Hilda, Abbess of Whitby, 680

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About the Commemoration

“Hilda’s career falls into two equal parts,” says the Venerable Bede, “for she spent thirty-three years nobly in secular habit, while she dedicated an equal number of years still more nobly to the Lord, in the monastic life.”

Hilda, born in 614, was the grandniece of King Edwin. She was instructed by Paulinus (one of the companions of Augustine of Canterbury) in the doctrines of Christianity in preparation for her baptism at the age of thirteen. She lived, chaste and respected, at the King’s court for twenty years, and then decided to enter the monastic life. She had hoped to join the convent of Chelles in Gaul, but Bishop Aidan was so impressed by her holiness of life that he recalled her to her home country, in East Anglia, to live in a small monastic settlement.

One year after her return, Aidan appointed her Abbess of Hartlepool. There, Hilda established the rule of life that she had been taught by Paulinus and Aidan. She became renowned for her wisdom, eagerness for learning, and devotion to God’s service.

Some years later, she founded the abbey at Whitby, where both nuns and monks lived in strict obedience to Hilda’s rule of justice, devotion, chastity, peace, and charity. Known for her prudence and good sense, Hilda was sought out by kings and other public men for advice and counsel. Those living under her rule devoted so much time to the study of Scripture and to works of righteousness that many were found qualified for ordination. Several of her monks became bishops; at least one pursued further studies in Rome. She encouraged the poet Caedmon, a servant at Whitby, to become a monk and to continue his inspired writing. All who were her subjects or knew her, Bede remarks, called her “mother.”

In 663, Whitby was the site of the famous synod convened to decide divisive questions involved in the differing traditions of Celtic Christians and the followers of Roman order. Hilda favored the Celtic position, but when the Roman position prevailed she was obedient to the synod’s decision. Hilda died on November 17, 680, surrounded by her monastics, whom, in her last hour, she urged to preserve the gospel of peace.

Collects

I.O God of peace, by whose grace the abbess Hilda was endowed with gifts of justice, prudence, and strength to rule as a wise mother over the nuns and monks of her household, and to become a trusted and reconciling friend to leaders of the Church: Give us the grace to recognize and accept the varied gifts thou dost bestow on men and women, that our common life may be enriched and thy gracious will be done; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

II. O God of peace, by whose grace the abbess Hilda was endowed with gifts of justice, prudence, and strength to rule as a wise mother over the nuns and monks of her household, and to become a trusted and reconciling friend to leaders of the Church: Give us the grace to recognize and accept the varied gifts you bestow on men and women, that our common life may be enriched and your gracious will be done; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Psalm  113

Lessons

Proverbs 6:20–23

Ephesians 4:1–6

Matthew 19:27–29

Preface of a Saint (1)

Hugh, and Robert Grosseteste, Bishops of Lincoln, 1200, 1253

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File:San hugo obispo de lincoln.jpg

About the Commemoration

Hugh was born into a noble family at Avalon in Burgundy (France). He became a canon regular at Villard-Benoit near Grenoble. About 1160 he joined the Carthusians, the strictest contemplative religious order, becoming the procurator of their major house, the Grande Chartreuse. With reluctance, he accepted the invitation of King Henry II to become prior of a new foundation of Carthusians in England at Witham, Somerset. With even greater hesitation, Hugh accepted the King’s appointment to the See of Lincoln in 1186. He died in London, November 16, 1200, and is buried in Lincoln Cathedral, of which he laid the foundation.

As a bishop, Hugh continued to live as much as possible under the strict discipline of his order. His humility and tact, his total lack of self-regard, and his cheerful disposition made it difficult to oppose him. His people loved him for his unrelenting care of the poor and oppressed. Steadfastly independent of secular influences, he was never afraid to reprove his king for unjust treatment of the people. Hugh refused to raise money for King Richard’s foreign wars. Yet Richard said of him, “If all bishops were like my Lord of Lincoln, not a prince among us could lift his head against them.”

Robert Grosseteste was a distinguished scholar of law, medicine, languages, sciences, and theology, having risen to prominence from humble beginnings. He was a commentator and translator of Aristotle, but sought to refute many of Aristotle’s ideas in favor of those of Augustine. Because of Grosseteste’s influence, Oxford began to give greater weight to the study of science, particularly geometry, physics, and mathematics. Roger Bacon, an important progenitor of scientific method, was a pupil of Grosseteste, and John Wycliffe was strongly influenced by him as well.

