Archive for the ‘Methodist Church (1939-1968)’ Tag

Feast of Alexander Clark (March 6)   Leave a comment

Above:  Alexander Clark

Image Source = Matthew Simpson, Cyclopedia of Methodism, 5th.ed. (1882), 222

Digital Photograph by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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ALEXANDER CLARK (MARCH 10, 1834-JULY 6, 1879)

U.S. Methodist Protestant Minister, Hymn Writer, and Hymnal Editor

Alexander Clark comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via several sources.  These include The Methodist Hymnal (1966), the companion volume to The Methodist Hymnal (1935), and the fifth edition (1882) of Bishop Matthew Simpson’s Cyclopedia of Methodism.  Internet sleuthing rounds out most of the remainder of research.

Clark was a journalist and a minister.  He, born in Jefferson County, Ohio, on March 10, 1834, was a son of Samuel Clark (1797-1880) and Christine McKenzie (Clark) (1805-1886).  Samuel, of Scots-Irish ancestry, was a teacher and a classical scholar.  Christine was a Scottish immigrant.  Our saint worked as a teacher from 19 to 23 years of age.  During that time, he founded a newspaper, The Student Visitor.  It became The School Day Magazine, which, in the late 1870s, merged into St. Nicholas (extant 1873-1940).  He married Anne Marie Daughaday (1834-1923).  They had to children (born 1856-1879).

Clark, ordained a minister in the Methodist Protestant Church (extant 1830-1939), served as a pastoral capacity in four congregations.

  1. He was pastor of Fifth Avenue Methodist Protestant Church, New Brighton, Pennsylvania, from 1861 to 1863.  This congregation became Fifth Avenue Methodist Church via the merger of 1939 then Fifth Avenue United Methodist Church via the merger of 1968.  The congregation has amalgamated into New Brighton United Methodist Church.
  2. Clark was assistant pastor (under Thomas H. Stockton, 1808-1868) of the Church of the New Testament, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1863-1864.  Stockton had been pastor of First Methodist Protestant Church, Philadelphia, from 1838 to 1847.  The Church of the New Testament was an independent congregation he led from 1856 to 1868.
  3. Clark was pastor of Union Chapel (Independent Methodist), Cincinnati, Ohio, from 1864 to 1866.  Union Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church, formed in 1853, split in 1861, during a controversy over the newly-appointed pastor.  A congregation continued as Union Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church, which disbanded in the 1870s.  Union Chapel (Independent Methodist) joined The Methodist Church (extant 1858-1877) in 1867.  (Much of the West and the North of the Methodist Protestant Church had, in the name of opposing slavery, withdrawn in 1858 and formed the Methodist Protestant Association.  They adopted the name “The Methodist Church” in 1862 then retained that name five years later, during a merger with other Methodists who also opposed the episcopacy.  The Methodist Church (1858-1877) reunited with its parent denomination, the Methodist Protestant Church, in 1877.
  4. Clark was pastor of First Methodist Protestant Church, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from 1866 to 1870.  This congregation outgrew its building on Fifth Avenue in 1892.  The congregation eventually amalgamated into First United Methodist Church.

Clark left parish ministry in 1870.  He became the editor of The Methodist Recorder and Our Morning Guide, denominational periodicals.  Our saint also visited the General Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South (1874), and the Methodist Episcopal Church (1876), as a fraternal delegate.  In 1871, he edited The Voice of Praise, the new hymnal of The Methodist Church (1858-1877).  The Voice of Praise (1871) had a brief life as an official resource; The Tribute of Praise replaced it as the hymnal of the reunited Methodist Protestant Church in 1882.  Clark wrote at least 12 hymns.  His most popular text was “Heavenly Father, Bless Me Now.”

