Archive for the ‘Saints of 1850-1859’ Category

Feast of Timothy Richard Matthews (January 16)   Leave a comment

Above:  Timothy Richard Matthews

Image in the Public Domain

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TIMOTHY RICHARD MATTHEWS (NOVEMBER 4, 1826-JANUARY 5, 1910)

Anglican Priest, Organist, and Hymn Writer

Timothy Richard Matthews comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Matthews was an Anglican priest and a church musician.  Our saint, born in Colmworth (near Bedford), England, on November 4, 1826, was a son of the Rector of Colmworth.  Young Timothy graduated from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge (A.B., 1853).  Matthews, ordained that year, took on two positions.  Our saint became the private tutor to the Reverend Lord Wriothesley Russell, a canon of St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.  That year, Matthews also became the Curate of St. Mary’s, Nottingham (-1859).  While at Nottingham, he founded the Working Men’s Institute.

While tutoring Russell’s family, Matthews met Sir George Job Elvey (1816-1893).  Our saint became one of Elvey’s organ students.  The two men also became lifelong friends.  Matthews’s musical talents extended to composition.  He composed settings of Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer.  He also wrote and edited books:

  1. Tunes for Holy Worship (1859),
  2. The Village-Church Tune-Book (1859),
  3. Congregational Melodies (1862),
  4. Hymn Tunes (1867),
  5. North Coates Supplemental Tune Book (1878), and
  6. The Village Organist (1877).

Furthermore, our saint composed at least one hymn (“The Sanctuary of My Soul“) and more than 100 hymn tunes.

Matthews served as the Rector of North Coates, Lincolnshire (1859-1907).  Then he, a widower, retired and moved into the vicarage at Tetney, where his eldest son was in residence as the vicar.

Our saint, aged 83 years, died at Tetney, Lincolnshire, on January 5, 1910.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

SEPTEMBER 2, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE MARTYRS OF NEW GUINEA, 1942 AND 1943

THE FEAST OF DAVID CHARLES, WELSH CALVINISTIC METHODIST MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF DIANNA ORTIZ, U.S. ROMAN CATHOLIC NUN AND ANTI-TORTURE ACTIVIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF ROSKILDE, ENGLISH-DANISH ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF ROSKILDE

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Timothy Richard Matthews)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Edward Bunnett (January 16)   Leave a comment

Above:  The Flag of England

Image in the Public Domain

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EDWARD BUNNETT (JUNE 26, 1834-JANUARY 5, 1923)

Anglican Organist and Composer

Edward Bunnett comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Bunnett served God via music.  our saint, born in Shipdham, Norfolk, England, on June 26, 1834, became a chorister at the Cathedral Church of the Holy and Undivided Cathedral, Norwich, when he was eight years old.  When our saint was fifteen years old, he began to study the organ under the tutelage of Dr. Zechariah Buck (1798-1877), organist at Norwich Cathedral (1819-1877).  Bunnett, the assistant organist at Norwich Cathedral (1855-1877), also had a fine singing voice.  In 1849, he performed Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy’s “Lift Thine Eyes” with opera star Jenny Lind (1820-1887), the “Swedish Nightingale.”  Our saint continued his formal studies at Cambridge, earning a Mus.B. (1857) and Mus.D. (1869).  In 1870, he became a Fellow of the College of Organists.

Bunnett, renowned for his virtuosity, taught, performed, and composed.  He became the organist of St. Peter Mancraft Church, Norwich, in 1877.  As the borough organist (1880f), our saint performed in well-attended concerts.  He also conducted the Norwich Musical Union for 21 years and performed in local musical festivals for more than 20 years.  Bunnett taught many organists, too.  His compositions included works for the organ, liturgical music and at least 21 hymn tunes and Christmas carols.

Links to YouTube videos of some of Bunnett’s compositions follow:

  1. Allegro moderato in G Major,
  2. Concluding Voluntary, and
  3. KIRBY BEDON.

Our saint, aged 88 years, died in Norwich on January 5, 1923.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 30, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICODEMUS, DISCIPLE OF JESUS

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Edward Bunnett)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Blessed Maria Dolores Rodriguez Sopena y Ortega (January 10)   2 comments

Above:  Blessed María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña y Ortega

Image in the Public Domain

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BLESSED MARÍA DOLORES RODRÍGUEZ SOPEÑA Y ORTEGA

(DECEMBER 30, 1848-JANUARY 10, 1918)

Founder of the Centers of Instruction, the Association of the Sodality of the Virgin Mary, the Ladies of the Catechetical Institute, the Association of the Apostolic Laymen/the Sopeña Lay Movement, the Works of the Doctrines/the Center for the Workers, and the Social and Cultural Work Sopeña/the Sopeña Catechetical Institute

Blessed María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña y Ortega comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via the Roman Catholic Church.

