Events & Programs

St. James  sponsors or participates in many annual and several one-of-a-kind special events during the year, including our always popular Blessing of the Animals, our Mardi Gras feast, and other seasonal celebrations. We offer spiritual travel experiences and quarterly book readings and discussions are offered to enhance worship development and personal growth. For more information about what we can offer you, please send us an email at

Click here to see our calendar of events >

‘Collective trauma’ was the theme of our Lenten Summit this year

Join Rev. Cindy and four experts in the field of understanding collective trauma as we explored how COVID-19 is affecting all of us, and how its after-effects will be felt in years to come. 

You can watch the various sessions of our Lenten Summit on YouTube at our Lenten Summit page here.

The Daily Pilot recently ran an article on our upcoming collective trauma summit, and how this past year has affected our congregation; you can read that article here.

Book to read:
‘Building Resilience’ 

Rev. Cindy writes, “This past year has been challenging at best. If you are struggling to understand how you can be resilient and come out of this pandemic stronger than ever, then this book is for you. Building Resilience is a process. Most of us understand that we need to be resilient but what does that mean? How do you build resilience? In this simple book, Alice Updike Scannell defines resilience and how to obtain it in nine steps that are easy to understand and implement in your daily life. If you are having a difficult time right now and would like to pull out of it—I found this book to be very helpful to me, and I highly recommend it to you!” You can order the print book from Amazon Smile at or the Kindle e-book version here:

Dr. Richard Matthew from UCI will be with us for our Earth Day celebration on Sunday, April 18th 

Richard A. Matthew (B.A., McGill; Ph.D., Princeton) is Associate Dean for Research and International Programs; Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy; and Director of the Blum Center for Poverty Alleviation ( at UC Irvine. He is also a Senior Fellow at IISD in Geneva, a member of the United Nations Expert Group on Environment, Conflict and Peacebuilding, and the Vice-President of the Environmental Peacebuilding Association ( He is PI of an NSF EAGER project, and Co-PI of the FloodRISE and SedRise projects ( He has served on several UN peacebuilding missions, including two that he led to Sierra Leone. His research focuses on understanding and addressing human security and conservation challenges at the intersection of severe environmental stress, extreme poverty and violent conflict. He has done extensive fieldwork in conflict and disaster zones worldwide. He has given four TEDx talks (including one linked below—see video) and been a featured storyteller on “The Moth” twice. He has over 180 publications.

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Girls Who Code classes continue in-person and virtually at St. James 
Educational programming courses resumed on Sept. 20th.

Our Technology Team has brought Girls Who Code to St. James! Barbara Stachelski is teaching the girls. Originally we started in the Lab on our church campus, but since the shelter-in-place orders, we have been conducting the classes via Zoom on Sundays. We recently started the fall semester with a combination of Zoom and in-person participants. This fall sees the addition of a high-school age class for grades 9–12. Boys are also welcome to join the classes, too. 

Please contact Barbara Stachelski if you are interested in having your children attend the course at


Who Are Girls Who Code?

They are an international nonprofit seeking to inspire, educate, and equip girls with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities. Girls Who Code has served over 185,000 students across the U.S. and Canada since launching in 2012. Their alumni major in Computer Science and related fields at a rate 15 times higher than the national average. Half of the girls they have served are from historically underrepresented groups.

Inner Sanctuary 
A spirituality class on Tuesday mornings on Zoom, that invites you to ‘just be’ in the presence of God. Our new series, “Letting It Be: Journey through the Darkness into the Divine New Beginning” begins on Dec. 1st.

There are those special places where we find ourselves drawn. They call out to our soul, saying, “Come—sit—just be.” When we do, invariably we are profoundly blessed. During these next weeks of the Inner Sanctuary experience, we will explore together the inner journey of spiritual transformation through a variety of perspectives and practices.  The Rev. Susan Purnell invites you to come—sit—just be.

Our latest eight-week series begin on Dec. 1st on Tuesday mornings from 10:30 a.m. until 12 noon, on Zoom. If you would like more information, please contact Rev. Susan

‘Let the same mind that was in Christ Jesus, be in you.’ 

—Philip 2:5











St. James in the News


Most Influential 2017: Meet the 100 top influencers in Orange County 

Rev. Canon Cindy Voorhees #4 of 101

(Orange County Register, Dec. 22, 2017

To see Rev. Cindy, scroll through images to #4.

Click here to read article


Around Town: Local events will bless the pets (Orange Coast Daily Pilot, Sept. 28, 2017)

Click here to read article


Newport Beach Church Members Test Their DNA as Part of Race Project (Orange County Register, June, 12, 2017)

Click here to read article

Newport woman is off to France to help refugee children (Orange Coast Daily Pilot, Feb. 25, 2017)

Click here to read article

Global Travels 
Throughout the year

Our dynamic and convivial congregation loves to take our faith and thirst for learning across the country and around the globe. As a group, we performed DNA tests and then traveled to Washington D.C. to visit the African American Museum. Coming up next, we will be traveling to Spain to walk the historic Camino de Santiago as a spiritual family—an adventure of a lifetime.

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