Clark’s duties entailed some traveling across the United States.  He was in Atlanta, Georgia, on a lecture tour when he became severely ill in June 1879.  Governor Alfred H. Colquitt (in office 1877-1882), a Methodist minister, had Clark moved from the hotel to the Governor’s Mansion.  Our saint, 45 years old, died there on July 6, 1879.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 3, 2020 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN XXIII, BISHOP OF ROME

THE FEAST OF CHRISTIAN GOTTFRIED GEISLER AND JOHANN CHRISTIAN GEISLER, SILESIAN MORAVIAN ORGANISTS AND COMPOSERS; AND JOHANNES HERBST, GERMAN-AMERICAN ORGANIST, COMPOSER, AND BISHOP

THE FEAST OF FRANCES RIDLEY HAVERGAL, ENGLISH HYMN WRITER AND COMPOSER

THE FEAST OF OLE T. (SANDEN) ARNESON, U.S. NORWEGIAN LUTHERAN HYMN TRANSLATOR

THE FEAST OF WILL CAMPBELL, AGENT OF RECONCILIATION

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Alexander Clark and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

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

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Feast of John S. Stamm (March 21)   1 comment

Above:  Bishop John S. Stamm, 1939

Image Source = Raymond M. Veh, Thumbnail Sketches of Evangelical Bishops (1939)

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JOHN SAMUEL STAMM (MARCH 23, 1878-MARCH 5, 1956)

Bishop of the The Evangelical Church then the Evangelical United Brethren Church 

Bishop John S. Stamm comes to this, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  An Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days, via The Interpreter’s Bible, for which he wrote the introduction to and the exegesis of Galatians for Volume X (1953).

Stamm belonged to an Arminian tradition.  The Church of the United Brethren in Christ (1800-1946) and the Evangelical Association (1816-1922) began as German-speaking counterparts to the English-speaking Methodist movement.  The ironically-named United Evangelical Church (1891-1922) reunited with the Evangelical Association, from which it had broken away, to create The Evangelical Church (1922-1946).  The Church of the United Brethren in Christ merged with The Evangelical Church to form the Evangelical United Brethren Church (1946-1968).  This denomination merged with the reunited Methodist Church (1939-1968) to create The United Methodist Church.

John Samuel Stamm was a son of Swiss immigrants.  His parents were Hans (George) Stamm (1854-1918) and Anna Maria (Mary) Stamm (1854-1950).  Our saint, born in Alida, Kansas, on March 23, 1878, grew up in the Evangelical Association.  The first two decades of his life were not conducive to education; he had completed five grades before his twentieth birthday.  Stamm, who had a conversion experience at age 18, matriculated at North Central College, Napierville, Illinois, in 1898.  The college, like many similar institutions at the time, had a preparatory academy attached to it.  Our saint started at the academy before moving on to the postsecondary program.  In 1909, at the age of 31 years, he completed his undergraduate degree.  The following year, he graduated from Evangelical Theological Seminary, attached to North Central College.  Then he earned his M.A. degree from The University of Chicago.

Stamm, a minister, spent most of his career above the congregational level.  He served in churches in Missouri (Bloomington and Glasgow) and Illinois (Manhattan, Downers Grove, and Oak Park) before becoming a professor at Evangelical Theological Seminary (1918-1926).  Then he became a bishop in 1926.  Stamm worked first out of Kansas City, Missouri (1926-1934), then Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (1934f).  Along the way, he fell in love with Priscilla Marie Wahl (d. 1955).  He wed her in Manhattan, Illinois, on March 9, 1912.

Stamm was active on the Conference level of his denomination.  He was, at different times, the President of the Sunday School Board, the Chairman on the Commission on Policy and Program, and the Missionary Secretary of the Young People’s Alliance.

Stamm was active on the denominational level, beyond his duties as a bishop.  He was the President of the Evangelical School of Theology, Reading, Pennsylvania (1934-1941).  As of 1939, our saint also led the denominational Board of Publication, the Superannuation Fund, the Church Extension board, the Christian Social Action committee, and the Commission on Church Federation and Union.  Stamm was, therefore, deeply involved in the 1946 merger that formed the Evangelical United Brethren Church.

Stamm, the author of Evangelism and Christian Experience, was also an ecumenist.  He served as the President of the Pennsylvania Council of Churches (1945-1949), the Federal Council of Churches (1948-1950).  Furthermore, Stamm helped to found the World Council of Churches (1948) and sat on its Central Committee (1948-1954).  If that were not enough, he also helped to create the Revised Standard Version (1946, 1952) of the Bible.