Blessed María came from a devout Spanish family.  She, born in Velez Rubio on December 30, 1848, was the fourth of seven children of Nicolasa Ortega Salomon and Tomas Rodríguez Sopeña.  He worked as the administrator of the Marqueses de Velez farms before getting a job as a magistrate in 1866.

Blessed María spent most of her life helping the less fortunate.  She, not caring about status and materialism, valued “the least of these.”  In Almeria, where her father was the judge (1866-1869), our saint, who had poor eyesight, helped her sisters, afflicted with typhoid fever.  She also ministered to a leper.  In 1869, Tomas transferred to Puerto Rico and took a son with him.  The rest of the family moved to Madrid.  Blessed María commenced catechetical work with women in prison, patents in the Princess Hospital, and pupils in Sunday Schools.

The family reunited in Puerto Rico in 1872.  There, Blessed María, 24 years old, tried to join the Sisters of Charity the following year.  Her poor eyesight prevented our saint from joining that order.  Blessed María, therefore, struck out on her own.  She began to work in impoverished neighborhoods and founded the Centers for Instruction.  The curriculum consisted of the catechism and general instruction.  Medical assistance was also available.  Blessed María also founded the Association of the Sodality of the Virgin Mary, members of which staffed the Centers for Instruction.

After Nicolasa died in 1877, the family returned to Madrid later that year. Blessed María spent the next six years taking care of her father and tending to the less fortunate.  Then Tomas died in 1883.  Our saint, struggling to find her vocation, joined a Salesian convent in 1883.  Ten days later, she left it.  The contemplative life did not fit our saint.

Blessed María vocation was social work, especially with women.  She formalized community centers for this social work as part of a new organization, Works of the Doctrines, in 1885.  Eventually, this organization took the name “Center for the Workers.”

In Madrid, in 1892, Blessed María founded the Association of the Apostolic Laymen (now the Sopeña Lay Movement).  The work of this order expanded into eight neighborhoods in Madrid the following year.

Our saint expanded her apostolic work across Spain in 1896.  She founded the Ladies of the Catechetical Institute in Toledo in 1901.  The following year, Blessed María founded the Social and Cultural Work Sopeña (now the Sopeña Catechetical Institute.  She became this order’s Superior General in 1910.

The Sopeña Catechetical Institute expanded into the Americas in 1917.

Blessed María, aged 69 years, died in Madrid on January 10, 1918.

Pope John Paul II declared our saint a Venerable in 1992 then beatified her in 2003.

Blessed María’s institutional legacy continues via the Sopeña Catechetical Institute and the Sopeña Lay Movement.

Consider two words, O reader.  Those words are orthodoxy and orthopraxy.  Orthodoxy is right belief.  Orthopraxy is right practice.  The two are properly like two sides of a coin.  One is like what one does, and as one thinks, one does and is.  When I consider elements of conventional Christian orthodoxy in the past and the present, I find a mixed bag of healthy spirituality and spiritual creepy crawlies.  I, as a student of history, know from primary sources that many Americans defended racially-defined, chattel slavery by quoting the Bible, for example.  I also recall reading such arguments recycled, well into the twentieth century, to justify Jim Crow.  I know, from the words of those who made these arguments, that these were matters, partially, of scriptural authority for those advocates.

The standard to follow is love–not vague love, not puppy love, not make-people-feel-good-for-now love.  The standard to follow is love.  Love builds up people.  Love is tangible.  Love is selfless.  Love hurts sometimes, too.  Love is willing to accompany a beloved one through hell.

