IN MEMORIAM: The Rev. Canon Leonel Mitchell (Class of 1955)

May 30, 2012

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

The Memorial Day weekend activities may have prevented many from hearing the sad news of the death on May 23 of the Rev. Canon Leonel Mitchell (Class of 1955) "whose words echo at every Baptism held in an Episcopal Church" (Episcopal News Service).

Canon Mitchell drafted the Thanksgiving over the Water prayer for the 1979 Book of Common Prayer and was influential in many other ways in that revision of the prayer book.  He was a noted liturgical scholar who served as Curate at Christ Church, Riverdale (1954-56), then as the Rector of Christ Church, Warwick (1959-64), and finally as Rector of St. Luke's Church in Beacon (1964-71)  prior to teaching at the General Theological Seminary, the University of Notre Dame and Seabury-Western Theological Seminary.  He was the Canon Theologian at the Cathedral of St. James in South Bend, Indiana, at the time of his death.

Canon Mitchell who taught that prayer shapes belief, once wrote that, "worship, religious activity in all of its aspects - what we do and how we do it, as well as what we say and how we say it - underlies religious belief."  We give thanks for the effective example Canon Mitchell has given to the Church.  Please remember him and his family in your prayers and at the Altar.

Faithfully yours,


The Rt. Rev. Mark S. Sisk

Chairman, Board of Trustees

Class of 1967