An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

A - Z Glossary

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A collection of offices for specific purposes and occasions "which occur in the work of Bishops and other Clergy." It was first published in 1940. It includes forms for the dedication of various buildings and forms for the blessing of articles of church furniture. It was contrasted with The Kingdom... Read More »

The Bishop Boone Memorial School, a boarding school, opened in Wuchang in Sept., 1871, with three students. It was named after Bishop William Jones Boone, the first Episcopal Bishop of China. It was raised to the rank of college in 1905 and graduated its first class in 1906. It was incorporated as... Read More »

(July 1, 1811-July 17, 1874). First foreign Missionary Bishop of the Episcopal Church. He was born in Walterborough, South Carolina, and graduated from the College of South Carolina in 1829. He was admitted to the bar in 1833 but decided to enter the ordained ministry. After studying for a while at... Read More »

(Apr. 17, 1846-Oct. 5, 1891). Missionary bishop. He was born in Shanghai, China. Boone graduated from Princeton in 1865. He then studied at the Philadelphia Divinity School and the Virginia Theological Seminary. He was ordained deacon on July 26, 1868, and priest on Oct. 28, 1870. Boone was... Read More »


See Book of Occasional Services, The (BOS).

(May 27, 1911-Dec. 29, 1976). Priest and church historian. He was born in Richmond, Virginia. Bosher received his B.A. from the University of Virginia in 1932, his S.T.B. from General Theological Seminary in 1936, and his Ph.D. from Cambridge University in 1949. He was ordained deacon on Apr. 14,... Read More »

(Mar. 12, 1738-Apr. 27, 1804). Tory clergyman. He was born in Blencogo, parish of Bromfield, Cumberland County, England. He came to Virginia in 1759 to serve as tutor for two boys in Port Royal. Boucher felt called to ordained ministry while he was in Virginia, but he had to go to England for... Read More »

(Jan. 7, 1751-July 31, 1817). Priest and educator. He was born in Ireland. Bowden came to the American colonies at an early age. For two years he was a student at the College of New Jersey (Princeton). He graduated from King's College, New York, in 1772. Bowden was ordained deacon on Apr. 25,... Read More »

(Oct. 8, 1882-Apr. 23, 1969). Seminary professor and renowned preacher. Born in Richmond, Virginia, Bowie received his B.A. in 1904 and his M.A. in 1905, both from Harvard. He received his B.D. from Virginia Theological Seminary in 1908. He was ordained deacon on June 19, 1908, and priest on June... Read More »

(May 9, 1906-Feb. 21, 1994). Outstanding Episcopal opponent to segregation in the era of the civil rights movement. She was born in Albemarle County, Virginia. In the late 1940s she became aware of the evils of segregation and racism. In the 1950s she worked to increase public awareness of... Read More »

(Jan. 25, 1863-Mar. 12, 1940). African American civil rights leader, priest, editor, and author. He was born in Warrenton, North Carolina, and grew up in Petersburg, Virginia, where he studied at St. Stephen's Parish and Normal School. He entered the Theological School for Negroes in... Read More »

(Nov. 11, 1862-June 26, 1944). Bishop and educator. Bratton was born near Winnsboro, South Carolina, and his mother was the sister of William Porcher DuBose. He studied at the Sewanee Grammar School. Bratton received his B.A. in 1887 and his B.D. in 1889 from the University of the South. He was... Read More »

Thomas Bray (1656-1730) was deeply interested in the English colonies. While visiting Holland, he met Monsieur Abel Tassin, who was commonly known as Sieur d'Allone. D'Allone provided in his will that the income from a fund that represented a significant portion of his estate would be... Read More »

(1656-Feb. 15, 1730). Commissary to Maryland and Founder of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel and the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. He was born in Marton, Shropshire, England. Bray graduated from All Souls College, Oxford, in 1678, and then was ordained deacon and priest.... Read More »

A metal bowl containing coals for burning incense. It is sometimes used in worship in place of the thurible, which is an incense bowl swinging from hand-held chains.

The mission to Brazil began on Aug. 31, 1889 when James Watson Morris (1859-1954) and Lucien Lee Kinsolving (1862-1929) sailed for Brazil as missionaries. On Oct. 20, 1898, the House of Bishops elected Kinsolving Bishop for the United States of Brazil. The General Convention of 1907 created the... Read More »

See Elements, Eucharistic.