Blessed María loved “the least of these.”  In doing so, she demonstrated her love of Jesus.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 28, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT AMBROSE OF MILAN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP. SAINT MONICA OF HIPPO, MOTHER OF SAINT AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO; AND SAINT AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF HIPPO REGIUS

THE FEAST OF DENIS WORTMAN, U.S. DUTCH REFORMED MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF EDMOND L. BUDRY, SWISS REFORMED, HYMN WRITER, AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF LAURA S. COPERHAVER, U.S. LUTHERAN HYMN WRITER AND MISSIONARY LEADER

THE FEAST OF SAINT MOSES THE BLACK, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK, ABBOT, AND MARTYR

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O God, your Son came among us to serve and not to be served,

and to give his life for the life of the world.

Lead us by his love to serve all those to whom

the world offers no comfort and little help.

Through us give hope to the hopeless,

love to the unloved,

peace to the troubled,

and rest to the weary,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Hosea 2:18-23

Psalm 94:1-15

Romans 12:9-21

Luke 6:20-36

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), 60

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Feast of Johann Josef Ignaz von Dollinger (January 9)   Leave a comment

Above:  Johann Josef Ignaz von Döllinger

Image in the Public Domain

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JOHANN JOSEF IGNAZ VON DÖLLINGER (FEBRUARY 28, 1799-JANUARY 10, 1890)

Dissident and Excommunicated Roman Catholic Priest, Theologian, and Historian

INTRODUCTION

Father Johann Josef Ignaz von Dõllinger comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via historical accounts.  He also comes here via a pupil, John Dalberg Acton (1834-1902).

I confess readily to my relationship to authority.  I am neither an anarchist nor an unconditional conformist.  I chafe against all forms of authoritarianism.  With the common good (defined by mutuality) and the Golden Rule as my core principles, I evaluate what authority figures say and do.  Theologically, I feel free to ask any question and to harbor any doubt I choose.  I gladly accept the label “heretic” from people.  In fact, I own and wear a T-shirt with “heretic” printed on the front.  Yet I am, compared to many people I know, orthodox.  According to fundamentalists, however, I am a Hellbound heretic.  So be it.  I call myself an Episcopalian.

Sometimes I poke my proverbial fingers into the equally proverbial eyes of authority figures because they deserve no less.  We are all “but dust.”  Even authority figures are mere mortals.  Somebody has to remind some of them of that.

I follow my own interests and march to the beat of my own drum.  Therefore, I am a default contrarian much of the time.  Many of my interests are outside of the mainstream, or at least of little or no interest to most people around me.  I feel no compulsion to keep up with “watercooler” topics of discussion either.  If I wanted to break the ice, I would have joined the crew of a ship with a reinforced hull long ago.

I grew up a Protestant–a United Methodist, mainly.  The rebelliousness hardwired into Protestantism appealed to my personality.  (It still does.)  Yet my sense of history led me toward Holy Mother Church.  Instead of crossing the Tiber River, I became an Episcopalian.  I have turned into an Anglican-Lutheran-Catholic.  (The Middle Way, indeed!)

Given all that, O reader, you may not be surprised to read that Father Döllinger catches and holds my attention.  I like him.  I disagree with him on certain points.  Of course, if agreeing with me on all points were a criteria for inclusion on my Ecumenical Calendar, the project would not exist.  I do agree with Döllinger’s rejection of papal infallibility.  I also conclude that anyone who got on the bad side of the reactionary Pope Pius IX could not have been all bad.

The article about Döllinger in The Catholic Encyclopedia (1907-1912) offers a hardline evaluation, not surprisingly:

Seldom has it been so clearly proven that whenever a man turns completely from a glorious and honourable past, however stormy, his fate is irrevocably sealed.

Consider the source, O reader.

HIS LIFE

Johann Josef Ignaz von Döllinger, born in Bamberg, Electorate of Bavaria, Holy Roman Empire, on February 28, 1799, came from a line of physicians and professors of medicine.  His grandfather had founded the medical faculty at the University of Bamberg.  Our saint’s father taught medicine at the University of Bamberg (-1803) then at the University of Würzberg (1803f).  Döllinger, a bookworm from an early age, mastered French, Italian, and Spanish.  At the University of Würzberg, our saint studied science, theology, philosophy, and law.  Seminary followed in Bamberg (1820-1822).

Döllinger became a priest on April 22, 1822.  This displeased his father, who (a) wanted the son to lead an academic career, and (b) considered leading a celibate life to be physically impossible.  Our saint, briefly a chaplain, led an academic career, with the aid of his father.  Döllinger started teaching canon law in Aschaffenburg from November 1823 to 1827.  During this time, he received his Doctor of Theology degree.  Our saint relocated to Munich, the capital of the Kingdom of Bavaria, in 1827.  He taught canon law and church history.  Döllinger also served as a canon of the royal chapel of St. Cajetan (1839f) and as the provost, or head canon (1847f).

