 523-1917
Fax: (718) 658-5208
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Church Pastor

The Rev. Donovan I. Leys
The Rev. Donovan I. Leys
Rector
89-26 168th St
Jamaica, NY 11432
United States
Phone: (718) 523-1917
Fax: (718) 658-5208
Download Rector The Rev. Donovan I. Leys vCard   Edit



Quote of the Day
Psalms 71:1

In thee, O LORD, do I put my trust: let me never be put to confusion.

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Leadership

Leader Name:
The Rev. Donovan I. Leys   Edit
Leader Position:
Rector   Edit
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(718) 658-5208   Edit
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Administration

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89-26 168th St, Jamaica, NY
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St. Stephen's Episcopal Church Jamaica Service Times

The Holy Eucharist, Sundays, 10am

Weekday Mass, Wednesdays, 10 am
There is no Weekday Mass in July and August.

Bible Study, Tuesdays, 7:30 pm, Church Office

Wednesdays, 10 am, In the Sanctuary following the Weekday Mass.

There is no Bible Study in July and August.

Adult Christian Education, Sundays, 9:30 am

Church School, Sundays, 10 am

Please contact the Rector or the Office for Baptisms, Confessions, Consultations, Funerals and Marriages.

Service Times last updated on the 27th of May, 2019
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Prayers and Hymns

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History of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church Jamaica

In the year 1902, the Diocese of Long Island purchased a parcel of land at the northwest corner of Grand and 91st Streets (now known as 168th Street and 90th Avenue). On the site was the present Rectory and a barn which was replaced by a small parish house in which the church services were held. On February 15, 1903 the parish house was dedicated as a Church and the congregation was organized as a Mission by the Right Reverend Frederick Burgess, Bishop of Long Island. The Mission was said to be primarily for the black people in the eastern part of Jamaica to keep the bulk of them from traveling further westward to Grace Church (the mother Church).

The Rev. Henry McDuffy was designated as the first Priest-in-Charge of the Mission Church. He was succeeded that same year by the Reverend E. N. Hollings who served from 1903 until 1916 when he died suddenly. The leadership was then passed to the Rev. William S. McKinney who was installed as the third Priest-in- Charge in 1917. Rev. McKinney had served as Lay Reader during Rev. McDuffy’s tenure, and as Deacon Assistant to Rev. Hollings.

All activities, along with the Church services took place in the small parish hall until in September 1923, the cornerstone was laid and soon after, the present church building was completed. The present Parish Hall was built in 1935.

Rev. McKinney retired in 1944 after 27 years of leadership and during the vacancy which lasted eight months, services were conducted by the Venerable Harry J. Stretch, Archdeacon of Queens and Nassau.

In 1945 the Rev. Montraville E. Spatches was appointed the fourth Priest-in-Charge with the Rev. Leslie C. Ford as his assistant. Rev. Ford was elevated to the position of the fifth Priest-in-Charge in 1947. Under his leadership we achieved parochial status and in 1960 he was elected the first Rector of St. Stephen’s Church. He served until his retirement in 1964.

The Rev. John Graham Murdock was instituted as the Parish’s second Rector in February 1965 and served until his resignation in September of 1968. The very next month we experienced a fire in the Church which severely damaged the chancel area and several of the stained glass memorial windows. The church building was closed for seven months while repairs were being made and services were once again held in the Parish Hall (now larger). During this time the Venerable Canon William G. Penny, Archdeacon of Queens and Nassau and the Rev. Marlin L. Bowman conducted the services. We also, during this time, purchased the small house next to the Church on the north side which now houses the Church office and meeting room.

The Rev. Arthur James Kelly was instituted as the third Rector of the Parish in September 1969 and served until his resignation in September 1978. He was succeeded by Rev. D. Stewart Alexy in September 1979. Father Alexy was a dynamic and innovative leader and initiated many physical interior improvements in our buildings during his tenure as fourth Rector. He served until his death in April 1990.

It was two years before we were able to secure a new Rector. In the interim we were served by Rev. Lynn Coggi who was appointed Interim Priest by Bishop Orris G. Walker, Bishop of the Diocese of Long Island.

On August 1, 1992, the Rev. Mervyn L. Belmontes became our fifth Rector. He was installed on November 1, 1992. Under Father Belmontes’ leadership a number of new programs were introduced which enhanced the spiritual, economic and social activities of the church. These included the establishment of an additional Bible Study Group, a Men’s Guild, a Nurses’ Guild, Chapters of the Union of Black Episcopalians and Daughters of the King, a Share Food Program and an annual International Day. In 1995 he was appointed Dean of the Jamaica Deanery which included nine churches. He initiated the annual Deanery Picnic which helped to foster greater fellowship among the congregations.

For three years he was ably assisted by Deacon Richard Montrose, who enabled St. Stephen’s to expand its ministry to include the re-establishment of Boys’ and Girls’ Scout Troops, also programs for battered women and children of incarcerated parents (Angel Tree Ministry).

Father Belmontes resignation became effective July 31, 2000.

In December 2002, Bishop Walker appointed the Rev. Canon Dr. Lynn A. Collins as Priest-in-Charge. She began her duties on March 5, 2003 and served until Nov. 2 when she resigned to take a position of Rector at St. John’s Church in Los Angeles, CA. Before and after her brief stay we were served by a number of Supply Priests. In November 2003 Rev. Charles Holdbrooke began as Supply Priest and served us for 19 months.

On December 1, 2006, the Parish called its sixth Rector in the Jamaican-born cleric, the Reverend Father Donovan I. Leys. Father Leys has been in the Diocese of Long Island since March 1992, served as an Assistant Priest at Saint Augustine's, Brooklyn and Rector of The Epiphany and Saint Simon, Brooklyn.

Father Leys presently serves as the President of the Black Clergy Caucus of the Diocese, Vice President of the Diocesan Council and a Member of the Cathedral Chapter. He enjoys cruising the 'high seas', reading, 'surfing' the web and repairing 'things'.

Presently, he is engaging the congregation in, 'Education....the way forward', focusing on many and varied ways of educating the members of the Parish through exercise, dance, music, bible study, christian education and formation, seminars, youth fellowship and our choirs.   Edit


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The power of Christian prayer "Prayer is the acid test of devotion."
Samuel Chadwick
This page was last updated on the 27th of May, 2019
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