Staff & Vestry

The Reverend Nigel Massey, Rector

Nigel has been the Rector of Saint Esprit since 1994. He was born in Staffordshire, England, and spent part of his childhood on the island of Cyprus. After studying Ancient History and Archeology specializing in Egyptian Hieroglyphics at Birmingham University, he read theology at Oxford University and was ordained to a parish in Birmingham. During that time he also took a degree in Islamic Studies. Before coming to Saint Esprit, he worked for the Church of England's Board of Mission and Unity, researching relations between Christians and Muslims in France, and was Advisor to the Bishop of London on Interfaith Relations. He is the Chaplain of the Huguenot Society of America, and a spiritual director at the General Theological Seminary. He is the Chair of the Diocesan Global Mission Commission, and a Trustee of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. He is married to his partner of twenty-eight years, and they have a black Labrador named Stormy. 

Frederic Spitz, Parish Administrator, Rector's Assistant

Frederic was born and raised in Paris, France. He graduated in applied Foreign Languages from Nanterre University (Paris X) while completing his last year at San Jose State University in California. As well as being the Parish Administrator and assistant to Nigel, Frederic is one of our volunteer French teachers who taught beginner classes and now teaches conversation. He is also a singer and a musician, and enjoys competing in road and trail races of all distances.

Cynthia Wuco, Music Director

Cynthia has been Saint Esprit's music director for twenty years. She began her formal music studies at the University of the Philippines, then came to the U.S. at the invitation of the Opera Company of Boston. She attended the Juilliard School of Music, where studied with the Metropolitan Opera’s Rose Bampton, and received a master's from the Manhattan School of Music. She conducts choirs and teaches voice at the Calhoun School and is an active performer, with groups including the American Chamber Opera Company and at the Hamptons Summer Music Festival and Bar Harbor Music Festival.

Aya, Organist and Pianist

Praised for her “graceful” (The New York Times) performances, Aya Hamada has been St. Esprit's organist since 2007, and has given numerous recitals and chamber music concerts in the major venues in the North and South Americas, Europe and Asia. She has performed with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Promusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, Kansai Philharmonic Orchestra (Japan), Sinfonietta Cracovia (Poland), Juilliard 415, Juilliard Symphony, and also appeared under conductors such as William Christie, Jordi Savall, and Masaaki Suzuki

A native of Kobe, Japan, Ms. Hamada made her debut with the Kobe Chamber Orchestra at the age of seventeen. She has won many awards, including first prize in the London Music Festival Competition and second prize in the Josef Hofmann Piano Competition, and earned her master of music degree in the inaugural class of Historical Performance from the Juilliard School. She studied under Kenneth Weiss in New York and Skip Sempé in Paris. She can be heard on the Naxos, BCMF Records and Live Notes/ Nami Records.

Our Vestry

What is it? Who are they?

The term "Vestry" once referred to the room in a church where sacred vessels and vestments were kept. Over time, this term was adopted to identify those persons entrusted by a congregation to conduct church business. At Saint-Esprit, the Vestry is made up of church members in good standing who are elected every year to oversee the parish's finances and activities, and to support the Rector in his work for the spiritual welfare of the congregation.

Vestry members are elected at Saint Esprit's annual meeting each May for periods of three years. The congregation also elects officers, who hold additional responsibilities as legal representatives of the church.