Dollinger’s relatively liberal politics–including support for constitutional government–got him into trouble.  It cost him his professorship in 1847, although he got that position back in 1850.  In 1871, Döllinger’s refusal to accept the new dogma of papal infallibility got him into deep trouble with Rome.  This act of conscience led to excommunication that year and dismissal from the professorship the following year.  Fortunately for our saint, he had the favor of the Kings of Bavaria.  Döllinger held various royal appointments–academic and scientific positions–and continued to research, write, and publish for the rest of his life.

Döllinger was sui generis.  He was too liberal for traditionalists and too traditional for hardcore German Liberals.  Our saint’s church was the ancient Catholic Church, not the Roman Catholic Church with an infallible Supreme Pontiff.  Schism was anathema to Döllinger.  He was unambiguous in criticizing Protestantism (in 1838, 1843, and 1851, in particular).  The excommunicated priest, who influenced the new Old Catholic Church, refused to join it while harboring no hostility toward it.  Our saint’s insistence of academic freedom made him many enemies in ecclesiastical circles, too.

Döllinger, who refused attempts to persuade him to reconcile with Rome, died in Munich, Kingdom of Bavaria, German Empire, on January 10, 1890.  He was 90 years old.

CONCLUSION

Certain issues at play in Döllinger’s life remain pertinent, sadly.

  1. The lack of academic freedom in schools, colleges, and universities in more than one denomination remains problematic.
  2. Dissent has a legitimate role in the Church.  Some limits need to exist, of course; certain standards should apply.  Yet the quest for doctrinal purity is a fool’s errand.  Some of the self-identified pure are purer than others.  The “purer” the tent is, the smaller and more Donatistic it is.
  3. Schism is a matter to approach with extreme caution, and should be a last resort.

Given the ecclesiastical standards that have unfolded and continue to unfold, what did Döllinger do that warranted excommunication?  He apparently honored his vow of celibacy.  He did not disavow the Holy Trinity.  He did not molest anyone.  He did not abuse indigenous children at residential schools in Canada.   Our saint’s alleged offenses seemed to have been asking “too many” questions and refusing to accept a new dogma.

Sola Scriptura, in the narrow definition, holds that nothing outside of scripture is necessary for salvation.  I read about Döllinger and conclude that his refusal to accept papal infallibility did not endanger his salvation.  I conclude that, in the mind of God, the excommunication was irrelevant.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 26, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN PAUL I, BISHOP OF ROME

THE FEAST OF FREDERICK WILLIAM HERZBERGER, U.S. LUTHERAN MINISTER, HUMANITARIAN, AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT LEVKADIA HARASYMIV, UKRAINIAN GREEK CATHOLIC NUN, AND MARTYR, 1952

THE FEAST OF SAINTS LUIGI BELTRAME QUATTROCCHI AND MARIA CORSINI BELTRAME QUATTROCCHI, ITALIAN ROMAN CATHOLIC HUMANITARIANS

THE FEAST OF SAINT TERESA OF JESUS, JORNET Y IBARS, CATALAN CATHOLIC NUN AND CO-FOUNDER OF THE LITTLE SISTERS OF THE ABANDONED ELDERLY

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Almighty God, you gave to your servant Johann Josef Ignaz von Döllinger

special gifts of grace to understand and teach the truth as it in Christ Jesus:

Grant that by this teaching we may know you,

the one true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent;

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Proverbs 3:1-7

Psalm 119:89-96

1 Corinthians 3:5-11

Matthew 13:47-52

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 721

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Feast of Henry Schwing (December 23)   Leave a comment

Above:  The Flag of Maryland

Image in the Public Domain

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HENRY SCHWING (DECEMBER 26, 1825-JANUARY 19, 1907)

U.S. Organist and Music Editor

“The Grand Old Man of Maryland Music”

Henry Schwing comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Above:  Mount Vernon Place Methodist Episcopal Church, Baltimore, Maryland

Image Source = Matthew Simpson, Cyclopaedia of Methodism (1878), 81

Schwing was a church musician and a music educator.  He, born in Germany on December 26, 1825, relocated to Baltimore, Maryland, in 1848.  He served as the organist first at St. John’s Episcopal Church, Baltimore.  Then, for 25 years, he served as the organist at Mount Vernon Place Methodist Episcopal (now United Methodist) Church, “the Cathedral of Methodism,” completed in 1872.  Our saint joined the faculty of the Woman’s College of Baltimore (now Goucher College, Towson) in 1896.  He was an instructor in the theory of music (1891-1892) then the Director of the School of Music (1892-1894).

