Archive for the ‘Samuel Seabury’ Tag

Feast of Samuel Seabury (November 14)   5 comments

Above:  Samuel Seabury, by Ralph Eleaser Whiteside Earl

Image in the Public Domain



First Episcopal Bishop

Episcopal Bishop of Connecticut and Rhode Island

Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church

Keeping track of the calendar of the calendar of saints in The Episcopal Church used to be simple; one consulted the calendar in the front of The Book of Common Prayer.  The calendar of saints was not expansive for a very long time.  Then, in the 1960s, the Church introduced Lesser Feasts and Fasts, revised occasionally then, in the 1980s through the early 2000s, revised and expanded every three years.  For example, Lesser Feasts and Fasts 1997 (1998) gave way to Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2000 (2001), replaced by Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2003 (2004), succeeded by Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2006 (2007), the official calendar of saints for more than a decade.  The General Convention of 2009 authorized a greatly expanded side calendar of saints, Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010).  The General Convention of 2015 authorized that volume’s expanded and revised volume, A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  A Calendar of Commemorations (2016).  Last year’s General Convention authorized Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018, the new official calendar, without removing A Great Cloud of Witnesses (2016).

This feast has two names in The Episcopal Church.  It is, according to Lesser Feasts and Fasts, the Feast of “the Consecration of Samuel Seabury, 1784.”  However, in Holy Women, Holy Men and in A Great Cloud of Witnesses, this is the Feast of “Samuel Seabury, First American Bishop, 1796.”

At least four Samuel Seaburys lived.  Samuel Seabury, Sr. (1706-1764), was our saint’s father.  Samuel Seabury, Jr. (1729-1796), was the bishop.  Samuel Seabury, III, was one of the sons of Samuel, Jr.  Samuel Seabury, IV (1801-1872), an Episcopal priest, was a grandson of Samuel, Jr., a nephew of Samuel, III, and a son of Charles Seabury, also a priest.

Our saint, born in Groton, Connecticut, on November 30, 1729, was a son of Abigail Mumford (Seabury) and Samuel Seabury, Sr. (1706-1764), then a Congregationalist minister.  The father, a convert to Anglicanism in 1731, served in parishes in Connecticut.  Samuel, Jr., who graduated from Yale College in 1748, became a catechist with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel via his father.

Our saint was a minister and a physician.  After studying medicine in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1752-1753, he became a deacon in 1753 then a priest on December 21 of that year.  Two days later, the Bishop of London licensed Seabury to preach in New Jersey.  Our saint arrived in New Brunswick, New Jersey, on May 25, 1754.  He transferred to Jamaica, New York, in 1757, then to Westchester, New York, in 1766.  In Westchester he was also a doctor and a schoolmaster.  He served in that town until 1775.

Seabury was a Loyalist and an advocate for having Anglican bishops in North America.  Both of these opinions were politically controversial.  His allies in both causes included Thomas Bradbury Chandler (1726-1790) and Charles Inglis (1734-1816).  Chandler was a prime candidate to the first bishop of The Church in England in North America, but failing health prevented him from accepting that post.  That duty fell to Inglis, who became the Bishop of Nova Scotia, with a vast diocese encompassing British North America and Bermuda, in 1787.  In Westchester Seabury wrote his Loyalist opinions under the pen name “A.W, Farmer,” short for “A Westchester Farmer,” and conducted a written debate with Alexander Hamilton.  Seabury’s political position led to his arrest by rebels in November 1775.

Seabury, once released, served behind British lines on Long Island.  He tended to the spiritual and medical needs of British soldiers there.  Oxford University awarded our saint a Doctor of Divinity degree for his loyalty to the British Empire on December 15, 1777.  The following year, Seabury became the chaplain to the King’s American Regiment.  After the war, our saint began to collect a pension from the British government.  He continued to receive this pension until he died.  The British pension gave many Americans a reason to distrust Seabury.

The Church of England in the United States needed to reorganize itself and to separate from the mother church to survive and thrive.  Three bishops were necessary, though, and British law did not allow for bishops of The Church of England to consecrate a bishop who refused to swear loyalty to the monarch.  On March 25, 1783, ten of fourteen Anglican clergymen in Connecticut gathered to choose a bishop.  Their first choice was Jeremiah Learning, who, citing age and health concerns, declined.  Then they elected Seabury.  He arrived in England on July 5, 1783.  After no bishops of The Church of England agreed to consecrate him, Seabury traveled to Scotland, where non-juring bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church consecrated him on November 14, 1784.

Seabury, who returned to the United States in late June 1785, immediately began to exercise his office, arch eyebrows, and make allies and enemies.  Meanwhile, William White (1747-1836), the Rector of Christ Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the chaplain of the Confederation Congress, and before that the chaplain of the Second Continental Congress, was trying to organize the American church.  Seabury presided over the first convention of the Diocese of Connecticut on August 3-5, 1785.  He ordained four deacons, including one for Maryland.  Our saint did not attend the General Convention White called in Philadelphia the following month.  Seabury and White disagreed on polity; the former resisted a laity with what he considered too much power, and the latter sought to grant much power to the laity.  Seabury also disapproved of White’s proposed Book of Common Prayer.  Seabury published his Communion Office, based on the Scottish liturgy, in 1786.  In 1785-1786 Seabury was the only American bishop.  In that capacity he ordained men for service beyond Connecticut.  This disturbed many, some of whom questioned the legitimacy of Seabury’s consecration.  White moved to restrict our saint’s authority to his diocese.

