Staff and lay leadership

Our priest

The Rev. Rebecca Jones, priest-in-charge

The Rev. Rebecca Jones,

Becky was a longtime Denver journalist, including 24 years as a writer and editor for the Rocky Mountain News, before finding her calling in the church.  She’s also worked for newspapers in Tennessee, for the Associated Press, and has done freelance work that has appeared in numerous publications.

A native of Cleveland, Tennessee, she has bachelor’s degrees in mass communications and political science from East Tennessee State University, and a master’s degree in journalism from The Ohio State University, where she was a Kiplinger Fellow.  She came to Colorado to go skiing one weekend in 1984 and simply never left.  She received her Master of Divinity from Iliff School of Theology in Denver in 2007, with concentrations in Anglican Studies and Justice & Peace Studies. Ordained a deacon in 2008, most of her seven-year diaconal ministry was focused on serving the homeless, and on advocating on behalf of the poor and marginalized.  She was ordained a priest in 2015, and came to St. James as priest-in-charge in 2016.

Email Mother Becky

Our deacon

The Rev. Anthony Christiansen

The Rev. Anthony Christiansen

The Rev. Anthony Christiansen was ordained a deacon in June 2017. He has a background in ministry with the homeless as well as chaplaincy experience in hospice and in correctional settings. He was raised in Minneapolis; went to college in New York City,  where he lived for 15 years; and he received a master's degree in theology in Washington, D.C. in 2005. He's lived in Colorado since late, not counting the 2016-17 school year that he spent at Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas.

He is owned by a dog, a 5-year-old Brussels Griffon by the name of Boo, who is unarguably the center of Anthony's life. Besides Boo, he has many interests and hobbies including travel, reading, drawing and painting, and cooking. He  lived for a couple of years each in The Netherlands and in England, working in both places with refugees from war-torn areas of the Middle East and Northern Africa. He loves languages and is fluent in Spanish, and does fairly well in both French and Dutch. He is passionate about social justice issues and has a strong bias that acting justly in the world is at the heart of our vocation as Christians. 

Email Deacon Anthony

Our parish administrator

Bev thomas

Bev thomas

Bev Thomas oversees the day-to-day running of our parish office, and chances are, it's her cheery voice you'll hear if you call the church.

Prior to her retirement, she worked as a senior information technology data analyst for Catholic Health Initiatives in Denver. She's skilled in all things related to computers, financial software, data base management, procurement and project management. Trust us, she's the ONLY one around here who knows how to coax a malfunctioning printer back to life or how to get the computers to work properly. 

She also serves as Bishop's Warden for The Episcopal Church of St. Peter & St. Mary in Denver and is managing director of St. Clare's Ministries, a Tuesday evening ministry to the homeless and hungry in Denver. 

Email Bev

Our music director

Gretchen timmer

Gretchen timmer

Gretchen Timmer started playing for church services as an eighth grader, and during her career has served Episcopal, Presbyterian, Methodist, Lutheran, Congregational and Catholic congregations. She has a bachelor's degree in music education/keyboard performance from Hastings College in Hastings, Nebr., and a master's degree in music education and piano from the University of Nebraska. A school music teacher for much of her life, she retired from Cherry Creek Schools in 2006 after teaching 24 years at High Plains Elementary. She was director of children's/youth choirs at St. John's Cathedral from 2007-2011, and has served as a collaborative pianist for Young Voices of Colorado since 2006.

Our vestry – the hardest-working vestry in Colorado

Nancy Herrera – Senior warden

Before retirement, I worked for the U.S. postal service as a letter carrier for 21 years. Before that  I worked for a music distributor for 11 years. I've been a member of the Episcopal church since 1990, first at All Saints in North Denver until it closed in 2005, then at Intercession for two years. I came to St. James in 2007. In the past I've served on the Vestry, was Senior Warden, and served on Altar Guild. At St. James I've done more of the same: Altar Guild, Eucharistic Visitor, acolyte, money counter, Vestry. My wish for our church is that we continue to be a loving and welcoming place.  

Carol Johnson - Junior warden

I was born in Germany and lived in the Territory of Hawaii, California and Virginia before coming to Colorado in 1968 to go to C.U. Boulder. I received my B.S. in elementary education in 1972. My main occupation was as a lactation consultant for a company I started in 1993. Since retiring, I have spent many hours helping with five of our granddaughters who live nearby. I have volunteered two days a week at their elementary school for the last six years. I have served on Altar Guild at each church I have attended. I have also helped with Vacation Bible School, rummage sales, silent auctions, and anything else that was needed. Outside of church, I keep busy with my family, Daughters of the American Revolution, and genealogy.

Martin Mooney – Treasurer

Martin is too busy paying our bills and keeping the books in order to give us his bio right now, but trust us when we tell you that this former CEO is a stand-up guy, is willing to drive across town two to three times a week on church business, and knows how to run a tight ship. He's up every morning by 5 to exercise, and whenever there's a need at St. James, Martin is right there to lend a hand. His wife, Cordy, grew up at St. James, and no other church could ever feel quite like home.