Schwing, husband of Sophia Wagner (1827-1910) and father of three daughters, all of whom survived him, left a published legacy, too.  His published works included:

  1. Margaret Polka (1849);
  2. Cantate Domino (1859), with co-compiler Lewis H. Steiner, M.D.;
  3. The Musical Philosopher’s Stone, or Amateur’s Test in Judging Music (1862);
  4. The First Instruction on the Piano (1880);
  5. Tunes for Worship (1884);
  6. The Hymnal of the Reformed Church in the United States (1890), as the Musical Editor;
  7. The Woman’s Hymnal:  A Collection of Sacred Lyrics Set to Music and Arranged as Duets for Soprano and Alto (Tenor and Bass Ad Libitium) for the Use of the Woman’s College of Baltimore (1892); and
  8. A Practical Guide in Improvisation and Modulation (1902).

Schwing also arranged hymn tunes.  For example, he arranged DU MEINER SEELEN (#276 in The Hymnal, 1941), by George Joseph/Georg Joseph/George Josephi.

Schwing, aged 81 years, died in Baltimore on January 19, 1907.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 21, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT BRUNO ZEMBOL, POLISH ROMAN CATHOLIC FRIAR AND MARTYR, 1942

THE FEAST OF SAINTS CAMERIUS, CISELLUS, AND LUXORIUS OF SARDINIA, MARTYRS, 303

THE FEAST OF SAINT MAXIMILIAN OF ANTIOCH, MARTYR, CIRCA 353; AND SAINTS BONOSUS AND MAXIAMINUS THE SOLDIER, MATYRS, 362

THE FEAST OF SAINT VICTOIRE RASOAMANARIVO, MALAGASY ROMAN CATHOLIC LAYWOMAN

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Henry Schwing)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Benjamin Tucker Tanner (December 20)   3 comments

Above:  Bishop Benjamin Tucker Tanner

Image in the Public Domain

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BENJAMIN TUCKER TANNER (DECEMBER 25, 1835-JANUARY 14, 1923)

African Methodist Episcopal Bishop and Renewer of Society

Bishop Benjamin Tucker Tanner comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via G. Scott Cady and Christopher L. Webber, A Year with American Saints (2006).

Tanner, born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on December 25, 1835, was a son of Hugh Tanner and Isabella Tanner.  Our saint, a student at Avery College, Pittsburgh, paid his way by working as a barber.  Then he spent three years as a student at Western Theological Seminary, Pittsburgh.

Tanner, ordained in the African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, served in A.M.E. and Presbyterian churches.  He organized a Presbyterian Sunday school for former slaves in Washington, D.C..  Then, in 1863, our saint, back in the embrace of the A.M.E. Church, began to serve a church in Georgetown.  He transferred to Baltimore, Maryland, in 1886.  Subsequent posts included:

  1. Pastor of an A.M.E. church, Fredericktown, Maryland;
  2. Organizer of a Freedmen’s Bureau school;
  3. Chief Secretary of the General Conference of the A.M.E. Church (1868f);
  4. Editor, The Christian Recorder (1872f);
  5. Editor, The A.M.E. Review (1884f); and
  6. Bishop (1888f).

Tanner, who, as an ecclesiastical journalist, strove to build up African-American families, wrote books, too.  These were:

  1. Paul Versus Paul Ninth (1865);
  2. An Apology for African Methodism (1867);
  3. The Negro’s Origin:  And Is the Negro Cursed? (1869);
  4. An Outline of Our History and Government for African Methodist Churchmen, Ministerial and Lay, in Catechetical Form (1884); and
  5. The Color of Solomon–What?  “My Beloved is White and Ruddy”:  A Monograph (1895).

Tanner, with Alexander Crummell (1819-1898) and W. E. B. DuBois (1868-1963), founded the American Negro Academy, in memory of Frederick Douglass (1817-1895).  The American Negro Academy refuted racist White academic claims.