Meanwhile, a change in British law in 1787 permitted bishops of The Church of England to consecrate bishops for the United States.  Samuel Provoost (the only non-Loyalist priest in New York) and William White became the first Bishops of New York and Pennsylvania, respectively.  Provoost did not speak to Seabury, and, for a time, neither did White.

Seabury and White were the main founders of The Episcopal Church in 1789.  They made the compromises necessary for the creation of one denomination, not two.  Seabury beat back Congregationalism (strongest in the South) and made his peace with a somewhat empowered laity.  His Communion Office also influenced the Eucharistic rites in The Book of Common Prayer (1789).  Our saint also served as the Presiding Bishop in 1789-1792.  Seabury, who also doubled as the Bishop of Rhode Island from 1790 to 1796, ruled his roost.  He styled himself,

…by Divine permission Bishop of Connecticut.

Seabury died in New London, Connecticut, on February 25, 1796.  He was 66 years old.  His wife, Mary Hicks, born in 1736, had died in 1780.

Seabury was ahead of his time sacramentally in one way.  He argued for the weekly Sunday celebration of the Holy Communion.  That did not become commonplace in The Episcopal Church until the 1960s and 1970s, a time of liturgical renewal.  Our saint would have approved of the definition of the Holy Eucharist as

the central act of Christian worship,

according to The Book of Common Prayer (1979).








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.

Isaiah 63:7-9

Psalm 133

Acts 20:28-32

Matthew 9:35-38

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 679


We give you thanks, O Lord our God, for your goodness in

bestowing upon this Church the gift of the episcopate,

which we celebrate in this remembrance of the consecration of Samuel Seabury;

and we pray that, joined in unity with our bishops and nourished by your holy Sacraments,

we may proclaim the Gospel of redemption with apostolic zeal;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with

you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

A Great Cloud of Witnesses:  A Calendar of Commemorations (2016)


Feast of William White (July 17)   4 comments

Above:  Second Street North from Market Street, with Christ Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1800

Engraver = William Russell Birch (1755-1834)

Image Source = Library of Congress


WILLIAM WHITE (MARCH 24, 1747-JULY 17, 1836)

Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church

On the Episcopal calendar of saints July 17 is the Feast of William White, one of the three original bishops (with Samuel Seabury and Samuel Provoost), and the father of the denominational constitution.

White was a man of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Eventually he developed a well-earned reputation as the “first citizen” of that city.  He, born there on March 24, 1747, was a son of Esther Hawlings and attorney and surveyor Thomas White.  Our saint graduated from the College of Philadelphia in 1765 then studied theology privately under the tutelage of the priests at Christ Church as well as Provost William Smith of the College of Philadelphia.  White, ordained to the diaconate in England on December 23, 1770, returned to that country for his ordination to the priesthood, April 25, 1772.  The following year our saint married Mary Harrison.  The couple had eight children.

White balanced overlapping ecclesiastical portfolios from the 1770s until his death in 1836.  He, for a time during  the Revolutionary War the only Anglican priest in Pennsylvania, due to the expulsion of Loyalist clergymen, was the following:

  1. Assistant Priest, Christ Church and St. Peter’s Church, Philadelphia (1772-1779);
  2. Chaplain of the Second Continental Congress (1777-1781);
  3. Rector, Christ Church and St. Peter’s Church, Philadelphia (1779-1836);
  4. Chaplain of the Confederation Congress (1781-1788);
  5. Bishop of Pennsylvania (1787-1836);
  6. Chaplain of the U.S. Senate (1789-1800); and
  7. Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church (1789, 1795-1836).

Meanwhile, White also served as a trustee of the College of Philadelphia and the University of the State of Pennsylvania (until 1791) as well as the merged University of Pennsylvania (1791f).

Above:  Christ Church, Philadelphia, 1814

Engraver = James Peller Malcolm (1767-1815)

Image Source = Library of Congress

From 1782 to 1789 White made an effective case for a national “Protestant Episcopal Church” separate from The Church of England.  He presided over the first three General Conventions (1785, 1786, and 1789), helped to write the Proposed Book of Common Prayer of 1786 (never adopted), and sought to reconcile factions and unite them into one denomination.  Samuel Seabury, from 1784 the Bishop of Connecticut, was an old Loyalist.  Samuel Provoost and White, from 1787 the Bishops of New York and Pennsylvania, respectively, had been rebels.  Provoost and Seabury were not on writing or speaking terms with each other for a while.  There were also regional and theological-liturgical differences; the churches from Virginia to New York disagreed with those of the South and New England with regard to the proper roles of bishops and lay members.  Delegates to the General Convention of 1789, with White presiding, forged a constitution and produced The Book of Common Prayer (1789), in use for 103 years.

