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The Liturgical Calendar: The Church Remembers

Today the church remembers William Porcher DuBose, Priest, 1918.

A century ago in a corner of Southern Appalachia there lived and died a man who has been acclaimed "the only important creative theologian that the Episcopal Church in the United States has produced." William DuBose lived a life which, had anyone less than he lived it, would have been called tragic. Born and reared in a prominent South Carolina family, he graduated from the Citadel and from the University of Virginia and served with some distinction as a Confederate line officer. However, in the Civil War and its aftermath he lost his wealth, his health, his wife, and finally his little son. In the meantime he had received Holy Orders and accepted a call as chaplain to a small Episcopal university at Sewanee, Tennessee. There he founded a School of Theology which still survives, and there he did his greatest work.

His writing, The Soteriology of the New Testament, The Gospel in the Gospels, High Priesthood and Sacrifice, and other books, although applauded in England, were ill-received in his native land. While Oxford dons were calling him "the wisest writer on both sides of the Atlantic," W. P. DuBose was being threatened with a heresy trial at home. He died without wealth or fame, but he had sung "the Lord's song in a strange land" and, as a later biographer was to observe, he was a "live voice in an age of many echoes."

Fill us with your eternal hope, O God, even amidst the adversity of our lives. Amen.

Read the Wikipedia article here.

Almighty God, you gave to your servant William Porcher DuBose special gifts of grace to understand the Scriptures and to teach the truth as it is 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, now and for ever. Amen.

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