The breaking of the consecrated bread for distribution by the celebrant at the eucharist. The fraction also recalls Christ's body as broken for us and our salvation. The breaking of the bread follows the eucharistic prayer and the Lord's Prayer and is accompanied by a period of silence. A... Read More »

Patrick. An ancient Irish hymn, "I bind unto myself today," which appears as Hymn 370 in The Hymnal 1982. It is a Celtic lorica, or breastplate prayer, which was recited while dressing or arming for physical or spiritual battle. The text invokes the Trinity, angels, apostles, patriarchs, prophets,... Read More »

(June 27, 1818-Mar. 30, 1876). Founder of Nashotah House and Seabury Divinity School. He was born in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, and educated at Flushing Institute, Flushing, New York. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1838. He studied at the General Theological Seminary,... Read More »

(Apr. 9, 1862-Mar. 27, 1929). Bishop and ecumenist. He was born in Newcastle, Ontario. Brent graduated from Trinity College, University of Toronto, in 1884, and then spent two years studying for the ordained ministry. He was ordained deacon on Mar. 21, 1886, and priest on Mar. 6, 1887. Since no... Read More »

A liturgical book used for recitation of the Divine Office (Canonical Hours). It includes psalms, lessons, hymns, prayers, antiphons, and readings from patristic sources and other Christian writers. The breviary provides in a single volume all materials needed for recitation of the Canonical Hours... Read More »

(Oct. 23, 1844-Apr. 21, 1930). Poet and hymn composer. He was born in Walmer on the Island of Thanet, Kent. He was educated at Eton and Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and studied medicine at St. Bartholomew's Hospital, London. He gave up the practice of medicine in 1882 and settled at... Read More »

(Jan. 15, 1841-June 8, 1913). OT scholar and biblical critic. He was born in New York City, and studied at the University of Virginia, 1857-1860; Union Theological Seminary, New York, 1861-1863; and in Berlin, 1866-1869. After serving as pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Roselle, New Jersey,... Read More »

(c. 453-c. 523). Very little is known about Brigid, except that she became a nun and founded the first nunnery in Ireland at the Church of the Oak, now Kildare. She is thus known as the Abbess of Kildare. She is also known as St. Bride, and "the Mary of the Gael." With Patrick and Columba she is a... Read More »

In 1825 the Rev. Drs. Gregory Townsend Bedell, James Milnor, and Stephen Higginson Tyng founded the Episcopal Education Society of Philadelphia. They began a manual labor college for prospective ministers near Wilmington, Delaware. It moved to Bristol, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and reopened as... Read More »

The term appeared in mid-nineteenth century theological discourse to describe an approach to the doctrine and worship of the Church of England which was more tolerant and liberal than the views of the existing low church and high church parties. Thomas Arnold, S. T. Coleridge, F. D. Maurice, A. P.... Read More »

(Dec. 13, 1835-Jan. 23, 1893). Bishop and celebrated preacher. He was born in Boston and received his B.A. from Harvard in 1855. After receiving his B.D. from the Virginia Theological Seminary in 1859, he was ordained deacon on July 1, 1859, and priest on May 27, 1860. Brooks served two pastorates... Read More »

The term has been applied to male Christians since the earliest NT times. The language of family kinship recalls the closeness of the bond that is shared by those who live in Christ. For example, the Gospel of Mark (3:35) records Jesus' statement that "Whoever does the will of God is my... Read More »

(Apr. 26, 1698-Apr. 13, 1723). One of the Yale converts. He was born in New Haven, Connecticut. Brown (sometimes Browne) graduated from Yale College in 1714. He was the rector of the Hopkins Grammar School in New Haven. In 1718 he was appointed tutor in Yale College and remained in that position... Read More »

(Sister Anna Mary) (June 14, 1873-Jan. 2, 1967). Leading African American sister. She was born in Macon, North Carolina. Brown was left an orphan as a small child and brought up by a white Baptist minister. She was confirmed in the Episcopal Church in 1895, and in 1897 she entered the novitiate of... Read More »

(June 23, 1897-Mar. 23, 1964). Church musician and composer. He was born in Roxbury, Vermont. Brown was a graduate of Oberlin College and an associate of the American Guild of Organists. Upon graduation from college he became director of the Music School of Fisk University, Nashville. In 1935 he... Read More »

(June 16, 1910-Feb. 5, 1994). Bishop and civil rights leader. He was born in Garden City, Kansas. Brown received his B.A. in 1933 from St. Mary's University and his B.D. in 1937 from the Virginia Theological Seminary. He was ordained deacon on June 20, 1937, and priest on Dec. 24, 1937. He was... Read More »

(Nov. 6, 1855-Oct. 31, 1937). Deposed bishop. He was born in Wayne County, near Norville, Ohio. Brown attended Seabury Hall, Faribault, Minnesota, and then studied theology at Bexley Hall, Gambier, Ohio. He was ordained deacon on June 17, 1883, and priest on May 22, 1884. Brown served Grace Church... Read More »

(Oct. 19, 1779-Jan. 13, 1865). Seventh Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. He was born in Westport, Massachusetts. Brownell began his education at the College of Rhode Island, but transferred to Union College where he graduated in 1804. From 1805 until 1817, he taught at Union College, and... Read More »

(b. Mar. 11, 1929). Twenty-fourth Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. He was born in Corpus Christi, Texas. Browning received his B.A. in 1952 and his B.D. in 1954 from the University of the South. He was ordained deacon on July 2, 1954, and priest on May 23, 1955. Browning was an assistant... Read More »


Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.