Above:  William White

An image from July 19, 1838

Image Source = Library of Congress

White was influential in other ways too.  Our saint taught theology to John Henry Hobart (1775-1830) in 1797-1798 and ordained him a deacon (1798) and a priest (1800).  Hobart, from 1816 to 1830 the Bishop of New York, was also a towering figure in The Episcopal Church.  Over the decades White had various assistants.  One of these, from 1811 to 1831, was Jackson Kemper (1789-1870), a protégé of Hobart and the first missionary bishop (consecrated in 1835) in The Episcopal Church.  Another circle of influence radiated from Kemper.  One member of that circle was James Lloyd Breck (1818-1876)William Augustus Muhlenberg (1796-1877) assisted White from 1817 to 1822.  Muhlenberg became influential in The Episcopal Church by, among other legacies, encouraging the use of flowers, the singing of hymns, and the founding of ecclesiastical institutions to provide social services.  He and Anne Ayres (1816-1896) founded the Sisterhood of the Holy Communion (1845), the first Anglican religious community for women in North America.

White, unlike Muhlenberg, preferred traditional metrical Psalms to hymns, which were new in The Episcopal Church in the 1800s.  The bishop considered hymns too Evangelical and prone to enthusiasm, which he described as

animal sensibility.

White, aged 89 years, died in Philadelphia, on July 17, 1836.  His direct and indirect influences on The Episcopal Church have never ceased to exist, however.








O Lord, in a time of turmoil and confusion you raised up your servant William White,

and endowed him with wisdom, patience, and a reconciling temper,

that he might lead your Church into ways of stability and peace:

Hear our prayer, and give us wise and faithful leaders,

that through their ministry your people may be blessed and your will be done;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with

you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Jeremiah 3:15-19

Psalm 92:1-4, 11-14

1 Timothy 3:1-10

John 21:15-17

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 467



Feast of Thomas Bray (February 15)   Leave a comment


Above:  Thomas Bray

Image in the Public Domain


THOMAS BRAY (1656-FEBRUARY 15, 1730)

Anglican Priest and Missionary

Thomas Bray did much to help The Church of England in North America.  The native of Marton, Shropshire, England, graduated from Oxford University then became a priest in Warwickshire.  In 1696 the Bishop of London selected Bray to supervise church work in Maryland.  Our saint sailed for the colony three years later.  During two and a half months in 1700 Bray became concerned about the neglect of the Anglican Church in the North American colonies, as well as about the realities of life for Native Americans and for African-American slaves.  Back in England he spent the rest of his life working for the welfare of slaves, founding schools and libraries, raising funds for missionary work, and recruiting priests to serve in North America.  Bray also lobbied for the appointment of a bishop for North America.  He was not alone in this cause.  Unfortunately, The Church of England did not consecrate a bishop for North America until 1787, when Charles Inglis (1734-1816) became the first Bishop of Nova Scotia, with a sprawling diocese.  (Scottish non-juring bishops consecrated Samuel Seabury in 1784.)

Bray’s final charge was St. Botolph Without, Aldgate, London, from 1706 until his death, in 1730.  Aside from the North America-related efforts I have listed, our saint, deeply involved in domestic prison reform, suggested that General James Edward Oglethorpe found a colony and include debtors as settlers in it.  In 1732, Oglethorpe secured the charter for Georgia.  The boats arrived the following year.








O God of compassion, you opened the eyes of your servant

Thomas Bray to see the needs of the Church in the New World,

and led him to found societies to meet those needs:

Make the Church in this land diligent at all times

to propagate the Gospel among those who have not received it,

and to promote the spread of Christian knowledge;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns

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

Isaiah 52:7-10

Psalm 102:15-22

Philippians 2:1-5

Luke 10:1-9

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 225


Feast of Charles Inglis (August 12)   3 comments


Above:  St. Paul’s Church, Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1910

Image Source = Halifax Public Libraries



Anglican Bishop of Nova Scotia

The feast day of Charles Inglis, the first bishop of The Church of England in the colonies and the first bishop in what became the Anglican Church of Canada, in The Church of Ireland is August 16.  In the Anglican Church of Canada his commemoration falls on August 12, the anniversary of his consecration as a bishop in 1787.  (That is his Canadian feast day in The Book of Common Prayer of 1962, yet his feast is absent from The Book of Alternative Services of 1985.  Both books have official status in Canada.)

The Church of England, for various reasons, never stationed a bishop in North America until 1787, when Inglis became the first Bishop of Nova Scotia, with jurisdiction over churches in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, Ontario, and Bermuda.  Four years earlier, Samuel Seabury (1729-1796), a priest in Connecticut, had sailed to England  to seek ordination to the episcopacy.  He, being an American, could not swear loyalty to the British crown, so The Church of England refused to consecrate him.  In 1784 bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church consecrated Seabury.  He became the first bishop in The Episcopal Church (organized in 1789) and the first Bishop of Connecticut (in 1785).  Seabury wore a mitre Charles Inglis had designed.

The Reverend Archibald Inglis (died in 1745) was the Rector of Glen and Kilcarr, in Ireland.  He had three sons, the eldest of which was Richard Inglis (born circa 1720), who succeeded him immediately.  The youngest son was Charles Inglis, born in 1734.  The death of Archibald when Charles was 11 years old prevented our saint from attending a university.  Nevertheless, Charles did read deeply in the Greek and Latin classics and learn some Hebrew.  From 1754 to 1758 our saint taught in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  Then he returned to England to become a priest.

Inglis was a priest in North American colonies from 1759 to 1783.  For six years he served in Delaware.  His parish was 33 miles long and 10-13 miles wide, containing four congregations, with the main one at Dover, when he started.  By the time Inglis left he had added a fifth congregation.  1764 was an eventful year for our saint.  Early in the year he married Mary Vining (born in 1733).  By the end of the year he had buried her and their twin daughters, all of whom died at childbirth.