Tanner was also a family man.  He married Sarah, an escaped slave who reached freedom via the Underground Railroad.  The couple had nine children, seven of whom lived to adulthood.  The most notable offspring were trailblazers.  Henry Ossawa Tanner (1859-1937) became an internationally acclaimed painter.  Halle Tanner Dillon Johnston, M.D. (1864-1901), became a pioneering physician in the Jim Crow Deep South.

Tanner, aged 87 years, died of chronic myocarditis in Washington, D.C,

Sadly, our saint’s legacy of refuting racism remains relevant.  Talk (from just a few years ago) of the “death of racism” has proven false.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 18, 2018 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF ARTEMISIA BOWDEN, AFRICAN-AMERICAN EDUCATOR AND CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST

THE FEAST OF ERDMANN NEUMEISTER, GERMAN LUTHERAN MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF FRANCIS JOHN MCCONNELL, U.S. METHODIST BISHOP AND SOCIAL REFORMER

THE FEAST OF JONATHAN FRIEDRICH BAHNMAIER, GERMAN LUTHERAN MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF PETTER DASS, NORWEGIAN LUTHERAN MINISTER, POET, AND HYMN WRITER

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Holy and righteous God, you created us in your image.

Grant us grace to contend fearlessly against evil and to make no peace with oppression.

Help us [like your servant Benjamin Tucker Tanner]

to use our freedom to bring justice among people and nations,

to the glory of your name;

through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Hosea 2:18-23

Psalm 94:1-14

Romans 12:9-21

Luke 6:20-36

–Adapted from the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978), 37

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Feast of Lewis Henry Redner (December 16)   Leave a comment

Above:  Episcopal Church of the Holy Trinity, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1933

Image Source = Library of Congress

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LEWIS HENRY REDNER (DECEMBER 15, 1831-AUGUST 29, 1908)

Episcopal Organist and Hymn Tune Composer

Lewis Henry Redner comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Redner, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on December 15, 1831, was a son of Lewis Redner (1798-1854) and Katherine Snyder Redner (1805-1888).  Our saint became a successful and wealthy realtor in the “City of Brotherly Love.”  He, a lifelong bachelor, served as the organist at four churches in Philadelphia.  For nineteen years he played the organ at the Episcopal Church of the Holy Trinity, where Phillips Brooks (1835-1893) served as the rector from 1862 to 1869.  Redner was also the Sunday School Superintendent for those nineteen years.  He increased enrollment from thirty-six to more than a thousand.

Redner composed hymn tunes, too.  The most famous hymn tune was ST. LOUIS, which he wrote for Brooks’s new Christmas carol, “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” which premiered, with Redner’s tune, on December 27, 1868.

Redner, aged 76 years, died on August 29, 1908, in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

The gift he and Brooks bequeathed keeps giving, fortunately.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 16, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF JOHN DIEFENBAKER AND LESTER PEARSON, PRIME MINISTERS OF CANADA; AND TOMMY DOUGLAS, FEDERAL LEADER OF THE NEW DEMOCRATIC PARTY

THE FEAST OF SAINT ALIPIUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP OF TAGASTE, AND FRIEND OF SAINT AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO

THE FEAST OF JOHN COURTNEY MURRAY, U.S. ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST AND THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF JOHN JONES OF TALYSHARN, WELSH CALVINISTIC METHODIST MINISTER AND HYMN TUNE COMPOSER

THE FEAST OF MATTHIAS CLAUDIUS, GERMAN LUTHERAN WRITER

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Lewis Henry Redner)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Alexis Feodorovich Lvov (December 16)   1 comment

Above:  Lvov

Image in the Public Domain

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ALEXEI FYODOROVICH LVOV 

JUNE 5, 1798-DECEMBER 16, 1870 (OLD STYLE)

MAY 25, 1798-DECEMBER 28, 1870 (NEW STYLE)

Russian Orthodox Musician and Composer

Alexis Feodorovich Lvov comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Lvov, like many other capable composers, made his living in other work much of the time.  Our saint, born in Reval, Russian Empire, on May 25, 1798 (June 5, New Style), came from a musical family.  His father was Feodor Petrovich Lvov, Maestro of the Imperial Chapel, St. Petersburg (1826-1836).  Feodor was a pupil and the immediate successor of Dmitry Stepanovich Bortniansky (1751-1825) in that post.  Our saint studied violin, starting in childhood, and performed as a child and as an adult.  Lvov eventually founded his own string quartet, with whom he performed at home and in Europe, on tour.