He became Bishop of Lincoln in 1235. He is remembered for the diligence with which he visited the clergy and people of his diocese, teaching, preaching, and celebrating the sacraments, thus refusing to be isolated from the lives of those under his care. He was a steadfast defender of diocesan prerogatives whether against the papacy or the state.

Collects

I. Holy God, our greatest treasure, who didst bless Hugh and Robert, Bishops of Lincoln, with wise and cheerful boldness for the proclamation of thy Word to rich and poor alike: Grant that all who minister in thy Name may serve with diligence, discipline and humility, fearing nothing but the loss of thee and drawing all to thee through Jesus Christ our Savior; who liveth and reigneth with thee in the communion of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. Holy God, our greatest treasure, you blessed Hugh and Robert, Bishops of Lincoln, with wise and cheerful boldness for the proclamation of your Word to rich and poor alike: Grant that all who minister in your Name may serve with diligence, discipline and humility, fearing nothing but the loss of you and drawing all to you through Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you in the communion of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Psalm 61

Lessons

 Micah 4:1–4

Titus 2:7–8,11–14

Luke 12:35–44

Preface of a Saint (2)

Margaret, Queen of Scotland, 1093

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About the Commemoration

Shakespeare made familiar the names of Macbeth and Macduff, Duncan and Malcolm; but it is not always remembered that Malcolm married an English princess, Margaret, about 1070.

With considerable zeal, Margaret sought to change what she considered to be old-fashioned and careless practices among the Scottish clergy. She insisted that the observance of Lent, for example, was to begin on Ash Wednesday, rather than on the following Monday, and that the Mass should be celebrated according to the accepted Roman rite of the Church, and not in barbarous form and language. The Lord’s Day was to be a day when, she said, “we apply ourselves only to prayers.” She argued vigorously, though not always with success, against the exaggerated sense of unworthiness that made many of the pious Scots unwilling to receive Communion regularly.

Margaret’s energies were not limited to reformation of formal Church practices. She encouraged the founding of schools, hospitals, and orphanages, and used her influence with King Malcolm to help her improve the quality of life among the isolated Scottish clans. Together, Margaret and her husband rebuilt the monastery of Iona and founded Dunfermline Abby, under the direction on Benedictine monks.

In addition to her zeal for Church and people, Margaret was a conscientious wife and the mother of eight children. Malcolm, a strong-willed man, came to trust her judgement even in matters of State. She saw also to the spiritual welfare of her large household, providing servants with opportunity for regular worship and prayer.

Margaret was not as successful as she wished to be in creating greater unity in faith and works between her own native England and the Scots. She was unable, for example, to bring an end to the bloody warfare among the highland clans, and after her death in 1093, there was a brief return to the earlier isolation of Scotland from England. Nevertheless, her work among the people, and her reforms in the Church, made her Scotland’s most beloved saint. She died on November 16, and was buried at Dunfermline Abbey.

Collects

I. O God, who didst call thy servant Margaret to an earthly throne that might advance thy heavenly kingdom, and didst give her zeal for thy Church and love for they people: Mercifully grant that we who commemorate her this day may be fruitful in good works, and attain to the glorious crown of thy saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. O God, you called your servant Margaret to an earthly throne that she might advance your heavenly kingdom, and gave her zeal for your Church and love for your people: Mercifully grant that we who commemorate her this day may be fruitful in good works, and attain to the glorious crown of your saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.

Psalm 112:1-9

Lessons

Deuteronomy 15:7-11

2 John 1-9

Luke 4:16-22a

Preface of Baptism

Francis Asbury and George Whitefield, Evangelists, 1816, 1770

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About the Commemoration

Two of the great figures to emerge from out of the religious fervor of colonial and post-revolutionary America, George Whitefield and Francis Asbury, shared a common tie to the Methodist movement of John Wesley.