Next Inglis served at Trinity Church, New York, New York, from 1765 to 1783, first as an assistant priest (1765-1776), then as the senior assistant priest (1776-1777), then as the rector (1777-1783).  During his time at Trinity Church our saint and his friend, Thomas Bradbury Chandler (1726-1790), worked together to advocate for the establishment of the episcopate in British North America.  Inglis was a staunch Loyalist and Royalist in revolutionary New York.  In 1776 he received a written request from George Washington, who was planning to attend church on a forthcoming Sunday, to omit the prayers for King George III and the royal family from the Litany in The Book of Common Prayer (1662).  Inglis ignored the note and read the Litany in full, with Washington in attendance.  Later that year our saint wrote and published a rebuttal to Thomas Paine’s Common Sense (1776).  New York Sons of Liberty burned copies of our saint’s text.  The following year, upon the death of Samuel Auchmuty, Rector of Trinity Church, Inglis became the rector of the parish.  Our saint had been de facto rector for a time in 1776-1777, when the ailing Auchmuty had taken time off.

Inglis married his second wife, Mary Crooke, in 1773.  The couple had four children:

  1. Charles Inglis (Jr.) (1774-1782), buried at Trinity Church, New York;
  2. Margaret Inglis (1775-1841), who, in 1799, married Sir Brenton Halliburton (1775-1860), who became the Chief Justice of Nova Scotia;
  3. Anne Inglis (1776-1827), who, in 1793, married George Pidgeon (1760-1818), a missionary priest in the Diocese of Nova Scotia; and
  4. John Inglis (1777-1850), who became a priest, his father’s assistant, and the third Bishop of Nova Scotia.

Inglis, who received two degrees from Oxford University (honorary Master of Arts, 1770; Doctor of Divinity, 1778), lost his wife, property, and parish in 1783.  Mary died; our saint buried her at Trinity Church.  Then, with the British Empire recognizing the fact that the United States (plural in those days) were not British via the Treaty of Paris of 1783, politics changed greatly in the former colonies.  American revolutionary governments seized the property of many Loyalists, including Inglis.  Furthermore, many Loyalists emigrated from former American colonies for various destinations in the British Empire.  Among those destinations were the maritime colonies of British North America.  Late in 1783 Inglis resigned from Trinity Church.  Then he and his children departed New York City for mother England.

Inglis lived in England for just a few years.  During that time he renewed his friendships with Samuel Seabury and Thomas Bradbury Chandler, for all three men were in London at the same time.  Seabury and Chandler, also Loyalists, eventually returned to the United States, for they made their peace with the revolution and found communities in which their politics were not insurmountable obstacles.  And, as I wrote at the beginning of this post, Inglis designed Seabury’s mitre.  Our saint also encouraged the Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge (SPCK) to translate The Book of Common Prayer (1662) into the Mohawk language.  In 1786, after Chandler, citing health problems, declined the offer to become the first Bishop of Nova Scotia, Inglis accepted the position.  The consecration occurred at Lambeth Palace on August 12, 1787.

Bishop Inglis presided over the Diocese of Nova Scotia, a vast territory spanning Ontario in west to the maritime colonies and Newfoundland and Labrador in the west to Bermuda even more to the west.  At the beginning of his episcopate the work was indeed daunting, for there was just one proper church building, that of St. Paul’s, Halifax.  Many colonists had little or no interest in organized religion.  Others, however, were Roman Catholics, Calvinists, and revivalists.  Inglis was critical of all of them.  Of dissenting Protestants he wrote:

Their wild notions are imbibed, which militate against both Church and State.  The minds of the people are hereby perverted against our excellent Church….For my part I shudder at the probable consequences of such a state of things, if continued.  I see in their embryo the same state which produced the subversion of Church and State in the time of Charles I.

Of revivalists he wrote:

Instantaneous conversion accompanied by strong bodily agitation, divine and immediate inspiration and even prophecy, with the impeccability of those who are once converted are among their favorite doctrines and pretensions.

Our saint, a man of the Anglican establishment, was equally critical of pre-Vatican II Roman Catholicism, labeling it an “intolerant sect.”  (To be fair, pre-Vatican II Roman Catholicism was also quite critical of Protestantism and Anglicanism.)

Inglis built up his see.  Although he expanded the Litany slightly to include civil officials in colonies, he insisted that priests otherwise follow The Book of Common Prayer (1662) to the letter.  He also oversaw the construction of more than 23 church buildings and visited congregations faithfully, confirming many people yet not converting the majority of the population to Anglicanism.  In 1789 our saint founded King’s College, Windsor, as a seminary.  Despite all his hard work, Inglis proved unable to fill all vacancies in missions.  That fact disturbed him.  In 1796 the bishop moved from Halifax, citing issues of climate and weather, and relocated to Clermont, a farm and orchard near Windsor.  And, in 1809, our saint joined His Majesty’s Council, ranking immediately after the Chief Justice.

Inglis worked closely with his youngest child, John Inglis (1777-1850).  The father ordained the son deacon in 1801 and priest the following year.  For 14 years John served at Aylesford, near Windsor.  During many of those years he served as his father’s assistant.  In 1807, at John’s urging, King’s College, Windsor, remaining a seminary, began to admit non-Anglicans, although subscription to the 39 Articles of Religion remained a requirement for earning a degree.

