Mission Center: The Episcopal Church: Community

‹‹ Return
Smith, Benjamin Bosworth  

(June 13, 1794-May 31, 1884). Bishop of Kentucky and ninth Presiding Bishop. He was born in Bristol, Rhode Island. Smith graduated from Brown University in 1816. He was ordained deacon on Apr. 23, 1817, and priest on June 24, 1818. He began his ordained ministry at St. Michael's Church, Marblehead, Massachusetts, and then moved to Virginia to be rector of St. George's Church, Accomack County. About two years later Smith became the rector of Zion Church, Charlestown, Virginia (now West Virginia). In 1823 he became the rector of St. Stephen's Church, Middlebury, Vermont. In 1828 he took charge of Grace Church Mission, Philadelphia, and on Oct. 8, 1830, he became the rector of Christ Church, Lexington, Kentucky. On Oct. 31, 1832, Smith was consecrated the first Bishop of Kentucky and served in that position until his death. Under his leadership, the Episcopal Theological Seminary in Kentucky was established in 1834. It was the fourth seminary to be established in the Episcopal Church. A controversy arose in the diocese about Smith's ability to function as bishop, rector, and head of the seminary at the same time, and over Smith's management of funds collected for the seminary. In Sept. 1837 a formal trial was held and Smith was cleared of the charges against him. He resigned as rector of Christ Church on Oct. 22, 1838. From 1839 until 1842 Smith was superintendent of public instruction for the State of Kentucky. He served as Presiding Bishop from Jan. 9, 1868 to May 31, 1884. Smith died in New York City. 

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.
Click here to order...


Resources »



ECCC Annual Conference
1/22/2012  - 1/27/2012    - Camp McDowell, AL

NAECED Annual Meeting and Tapestries Conference
2/2/2012  - 2/4/2012    - New Orleans, LA

Why Serve 2012
6/6/2012  - 6/10/2012    - Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, VA

More Events

Back to Top