About Us

Pastor and Staff

Michael Ralph, Rector

   (631) 288-2111

  michael.ralph@stmarkswhb,org

Fr. Michael was born and raised in upstate New York.  A graduate of Houghton College in western New York, he is also a graduate of Asbury Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky.  After serving parishes in Kentucky he came back north in 2009 to serve as rector of St. Paul’s Church in Glen Cove.  He happily accepted a call in April of 2014 to become the sixth rector of St. Mark’s.  He enjoys spending time with his wife, Aimee and his two children, Patrick and Katherine. 


And reading to kids ...

Kate Gabrielsen, Church Secretary

   (631) 288-2111

  Kate.Gabrielsen@stmarkswhb.org

I am a Brooklyn born gal who trekked into Manhattan at the age of 16 and began a career in the fashion industry working at Harper's  Bazaar during the full blaze of the "fashion icons".  Upon the birth of my first child I began my second career as full time wife and mother and 25 years later returned to the workforce.

I particularly enjoy Indi & Foreign films along with Masterpiece Theatre and BBC Productions. Some memorable ones are "Into the West", "Like Water for Chocolate" and "Truly, Madly, Deeply"...and of course 'Downtown Abbey!"

My all time favorite book is "The Razor's Edge" (this was also a great movie) and "The Mists of Avalon" and "The Gift of Rain" run neck to neck as close seconds.

As a year-round Westhampton resident, the lifestyle here lends itself to my enjoyment of using local seasonal foods to cook for family and dear friends.  For quiet down time, give me a good book or a great film.

Nancy Connett, Treasurer

   (631) 288-2111

  cnancy6415@gmail.com

Aimee Ralph, Christian Education Director

   (516) 729-7737

  aralph@stmarkswhb.org

Position Available, Minister of Music

 

Dawn Orban, Director, St Mark's Bright Beginnings Preschool

   (631) 288-3310

  saintmarksbrightbeginnings@hotmail.com

Dawn Orban grew up in East Moriches and graduated from Westhampton Beach High School.  After high school Dawn received her Bachelors of Arts in Psychology and a Master's Degree in Education from Dowling College.  Dawn is beginning her sixth year at Saint Mark's Bright Beginning s Preschool this fall.  The school has grown by leaps and bounds and our school is not just a place to bring your children but a community for the whole family. 

Dawn will be married twenty-five years this September to her husband Gary.  Their children, Jeff (22) has just celebrated his first anniversary in the Air Force and Jason (18) has just begun attending the University of Hartford as a freshman.  The family is rounded out with the only other girl named Callie, a Jack Russell mix, who has the run of the house.

In her spare time, Dawn likes to read, spend time with her family and watch the boys play soccer and lacrosse.  Dawn and Gary are beginning a new journey in their lives with both children living out of the house.  They hope to travel more and enjoy the new adventure.

Joyce Lankenau, Co-chair - Love in a Dish

   (631) 878-0964

  jdll@optonline.net

Steve Turner, Co-chair - Love in a Dish

   (631) 909-1283

  sturner430@aol.com

Carol Fitton, Warden

   (917) 817-9163

  carol.fitton@stmarkswhb.org

Sandy Wyman, Warden

   (531) 653-8438

  sandy.wyman@stmarkswhb.org

Diane Stewart, Altar Guild Chairperson

History of Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church, Westhampton Beach, New York

Before 1890, the pastoral waterfront of Westhampton Beach was known as Ketchaponack. There was no electricity, no telephone and there were no autos.  The expansion of the public transportation enabled people to travel to the eastern end of Long Island for summer. 


At this time, The Reverend Morgan Dix, Rector of Trinity Parish, New York City began holding services while visiting during the summer.  The small summer congregation worshiped in the current Methodist church on Mill Road.


A small congregation of about fourteen families wanted to continue to worship year round.  The first service of Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church was held on October 26, 1924 in Union Chapel, a village owned property. After one more year of services in the Methodist Church, the Ladies Auxiliary made an appeal to Bishop Stires of Long Island for permanent clergy.  The bishop sent only supply clergy but the women persisted until The Reverend William Cumpston was appointed Priest in Charge of the mission congregation in 1928.

The Reverend Arnold Lewis was appointed Priest in Charge in 1936.  While continuing to worship in Union Chapel,  the congregation purchased land on North Beach Lane (now Beach Road) with the hopes of first building a rectory on one half of the property and then a church building on the other half.


The Reverend Dr. Robert Woodruff was called in 1941. When the congregation outgrew the Union Chapel , the Atwater family offered Saint Mark’s the land on the corner of Main Street and Potunk Lane. Ground was broken in June 1948 and the cornerstone laid on October 10, 1948, by Bishop DeWolf.  The first worship service in the new building was conducted on June 12, 1949.  Full status as a parish was granted by the diocesan convention in 1949 and Colonel Joseph Geer and Joseph Quickenenden served as the parish’s first elected wardens.


The Reverend Charles Hubon was called as the second rector in 1952.  The 1950’s saw dramatic growth in the parish’s involvement in the community and in youth ministry in particular.  During this time, the undercroft was finished for program and fellowship space.

In 1966, The Reverend George W. Busler was called as the third rector and under his leadership youth ministry flourished, the Beinicke Building was constructed to house a family counseling program, stained glass windows were installed in the nave, and the columbarium was built.


In 2001, The Reverend Christopher David was called as the fourth rector.  In order to meet the needs of a growing community and parish, the congregation embarked on a major building campaign to construct a parish hall for church and community use, to expand the educational  facilities, and to enhance  parish office space.


As the community continued to grow, young parents expressed a compelling need for a nursery school in town. In 2004, Bright Beginnings was created as a New York certified parish day school with a full time director.


In 2012, The Reverend Mark Powell was called as the fifth rector.  Saint Mark’s has a long history of commitment to young people through Christian formation and pre-school education.  Father Powell continued that commitment, revitalized stewardship, and sought to explore avenues for mission and outreach.   Fr Powell's tenure at St Mark's was short as he left to pursue a different career.


St Marks called their sixth and current Rector, Father Michael Ralph.  Fr Ralph and his wife Aimee have brought a renewed energy to St Mark's.




St Mark’s first Ladies Auxiliary, a precursor of Episcopal Church Women approximately 1930 – Taken at the south door of St Marks Church (Union Chapel) that sat at the corner of Library Ave now occupied by the Westhampton Beach Library (formerly Nevins Room)


1st Row left to right – Mrs George Winters with daughter, Mary Louise, unknown, Mrs Cumpston, wife of priest in charge, Mrs Desch (later killed in ’38 hurricane), Mrs Hansen.


2nd Row – Mrs Sliako, Mrs Edward Rogers(“Bea” – one of the founding members), Edith Quickenden  (Mrs Joseph -Joan Derryberry’s mother)


3rd Row – Unknown, Mrs Duyckinck, Mrs, Klose


4th Row – Unknown, Mrs Illbert Zaics (partially hidden), Mrs Harold Cutver (Ethel – Ginny Gilmore’s mother), Mrs Fox, Mrs Francis Tuthill, Mrs Aubrey Jessup (Lola)