Frederick Denison Maurice


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Biographical sketch of Frederick Denison Maurice, 19th century founder of the Christian Socialists and an Episcopal saint


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Frederick Denison Maurice:

Frederick Denison Maurice Priest, Professor, Theologian, Author Founder of Christian Socialists August 29, 1805-April 1, 1872

Frederick Denison Maurice:

Frederick Denison Maurice August 29, 1805-April 1, 1872 Lent, 2011 2

Frederick Denison Maurice:

Frederick Denison Maurice Born in Normanton , Suffolk to a controversial progressive Unitarian minister Studied civil law at Trinity College, Cambridge, starting in 1823 Refused the law degree in 1827 because he could not subscribe to the 39 Articles of Religion as was required by the university Later converted to the Anglican Church in the wake of several personal problems Lent, 2011 3

Pastoral Career:

Pastoral Career Returned to school at Exeter College, Oxford to study towards ordination Graduated in 1831 with a classics degree Ordained as Anglican priest in 1834 Chaplain of Guy’s Hospital Rector of two parishes, including St. Peter’s, Vere St. Lent, 2011 4

Teaching Career:

Teaching Career Professor of E nglish literature and history at King’s College, London In 1846 became chair of theology Dismissed from these in 1853 for involvement in the Christian Socialist movement Resumed teaching at Queen’s College, London, which he co-founded Founded the Working Men’s College Professor of moral theology at Cambridge Lent, 2011 5

19th c Christian Socialist movement:

19 th c Christian Socialist movement Formed in 1848 by Maurice, Charles Kingsley (novelist), and J. M. Ludlow (attorney) following plethora of crushed revolutions Exported writings precipitated development of US Protestant Social Gospel movement Collapsed in 1854 b/c of poor organization US Social Gospel movement persisted until disillusionment by WWI Lent, 2011 6

Major Bibliography of F. D. Maurice:

Major Bibliography of F. D. Maurice The Kingdom of Christ (1838) Investigated the causes and remedies of schisms A much respected work of ecumenical literature to this very day Theological Essays (1853) The “unorthodox” (read socialist) perspectives cost him his professorships at King’s College King’s College now has an F. D. Maurice Professorship in Moral and Social Theology ;-) Lent, 2011 7

Bibliography, cont’d:

Bibliography, cont’d Eustace Conway, or the Brother and Sister A novel The Unity of the New Testament The Epistle to the Hebrews The Religions of the World Moral and Metaphysical Philosophy The Church a Family Lent, 2011 8

Bibliography, cont’d:

Bibliography, cont’d The Old Testament The Prophets and Kings of the Old Testament Lectures on Ecclesiastical History The Doctrine of Sacrifice The Patriarchs and Lawgivers of the Old Testament Lent, 2011 9

Bibliography, cont’d:

Bibliography, cont’d The Epistles of St. John The Commandments as Instruments of National Reformation On the Gospel of St. Luke The Conscience: Lectures on Casuistry The Lord’s Prayer: A Manual Many originated as sermons or lectures Lent, 2011 10


Quotations “We have been dosing our people with religion when what they want is not this but the living God.” “Competition is put forth as the law of the universe. That is a lie. The time has come for us to declare that it is a lie, by word and deed.” Lent, 2011 11

Quotations, cont’d:

Quotations, cont’d “Christian Socialism will commit us at once to the conflict we must engage in sooner or later with the unsocial Christians and the unchristian Socialists.” “I do not think we are to praise the liturgy but to use it. When we do not want it for our life, we may begin to talk of it as a beautiful composition.” Lent, 2011 12

Personal life:

Personal life First wife was Anna Barton, sister-in-law of close friend John Sterling Second wife was half-sister of another friend One son, Sir John Frederick Maurice One grandson, Frederick Barton Maurice Also principal of the Working Men’s College in the post WWI era Lent, 2011 13

Collect of F. D. Maurice:

Collect of F. D . Maurice Almighty God, you restored our human nature to heavenly glory through the perfect obedience of our Savior Jesus Christ: Keep alive in your Church, we pray, a passion for justice and truth; that, like your servant Frederick Denison Maurice, we may work and pray for the triumph of the kingdom of your Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. Lent, 2011 14


Sources Lesser Feasts and Fasts , 2000 Bruce L. Shelley, Church History in Plain Language , 2 nd ed. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1995. Wikipedia Lent, 2011 15

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