The Rev. Stephen J. Graff

staff-steveI came to St. Gregory’s in October 2011 from my home near Syracuse, NY. I have a B. A. and M. A. in theatre and had a mildly successful career as a theatrical designer and stage manager. However, I was happier during his seven years as a Roman Catholic monk and even more at home in a 30 year career in ministry, during which I received an M. A. and M. Div. in theology, and spent roughly equal time in parish ministry and seminary education/administration. With a Ph.D. from the Graduate School of Education at New York University, I spent much of my time in program design and supervision, while my publications were largely in the area of adult education models for ministry formation. I served as an author, editor, and consultant for the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, the National Association for Lay ministry, the Interfaith Common Competencies Conference, and the National Association of Diaconate Directors. My journey at St. Gregory’s continued as me and my wife, Sharon Schoen, were formally received into the Episcopal Church in May 2012. Ordained as a deacon for the Roman Catholic diocese of Rochester in 1987, I was received as a deacon for the Episcopal Diocese of Southeast Florida on May 31, 2013 – the 26th anniversary of my RC ordination. Assigned to St. Gregory’s by Bishop Frade, my ministry is in three areas: Pastoral Care of the Sick, including hospital, nursing home, home visits, and training and coordination of Lay Eucharist Visitors; Adult Education, both in program design and offering the occasional session; and Prayer and Meditation Ministry, participating in daily morning prayer and the Thursday Centering Prayer time while looking to expand opportunities for meditation during not just Advent and Lent, but throughout the year. While considering ourselves “new Floridians,” Sharon and I still maintain our ties to Central New York with its access to brothers and sisters, children and grandchildren.