JoAnn Hamm - Clerk

I am originally from New Jersey. I worked for 25 years as secretary to the Special Services Department of Red Bank Public Schools in Red Bank, N.J. I retired from that position in June, 2013. In February of 2014 I moved to Arvada with my daughter, son-in-law and grandson. I've been attending St. James since we moved here. Prior to moving here, I attended Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Catholic Church in New Jersey. I now volunteer two days a week at Peck Elementary School in Arvada, and I recently adopted a bulldog puppy named Gracie. My goal is to have St. James become the parish that we know it can be.

Rose Applegate

I worked for the State of Colorado for 22 years and retired from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Center. I worked for Printing Services as a Program Assist II in charge of the business department and payroll. I also did payroll for the Bookstore, Mail Center & Photography. After I retired I went back to work for them as a partime retiree for three more years. I have been at St. James for almost four years. I started attending the Episcopal Church about 25 years ago. I started at All Saints Episcopal of Denver until it closed and from there I went to St. Laurence in Conifer until I came to St. James. I am head of the Altar Guild, an acolyte and Eucharistic Visitor. I am married to John and we live in Thornton. I have four children and four grandchildren. We love to go fishing and camping .

Phyllis Sharla - Bio and photo coming soon!

Pearl Oppliger 

I am a 74-year old widow. I moved to Colorado from Ohio when I retired in July 2009. I have a BSW from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio, and a MSW from the Ohio State University. My MSW was in the administrative track. I worked in the addiction field for 25 years working myself up to Compliance Officer for two non-profit agencies. I was co-owner of a children's clothing store from 1976 - 1984. I had not been actively involved with a church since 1994, when my husband died. Recently, I decided I needed to find a church again and attended a service at St. James. I felt at home and knew this was the church I wanted to join. I was a City Council Member for four years in Bowling Green, and was chairman of the Safety Committee. I was a charter member of the Bowling Green Housing Agency and was an Adjunct instructor at BGSU. I was also President and Membership Vice President of the American Association of University Women in Bowling Green. I have three married daughters and no grandchildren. I am a very active person and try to walk 7 miles a day. I am in very good health and love life.

Stephen Anthony 

I have a bachelor?s degree in design-in-wood from Metropolitan State University Denver, and the equivalent of a master's degree in European-American Furniture Design. I am an Associate Brother of the Order of the Holy Family and am a member of the Verger Guild of the Episcopal Church. I was born in Denver, baptized at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Lakewood and confirmed at St. John's Cathedral. I've been involved in worship since I began as an acolyte at age 9. I lived in the Bishop's Community, an offshoot of the Community of Celebration in the mid 1970s, worked as an intake/social worker for Cathedral Social Services and worked in street ministry with Burt Womack in the founding of the St. Francis Center. I have been blessed to serve and study under a great litany of priests, including my uncle, the Rt. Rev. William Frey, former bishop of Colorado. I have owned or been partner in five custom woodworking businesses in the Denver Metro Area. I taught at Graland Country Day School as a fine arts/science teacher and member of the 6th Grade Team. I have tutored, taught, led seminars and conferences on furniture design, construction and finishing since graduating from university in 1985. I love to fly fish and hunt birds, especially dove and pheasant. 

Nancy Shepard

I have worked in various industries – medicine, insurance, mining, mortgage banking – as administrative assistant/secretary, mostly in small offices. I have volunteered in hospice care, with the child protection team in Jefferson County and tutored elementary reading. I was involved in starting a 501 (c) 3, non-profit corporation 2 1/2 years ago and am currently President of ACT, All Comforting Things of Colorado. We make and distribute hand-crafted items for those in need to several organizations and currently have 35 members. Some things I enjoy are quilting, reading and jazz music. At St. James I have served as an acolyte, 2016 stewardship chair and am now singing with the newly formed choir. 

Helen Masterson

I am owner of the public relations firm, Masterson & Friends Communications. Among my more than 30 years of experience in public relations, advertising and promotions, were four years with Ned High Public Relations and four years as director of public relations for the Denver Art Museum. Before joining the museum, I was director of public information for the University of Colorado's Boulder campus. I served as editor, production manager and director of public information at the Education Commission of the States and the National Assessment of Educational Progress. In this capacity, I was responsible for media relations, legislative briefings and national news conferences. I am the former host of "Denver Showcase" on KCNC, Channel 4, Denver. I served on the American Lung Association media task force, and on the boards of Community Housing Services, Visiting Nurse Association, Denver Woman's Press Club, Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, and Arvada Chamber of Commerce. I currently write for GuestGuide Publications, publishers of tourists publications in Estes Park and Winter Park Colorado and Moab Utah.