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The Liturgical Calendar: The Church Remembers

Today the church remembers James Otis Sargent Huntington, Priest and Monk, 1935.

He was the son of a bishop and a Harvard graduate. None of his contemporaries could have guessed that James Huntington would spend most of his life championing the poor and founding a religious community. As a young priest he first tried his vocation among the very poor of the Lower East Side of New York City. Eyebrows were raised among "proper" Episcopalians when he taught choirboys to sing "Our Lord He was a Carpenter" and many regarded it as downright scandalous when Huntington joined the Knights of Labor.

In 1884 he founded a religious order for men called the Order of the Holy Cross. He wrote the order's Rule and served as its superior for many years. Attired in the habit of the order, he led a demonstration in support of coal miners who were on strike in Streator, Illinois. But his mind turned constantly to learning and prayer. He founded St. Andrew's School for Mountain Boys in Tennessee and Kent School in Connecticut.

In 1904 he secured a permanent motherhouse at West Park, New York. He established a school for wayward girls in Connecticut and a mission in Liberia. His last years were devoted mainly to prayer, contemplation, and to the pastoral care of the order. He died at age eighty-four.

Let our prayers lead us not to retreat from the world, but to embrace all those in need, that we may share your love with all the peoples of the earth, Lord Christ. Amen.

Read the Wikipedia article here.

O loving God, by your grace your servant James Huntington gathered a community dedicated to love and discipline and devotion to the holy Cross of our Savior Jesus Christ: Send your blessing upon all who proclaim Christ crucified, and move the hearts of many to look upon him and be saved; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

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