Stamm received more degrees later in life.  These were:

  1. Doctor of Divinity (1927), Evangelical Theological Seminary;
  2. Doctor of Laws (1936), Albright College;
  3. Doctor of Humane Letters (1949), North Central College; and
  4. Doctor of Sacred Theology (1951), Dickinson College.

In 1950, at the age of 72 years, Stamm retired from episcopal ministry.  He remained active in other capacities for years.  Our saint died on Kansas City, Missouri, on March 5, 1956, at the age of 77 years.  The cause of death was pneumonia, after a pelvic fracture.

Bishop John S. Stamm got a late start to his ministry, but he did much once he got underway.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JANUARY 22, 2020 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF JOHN JULIAN, ANGLICAN PRIEST, HYMN WRITER, AND HYMNOLOGIST

THE FEAST OF ALEXANDER MEN, RUSSIAN ORTHODOX PRIEST AND MARTYR, 1990

THE FEAST OF LADISLAO BATTHÁNY-STRATTMANN, AUSTRO-HUNGARIAN ROMAN CATHOLIC PHYSICIAN AND PHILANTHROPIST

THE FEAST OF LOUISE CECILIA FLEMING, AFRICAN-AMERICAN BAPTIST MISSIONARY AND PHYSICIAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT VINCENT PALLOTTI, FOUNDER OF THE SOCIETY FOR THE CATHOLIC APOSTOLATE, THE UNION OF CATHOLIC APOSTOLATE, AND THE SISTERS OF THE CATHOLIC APOSTOLATE

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Heavenly Father, shepherd of your people, we thank you for your servant John Samuel Stamm,

who was faithful in the care and nurture of your flock;

and we pray that, following his example and the teaching of his holy life,

we may by grace grow into the full stature of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Ezekiel 34:11-16 or Acts 20:17-35

Psalm 84

1 Peter 5:1-4 or Ephesians 3:14-21

John 21:15-17 or Matthew 24:42-47

–Adapted from the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978). 38

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Feast of George McGovern and Eleanor McGovern (October 21)   1 comment

19602v

Above:  Senator George McGovern, June 30, 1972

Photographer = Warren K. Leffler

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-U9- 26137-21

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GEORGE STANLEY MCGOVERN (JULY 19, 1922-OCTOBER 21, 2012)

United States Senator and Statesman

husband of 

ELEANOR STEGEBERG MCGOVERN (NOVEMBER 25, 1921-JANUARY 25, 2007)

Humanitarian

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George McGovern (1922-2012) entered the world in Avon, South Dakota.  His mother was Frances Maclean McGovern.  His father was the Reverend Joseph C. McGovern, a minister of the Wesleyan Methodist Church.  The family upbringing was strict (even no movies) and financially strapped during the Great Depression.  Young George rebelled against his struct upbringing by watching movies anyway.  More importantly, he developed a lifelong empathy for the underpaid working people and the poor more broadly speaking.

Eleanor Stegeberg (1921-2007) entered the world at Woonsocket, South Dakota.  She and her twin sister Ila grew up during the Great Depression also.  The death of their mother when they were twelve years old forced greater responsibilities upon them at that young age.

Both saints graduated from high school in 1940–George from Mitchell, South Dakota, and Eleanor from Woonsocket.  Both of them matriculated at Dakota Wesleyan University, Mitchell, South Dakota, in Fall 1940.  There they met and fell in love.  Eleanor had to leave school after one year for financial reasons.  So she went to work as a legal secretary at Mitchell.  George remained at Dakota Wesleyan until he joined the military, flying thirty-five combat missions as a B-24 bomber pilot in Europe and earning the Distinguished Flying Cross.   Then he returned to Dakota Wesleyan, completing his undergraduate degree.  He had already married Eleanor on October 31, 1943  They raised five children.

