C053 Dr. Bowden to Church Calendar

 

Artemisia Bowden nominated for Calendar of the Church Year

If a resolution submitted to General Convention from the Diocese of West Texas is approved, the life and work of Dr. Artemisia Bowden, the founder of St. Philip’s College in San Antonio, will be placed on the Calendar of the Church Year.  

Resolution C053 was approved by diocesan council this past February and sent forward to General Convention. The resolution came from the diocesan Historical Commission in an effort to recognize Dr. Bowden.

The ministry of Dr. Bowden stretches back to 1902 when Bishop Steptoe Johnston brought her from North Carolina to take over the fledgling St. Philip’s School. The school had its roots in a sewing class for Black girls begun in 1897 that had been held in the rectory of St. Philip’s Church. Bowden oversaw the continual expansion of the school, seeking to develop and send forth, “true, God-fearing women, who are not ashamed of the truth and whose characters are spotless.”

By 1927, Bowden had succeeded in guiding the school to junior college status, and in 1942 St. Philip’s Junior College joined with San Antonio Junior College to constitute the San Antonio Union Junior College District, later renamed the Alamo Community College District.

Bowden devoted her entire life to serving God and assisting the Almighty in raising up worthy Christians. She anticipated success, never failure. “A person who has courage must be full of faith,” she said. “A goal is set for the purpose of achieving it.”

The Calendar of the Church Year marks the seasons of the Church year as well as significant holy days, and recognizes the lives of certain people who contributed to the life of the Church in extraordinary ways.

The proposed collect for Dr. Artemisia Bowden’s commemoration day is:

O God, by your Holy Spirit, you give gifts to your people so that they might faithfully serve your Church and the world: We give you praise for the gifts of perseverance, teaching and wisdom made manifest in your servant, Artemisia Bowden, whom you called far from home for the sake of educating the daughters and granddaughters of former slaves in Texas. We thank you for blessing and prospering her life’s work, and pray that, following her example, we may be ever mindful of the call to serve where you send us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Proposed readings are: Wisdom 7:7-14; Psalm 119:97-104; I Corinthians 3:5-1; Matthew 11:25-30

 

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