Community Voices

Neighbors in Religion: The Rev. Elaine Jessup of Trinity Cathedral retires at 70

In March 2010: The Rev. Elaine Anderson Jessup provides the Holy Eucharist to worshipers during Palm Sunday service at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Miami.
In March 2010: The Rev. Elaine Anderson Jessup provides the Holy Eucharist to worshipers during Palm Sunday service at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Miami. Miami Herald File

Trinity Cathedral Miami recently said “so long” to the vibrant and beloved the Rev. Elaine Anderson Jessup, who served as a deacon there since 2007.

In her farewell letter in the Episcopal cathedral’s newsletter, Jessup, 70, said of her retirement: “As I begin my new journey, just as Abraham [in the Bible] did, I will obey with no hint of resistance. I will embrace this change. I am trusting God and I believe I will reap, as Abraham, an incredible reward — total Healing for my body and rest for my soul. God will Restore — Renew — and Rejuvenate me.”

Jessup’s retirement is well deserved. Prior to coming to the cathedral, Jessup served for almost 37 years in Ohio.

Now, she said, it is time to listen to God’s voice and let Him heal her body. “I have not been well for a while,” she said. I suffer from very low platelets.” Although she hasn’t been diagnosed with leukemia, the condition has caused her to be open to other viruses. “But,” she said, “I am trusting God for my healing.”

“There comes a time in life when we go beyond what God has told us to do. Right now I am going to rest and wait until God says its time to go again,” Jessup said.

She admits that facing the unknown causes her to be fearful at times. “But as I study my Bible, pray and meditate, all fear disappears immediately and I am restored, renewed and rejuvenated. ... Obedience is better than sacrifices. I must obey what He has told me to do. I am focusing on the long-term benefits instead of the short-term convenience.”

Erick Arellano, the administrative coordinator at the cathedral said: “Deacon Elaine has been one of the principle pastoral ministers at the cathedral. She has reached out to people in hospitals, nursing homes. she has been the guest speaker at a number of churches. And she never has a problem calling out things as she sees them. She brings it all back to God. She is so down to earth, ... one of those ladies who just tells it like it is, but she always tells people to keep the faith.”

Jessup said she is not saying “goodbye” because she will continue to be visible throughout the Diocese and Trinity Cathedral. “As I rest and allow God to, not only heal by body, but continue to direct my footsteps.”

Deacon joins Trinity Cathedral

Also, Trinity Cathedral recently welcomed Deacon Doris Ingraham to its family. Prior to joining the cathedral, Ingraham served in the Diocese 15 years and previously ministered at St. Kevin’s Church in Opa-locka and the Historic St. Agnes in Overtown.

At the cathedral, she will be responsible for supporting the Lay Eucharistic Visitors as well as other pastoral functions in the parish.

In addition, Ingraham also serves on the Diocesan Board of Episcopal Church Women. She and her husband Tellis live in Miami Garden and are the parents of five children, grandparents of nine and great-grandparents of 13.

‘A Shattered Love’

The musical stage play A Shattered Love will be presented at the Miramar Cultural Arts Center by Terolyn H. Fields at 3 and 7 p.m. on Aug. 22. Tickets are $32 for the balcony and $37 for the floor and may be purchased at the box office or on line at

Synagogue to host public events

Ahavat Olam Synagogue in Kendall will have two events that are open to the entire community.

The first event is an evening of bingo at 7 p.m. Aug. 29 at the synagogue, 10755 SW 112th St. The evening will include cash prizes. An entry fee of $18 per person will include 10 game cards and four special game cards. Hot dogs, chips, sodas and bottled water will be available for purchase. Attendees must be 18 or over to play.

The second event will be a bowling outing for the entire family at 10 a.m. Aug. 30 at Bird Bowl, 9275 SW 40th St. The cost is $10 per person and include two hours of bowling and shoes. The event will feature the students and teens bowling against the parents and Ahavat Olam staff.

Sounds like fun. To make your reservations, call the synagogue at 305-412-4240 or send an email to:

Church adopts school

Three years ago, the Rev. Brock Shiffer of Speedway Community Ministries in Homestead adopted Campbell Drive K-8 school to help provide the school with needed supplies. Since then, he has challenged five other churches to adopt local, needy elementary schools.

In addition Shiffer said, “I was able, with God’s help, to also persuade local businesses and individuals to adopt classrooms.”

He gives examples: Homestead Hospital has adopted an entire third-grade class, and the military from Homestead Air Force Reserve Base has agreed to mentor young boys with no father figure in their home.

“Starting this fall, we will mentor young women also,” Shiffer said.

Shiffer said he led the Speedway Church in the Homestead area for 10 years. “During that time I became a member of several civic organizations. That’s when I learned of the need of the children in some of our public schools. I closed the church last year to devote full-time attention to the School Adoption Ministry, which is out of our home,” he said.

“With back to school right around the corner, we are in full mode helping to get these schools ready. We would like to attract more people to help us out.”

To get involved with Shiffer’s School Adoption Ministry, call him at 305-975-0852 or write to him at 2475 SE Fourth Pl., Homestead, FL 33033.

Send all items at least two weeks in advance to Religion Notes, c/o Neighbors, 2000 NW 150th Ave., Suite 1105, Pembroke Pines, FL 33028, fax it to 954-538-7018 or email Pictures are accepted but cannot be returned.