St. John’s Episcopal Church
207 Albany Avenue, Kingston, NY 12401

Church Leadership

A vestry is a group of lay people elected by the parish who work with the Rector to oversee the temporal health of their congregation. Vestrypeople are elected to three-year terms. A new group of vestry members is elected at each annual congregational meeting (the last Sunday in January), and all who are members in good standing of St. John’s are eligible to vote.

The 2023 Annual Meeting was held on January 28, 2024. You can download the Annual Report Here: 2023 Annual Reports StJohnsKingston

Responsibilities of the Vestry

In cooperation with the Rector, the vestry is responsible for:

  • Promoting the spiritual welfare of the parish
  • Supporting the programs of the church
  • Managing parish property and its financial resources
  • Reporting to the bishop on the state of the parish
  • Certifying candidates from the parish for ordination

St. John’s is blessed with an active, working vestry made up of eight dedicated parishioners (six Vestrypeople and two Wardens) who give generously of their time and talent. Our vestry includes people with a variety of skills and backgrounds. Some are lifelong Episcopalians; others are relatively new to the Episcopal Church.

The Wardens

Wardens are Officers of the congregation and full members of the Vestry. As such, Wardens have both voice and vote in vestry meetings. In addition, they have increased responsibility for leadership, as the Rector often consults them for advice. Along with the Rector, the Wardens determine the vestry agenda and, should anything happen to the Rector, they are the head of the parish. They are elected by the congregation for two-year terms.

Vestry Meetings

The St. John’s Vestry meets at 12:00 noon on the third Sunday of the month. At every meeting, the members of the vestry engage in reflection, prayer, and discussions about various areas of parish life including buildings and grounds, ministry concerns, events, and finances. Some decisions require a vote and every item on the agenda is discussed in light of our Mission. Vestries are responsible for electing the Clerk and Treasurer every year, as well as electing a Rector when the parish is searching for a new one.

In addition to Vestrypeople, the Clergy, Treasurer, and Clerk all attend vestry meetings. All of them have a voice in the discussion but cannot vote, unless they are elected by the congregation to be Vestry members. The Wardens and/or Rector preside over the vestry meetings.

Parishioners are always welcome to attend any meeting unless the vestry needs to discuss a sensitive matter in an executive session. To communicate with the vestry, you may contact any member individually.

Current Vestry Members

  • Leah Siuta serving as Warden until 2025
  • Paula Wisneski and Sara Hutton serving as Vestrypersons until 2025
  • Kathy Burdick and Keith Ferber serving as Vestrypersons until 2026
  • Michelle Hoffman and Bruce Dodge Jr. serving as Vestrypersons until 2027
  • Officers: Keith Ferber, Treasurer; Kathy Burdick, Clerk; Leah Siuta, Warden
  • Clergy: The Rev. Michelle Meech, Rector; Sue Bonsteel, Deacon (retired)