The Little Stone
Church on the Hill
The Episcopal Church of the Epiphany in Flagstaff, Arizona has been a spiritual home to many since the ‘Little Stone Church on the Hill’ was built in 1912 as a mission church.
Epiphany is the largest Episcopal parish in northern Arizona and is a house of prayer for all people – a spiritual home and family for a congregation of over 500 people from all walks of life, united in worship, spiritual development, stewardship and love. We are a congregation centered in the love of Jesus Christ and committed to the service to others. Through outreach, fellowship and community, Epiphany has always been dedicated to the mission of the Episcopal church here in Flagstaff and the Anglican Communion around the world.
Welcome to Epiphany
Whether you live here in Flagstaff or are just passing through, we hope you’ll take time to visit us in our historic church on the corner of Beaver and Elm Streets, just north of downtown Flagstaff. It is our hope that all who enter through our red doors will grow in an ever increasing understanding of God’s abundant love for all.
The Church of the Epiphany is a house of prayer for all people. Services are open to the public, and we welcome all to worship with us in fellowship and in grace. We deeply value all individuals, families, children and youth. We encourage active participation of all ages in a variety of ministries and fellowship. Epiphany offers many things: a diverse congregation, extensive adult education and youth ministries, outreach programs, outstanding music, and attentive pastoral care. It is our mission to foster real stewardship and compassionate outreach – to increase active participation and discipleship for all in our community of faith.
Clergy, Staff and Associates
Priest Marianna Gronek
Rev. Janetta Beaumont
Rev. Scott Deasy
Mary Anne Bruner
Communications and Music Director
Charles “Charly” Spining
Our clergy and staff are here to serve. We are a diverse group of dedicated people with a range of and interests, talents and focus of ministries. Please let us know how we can be of service to you.
2017 Vestry Members and Officers
Taylor Franklin, Robert Barlow (Treasurer) Randy Larsen, Allan Budd, Jay Graves (Junior Warden), Lori Lemke, Janette Macauley, Madeline Nash, Sue Martin Caskey (Senior Warden), David Spence, Sue Norris, and Priest Marianna Gronek
The governing board of a parish in the Episcopal Church is called the vestry. This historic term refers to the group of lay (not ordained) members of the church elected for a three-year term to oversee running the business of the church. The vestry is the legal representative of the parish regarding all matters pertaining to its corporate property. At Epiphany, three members are elected each January for a three-year term. The presiding officer of the vestry is the Rector (priest in charge). The Senior Warden, appointed by the rector, leads the parish between rectors. The Junior Warden has responsibility for church property and building maintenance.
The basic responsibilities of the vestry are:
- to help define and articulate the mission of the congregation
- to support the church’s mission by word and deed
- to ensure effective organization and planning
- to manage resources and finances
- to appoint a search committee and select a rector
The sanctuary, built in 1912-13, is our worship space, with two main sections. The chancel (altar area) holds pews for 20 or so choir members, plus acolytes, the priest, deacons, and others directly involved with the service. The main organ is in the chancel, along with the room that houses the organ pipes. Separating the chancel from the nave is the altar rail, where people come to receive Holy Communion or a blessing. The nave (main body of the church) contains the pulpit, a raised speaker’s stand, and pews for the congregation. At this time, there is also a smaller pipe organ (and its pipes) housed in the southeast corner of the nave.
The parish hall, built in 1927, is the part of the church used for administrative, education, and social gatherings outside of services. Outside organizations use the Parish Hall for such diverse purposes as Tai Chi and yoga, 12-Step Groups, theatrical auditions or rehearsals, and board meetings. The church offices are located on the west side of the building. The kitchen completes the main level of the parish hall. It is regularly used for church-wide and other functions, from chili cook-offs and pancake suppers to potlucks, receptions and our Sunday coffee hour. Downstairs are three rooms used for meetings and classes. Children’s Chapel is held in one area on Sunday mornings during the school year.
The Memorial Garden and Labyrinth are on the west side of the sanctuary. The garden is maintained under the direction of Master Gardener Kathy Deasy, and has recently been replanted to include a number of Biblical plants which are appropriate to northern Arizona.
A Brief History
When the Episcopal Church first came to Flagstaff, it would be twentyfive years later that Arizona would achieve statehood. In that year, 1912, the tiny congregation moved from their temporary quarters at the Elks Lodge downtown into their new rock structure on the corner of Beaver and Elm Streets.
Master stonemason Herman Dietzman built the Period Revival style church with distinctive bell tower and Gothic arched stained glass window. The interior is one of the Craftsman or Mission Period, with classic hand-carved woodworking by Edward C. Mills, a master craftsman who was also a carpenter for 20 years at nearby Lowell Observatory. The Parish Hall was added in 1927 to match the original structure with malpais rock construction and gothic arched windows matching the sanctuary.
The parish’s early history was marked by the World Wars. A wreath commemorating local boys fighting on the European front hung on the church’s wooden double doors during World War I. Records by Church Secretary Kent Rucker show an enormous struggle by church leadership to continue parish business during wartime. The Bishop’s Committee authorized the user of the parish hall for dances for soldiers sponsored by the church. Financial aid for the church was obtained through C. B. Wilson, Dr. H. S. Colton, the Babbitt brothers, and Joe Kellam, to name a few.
Women have always been a guiding presence in the parish. They have contributed in the St. Margaret’s Guild, St. Anne’s Guild, and the present day Altar Guild. They raised money for vestments, candles, and linens. Bazaars were a common way to raise monies, and the huge yard sale held every year in the 1970’s was famous around town.
In 2012, our parish celebrated its 100th year at the corner of Beaver and Elm. As we move forward into a new era, we reflect on our past as we move confidently into the future, and on the legacy that we are leaving for the future. We have rededicated ourselves to supporting the growth of our congregation, maintaining our historic building, preserving and progressing our ministry in the Episcopal tradition – in God’s name, and in love for this life and the life to come.
Edward C. Mills, Epiphany member and skilled wood craftsman.
Photo: Charlotte Mills Fern Collection
Hand-drawn sketches of the tower by Dr. Charles Hoffman.
Courtesy of Hoffman Collection, Special Collections at Cline Library, NAU.
Mr. and Mrs. Jesse Gregg, early Flagstaff residents and Epiphany parishioners.
Newlyweds Irvin and Sally Drye leave the church after their wedding in 1956.