Lvov was, by profession, an officer in the Russian Army.  He, trained as a civil engineer, rose to the rank of General.  In 1828, our saint became an aide-de-camp to Tsar Nicholas I (reigned 1825-1855).  Lvov succeeded his father as the Maestro of the Imperial Chapel (1837-1861).  In 1850, our saint founded the Russian Concert Society.  This organization pioneered symphonic concerts in the Russian Empire.

Lvov’s musical contributions to posterity were impressive.  He codified the current Russian Orthodox standard repertory of chants, the Obikhod.  Our saint’s writings about music included:

  1. A Free and Assymetric Rhythm (1858), about Old Slavonic chants; and
  2. A Beginner’s Guide to the Violin, with 24 Musical Examples (circa 1859).

Lvov composed secular and sacred music.  Examples included:

  1. 24 Caprices for Violin;
  2. Borodinsky March (1839);
  3. Dramatic Fantasy for Violin and Cello;
  4. Bianca and Gualtiero (1844), an opera;
  5. Concerto in A Minor for Violin and Orchestra (1840);
  6. Lord, Have Mercy;
  7. To Thy Heavenly Banquet;
  8. Of Thy Mystical Supper;
  9. Standing Before Thy Cross;
  10. Thy Soul Shall Rejoice in the Lord.

Lvov may be most famous for another composition, though.  That work is God Save the Tsar! (1833), the imperial anthem.  The tune, named RUSSIA and RUSSIAN HYMN, is the tune for “God the Omnipotent.”  The old Russian imperial anthem, quoted in Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture and Maurice Jarre’s overture to Doctor Zhivago, is a wonderful tune.  (Don’t forget P.D.Q. Bach’s 1712 Overture, which also includes the tune.)

Lvov, who married and had three children, died in Romainai, Russian Empire, on December 16, 1870 (December 28, New Style).  He was 72 years old.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 15, 2021 COMMON ERA

PROPER 15:  THE TWELFTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST, YEAR B

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARY OF NAZARETH, MOTHER OF GOD

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Alexis Feodorovich Lvov)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of Conrad Kocher (December 16)   Leave a comment

Above:  The Flag of the Duchy of Württemberg

Image in the Public Domain

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CONRAD KOCHER (DECEMBER 16, 1786-MARCH 12, 1872)

German Composer and Music Educator

Reformer of Church Music in Germany

Conrad Kocher comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Kocher, born in Dietzingen, Duchy of Württemberg, Holy Roman Empire, on December 16, 1786, was, according to his parents, supposed to become a teacher.  So, he did.  Our saint taught in St. Petersburg, Russian Empire.  While there, Kocher fell in love with the music of Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791).  Our saint, therefore, changed his career path.

Kocher abandoned teaching, as he had been doing it, and focused on music.  Our saint studied composition in St. Petersburg and Rome.  He began to compose.  His oeuvre ultimately included operas, sonatas, oratorios, chorales, and hymn tunes.  His most enduring composition was probably a hymn tune, DIX, as in “For the Beauty of the Earth;” “As With Gladness Men of Old” (about the Magi); “Praise to God, Immortal Praise;” “Lord, Set Fire to My Soul;” and “Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies.”  Kocher’s studies of the music of Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525-1594) convinced him to focus on sacred music.  Kocher returned to Germany in 1811.  There he founded the School of Sacred Song, Stuttgart.  In this capacity, our saint helped to reform and improve singing in Protestant churches by popularizing four-part singing.  For this reason, Kocher received an honorary doctorate from the University of Tübingen (1852).

Kocher, aged 85 years, died in Stuttgart, Kingdom of Württemberg, German Empire, on March 12, 1872.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 14, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM CROFT, ANGLICAN ORGANIST AND COMPOSER

THE FEAST OF JOHN BAJUS, U.S. LUTHERAN MINISTER AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF JOHN HENRY HOPKINS, JR., EPISCOPAL PRIEST AND HYMNODIST; AND HIS NEPHEW, JOHN HENRY HOPKINS, III, EPISCOPAL PRIEST AND MUSICIAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT MAXIMILIAN KOLBE, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST AND MARTYR, 1941; AND JONATHAN MYRICK DANIELS, EPISCOPAL SEMINARIAN AND MARTYR, 1965

