An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

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Heber, Reginald

(Apr. 21, 1783-Apr. 3, 1826). British bishop and hymn writer. He was born in Malpas, Cheshire, England. He was educated at Brasenose College, Oxford, and a Fellow of All Souls. After his ordination in 1807, Heber served in parishes in England. In 1815 he delivered the noted Bampton Lectures. In 1823 he became Bishop of Calcutta. He was a fervent missionary. Heber is best remembered for his hymns. He envisioned a collection of texts connected with the epistles and gospels for each Sunday and feast day of the church year. Along with his own poems he solicited works from others. The collection, Hymns written and adapted to the Weekly Church Service of the Year (1827), was published by his wife after his death. Heber wrote several hymn texts that are used in The Hymnal 1982, including "Brightest and best of the stars of the morning" (Hymns 117-118), "Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!" (Hymn 362), and "Hosanna to the living Lord!" (Hymn 486). He died in Trichinopoly, India.

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.