George Whitefield entered Pembroke College, Oxford as a servitor, one unable to pay tuition and who thus served higher ranked students in exchange for free tuition. There he came under the influence of John and Charles Wesley and was a member of the “Holy Club.” In 1736, he was ordained a deacon, and in 1738, he followed John Wesley to Savannah, Georgia. He returned to England in 1739 to obtain priest’s orders to raise funds for his Bethesda orphanage in Georgia.His preaching attracted a wide following in England, Wales, and Scotland. Whitefield, who subscribed to the Calvinist position then prevalent in the Church of England, broke with the Wesleys, the latter being theologically drawn to Arminianism. Whitefield formed and was president of the first Methodist conference, but left that position after a short time to focus on evangelistic efforts.

Whitefield returned to America several times, and his preaching sparked the Great Awakening of 1740. Whitefield preached to thousands throughout the colonies, riding from New York to Charleston on horseback.

Like Whitefield, Francis Asbury was also renowned for his preaching, and also like Whitefield, he rode many miles on horseback each year and preached throughout the colonies. Asbury was sent to America by John Wesley in 1771 and was the only Methodist minister to remain in America when the War for Independence broke out. When the newly independent Methodist Episcopal Church was formed, he and Thomas Coke served as its first two bishops.

Like his mentor John Wesley, Asbury preached in courthouses, public houses, tobacco fields, or wherever a large crowd could be gathered to hear him. Among those he ordained was Richard Allen (March 26), the former slave and founder of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Collects

I. Holy God, who didst so inspire Francis Asbury and George Whitefield with evangelical zeal that their faithful proclamation of the Gospel caused a Great Awakening among those who heard them: Inspire us, we pray, by thy Holy Spirit, that, like them, we may be eager to share thy Good News and lead many to Jesus Christ, in whom is eternal life and peace; and who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

II.  Holy God, you so inspired Francis Asbury and George Whitefield with evangelical zeal that their faithful proclamation of the Gospel caused a Great Awakening among those who heard them: Inspire us, we pray, by your Holy Spirit, that, like them, we may be eager to share your Good News and lead many to Jesus Christ, in whom is eternal life and peace; and who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Psalm 97:8–12

Lessons

Numbers 11:24–30

1 Thessalonians 5:13b–24

John 17:5–13

Preface of the Epiphany

Samuel Seabury, First American Bishop, 1796

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About the Commemoration

Samuel Seabury, the first Bishop of the Episcopal Church, was born in Groton, Connecticut, November 30, 1729. After ordination in England in 1753, he was assigned, as a missionary of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, to Christ Church, New Brunswick, New Jersey. In 1757, he became rector of Grace Church, Jamaica, Long Island, and in 1766 rector of St. Peter’s, Westchester County. During the American Revolution, he remained loyal to the British crown, and served as a chaplain in the British army.

After the Revolution, a secret meeting of Connecticut clergymen in Woodbury, on March 25, 1783, named Seabury or the Rev. Jeremiah Leaming, whichever would be able or willing, to seek episcopal consecration in England. Leaming declined; Seabury accepted, and sailed for England.

After a year of negotiation, Seabury found it impossible to obtain episcopal orders from the Church of England because, as an American citizen, he could not swear allegiance to the crown. He then turned to the Non–juring bishops of the Episcopal Church in Scotland. On November 14, 1784, in Aberdeen, he was consecrated by the Bishop and the Bishop Coadjutor of Aberdeen and the Bishop of Ross and Caithness, in the presence of a number of the clergy and laity.

On his return home, Seabury was recognized as Bishop of Connecticut in Convocation on August 3, 1785, at Middletown. With Bishop William White, he was active in the organization of the Episcopal Church at the General Convention of 1789. With the support of William Smith of Maryland, William Smith of Rhode Island, William White of Pennsylvania, and Samuel Parker of Boston, Seabury kept his promise, made in a concordat with the Scottish bishops, to persuade the American Church to adopt the Scottish form for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist.

 In 1790 Seabury became responsible for episcopal oversight of the churches in Rhode Island; and at the General Convention of 1792 he participated in the first consecration of a bishop on American soil, that of John Claggett of Maryland. Seabury died on February 25, 1796, and is buried beneath St. James’ Church, New London.