THE FEAST OF SARAH FLOWER ADAMS, ENGLISH UNITARIAN HYMN WRITER; AND HER SISTER, ELIZA FLOWER, ENGLISH UNITARIAN COMPOSER

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially Conrad Kocher)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Feast of John Zundel (December 9)   Leave a comment

Above:  John Zundel

Image in the Public Domain

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JOHANNES ZUNDEL (DECEMBER 10, 1815-MAYN21, 1882)

German-American Organist, Hymnal Editor, Hymn Tune Composer, and Music Educator

John Zundel comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Hymnal (1941), of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Zundel was a native of the Kingdom of Württemberg.  He, born in Hochdorf an der Enz on December 10, 1815, studied at the Royal Academy, Esslingen (1829-1831).  Our saint taught at Birkach (1831-1833) then Esslingen (1833-1839) before studying organ building at Ludwigsburg (1839).  From 1840 to 1847, Zundel lived and worked in St. Petersburg, Russian Empire.  He was the organist at St. Anne’s Lutheran Church, as well as the bandmaster of the Imperial House Guards.

Above:  Plymouth Church, Brooklyn, New York, 1866

Image in the Public Domain

Zundel came to the United States of America in 1847.  He served as the organist at All Souls’ Unitarian Church then St. George’s Episcopal Church, New York New York (1848-1850), before going to work as the organist at Plymouth Church, Brooklyn, New York (1850-1878).  The pastor was the famous Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887).  Zundel became as much of a draw to Plymouth Church as was Beecher.  Our saint took some time away from Plymouth Church over the years; he toured and played the organ at other churches on occasion.  At Plymouth Church, Zundel collaborated with Beecher ton two important works in the development of U.S. hymnals:

  1. Temple Melodies (1851), and
  2. The Plymouth Collection (1855).

The latter volume included twenty-eight of Zundel’s hymn tunes.

Zundel wrote, co-wrote, edited, or co-edited the following works and publications:

  1. Two Fugues with Three Subjects (1841);
  2. Six Preludes and Interludes (1848);
  3. Two Hundred and Fifty Easy Voluntaries and Interludes (1851);
  4. The Choral Friend (1852);
  5. The Complete Melodeon Instructor (1853);
  6. The Amateur Organist (1854);
  7. Zundel’s Psalmody (1855);
  8. Plymouth Sunday School Collection (1858);
  9. New Method for the Melodeon, Harmonium, and Other Instruments of the Organ Class (1859);
  10. The Modern School for the Organ (1860);
  11. Treatise on Harmony and Modulation (1862);
  12. Monthly Choir (1863-1864);
  13. Organ Journal (1863-1864);
  14. Festival March (1867);
  15. Christian Heart Songs (1870);
  16. Zundel and Brandt’s Quarterly (1873f); and
  17. School Harmonist (1873).

Zundel’s musical legacy may rest primarily on one hymn tune, BEECHER, to which many people continue to sing “Love Divine, All Loves Excelling.”

Zundel retired from playing the organ in the United States and returned to his homeland in 1878.  He, aged 68 years, died in Kirchheim unter Teck, German Empire, on May 21, 1882.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 10, 2021 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM WALSHAM HOW, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF WAKEFIELD, AND HYMN WRITER; AND HIS SISTER, FRANCES JANE DOUGLAS(S), HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF SAINT CATHERINE DE HUECK DOHERTY, FOUNDER OF THE MADONNA HOUSE APOSTOLATE

THE FEAST OF SAINT CYRAICA, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR AT ROME, 249; AND SAINT SIXTUS II, HIS COMPANIONS, AND SAINT LAURENCE OF ROME, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYRS AT ROME, 258

THE FEAST OF SAINTS EDWARD GRZYMALA AND FRANCISZEK DRZEWIECKI, POLISH ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIESTS AND MARTYRS, 1942

THE FEAST OF JOHN ATHELSTAN LAURIE RILEY, ANGLICAN ECUMENIST, HYMN WRITER, AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

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Holy God, whose majesty surpasses all human definitions and capacity to grasp,

thank you for those (especially John Zundel)

who have nurtured and encouraged the reverent worship of you.

May their work inspire us to worship you in knowledge, truth, and beauty.

In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 25:1-8

Psalm 145

Revelation 15:1-4

John 4:19-26

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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