Anglo-Catholic of the Week: The Reverend Canon Colin Stephenson

The Rev. Canon Colin Stephenson was a prominent Anglo-Papalist and the second Guardian of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham (1958-68). He attended St. Bartholomew’s, Brighton as a boy and was Vicar of St. Mary Magdalene’s, Oxford as a man. Though he took defiant pride in being among the spikiest of his generation of Rome-aping British clergy, he also had a clear-eyed view of his place in history. He expanded the Shrine’s appeal to Anglicans of more moderate churchmanship, and satirized the Catholic Movement (and himself) in Walsingham Way (1970) and Merrily on High (1972). He has been accused of trivializing the Movement, but he also put to print some of the greatest zingers in ecclesiastical history! I read both of his books after realizing some time ago that I had begun to take myself too seriously. Some quotes from Canon Stevenson’s memoir are interesting. I will post them here because of the backhanded wisdom he offers us. For his insights, he is Anglo-Catholic of the week.

Note: I apologize for the lack of a picture. I couldn’t find a portrait of Canon Stephenson that was definitely in the public domain.

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