The Collects

I. Eternal God, who didst bless thy servant Samuel Seabury with the gift of perseverance to renew the Anglican inheritance in North America; Grant that, joined together in unity with our bishops and nourished by thy holy Sacraments, we may proclaim the Gospel of redemption with apostolic zeal; through Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. Eternal God, you blessed your servant Samuel Seabury with the gift of perseverance to renew the Anglican inheritance in North America: Grant that, joined together in unity with our bishops and nourished by your holy Sacraments, we may proclaim the Gospel of redemption with apostolic zeal; through Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Psalm 133

Lessons

Isaiah 63:7–9

Acts 20:28–32

Matthew 9:35–38

 

Preface of Apostles

Charles Simeon, Priest, 1836

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About The Commemoration

The historian Thomas Macaulay said about Charles Simeon, “If you knew what his authority and influence were, and how they extend from Cambridge to the most remote corners of England, you would allow that his real sway in the Church was far greater than that of any primate.”

Simeon’s conversion, in 1779,  while still a student, occurred as he was preparing himself to receive Holy Communion, an act required of undergraduates at the University. His first Communion had been a deeply depressing and discouraging experience, because of his use of the popular devotional tract, The Whole Duty of Man, which emphasized law and obedience as the means of receiving the Sacrament worthily. When he was again preparing for Communion before Easter, he was given a copy of Bishop Thomas Wilson’s Instructions for the Lord’s Supper. Here was a quite different approach, which recognized that the law could not make one righteous, and that only the sacrifice of Christ, perceived by faith, could enable one to communicate worthily. This time, the experience of Holy Communion was one of peace and exhilaration, a new beginning of a Christian life whose influence is difficult to exaggerate.

Simeon’s influence and authority developed slowly, but he soon became the recognized leader of the evangelical movement in the Church of England. He helped to found the Church Missionary Society, and was active in recruiting and supporting  missionaries, including Henry Martyn (October 19). As a preacher, he ranks high in the history of Anglicanism. His sermons were unfailingly biblical, simple, and passionate.

The influence of Simeon and his friends was thus described by the historian William Edward Hartpole Lecky: “They gradually changed the whole spirit of the English Church. They infused into a new fire and passion of devotion, kindled a spirit of fervent philanthropy, raised the standard of clerical duty, and completely altered the whole tone and tendency of the preaching of its ministers.”

Collects

I. O loving God, we know that all things are ordered by thine unerring wisdom and unbounded love: Grant us in all things to see thy hand; that, following the example and teaching of thy servant Charles Simeon, we may walk with Christ in all simplicity, and serve thee with a quiet and contented mind; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. O loving God, we know that all things are ordered by your unerring wisdom and unbounded love: Grant us in all things to see your hand; that, following the example and teaching of your servant Charles Simeon, we may walk with Christ in all simplicity, and serve you with a quiet and contented mind; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Psalm 145:8-13

Lessons

Isaiah 12:1-6

Romans 10:8b-17

John 21:15-17

Preface of a Saint (I)

Martin, Bishop of Tours, 397

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About the Commemoration

Martin, one of the patron saints of France, was born about 330 at Sabaria, the modern Szombathely in Hungary. His early years were spent in Pavia in Italy. After a term of service in the Roman army, he travleled about Europe, and finally settled in Poitiers, whose bishop, Hilary, he had come to admire.

According to an old legend, while Martin was still a catechumen, he was approached by a poor man, who asked for alms in the name of Christ. Martin, drawing his sword, cut off part of his military cloak and gave it to the beggar. On the following night, Jesus appeared to Martin, clothed in half a cloak, and said to him, “Martin, a simple catechumen, covered me with his garment.”

Hilary ordained Martin to the presbyterate sometime between 350 and 353, and Martin, inspired by the new monastic movement stemming from Egypt, established a hermitage at nearby Liguge. To his dismay, he was elected Bishop of Tours in 372. He agreed to serve only if he were allowed to continue his strict, ascetic habit of life. His monastery of Marmoutier, near Tours, had a great influence on the development of Celtic monasticism in Britian, where Ninian, among others, promoted Martin’s ascetic and missionary ideals. The oldest church in Canterbury, which antedates the Anglo-Saxon invasions, is dedicated to St. Martin.