Inglis suffered a stroke in the summer of 1811.  He asked the Archbishop of Canterbury and other church leaders to appoint and consecrate John as the Bishop Coadjutor.  Our saint assumed that he would die soon; he survived until February 24, 1816, aged about 82 years, instead.  In 1812, however, eccelesiastical officialdom decided not to make John a bishop yet.  The stated reasons were the son’s inexperience and allegations of nepotism.  Neither did the church send another bishop until 1816.  The tenure of Robert Stanser, the second Bishop of Nova Scotia, was not a glorious age of church growth, for he spent 1817-1824 in England for health reasons before vacating the post.  Finally, in 1825, John Inglis, the Rector of St. Paul’s, Halifax, from 1816, became the third Bishop of Nova Scotia.  He served in that capacity for a quarter of a century.

Our saint’s published works (mostly sermons) included the following, apart from those to which I have provided links in this post already:

  1. An Essay on Infant Baptism:  In Which the Right of Infants to the Sacrament of Baptism, is Proved from Scripture, Vindicated from the Usual Objections, and Confirmed by the Practice of the First Four Centuries (1768);
  2. A Sermon on II Corinth. v. 6:  Occasioned by the Death of John Ogilvie, D.D., Assistant Minister of Trinity Church, New-York (1774);
  3. A Sermon Preached Before His Excellency of the Lieutenant Governor, His Majesty’s Council, and the House of Assembly, of the Province of Nova-Scotia:  in St. Paul’s Church at Halifax, on Sunday, November 25, 1787 (1787);
  4. A Charge Delivered to the Clergy of the Diocese of Nova Scotia, at the Primary Visitation Holden in the Town of Halifax, in the Month of June 1788 (1788);
  5. A Charge Delivered to the Clergy of the Province of Quebec, at the Primary Visitation:  Holden in the City of Quebec, in the Month of August 1789 (1789);
  6. A Charge Delivered to the Clergy of Nova-Scotia, at the Triennial Visitation Holden in the Town of Halifax, in the Month of June 1791 (1791);
  7. Steadfastness in Religion and Loyalty Recommended, in a Sermon Preached Before the Legislature of His Majesty’s Province of Nova-Scotia; in the Parish Church of St. Paul at Halifax, on Sunday, April 7, 1793 (1793);
  8. A Sermon Preached in the Parish Church of St. Paul at Halifax, on Friday, April 25, 1794:  Being the Day Appointed by Proclamation for a General Fast and Humiliation in His Majesty’s Province of Nova-Scotia (1794); and
  9. A Charge Delivered to the Clergy of the Diocese of Nova-Scotia at the Triennial Visitation:  Holden in the Months of June and August, 1803 (1803).

Useful sources of information about the bishop include the following:

  1. A Missionary Apostle:  A Sermon Preached in Westminster Abbey, Friday, August 12, 1887, on the Occasion of the Centenary of the Consecration of Charles Inglis, D.D., First Bishop of Nova Scotia (1887), by William Stephens Perry;
  2. A History of the Parish of Trinity Church in the City of New York, Part I:  To the Close of the Rectorship of Dr. Inglis, A.D. 1783 (1898), edited by Morgan Dix; and
  3. Leaders of the Canadian Church (1918), edited by William Bestal Heeney.

Charles Inglis did not hold political differences against those who opposed British rule.  Neither do I, an American, hold his Royalism against him.  He was an ecclesiastical pioneer, a proverbial giant upon whose shoulders others stand.  As the Bishop of Nova Scotia he sought the best interests of his diocese and the Kingdom of God.  Our saint was indeed a man people should continue to honor.








O God, our heavenly Father, who raised up your faithful servant Charles Inglis

to be a bishop and pastor in your Church and feed the flock:

Give abundantly to all pastors the gifts of your Holy Spirit,

that they may minister in your household as true servants of Christ

and stewards of your divine mysteries; through Jesus Christ our Lord,

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

Acts 20:17-35

Psalm 84 or 84:7-11

Ephesians 3:14-21

Matthew 24:42-47

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 719


Feast of Thomas Bradbury Chandler, John Henry Hobart, and William Hobart Hare (May 17)   6 comments

Episcopal Flag

Above:  The Flag of The Episcopal Church

Image Source = Zscout370



Anglican Priest

His feast transferred from August 17

father-in-law of


Episcopal Bishop of New York

His feast transferred from September 12

grandfather of


Apostle to the Sioux and Episcopal Missionary Bishop of Niobrara then South Dakota



With this post I add to my Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days three holy men from The Episcopal Church’s calendar of saints.  The Episcopal Church has, for logical reasons, assigned each man to a different date.  I, for my logical reasons also, have moved Chandler and Hobart to Hare’s feast day, May 17.  This is, after all my weblog, and the Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Says and Holy Days is my project.  I have concluded that the stories of these three men’s lives, told in one post, constitute a compelling account of active Christian faith across generational lines.  Also, combining what would have otherwise been three posts into one enables a readier to notice connections more easily.



