Clergy and Staff
Wilma was born in Cape Town, South Africa of immigrant parents from Denmark and Britain. She earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Cape Town, worked as a high school physical science and math teacher, then came to the United States in 1984 to attend Fuller Seminary, Pasadena.
After obtaining her Master of Divinity from Fuller, she returned to South Africa to be ordained as a deacon. Four years later, when the Anglican Church of Southern Africa finally allowed it, she became the first female priest ordained by Archbishop Desmond Tutu. She worked for 15 years in the Diocese of Cape Town, in parishes in black townships, university towns, the cathedral, a rural parish with fishing and farming communities, and a 19-month stint as chaplain to Archbishop Tutu. During the apartheid years she was an anti-apartheid activist in church and faith based organizations, which crystallized her conviction of the connection between faith and social justice.
In 1997 she obtained a Master of Sacred Theology from Union Theological Seminary, New York. She was the Anglican chaplain at the University of Cape Town for six years, then joined the staff of All Saints Church, Pasadena in 2003, serving most recently as Senior Associate for Children, Youth & Families, Students & Young Adults. She is passionate about the integration of spirituality in all areas of life, and her belief that “ ministry built on a solid basis of prayer, relationships, loving pastoral care, mutual ministry with priest and people as equals, contemplation and action, creativity, Eucharist and social action, can transform people’s lives.”
Wilma has an eclectic taste in music, from sacred and classical to African, jazz, folk and world; she plays piano, guitar, violin and recorder. She enjoys reading, tennis, and jogging, loves the beach and the mountains, and dark chocolate.
(Here is a newpaper article that ran locally when Wilma joined our parish.)
The Rev. Sarah Lapenta-H
Associate Rector firstname.lastname@example.org
The Rev. Sarah Lapenta-H is a third-generation Italian-American from Detroit. Sarah serves as St. Jude’s Associate Rector for Congregational Development, helping to implement St. Jude’s Mission Covenant goals of Deepening our welcome and accessibility, Learning to live as disciples of Jesus in the modern world, and Supporting parishioners through all stages of their lives. Together with the Rector, and in addition to sacramental and preaching responsibilities, she is responsible for equipping the congregation to grow and function as mature people of faith in the 21st century in Silicon Valley.
Sarah earned a BS in Management from Purdue, a MDiv with foci in multicultural leadership and pastoral care from Fuller, her interfaith chaplain training through Providence in SoCal, Anglican Studies from St. John’s ProCathedral, Los Angeles, and her Spiritual Direction certification from the Archdiocesan Spirituality Center, Los Angeles. She served for many years in business management, as an AmeriCorps volunteer through the United Methodist Church and Mennonite Voluntary Service, in leadership with Evangelical churches, and as a chaplain in various settings, including with a police department in LA County. Additionally, Sarah brings rich formation experiences from time spent in homeless and addiction-recovery communities and from relationships with church leaders including Ms. Margaret Treadwell, student and editor for “systems theory” pioneer Rabbi Ed Friedman; spiritual director and author Ms. Margaret Guenther; and Fr. Richard Rohr with the Center for Action and Contemplation.
Sarah enjoys being a longtime vegetarian foodie and a ‘why-sayer,’ improv and sketch comedy, training her dog Bran Muffin, visual and conceptual arts, watching soccer, and urban hiking. Sarah is married to Paul Hebblethwaite, a first-generation immigrant from South Africa who currently works in non-profit development. They are passionate about accompanying individuals and communities in sacred listening, becoming more aware, and participating in who God is inviting them to be-becoming.
The Rev. Bruce R. Bramlett
Assisting Priest email@example.com
The Rev. Bruce R. Bramlett is an ordained Episcopal priest and Christian educator in Inter-religious relations, world religions and a facilitator in inter-group relations. Bruce received his theological education at Union Theological Seminary in New York and completed his Masters of Divinity degree at the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church and has served parishes over the past thirty years in Reading and Williamstown, Massachusetts; Essex Fells and Teaneck, New Jersey; and Lodi, San Ramon, and San Rafael, in California.
Bruce pursued advanced theological and historical studies at the Graduate Theological Union. While continuing as a pastor, he also pursued his interests and involvement in scholarly work as a part time instructor for a number of bay area educational institutions including St. Mary’s College, U.S.F., The University of the Pacific and Dominican University. He has been an adjunct instructor at Sonoma State and San Jose State Universities in their Jewish Studies programs.
After leaving parish ministry, he was the Program Coordinator for Holocaust and Genocide Studies and Critical Thinking for the Silicon Valley Faces (formerly the Conference for Community and Justice) in San Jose. He is now a freelance educator providing Holocaust education in Bay area schools and Board member of the Helen and Joe Farkas Holocaust Studies Center at Mercy High School. He is an instructor for Lehrhaus Judaica in Berkeley and a trainer/educator for the Jewish Partisan Education Foundation. He has been the program chair for the Silicon Valley Inter-Religious Council and active in inter-religious affairs, especially Jewish-Christian relations, in the bay area. He is also a Spiritual director at San Quentin’s Death Row.
A native of Michigan, Jani has made her home in California for over two decades and has worked in facility management for 35 years. Jani is married to Deb Wild and has five children, Joshua (12), Enoc (12), Elias (10), Daniel (8) and Esperanza (6). When not using her gifts for management or with her family, she enjoys practicing Aikido, painting, sculpting, and creating mixed media art work. Jani is pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at Church Divinity School of the Pacific.
Music Director and Organist firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura is a professionally trained organist and pianist. She has gathered and directed eight choirs and choral groups over 30 years, directed the music and accompanied several musical productions, teaches Suzuki piano (certified through Book Three), and is a published composer and arranger. Laura directs the Choraliers, a senior outreach choir that performs for senior facilities. She earned her B.A. in Music (organ) from California State University at Long Beach, with a Secondary Credential in Music. She currently plays for St. Andrew's parish for their Saturday Night liturgy, and is an accompanist for Mission City Opera. She is available with her sister Allison (flutist) to play for healing liturgies and other events.
Billie has been a singing instructor at De Anza College in Cupertino since 1983. She teaches beginning and intermediate singing classes and founded and directed the De Anza Women's Chorus (1992-2009). Before coming to St. Jude's, Billie was the music director at Union Church of Cupertino (1990-2007). She earned her B.A. in Vocal Music from Long Beach State University, M.A. in Vocal Music from San Jose State University, Elementary School Teaching Credential from University of Hawaii, and the International Opera Studio Diploma in Zurich, Switzerland. She has sung with the Honolulu Opera Society, the Vintage Singers, and the De Anza Orchestra. She has been music director and vocal coach for many musicals.
Donna Andresen Araiza
Office Manager/Administration email@example.com
Donna is a native of New York but grew up in Aptos in Santa Cruz County. She was raised Lutheran and attended two Lutheran colleges before graduating from the University of Nebraska with a Bachelor’s degree in journalism, specializing in advertising. Donna came to St. Jude’s after working for the San Jose Mercury News for over 22 years in outside sales. One of the things she loved best in that job was creating display ads for her clients. It’s this eye for creativity and design that she brings to St. Jude’s in our print publications. Whether it’s the monthly View or one of the weekly Sunday bulletins, she strives to make it flow easily for newcomers and make the reading interesting for our parishioners. She is one of several who updates the website. She also handles facility rentals and directs parish communications. She has two children (one deceased), two step-children and five grandchildren. She augments her part-time job at St. Jude’s with tutoring children in reading, writing and math. In her spare time she enjoys everything related to the fine arts, gym time, watching college football, gardening, baking and reading.
Whoever you are, wherever you are on your journey of faith, you are welcome here.