Martin was unpopular with  many of his episcopal colleagues, both because of his manner of life and because of his strong opposition to their violent repression of heresy. He was a diligent missionary to the pagan folk of the countryside near his hermitage, and was always a staunch defender of the poor and helpless.

Martin died on November 11, 397. His shrine at Tours became a popular site for pilgrimages, and a secure sanctuary for those seeking protection and justice.

Collects

I. Lord God of hosts, who didst clothe thy servant Martin the soldier with the spirit of sacrifice, and didst set him as a bishop in thy Church to be defender of the catholic faith: Give us grace to follow in his holy steps, that at the last we may be found clothed with righteousness in the dwellings of peace through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. Lord God of hosts, you clothed your servant Martin the soldier with the spirit of sacrifice, and set him as a bishop in your Church to be a defender of the catholic faith: Give us grace to follow in his holy steps, that at the last we may be found clothed with righteousness in the dwellings of peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Psalm 15

Lessons

Isaiah 58:6-12

Galatians 6:1-2

Luke 18:18-30

Preface for a Saint (2)

Leo the Great, Bishop of Rome, 461

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About the Commemoration

When Leo was born, about the year 400, the Western Roman Empire was almost in shambles. Weakened  by barbarian invasions ad by a totally inefficient economic and political system, the structure that had been carefully built by Augustus had become a chaos of internal warfare, subversion, and corruption.

The social and political situation notwithstanding, Leo received a good education, and was ordained deacon, with the responsibility of looking after Church possessions, managing the grain dole, and generally administering finances. He won considerable respect for his abilities, and a contemporary of his, Cassian, described him as “the ornament of the Roman Church and the divine ministry.”

In 440, Leo was unanimously elected Pope, despite the face that he was absent at the time on a mission to Gaul. His ability as a preacher shows clearly in the 96 sermons still extant, in which he expounds doctrine, encourages almsgiving, and deals with various heresies, including the Pelegian and the Manichean systems.

In Gaul, Africa, and Spain, Leo’s strong hand was felt as he issued orders to limit the powers of one over-presumptuous bishop, confirmed the rights of another bishop over his vicars, and selected candidates for holy orders. Leo’s letter to the Council of Chalcedon in 451 dealt so effectively with the doctrine of the human and divine natures of the One Person of Christ that the assembled bishops declared, “Peter has spoken by Leo,” and affirmed his definition as orthodox teaching. (See page 864 of the Prayer Book.)

With similar strength of spirit and wisdom, Leo negotiated with Attila when the Huns were about to sack Rome. He persuaded them to withdraw from Italy and to accept and annual tribute. Three years later, Genseric led the Vandals against Rome. Again Leo negotiated. Unable to prevent pillaging by the barbarians, he did dissuade them from burning the city and slaughtering its inhabitants. He worked, thereafter, to repair the damage, to replace the holy vessels in the desecrated churches, and to restore the morale of the Roman people.

 

Collects

I. O Lord our God, grant that thy Church, following the teaching of thy servant Leo of Rome, may hold fast the great mystery of our redemption, and adore the one Christ, true God and true Man, neither divided from our human nature nor separate from thy divine Being; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

II. O Lord our God, grant that your Church, following the teaching of your servant Leo of Rome, may hold fast the great mystery of our redemption, and adore the one Christ, true God and true Man, neither divided from our human nature nor separate from your divine Being; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and  reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

Psalm 77:11-15

Lessons

Lamentations 3:22-33

2 Timothy 1:6-14

Matthew 5:13-19

 

Preface for the Epiphany

Willibrord, Archbishop of Utrecht, Missionary of Frisia, 739

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About The Commemoration

 

We know about Willibrord’s life and missionary labors through a notice in the Venerable Bede’s Ecclesiastical History and a biography by his younger kinsman, Alcuin. He was born in Northumbria about 658, and from the age of seven was brought up and educated at Bishop Wilfrid’s monastery at Ripon. For twelve years, 678-690, he studied in Ireland, where he acquired his thirst for missionary work.

In 690, with twelve companions, he set out for Frisia (the Netherlands), a pagan area that was increasingly coming under the domination of the Christian Franks. There Bishop Wilfrid and a few other Englishmen had made short missionary visits, but with little success. With the aid of the Frankish rulers, Willibrord established his base at Utrecht, and in 695 Pope Sergius ordained him a bishop and gave him the name Clement.

