New commemorations on the Episcopal Church calendar for the months of January and February are the topic of Dec. 12 bulletin inserts from Episcopal News Service. The Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music is conducting a year-long open forum on "Holy Women, Holy Men," the first complete revision of "Lesser Feasts and Fasts" in 40 years, and invites participation from all church members through its website or by email at [email protected].
The Saints of God: Holy Women, Holy Men
Fourth in a series
In July 2010 the Episcopal Church's Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music launched a year-long open forum on Holy Women, Holy Men, the first complete revision of Lesser Feasts and Fasts in 40 years. "More than 100 new commemorations were approved at the 2009 General Convention," SCLM notes on its blog, liturgyandmusic.wordpress.com.
"We invite you to join us in this prayer each day, whether by worshiping with a congregation or by including the commemoration in your personal devotion," SCLM continues. "Then tell us about your experience."
The online survey to assist in gathering feedback became available on July 1 and will close on June 30, 2011. After compiling the data from the survey, SCLM will prepare a comprehensive report for the 77th General Convention, meeting in 2012 in Indianapolis.
New commemorations for January and February
(Year listed in each case is the date of death)
2 Vedanayagam Samuel Azariah, bishop of Dornakal (Madras, India), 1945. The Anglican church's first Indian bishop was an advocate of ecumenism and church unity.
3 William Passavant, prophetic witness, 1894. A Pennsylvania Lutheran pastor, he believed in practical application of the gospel, and founded many charitable organizations.
4 Elizabeth Seton, founder of the American Sisters of Charity, 1821. Seton's new community concentrated on education, social ministry and religious formation.
16 Richard Meux Benson, religious, 1915, and Charles Gore, bishop of Worcester, of Birmingham, and of Oxford, 1932. Both are remembered for their role in the revival of Anglican monasticism in the19th century.
26 Silas, companion of St. Paul. Silas, along with Timothy and Titus (who share this feast day), accompanied the apostle Paul in his missionary work.
27 Lydia, Dorcas and Phoebe, witnesses to the faith. Lydia hosted St. Paul in Philippi and was his first European convert. Dorcas, a faithful disciple in Joppa, was raised from the dead by St. Peter. Phoebe, of Cenchreae, is the first person in Paul's list of beloved associates in Romans 16.
29 Andrei Rublev, monk and iconographer, 1430. Generally acknowledged as Russia's greatest writer of icons.
31 Juan Bosco, priest, 1888. An Italian educator, Bosco founded the Salesian Order, which stressed education, especially for the poor and working people.
31 Samuel Shoemaker, priest and evangelist, 1963. Shoemaker, who advocated the empowerment of the laity, founded Faith at Work, for personal witness in the workplace, and is considered the spiritual mentor of Alcoholics Anonymous.
3 The Dorchester Chaplains: Lieutenants George Fox, Alexander D. Goode, Clark V. Poling and John P. Washington, 1943. These four U.S. Army chaplains (Methodist, Jewish, Dutch Reformed and Catholic, respectively) saved the lives of hundreds of sailors on the torpedoed transport ship Dorchester by stemming panic and supplying life jackets. The four remained on the ship and died when it sank.
5 Roger Williams, 1683, and Anne Hutchinson, 1643, prophetic witnesses. Both were early champions of religious liberty in what is now the United States.
11 Frances Jane (Fanny) Van Alstyne Crosby, hymn writer, 1915. Blinded by illness in infancy, Crosby was the most prolific writer of hymn texts and gospel songs in the American evangelical tradition of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
12 Charles Freer Andrews, priest and "Friend of the Poor" in India, 1940. Andrews dedicated his life to relief and justice for the oppressed and poor in India and around the world. His Indian colleagues gave him the name Deenabandhu, "friend of the poor."
16 Charles Todd Quintard, bishop of Tennessee, 1898. After the Civil War, Quintard was instrumental in bringing together the divided Episcopal Church, and in rebuilding the University of the South, which was destroyed during the conflict.
20 Frederick Douglass, prophetic witness, 1895. An outstanding orator â and a former slave â Douglass advocated for the abolition of slavery in the United States, and for the integration and mutual respect of all races.
21 John Henry Newman, priest and theologian, 1890. A founder of the Oxford Movement, Newman converted from the Anglican to the Roman Catholic church in 1845.
22 Eric Liddell, missionary to China, 1945. Born in China to missionary parents, Liddell competed in the 1924 Olympics â a story told in the 1981 film Chariots of Fire. He returned to China as a missionary, and died in a Japanese internment camp.
25 John Roberts, priest, 1949. Roberts, born in Wales, became a missionary among the Shoshone and Arapahoe Native Americans in Wyoming.
26 Emily Malbone Morgan, prophetic witness, 1937. Morgan founded the Society of the Companions of the Holy Cross, an order of Episcopal laywomen.
28 Anna Julia Haywood Cooper, 1964, and Elizabeth Evelyn Wright, 1904, educators. Cooper was the fourth African-American woman to receive a doctorate, and was president of Freylinghuysen University. Wright founded the Denmark (South Carolina) Industrial Institute, now the Episcopal Church-affiliated Voorhees College.
29 John Cassian, abbot at Marseilles, 433. Cassian established the Benedictine monasticism that became the basic spirituality of the Western Christian church.