George thought that maybe he should be a minister, so he, influenced more by the Social Gospel than by his father’s theology, pursued that track in The Methodist Church (1939-1968), a forerunner of The United Methodist Church.  He attended Garrett Theological Seminary, Evanston, Illinois, for a year and served as a student supply minister at Diamond Lake Methodist Church, Mundelein, Illinois, in 1946-1947.  The experience convinced George that his destiny was not as a minister.  So he transferred to Northwestern University and started graduate studies in history instead.  In 1950 George joined the faculty of Dakota Wesleyan University.

George might have had tenure and a long career as a university professor had he not chosen politics instead.  In 1948 he, raised a Republican, volunteered for the campaign of Henry A. Wallace.  George became disenchanted with many of the people around the former Secretary of Agriculture, Vice President, and Secretary of Commerce, though.  Four years later George worked on behalf of Adlai Stevenson‘s Presidential campaign.  In 1955 George left his faculty post to work full-time in South Dakota Democratic Party politics.  He served in the U.S. House of Representatives (1957-1961).  He, defeated in a bid for the U.S. Senate in 1960, became the first Director of the Food and Peace Program and a Special Assistant to the President in 1961.  Thus George oversaw the distribution of much food to hungry people in developing nations.  He served as a U.S. Senator (1963-1981), losing his bid for a fourth term.

George was a dedicated public servant.  In Congress he, advised by Eleanor, took special interest in food and nutrition programs.  He also worked on peace and war issues.  George’s opposition to the Vietnam War pertained to the facts of that conflict, not war itself; he was not a pacifist.  Such opposition caused many jingoists to question his patriotism and to vote for President Richard Nixon instead in 1972, but at least the Senator from South Dakota was an honest man.  Presidents Gerald Ford (in 1976) and Jimmy Carter (in 1978) appointed him a delegate to the United Nations.  From 1991 to 1998 George served as President of the Middle East Policy Council.  In 1998 President Bill Clinton appointed him the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture.  Clinton awarded the former Senator the Presidential Medal of Freedom in August 2000.

After the Clinton Administration ended the good works continued.  The World Food Programme appointed George the United Nations Global Ambassador on World Hunger in 2001.  Two years later he began to work with former Senator and 1996 Republican Presidential Nominee Robert J. “Bob” Dole on the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program.  They helped many of the world’s poorest children, especially girls and young women, gain access to good food.  The two former Senators shared the World Food Prize in 2008 for this accomplishment.  And George spoke out against the Second Iraq War, for many of the same reasons he had opposed the Vietnam War.

George and Eleanor worked together and separately on issues which affected people.  The Senator had food and world peace on his mind.  Eleanor focused on family issues, such as women’s roles and child development, for a while.  She served on various boards, including those of the Psychiatric Institute Foundation and the Child Study Association.  In 1994 their daughter Terry died; alcoholism had contributed to her demise.  So both of them worked on raising funds for research into alcoholism.

 Eleanor died at Mitchell, South Dakota, on January 25, 2007.

George died at Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on October 21, 2012.  Politicians and public figures of various stripes offered their appreciation and admiration for him.  On the Cable News Network (CNN) website I found positive comments from President Barack Obama, Vice President Joseph Biden, former President Bill Clinton, Senator (as I write this, Secretary of State) John Kerry, former Ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson, and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich.  Gingrich, who had little in common politically with George McGovern, described him as:

Just a great guy.

Last October, shortly after the former Senator’s death, I clipped a Cal Thomas column–a tribute to his good friend and debating partner, George McGovern.  The former Senator, Thomas wrote, was a gentleman and

…a fellow American, a patriot and an example

who

practiced “family values” better than some conservatives who merely talk about them

and who

understood war better than some conservatives who have never fought in one

and who

believed America should only put American lives at risk when supreme national interests and security are at stake and diplomacy has completely failed.

This position, Thomas wrote, was

Honorable and principled.

George and Eleanor McGovern left their planet better than they found it.  The impact of their actions was–and is–domestic and international.  They did all this for the glory of God and the benefit of others.  Thus I honor them as saints gladly.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 24, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE NATIVITY OF SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST

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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), page 60

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For Further Reading:

http://www.mcgoverncenter.com/

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