Church of the Epiphany

At Lafayette Boulevard and Versailles Avenue, have you noticed the spacious open area on that corner dominated by a huge Magnolia tree. Beautiful isn’t it? Looking closer you can’t help but notice the church situated toward the back of the property. Also lovely don’t you think? Certainly diminutive in comparison to other churches with soaring architectures that grace the Hampton Roads area. It is called the Church of the Epiphany. Curious now, aren’t you?

Please, come closer. Our schedule of services and Sunday school are posted like any other church. Two services 8:00 AM and 11:00 AM with Sunday school in between. The grounds are well maintained, lovely rain garden, an immaculate columbarium, and it’s a little bigger than you first thought. If you come on a Sunday, the simple wooden doors at the front are open. Come in….please.

We are an Episcopalian church. If you come at 11:00 AM you will hear organ music. Entering the sanctuary you will wonder how such a powerful instrument was positioned into such a small space. If you come at the 8:00 AM service, there is no music by choice.

Epiphany is small church in physical size and congregation but it offers so much more. It has an openness in the hearts and minds of its members that is missing in so many areas of our lives today. We are inclusive, as God would want us to be. Your station in life is not a criteria for us… your presence and fellowship are what we desire.

Throughout our lifespan, we come in contact with numerous groups of people. Maybe a fraternity or sorority in school, the PTA, neighborhood watch, civic league, the list goes on and on. Yet it’s different for each of us. What’s the philosophy of the group, what it accomplishes, is it satisfying to be a part of that group?

For a number of us, there comes a point in our lives when we feel the need to establish our relationship with God and Jesus Christ. Then the big question where will I find that answer? Some will follow a family tradition in what religion to follow. Others, for a myriad of reasons, will be a little more experimental. They will sample the various sacraments and rituals of different congregations. We propose that Epiphany is a prime candidate for spiritual exploration.

We offer a dichotomy. One the one hand, as we are an Episcopal church, we do adhere to the rituals lay forth in the Book of Common Prayer. Our ancestor is the Anglican Church of England. We’ve made some changes over the years. That is our structure and base.

Our other side is the human side. We have no barriers. Your skin color, sexual orientation, socio-economic standing are a part of our inclusiveness. We care about you as a human being in a tumultuous world and want to see your spiritual needs met.

1530 Lafayette Boulevard
Norfolk, VA 23509
(757) 622-7672
Priest in Charge:  The Reverend Richard O. Bridgford
Assisting Priest:   The Reverend Julia Ashby



  1. The website is beautiful, nice work to the webmaster, since you asked for feedback and sort of keeping with the message on Clergy Clatter, here’s mine. I have noticed recently in these days of Facebook and texting, that I and other people tend to forget all about email, so many businesses, politicians not only have a website, they have a Facebook page, linked to their site and also send a text to remind me of something, in your case it would be to let me know not to forget the newsletter. ?

    • epiphanynorfolk

      Thanks for the feedback, Thomas! As we start adding more and more content to the website, you’ll find that we will be utilizing Epiphany’s Facebook page as one way of notifying folks when something has been added (such as the latest Epiphany Star or Clergy Clatter). Stay tuned!

  2. Mary Shaffer

    Gayle Greene and I were honored to represent the Church of the Epiphany at the award luncheon for the Elizabeth River Project. We received the honor because of our efforts as a community to enhance our environment. We have replaced our lighting with LED, our roof is made from recycled materials, our yard sale, and the rain garden. United Methodist of Portsmouth was the other church represented. We should be very proud that our little parish makes such an impact.

  3. susie pedigo

    Design great, again I will make comment on gray appearance of text. and old eyes. Also, Not sure of its purpose but low on content. I don’t see a reason for a member to look at it. Is it meant for nonmembers?

    • Sara Roberts

      Are you the Susie Pedigo I taught with at Princess Anne High School years ago? This is the church I grew up in! I’m living in Florida now. Love to hear from you!

  4. Ruth Kenworthy Ecker

    The website looks terrific! Congratulations to all involved. Its been a while since I visited Norfolk, but whenever I do, I find my way to Epiphany that hold so many wonderful memories. Thank you to the clergy, vestry and all those who take a lay leadership role in making Epiphany a very special church.

    Ruth Kenworthy Ecker

    • David L. Jones

      Dear Ruth,

      We would love to see you. I will never forget your parents. They were wonderful people and who lead by example.

      David Jones

    • Sara Ann Roberts

      Hi Ruth! For some reason I decided to Google Epiphany tonight. Brought back wonderful memories. And then I saw your comment! I would like to stop by next time I’m in Norfolk!
      Hope all is well with you!
      Sara Ann Roberts

  5. Donna Jones Simpson

    Mr. Bridgford, I have thought fondly of you for most of my life and want you to know what a profound effect you have had in my life. I was your student at Willard Jr. High the first year you taught. Your enthusiasm, warmth, devilishness and sense of humor, and your frequent going off the subject was a source of delight for your students. You inspired me.

    I retired in 2008 after 33 years as a Special Educator, 5 years in Norfolk and the rest of my career in Hampton where I live. I married a teacher and have one son.

    Thank you so very much for being my teacher, an inspiration and for your many kindnesses to me.

    Fondly, Donna Jones Simpson

    • Donna.
      Thank you so much for your very kind words. They are so much appreciated. I had lunch the other day with Don Beamon and we shared memories of our days at Willard. Those were good times for me, and I so well remember all of you. I think you taught me more than I taught you. And I am so happy that you went into teaching and had a successful career – especially with special needs kids. And you even married a teacher. That was a brave act.
      It’s wonderful to hear from you, and thank you again for writing.
      Richard Bridgford+

  6. Phil Okkerse

    To anybody who would remember us, Rev. Kenneth H okkerse used to be the priest there in the seventies. anybody who may remember us Grace okkerse passed away July 8 of this year. she passed away from terminal cancer at the age of 86.

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