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Clergy and Staff

Missional Priest — Ellendale Hoffman

Canon Ellendale Hoffman earned the Doctor of Ministry degree from Andover Newton Theological School in 1978. She retired from Grace Episcopal Church, Old Saybrook, where she served over thirty years. She attended the Episcopal Divinity School and Manhattanville College and was ordained to the priesthood in 1977.

One of the first women to be ordained priest in the Episcopal Church, Ellendale has also served in bivocational ministry. She is licensed as a mental health clinician and has served as parish priest, clinical director in community mental health centers, clinical therapist in private practice, seminary teacher, and in transitional ministry. She has also been involved in local community outreach programs and mission trips to Africa and Paraguay.

Missional Priest — Chuck Hoffman

The Rev. Chuck Hoffman earned the Doctor of Ministry degree from Andover Newton Theological School in 1979 and has served for fifty years as an ordained minister in parishes located in Massachusetts and Connecticut. In Connecticut, he was rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Old Saybrook for 25 years, and he retired in 2013. He has since served as interim rector and Sunday supply priest in various congregations in Connecticut

Before graduating from Andover Newton, Chuck earned degrees from the Episcopal Theological School and Trinity College. In addition to serving in parish ministry, he has been appointed to various diocesan and national church committees. In the local communities in which he served as pastor, he has served on town boards and many community outreach groups.

Pastoral Associate — Paul Smith

Originally trained in chemistry and physics at Harvard and Caltech, Paul left academia to pursue a call to ministry. He joined InnerChange (a Christian order among the poor), moved into a marginalized immigrant neighborhood in Los Angeles, and came alongside local leaders to help them transform their community. After many years in Los Angeles, Paul relocated to New Haven, where he works on InnerChange’s Staff Formation Team, tutors math and science, and serves as pastoral associate at St. John’s.


Choir Director and Taizé Leader — Michael Racine

Michael Racine was raised in God’s love in the very musical town of Traverse City, Michigan, where he sang from early childhood and began studying the guitar at age 11. After graduating from Brown University with a concentration in Religious Studies, he moved to Hunan, China, where he taught English for two years at a public middle school and led a small house church. Michael later directed English teaching and curriculum development for a college scholarship program in Haiti, then taught for a year in Spain before coming to New Haven to study at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. While singing in multiple ensembles and studying choral conducting with Marguerite L. Brooks, he earned his M.Div. from Yale in 2015. In addition to his roles at St. John’s, Michael serves Yale undergraduates as a Ministry Fellow with Christian Union.

Parish Administrator — Naomi Purnell

Naomi is currently a Masters student in her second year of studying Art Theory.  She enjoys applying her skill set to the St. John’s website and weekly emails.

Sexton — Ken Ollison

Sexton: The words “sexton” and “sacristan” both derive from the Medieval Latin word sacristanus, meaning “custodian of sacred objects.” A sexton is a functionary of a church, charged with the maintenance of its building and surrounding grounds. Historically, they were responsible for the order and upkeep of the house of worship, including the care of the church buildings, its furnishings, and sacred relics, used in the liturgy and other public acts of worship.

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