The intergenerational story begins with Thomas Bradbury Chandler.  He was one of ten children of William J. Chandler (1698-1754) and Jemima Bradbury Chandler (circa 1703-1779) of Woodstock, Massachusetts.  Our saint grew up on the family farm and attended Yale College, from which he graduated in 1745.  He became the catechist and lay reader of St. John’s Church, Elizabethtown, New Jersey, in 1747.  The congregation had no priest at the time, and the consensus at St. John’s was that Chandler should fill that vacancy.  In 1751 our saint traveled to England, where Thomas Sherlock, the Bishop of London, ordained him to the priesthood and designated him the Rector of St. John’s Church, Elizabethtown.

Chandler spent most of the rest of his life as the Rector of St. John’s Church, Elizabethtown, and became beloved there.  He also traveled in the Northeast, functioning as a missionary.  Our saint, a stickler for doing things decently and in order, refused to permit the Anglican-Methodist revivalist George Whitefield (1714-1770), who visited Elizabethtown in 1763 and 1764, to fill the pulpit.

Chandler, whom Oxford University honored with a D.D. degree in 1766, took up a controversial cause his mentor, Samuel Johnson (1696-1772), Anglican priest, former Congregationalist minister, and first President of King’s College (now Columbia University), New York, New York, favored.  The Anglican congregations in America were in the jurisdiction of the Bishop of London.  There was no bishop in North America, and Johnson and Chandler thought there should be at least one.  This was a controversial position.  On the American side of the Atlantic Ocean many Congregationalists and Presbyterians, fearing that an Anglican bishop in North America would lead to the establishment of The Church of England in the Middle Atlantic colonies, opposed such an episcopal appointment vehemently.  Chandler published his case in An Appeal to the Public in Behalf of the Church of England in America (1767) and in The Appeal Defended, or, the Proposed American Episcopate Vindicated:  In Answer to the Objections and Misrepresentations of Dr. Chauncy and Others (1769).  (Dr. Charles Chauncy had published his rebuttal to Chandler’s Appeal (1767) in 1768.)

Our saint was, as were at least one-third of the subjects in the rebellious thirteen colonies, loyal to the British Empire during the American Revolutionary period.  Chandler was quite vocal in his political opinions, for he wrote and published at least two pamphlets:

  1. A Friendly Address to All Reasonable Americans on the Subject of Our Political Confusions (1774), and
  2. What Think Ye of Congress Now?  Or an Enquiry How Far the Americans are Bound to Abide by and Execute the Decisions of the Late Congress (1775).

Chandler had to leave Elizabethtown and America in 1775, for he was receiving threats from the Sons of Liberty.  He spent the next ten years in England.

The vestry of St. John’s Church, Elizabethtown, invited Chandler to return in 1785.  He accepted the offer.  By the time our saint arrived his health did not permit him to conduct regular services, but the vestry insisted that he be the official rector and reside in the rectory anyway.  In 1786 Chandler received word that he was the first choice of the Archbishop of Canterbury to become the first Church of England bishop in North America, headquartered in Nova Scotia.  Our saint, who had not sought the position, declined it for health reasons.  The post went to Charles Inglis (1734-1816), Rector of Trinity Church, New York, New York, from 1777 to 1783 instead.

[Aside:  The first Anglican bishop in North America was Samuel Seabury (1729-1796), whom bishops of The Church of England refused to consecrate because he, as an American (albeit a Royal Army chaplain during the Revolutionary War) could not swear allegiance to the crown.  Bishops of the Scottish Episcopal Church consecrated him at Aberdeen on November 14, 1784, however, and he became the first Bishop of Connecticut on August 3, 1785.]

Chandler died at Elizabethtown on June 17, 1790.  He was 64 years old, and Then Episcopal Church was less than one year old, having completed the process of separating from The Church of England in 1789.

Chandler had written The Life of Samuel Johnson, D.D., the First President of King’s College in New York yet not published it during his lifetime.  The volume became available in print in 1805.

Chandler’s legacy continued via his family.  His wife was Jane Emott Chandler (circa 1732-1801).  Their youngest daughter, Mary Goodwin Chandler (1774-1847), married a young clergyman named John Henry Hobart (1775-1830, who became the Bishop of New York.


Chart and Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor



John Henry Hobart was a great missionary bishop and a man of strong opinions.  He funded educational institutions, started congregations and left a legacy which even many who argued with him bitterly had to respect.

Hobart was a native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  His parents were Enoch Hobart (1726-1776) and Hannah Pratt Hobart (1732-?).  Our saint studied at the Episcopal Academy, Philadelphia, before matriculating at The University of Pennsylvania.  He remained there for two years before transferring to the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), graduating with his A.B. in 1793.  He worked in a counting house in Philadelphia for a few worlds, but commerce was not his vocation.

Hobart, realizing this fact, turned toward theology.  In 1797 and 1798, while working as a tutor at the College of New Jersey, our saint pursued theological studies under the direction of William White (1747-1836).  White was the Rector of St. Peter’s Church and Christ Church, Philadelphia (1779-1836), the Bishop of Pennsylvania (1787-1836), Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church (1789, 1795-1836), and the Chaplain of the United States Senate (1790-1800).  White ordained Hobart to the diaconate on June 3, 1798, and to the priesthood in 1800.  Our saint served the yoked congregations of Trinity Church, Oxford, Pennsylvania, and All Saints Church, Perkionmen, Pennsylvania, in 1798 and 1799.  He served briefly at Christ Church, New Brunswick, New Jersey, in 1799 and 1800.  On May 6, 1800, Hobart married Mary Goodwin Chandler (1774-1847), youngest daughter of Thomas Bradbury Chandler (1726-1790).  At the end of 1800 Hobart became the Assistant Rector of Trinity Church, New York, New York.  In 1811 he became both the Rector of Trinity Church and the second bishop coadjutor in the Diocese of New York.  He served as rector and bishop until his death, in 1830.

