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Dedication set for African American Episcopal archive at Virginia Theological Seminary

ENS 021805-1
[Episcopal News Service]  The African American Episcopal Historical Collection will be formally dedicated in a ceremony at Virginia Theological Seminary, in Alexandria, on Thursday, February 24, at 1:30 pm.

The African American Historical Collection solicits, preserves, and makes available for research and public education unique documentary evidence of the African American experience in the Episcopal Church of the United States and its colonial antecedents. These collections consist of written and printed documents, audio and visual recordings, and photographs.

The keynote speaker for the dedication will be Bishop Herbert Thompson, of the Diocese of Southern Ohio, and preaching will be the Rev. Canon Angela Ifill, missioner for the Episcopal Church Center’s Office of Black Ministries.

The Historical Society of the Episcopal Church and the Bishop Payne Library of the Virginia Theological Seminary, in December 2002, agreed to jointly sponsor the Collection.

Virginia Theological Seminary, which is the second oldest and the largest of the Episcopal seminaries in the United States, has had a long standing interest in ministry by and among African Americans. From 1878-1949 the Bishop Payne Divinity School, in Petersburg, Virginia, was the primary institution for the education of African American candidates for the Episcopal ministry. Bishop Payne Divinity School merged with Virginia Theological Seminary in 1953. The seminary’s library was later named in honor and in memory of the former divinity school.

Donations of appropriate archival materials from African American individuals and/or organizations or others working with African Americans in the Episcopal Church are encouraged. All donations are documented by a Deed of Gift transferring full title to the Historical Collection. For further information, on donating material contact Julia Randle or Margaret L. Lewis at 703-461-1850 and 703-461-1732 respectively.

Monetary donations may be sent to Virginia Theological Seminary, 3737 Seminary Road, Alexandria, Virginia 22304, earmarked for the African American Episcopal Historical Collection.

For registration and information call Vivian Burney at 703-461-1714.