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Percy Dearmer’s time as a visiting lecturer at Berkeley Divinity School in Connecticut, USA, at the invitation of Dean William Palmer Ladd, from July 1918 to February 1919, marked a turning point in his life and career. As author of The Parson’s Handbook (1899) and Vicar of St Mary’s Primrose Hill (1901–1915), he was immersed in the Church of England. From 1919, when he left Berkeley Divinity School, with no offer of a clergy post until 1931, he worked on the margins of the church as a university lecturer, writer, and co-director of an experimental worshipping community. The experiences he had between 1915 and 1919 shaped this ‘second’ Dearmer: loss in the war; a second wife and new family; work with the YMCA in France and India; travels in the Anglican Communion and, not least, time at Berkeley where he consolidated these experiences, becoming attuned to those who wanted a spiritual life but were disillusioned by institutional religion, as expressed in The Art of Worship (1919).
The thought of Percy Dearmer was related to that of Augustus Pugin and Daniel Rock, Roman Catholics seeking to revive English medieval forms, and to his Anglican near-contemporaries Conrad Noel and William Palmer Ladd. In England, Noel was more ideologically committed than Dearmer and his imagined medieval society and the English Use were given applied expression at Thaxted. In the USA, William Palmer Ladd was a congenial colleague to Dearmer but his liturgical ideals were of the 1930s, and not an outcome of the nineteenth-century English ritual controversies. Dearmer, Ladd and Noel were all grounded in what has been called Sacramental Socialism, which saw a unity between the Eucharist, the corporate church, and its mission as part of the Kingdom of God.
An extended homily or meditation that focuses on some aspects of the life and work of Percy Dearmer. Dearmer, in his pastoral attentiveness, irenic prophetic action, and practical Christianity, sought to continue a distinctive English Anglican tradition of faithfully fulfilling his vocation through a richly incarnational ministry.
While Percy Dearmer’s influence on Anglican liturgy through The Parson’s Handbook and The English Hymnal are well known, his lectures on The Art of Public Worship, given in 1919 when he was visiting professor at Berkeley Divinity School in Connecticut, USA, introduce a different phase of his liturgical thought. A new emphasis on modernizing language, brevity of form, and alternative forms of worship would later have expression in England via his association with the Guildhouse in London, and in the hymnal Songs of Praise. Comparing The Art of Public Worship with the later Prayer Book Interleaves by Berkeley Divinity School’s Dean William Palmer Ladd leads to the suggestion that this ‘second Dearmer’ also had an afterlife in the American liturgical movement.
This study considers John Habgood’s understanding of the relation of science and religion, particularly his core notion that an ‘undivided mind’ engages different aspects of reality using disciplines of study appropriate to their specific subject matter. Particular attention is paid to the emergence of those views during his time as a research scientist at Cambridge, their location within the Anglican tradition, their expression in Habgood’s 1992 debate with Richard Dawkins, and their impact on his public ministry as Bishop of Durham and Archbishop of York, especially in public debates concerning bioethics.
John Macquarrie’s contribution to Anglican systematic theology has been long acknowledged and his impact is still being felt both within and outside Anglicanism. His existentialist theology, with its roots in German philosophy, as well as Christian mysticism, can at times seem quite distant from ‘traditional’ Anglican theology, but when his way of engaging in theological reflection is examined closely, his epistemology does not appear to be as remote from the ‘traditional’ Anglican hermeneutic of Scripture, tradition reason as it might seem at first sight. This article will argue that Macquarrie’s epistemology is rooted in the Anglican three-fold hermeneutic inherited from Richard Hooker, albeit in a way that is adapted for the modern age. In some respects, Macquarrie’s hermeneutic is a development of Hooker’s ‘three-legged stool’, but a ‘stool’ that has been heavily renovated in light of, and in response to, the existentialist crisis seen in continental philosophy from Søren Kierkegaard onwards. Macquarrie offers a resolution to the tension between individual and corporate identities, and his epistemology may offer Anglican thought a means of negotiating some controversial contemporary theological issues.
This paper aims to expound Rowan Williams’s reading of Augustine and Hegel on the question of selfhood. Through an adoption of the tropes of ‘tragedy’ and ‘comedy’, the argument will be made that Williams’s interpretation of Augustine’s portrayal of the soul as wandering and homeless does not imply an unremitting vision of loss and fragmentation. For him, the distentio animi is always placed within a more expansive arc of desire in which the self is continually rediscovered in what is ‘other’. This means that my self is most primarily found in the unhanding of restrictive identities that hinder our spiritual growth towards union with God, and also in the discovery of my goods as being bound up with the goods of others. This reading is further expanded by relating Williams’s ‘Augustine’ to Gillian Rose’s ‘Hegel’, thereby showing the way that his reception of this has assisted him in explicating a greater ‘comic’ undercurrent in his retrieval of selfhood.