Joe Murphy and his wife, Mickie, came in September of 2001 to St. Mary’s and St. Stephen’s Heathsville, for Joe to be an assistant to the Rector, Jeffrey O. Cerar. As a college student, Joe had rejected his upbringing in Christianity. While considering himself outside Christianity, he was able to see the remarkable uniqueness of Jesus in a new way. This led to a conversion to Christ, and to subsequent experience of worship in a wide variety of Christian churches. Completing the ordination process in 2001 and 2002 in the Anglican communion is the culmination of many years of service and study in Scripture and theology. He believes the Anglican communion offers the opportunity to embrace the seemingly opposite, but equally necessary principles in Christianity of the evangelical and the catholic, the biblical and the traditional, Word and Sacrament. He is a member of the American Anglican Council , the Evangelical Fellowship in the Anglican Communion, the Society for Ecumenical Anglican Doctrine , the American Academy of Religion , the Evangelical Theological Society , the Calvin Studies Society, and the North American Patristics Society .
After some years of serving first as warehouse clerk, then successively manager, director, and vice-president of a small manufacturing firm in NJ, Joe entered seminary in 1981. He received an M.Div., and an M.A. in Biblical Studies from Biblical Theological Seminary in Hatfield, PA in 1984. Graduate work followed, but was interrupted by fourteen years in numerous positions at FedEx, most recently as a Sr. Business Applications Advisor in Reston, VA.
Dr. Murphy graduated in the spring of 2001 with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from the Caspersen School of Graduate Studies of Drew University in Madison, NJ. At the same time, he received a Diploma in Anglican Studies from the Virginia Theological Seminaryin Alexandria, VA. He was ordained deacon at St. Mary’s on November 18, 2001, and presbyter in Christ’s holy, catholic Church at St. Mary’s on May 18, 2002. He has been active in prison ministries, including Kairos, and a number of community outreach programs. His hobby is traditional archery, and he and Mickie love to travel. They live in Reedville with Mickie’s 15 year old son, Tom Eisenbraun, an Australian shepherd named Tess, and a great cat named Sterling.
Photo Background: the Cliffs of Moher, County Claire, Ireland