Readings for the Feast Day of Samuel Johnson, Timothy Cutler, and Thomas Chandler
Today is the feast day of three Anglican clergy—Samuel Johnson, Timothy Cutler and Thomas Chandler—who left their spiritual homes in Congregationalism to embrace the Anglican way and to help establish the Episcopal Church in New England and throughout the United States. Today we are baptizing Heather Harman who is soon leaving her home in Humboldt County and moving to New England; and who is today plunging deeper into the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement.
Today is also the feast day of the Baptisms of Manteo, the first Native American to be baptized by Anglican clergy within North America, and Virginia Dare, the first child born to English settlers in North America and the second person to be baptized by Anglican clergy in North America. And today we are baptizing Heather Harman who is the first person whom I will be baptizing by full immersion and likely the first person ever to be baptized by an Anglican priest here at the Arcata Community Pool.
So it is appropriate that we celebrate these past pioneers of Anglicanism and Christianity on this day (August 17) when we baptize a modern-day pioneer, whose unique baptism invites us to honor God’s diversity in human life and who calls us to become stronger in living out our baptismal vow to respect the dignity of every human being. Amen.