In 698 he founded the monastery of Echternach, near Trier. His work was frequently disturbed by the conflict of the pagan Frisians with the Franks, and for a time he left the area to work among the Danes. For three years, 719-722, he was assisted by Boniface, who at a later time came back to Frisia to strengthen the mission. In a very real sense, Willibrord prepared the way for Boniface’s more successful achievements  by his relations with the  Franksish rulers and he papacy, who thus became joint sponsors of missionary work. He died at Echternach, November 7, 739.

 

Collects

I. O Lord our God, who dost call whom thou willest and send them where thou choosest: We thank thee for sending thy servant Willibrord to be an apostle to the Low Countries, to turn them from the worship of idols to serve thee, the living God; and we entreat thee to preserve us from the temptation to exchange the perfect freedom of thy service for servitude to false gods and to idols of our own devising; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

II. O Lord our God, you call whom you will and send them where you choose: We thank you for sending your servant Willibrord to be an apostle to the Low Countries, to turn them from the worship of idols to serve you, the living God; and we entreat you to preserve us from the temptation to exchange the perfect freedom of your service for servitude to false gods and to idols of our own devising; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Psalm 115:9-15

Lessons

Isaiah 55:1-5

Acts 1:1-9

Luke 10:1-9

 

Preface of Apostles

William Temple, Archbishop of Canterburry, 1944

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About This Commemoration

William Temple was born October 15, 1881, and baptized three weeks later, on November 6, in Exeter Cathedral. His father, Dr. Frederick Temple, Bishop of Exeter and then of London, became Archbishop of Canterbury when William was fifteen. Growing up at the heart of the Church of England, William’s love for it was deep and lifelong. Endowed with a brilliant mind, Temple took a first-class honors degree in classics and philosophy at Oxford, where he was then elected Fellow of Queen’s College. At the age of twenty-nine he became headmaster of Repton School, and then in quick succession rector of St. James’s Church, Piccadilly, Bishop of Manchester, and Archbishop of York.

Though he never experienced poverty of any kind, he developed a passion for social justice which shaped his words and his actions. He owed this passion to a profound belief in the Incarnation. He wrote that in Jesus Christ God took flesh and dwelt among us, and as a consequence “the personality of every man and woman is sacred.”

In 1917  Temple resigned from St. James’s, Piccadilly, to devote his energies to the “Life and Liberty” movement for reform within the Church of England. Two years later an Act of Parliament led to the setting up of the Church Assembly, which for the first time gave the laity a voice in Church matters.

As bishop and later as archbishop, Temple committed himself to seeking “the things which pertain to the Kingdom of God.” He understood the Incarnation as giving worth and meaning not only to individuals but to all of life. He therefore took the lead in establishing the Conference on Christian Politics, Economics and Citizenship (COPEC), held 1924. In 1940  he convened the great Malvern Conference to reflect on the social reconstruction that would be needed in Britain once the Second World War was over.

At the same time he was a prolific writer on theological, ecumenical, and social topics, and his two-volume Readings in St. John’s Gospel, written in the early days of the war, rapidly became a spiritual classic.

In 1942  Temple was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury and reached an even wider audience through his wartime radio addresses and newspaper articles. However, the scope of his responsibilities and the pace he set himself took their toll. On October 26, 1944 , he died after only two and a half years at Canterbury.

Collects

I. O God of light and love, who illumined thy Church through the witness of thy servant William Temple: Inspire us, we pray, by his teaching and example, that we may rejoice with courage, confidence, and faith in the Word made flesh, and may be led to establish that city which has justice for its foundation and love for its law; through Jesus Christ, the light of the world, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

II.  O God of light and love, who illumined your Church through the witness of your servant William Temple: Inspire us, we pray, by his teaching and example, that we may rejoice with courage, confidence, and faith in the Word made flesh, and may be led to establish that city which has justice for its foundation and love for its law; through Jesus Christ, the light of the world, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Psalm 119:97-1-4

Lessons

Exodus 22:21-27

Ephesians 3:7-12

John 1:9-18

Preface for Epiphany