The first Bishop of New York was Samuel Provoost (1742-1815), who served in the diocese from 1787 to 1815 and as the Chaplain of the United States Senate (1789-1790) and the Presiding Bishop of the denomination (1792-1795).  Benjamin Moore (1748-1816) had become the first bishop coadjutor in the Diocese of New York in 1801.  When Provoost died Moore succeeded him and became the second Bishop of New York.  Moore died in February 1816, so Hobart automatically became the third Bishop of New York.  This made official was had been unofficial reality for several years, for both Provoost and Moore had not been well, so Hobart had been administering the diocese.

Hobart was an effective bishop.  Between 1816 and 1820 he increased the number of clergy in the diocese by a factor of two and the number of missionaries by a factor of four.  By the end of his tenure (and life) our saint had started missionary work among the Oneida Indians and planted a church in every major town in the state previously lacking one.  In 1817 Hobart helped to found the General Theological Seminary, New York, New York.  He served as its first dean and taught pastoral theology.  Our saint expanded education in the western part of the state, selecting the site of Geneva College (opened in 1822), Geneva, New York.  (It became Hobart College then Hobart and William Smith Colleges.)  Hobart also visited churches in Connecticut and New Jersey during times of vacancies in the episcopates of those dioceses.

This hard work damaged our saint’s health.  He took a sabbatical in 1823-1825 to recover while traveling in Europe.

Hobart was also a controversialist.  The bishop was a pre-Oxford Movement High Churchman.  The Oxford Movement, which started in England in the 1830s (after Hobart’s death), had a strong liturgical emphasis.  Hobart’s High Churchmanship pertained to questions of baptism and Apostolic Succession.  There were competing theologies of baptism and the episcopate.  Our saint argued strongly for his interpretations and cautioned against ecumenical cooperation with denominations with different understandings.  These matters, he insisted, were crucial.

One might recognize Apostolic Succession as one of four standards in the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral (1886 and 1888).  The other three standards for Christian unity there are the Old and New Testaments, the Nicene Creed, and the sacraments of baptism and the Holy Eucharist.

Hobart died at Auburn, New York, on September 12, 1830, two days before his fifty-fifth birthday.  Among the bishops who met a Chicago, Illinois, in 1886 to discuss the Quadrilateral was his grandson, William Hobart Hare (1838-1909), the Missionary Bishop of South Dakota (1883-1909), and a son of Elizabeth Catherine Hobart Hare (1810-1883).

Hobart’s immediate successor was Benjamin Tredwell Onderdonk (1791-1861).

Hobart’s published writings included the following:

  1. A Companion for the Altar, or, Week’s Preparation for the Holy Communion (First Edition, 1804; Fifth Edition, 1819)
  2. Feasts and Festivals (1804);
  3. An Apology for Apostolic Order (1807);
  4. Letters to the Vestry of Trinity Church (1811);
  5. The Christian’s Manual of Faith and Devotion (1814);
  6. The State of the Departed (1816);
  7. The Churchman (1819);
  8. Sermons on the Principal Events and Truths of Redemption (1824);
  9. The High Churchman Vindicated (1826); and
  10. The Christian Bishop Approving Himself Unto God (1827), preached at the consecration of Henry Ustick Onderdonk (1789-1858) in the Diocese of Pennsylvania.

Posthumous volumes about Hobart, most of them containing writings by him, included the following:

  1. A Great Man in Israel (1830), by John Frederick Schroeder;
  2. Memorial of Bishop Hobart:  A Collection of Sermons on the Death of the Right Reverend John Henry Hobart, D.D., with a Memoir of His Life and Writings (1831), by John Frederick Schroeder;
  3. The Posthumous Works of the Late Right Reverend John Henry Hobart, with a Memoir of His Life by the Rev. William Berrian, D.D. (1832), Volumes I, II, and III;
  4. The Early Years of the Late Bishop Hobart (1834), by John McVickar;
  5. The Professional Years of John Henry Hobart:  Being a Sequel to His “Early Years” (1836), by John McVickar;
  6. The Office of Devotion (Second Edition, 1846);
  7. Instruction and Encouragement for Lent (1859); and
  8. The Correspondence of John Henry Hobart (1911), Volumes I, II, III, IV, V, and VI.




Chart and Scan by Kenneth Randolph Taylor

William Hobart Hare shared the Gospel of Jesus Christ with people in the Dakotas, Japan, and China.

Our saint was a son of the church.  His family tree included, among others, Thomas Bradbury Chandler (1726-1790) and John Henry Hobart (1775-1830).  Hare’s parents were George Emlen Hare, Sr. (1808-1892), and Elizabeth Catherine Hare (1810-1883), daughter of Bishop Hobart.  George Emlen Hare, Sr., was a prominent Episcopal priest and Biblical scholar in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  He taught at and served as the dean of Philadelphia Divinity School (extant 1857-1974).  At the time of our saint’s birth in Princeton, New Jersey, in 1838, George Emlen Hare, Sr., was the Rector of Trinity Church in that city.  He wrote Christ to Return:  A Practical Exposition of the Prophecy Recorded in the 24th and 25th Chapters of the Gospel According to St. Matthew (1840) and Visions and Narratives of the Old Testament (1889).

