St. John’s Vestry, the lay leadership of our church, consists of nine members who serve three year terms. The officers are Senior Warden, Junior Warden, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and Registrar.


The Reverend Candine E. Johnson, Ph.D., Rector

Brooklyn born and raised, The Rev’d Candine E. Johnson, Ph.D. came to Virginia in 1976 to attend graduate school at The University of Virginia and except for a few short periods, she has called the Commonwealth of Virginia home. Upon graduating from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, Johnson embarked on a life-long journey of education both as a student and educator. With a Ph.D. in Education, Johnson returned to New York as an assistant professor in the School of Education at Syracuse University. After two years in the frozen north, she returned to Virginia to the University of Richmond. During her 16 years of service at UR, she served as the Director of Academic Advising to the University’s 400 Division I student-athletes and as an Assistant Professor. Upon answering a long denied call to ministry, Johnson, a postulant from the Diocese of Virginia, matriculated at The General Seminary in NYC. September 11, 2001 was her fourth day of seminary and she was two miles from Ground Zero—-she considers this the first day of her ministry.

Graduating with honors from GTS, she was called back to her home diocese to serve as chaplain and teacher at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School, a boarding school for girls grades 8-12. While serving as the chaplain of St. Margaret’s, she also undertook parochial ministry and served as the priest-in-charge of Vauter’s Episcopal Church, Loretto, Virginia. Making her home in Tappahannock, Johnson has taken a very active role in her adopted community. She has served as President of the Essex County Ministerial Association, Chair of The Long Term Recovery Group following an F-4 tornado in 2016, and currently she is the Chair of TRIAD, a joint program of law enforcement and the Attorney General’s office. In September 2015, Johnson was called to St. John’s Episcopal Church, Tappahannock, Virginia. This call was somewhat of a homecoming for Johnson in that she served her diaconal service at St. John’s from 2004-2005. In 2018, the 13th year of her priesthood, she was called as the 23rd rector.


Roger Sethmann, Music Director

Roger has over forty years of experience in church music, most of which has been dedicated to the Episcopal Church. He became music director at St. John’s in 2010. Roger received his Bachelor of Church Music Degree from Shenandoah Conservatory of Music, Winchester, Virginia where he has also done graduate work in organ performance and conducting. He studied organ with Dr. Paul Callaway of the National Cathedral, Washington, D.C. and renowned concert organist Dr. Virgil Fox. Roger has performed at Organ Masters Classes given by Olivier Latrie, Titular Organist of Notre Dame de Paris and Concert Organist Gillian Weir, and at Sarum College, Salisbury, U.K. where he played the famous “Father Willis” organ at Salisbury Cathedral. He did choral work in Gregorian Chant with Dr. Theodore Marrier at Catholic University, Washington, D.C. and at Christendom College, Front Royal, Virginia. He has studied choral conducting with Dr. Jeff Sandburg at Roanoke College. Roger and his wife Barbara sang for seven seasons with the Berkshire International Choral Festival choir performing with notable American and European conductors in the great cathedrals of Austria and England. They, also, sang in a landmark performance of the Definant Requiem – Verdi at Terezin with Murray Sidlin. A master organist, Roger often plays his own arrangements or improvisations for the prelude or postlude.