Ohio History Journal

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St. John's Parish, Worthington, and

the Beginnings of the Episcopal

Church in Ohio



There are, I trust, a few among the oldest members of this parish

who still remember the day fifty years ago when the then dean of

Bexley Hall, the Very Reverend Hosea Jones, delivered the sermon

at the centenary of St. John's. Dr. Jones was closely connected with

Worthington; he had been rector of your parish in the 1870's. But

there are many other ties between Worthington and Bexley: if we

go over the list of your former rectors, we find familiar Bexley and

Kenyon names: Norman Badger, Rodolphus Nash, William French.

Dr. Jones's successor in the deanship, Charles Byrer, was ordained

deacon here in this venerable old church in 1900, together with a

Bexley man, Thomas Jenkins, who now is one of the oldest members

of the house of bishops. Bexley Hall considers it a special honor to

have been called upon again after fifty years, and I am grateful for

the privilege of conveying to you the greetings of our divinity school

and of expressing to you our sincerest wishes for the years and ages

to come.

The aim of the series of sermons and lectures which you have

arranged in celebration of your sesquicentennial is, I think, to define

the place where you now stand after one hundred and fifty years of

parish life: to look back into the past, to take stock of achievements

and perhaps also, since we are human, of failures, and to map out

the tasks of the future. It was a wise idea to distribute this assign-

ment among various speakers; and gladly I follow the instruction

implicit in this arrangement--to stick to subjects which I have

studied in detail, and to keep out of other men's fields. Today I


* Richard G. Salomon is professor of history at Kenyon College and professor of

church history in Bexley Hall, its divinity school. His article comes almost unaltered

from an address delivered at the sesquicentennial of St. John's Parish, January 3, 1954.