Our saint became an Episcopal priest.  He attended yet did not graduate from The University of Pennsylvania.  Then he studied at the new Philadelphia Divinity School.  Hare became a deacon in 1859 and a priest in 1862.  At first he was assistant at St. Luke’s Church, Philadelphia, where Mark Antony DeWolfe Howe (1808-1895), later the first Bishop of Central Pennsylvania from 1871 to 1895, was the rector.  In 1861 Hare transferred to St. Paul’s Church, Chestnut Hill, and on October 30, married Howe’s daughter, Mary Amory (May 4, 1837-January 7, 1866).  The couple’s brief marriage produced one child, Hobart Amory Hare (September 22, 1862-June 15, 1931), a physician and author of medical texts.  The Hares spent parts of 1863 and 1864 in Michigan and Minnesota for Mary’s health.  Then, in 1864 Hare became the Vicar of the Church of the Ascension, Philadelphia,  He remained there until 1870, becoming rector in 1867.

Hare entered the missions field in 1870, when he became the Secretary and General Agent of the Foreign Committee of the Board of Missions.  He nearly left that job the following year, when the House of Bishops elected him to become the Missionary Bishop of Cape Palmas (in western Africa), but the House of Deputies concluded that he was invaluable in his then current position.  On All Saints’ Day 1872, however, the bishops elected him the Missionary Bishop of Niobrara, with a territory spanning the Dakotas.  The consecration occurred on January 9, 1873.

From 1873 to 1883 Hare administered the affairs of the Missionary District of Niobrara, ministering to Sioux and pioneers alike.  He divided the district into ten departments, each led by a priest.  This manner of organizing his see proved to be quite effective.  He wrote annual letters, published as pamphlets, to raise funds for the schools.  One such letter was Christian Schools Among the Indians:  Bishop Hare’s Circular (1874).

The Missionary District of Niobrara divided into the Missionary Districts of North and South Dakota in 1883.  Hare became the Missionary Bishop of South Dakota, a post he held for the rest of his life.  He oversaw a network of parochial schools and established his headquarters at Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  He lived in a wing of All Saints School (for Sioux and pioneer girls), near Calvary Episcopal Cathedral.  Our saint wrote of the schools one year in How the Church Schools in South Dakota Help Indian Boys and Girls.  ( provides 1850 as the date, but that is incorrect, for he would have been 11 or 12 years old at the time, and the document lists his title as Missionary Bishop of South Dakota.)

Hare’s job was demanding.  Nevertheless, our saint doubled as a missionary bishop in Japan in 1891 and in Japan and China in parts of 1891 and 1892, with a return to South Dakota separating those two tenures.  Furthermore, Hare’s health became an issue.  Thus he traveled in Europe from October 1895 to April 1896.  The work of the church in South Dakota continued, as another pamphlet, Indian Missions of the Protestant Episcopal Church in South Dakota:  Letter from Bishop Hare (1899), attested.  Hare eventually requested a bishop to assist him.  Answering that request affirmatively entailed altering the denominational canons.  In 1905 Frederick Foote Johnson (1866-1943) became the Assistant Bishop of South Dakota.

Hare visited sisters in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Atlantic City, New Jersey, from time to time.  He died at Atlantic City during one such visit on October 23, 1909.  He was 71 years old.

Johnson succeeded our saint as Missionary Bishop of South Dakota then left to become the Bishop Coadjutor of Missouri, serving under Daniel Sylvester Tuttle (1837-1923), Bishop of Missouri from 1886 to 1923 and Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church from 1903 to 1923.  Foote served as the Bishop of Missouri from 1923 to 1933, when he retired. is host to biographies of our saint and other published works by him:

  1. Reminiscences (1888);
  2. Addresses Relating to the Growth of the Church in the Missionary Jurisdiction of South Dakota:  From June, A.D. 1860 to June, A.D. 1898 (1898);
  3. Bishop Hare’s Indian Boarding Schools in South Dakota (1910);
  4. The Life and Labors of Bishop Hare:  Apostle to the Sioux (1914), by Mark Antony DeWolfe Howe (1864-1960), his late wife’s half-brother; and
  5. Zitkano Duzahan, Swift Bird:  The Indians’ Bishop; a Life of the Rt. Rev. William Hobart Hare (1915), by Mary B. Peabody.



I ponder the contributions of these three men to the glory of God, to The Episcopal Church, to the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, and to the lives of the people they touched in positive ways then stand in awe of them.  These were men of God whose influences (both direct and indirect) was great.  I join others in standing on the shoulders of such giants.








Heavenly Father, Shepherd of your people, we thank you for your servants

Thomas Bradbury Chandler, John Henry Hobart, and William Hobart Hare,

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

and we pray that, following their examples and the teaching of their holy lives,

we may by your grace grow into the stature of the fullness

of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ;

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Ezekiel 34:11-16

Psalm 23

1 Peter 5:1-4

John 21:15-17

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 718