Welcome to St. Francis in the Fields! Learn more about who we are, what we do, and our passion for the Good News of Jesus Christ.
What We Believe
Grounded in the Gospel
We never tire of hearing about the good news of what God has done for the world in Jesus. Our worship is steeped in Holy Scripture, and we encounter God’s Word in the prayers we pray, in the songs we sing, and in our preaching. Every week, we hear about the burdens of the world, the love of God in Jesus, and the promise of mercy and forgiveness.
Focused on Formation
At the end of every service we are sent out with a blessing that prays that the “peace of God” will “keep our hearts and minds in the knowledge and Love of God.” We take that promise very seriously and endeavor to challenge both the heart and the mind with the good news of God in Christ. We seek to equip people so they can not only deepen their faith, but to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ into their homes, schools, and workplaces. Engagement of the heart and mind lies at the core of what we do here, and is integrated into our programs and teaching for all ages.
Embracing our Anglican Heritage
St. Francis in the Fields is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion. We are committed to the “faith once delivered to all the saints,” (Jude 4) which we share with Anglicans around the world:
Clergy & Staff
Raleigh has served St. Francis since 1990, first as Youth Minister, and more recently as Associate Rector for Pastoral Care, Families, and Mission.
Mthr. Barbara works with ministry leaders to offer worship that is beautiful and glorifies the Living God, and helps oversee formation opportunities so that the adults of St. Francis can deepen their walk with Christ.
As Director of Children’s Ministry, Mthr. Jennifer oversees Sunday Childcare, Sunday School, Children’s Chapel, Junior Youth Group and Crossroads, the Wednesday Night Bible program for children.
As Children’s Ministry Assistant, Alison staffs the nursery on Sundays, provides materials for the Sunday School teachers, and plans and executes church events such as the Teddy Bear Tea, St. Timothy’s Craft Fair, Goody Two Shoes Consignment sales and Vacation Bible School.
Karen is a lifelong Episcopalian and native Kentuckian, and has worked in Christian formation since 2011, when she was called to St. Francis in the Fields as Associate Youth Minister.
Melodie has served as our Parish Administrator since 1998. She manages the parish office, oversees the day-to-day administrative responsibilities of the church, as well as church property management.
Liz coordinates internal and external communications for the church such as the website, newsletters, Sunday leaflets, brochures, and social media, and assists with day-to-day operations.
As Verger, Mathew makes sure things are set up properly and running smoothly for the many classes, programs and events offered at St. Francis as well as the weekly services.
Steve is responsible for managing the day-to-day financial operations that keep St. Francis running, and for using best accounting practices to help us be good stewards of the gifts God has given us.
The St. Francis in the Fields Vestry serves as the “board of directors” for our parish, and is made up exclusively by lay leaders. The Vestry oversees the day-to-day operations of the parish executed by clergy and staff, and engages in long-range planning to achieve our vision. Vestry members are elected for a 3-year term at our Annual Parish Meeting, and Vestry members are expected to be regular, pledging members of the parish and to demonstrate a commitment to the well-being of the parish and their personal faith. The proceedings of Vestry meetings are open to anyone in the parish and meeting minutes are available upon request.
Current Vestry Members
Term ending 2023: Melissa Calabrese, Calvin Rasey, Kennedy Simpson, Robert Vice (Senior Warden), Delia Walker
Term ending 2024: Chamie Deters, Jason Kron, Judi Quaife (Clerk), Davis Tyler, Chris Utter (Junior Warden)
Term ending 2025: R. Kent Westberry, Kate Boyer, Jerry Lyon, Nancy Tafel, Michael Swindall
Appointees: George Vieth (Treasurer), Bill Receveur (Properties Committee), Caroline Eager (Parish Life Committee)
St. Francis in the Fields
St. Francis in the Fields Episcopal Church was founded by a group of 30 neighbors, friends, and relatives gathered at the foot of Harrods Creek just outside of Louisville, Kentucky, in 1946. They were in search of a place to worship God, and a place to raise their children in a Christian environment. They rented a small Baptist church where they and their 31 children attended their first service on Christmas Eve, 1946. The Rev. Robert Clingman was called to serve as rector. Sunday School classes were held at Walter Bader’s grocery store and adult confirmation classes at the Chick Inn.
By 1948 the congregation had outgrown the small baptist chapel. They purchased seven and a half acres of wooded land on Wolf Pen Branch Road and built a beautiful Georgian sanctuary and rectory They started a primary day school, and the church soon became a center of community activity, offering baby care and tuberculosis clinics, and offering other community services.
Legacy of Service
In 1953 the Rev. Stephen R. Davenport was called as rector— a role he would fill for nearly 30 years. The church became known for its strong music program, a legacy we uphold to this day. In 1954, the church added a new education wing and fellowship hall to support the growing community. The day school became St. Francis School, with a school grounds in Goshen and later a high school in downtown Louisville.
The parish continued to grow throughout the 1960s and 1970s. The children of the founders brought their own children to church where they were joined families from the growing neighborhood. In 1982, the Rev. Robert T. Jennings was called as rector. By the 1980s, St. Francis was the largest Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Kentucky. The church grew so much that in the early 1990s that it outgrew the worship space and services were held in the fellowship hall. In 1995 we moved into our current worship space which offers more room for worship while staying true to the lovely design of the original church.
Forward in Faith
The Rev. Robert T. Jennings retired in 2014 and The Rev. Dr. John D. Koch, Jr. became the fourth rector at St. Francis in the Fields. In February of 2020, The Rev. Clint Wilson joined as the fifth rector of St. Francis. We’ve continued to adapt to the changing needs of our community and world, while staying true to the vision of our founders: beautiful worship, robust Christian formation, and energetic mission in our community and around the world.