On November 5, 2015, during the Alumni Memorial Eucharist in the Chapel of the Good Shepherd, the Very Rev. H. Scott Kirby, Class of 1963, accepted the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award from The General Theological Seminary. In his acceptance speech, he paid tribute to all those who had passed through our gates before him. He was introduced by the Rev. Canon Carlson Gerdau (Class of 1959, D.D. 2012) who had nominated him for the award citing his long ministry of service and devotion to the Church emphasizing community outreach and partnership. After many years serving parishes in Western New York, New Jersey, and Kansas, Kirby was called as Dean of Christ Church Cathedral in the Diocese of Eau Claire, where he led a resurgence of congregational, spiritual, and financial growth. He retired as Dean Emeritus in 2005, but has continued his life-long interest in the Church in small communities, serving as part-time Vicar of Grace Church in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. Kirby also continues to serve as Chaplain for the Upper Mississippi River Region for the Seamen’s Church Institute and Captain Chaplain in the Civil Air Patrol.
Kirby’s distinguished ministry to the National Church includes the Board of Directors of Episcopal Relief and Development, and culminated with his unanimous election to be Vice President of the House of Deputies for the 2012 General Convention. His wide-ranging diocesan experience includes Budget and Finance, Ecumenical Relations, Commission on Ministry, Christian Education, and Standing Committee.
The Memorial Eucharist is held each year to honor and pray for those graduates of The General Theological Seminary who have died in the past year. The Rev. Dr. Richard Corney, Professor Emeritus of Old Testament, read the names aloud during the service. The Rev. Dr. R. Scott White, Class of 1996 and President of the Alumni Executive Committee was Celebrant at the service, and Kirby was the preacher. Click here to download the text of his sermon and click here to see more photos of the event.
Recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award are graduates of the Seminary in either priestly or lay orders. Candidates may be put forth on the basis of lifetime achievement or to honor significant accomplishment that brought credit both to the Church and to General. Nominees may be well known, or credited with inspiring yet unheralded ministries.
The Call for Nominations for the 2016 Award is now open. For complete information and eligibility requirements click here or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominations must be received by January 22, 2016.