Obituaries, as printed in the August 9 issue of The Living Church.
The Rev. Dr. Richard Warren Corney, who taught Old Testament at General Seminary for more than 40 years, died on June 17, aged 87, surrounded by his loving family.
A native of Poughkeepsie, New York, He graduated from Lehigh University and from General Seminary in 1957. He was ordained that year by the bishop of New York and was canonically resident in the diocese for 63 years. He earned his doctorate in Old Testament from Union Theological Seminary, and the prophets and hermeneutics were the focus of his scholarly work.
He was a fellow and tutor at General Seminary from the time of his ordination and became an instructor in Old Testament and Hebrew in 1960, becoming a full professor in 1971. He was admired for his beautiful chanting voice, and enlivened campus life, acting in plays, and composing music. Loved by his students, he preached at countless ordinations and ordination anniversaries. He continued to teach courses as an adjunct after his retirement, and read the alumni necrology for many years at the requiem during General’s alumni weekend.
He assisted at several Manhattan parishes alongside his work at General, especially at St. Mary the Virgin and St. John’s in the Village, and at St. Hilda’s, the convent for the Community of the Holy Spirit. In retirement he was part of the clergy team for the Adirondack Mission, conducting services at two of the rural mission churches each Sunday.
“Dick Corney was a giant in the history of General Seminary, so loved and admired by the many lives he touched.” said Dean Kurt H. Dunkle. “With a remarkable mind, a faithful and welcoming heart, and a sharp sense of humor, he was the quintessential servant priest, professor, and friend.”
A student from his early years at General, the Rev. Dr. Paul Clayton, said that Corney “had the most marvelous gift for friendship I have ever known. His faith was always calm, humble, and informed by his scholarship and great joy.”
Corney is survived by his wife of 62 years, Susan, by three children, three grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
The Rev. Dr. Edwin E. Harvey, a biblical scholar with a gift for mentoring, died July 12, aged 90.
A Kansan, Harvey graduated from Drew University and Virginia Theological Seminary. He was ordained in the Diocese of Florida and was chaplain at Jacksonville University for two years. He received a doctorate in Old Testament theology from the University of Heidelberg in 1965.
He served as the first warden of St. John the Baptist Theological College in Suva, Fiji, an ecumenical seminary now known as Pacific Theological College that trained ministers to serve in churches of six different denominations across nine South Pacific countries. He welcomed the beginnings of the charismatic movement and helped to spread its message within Anglican and Roman Catholics in the region.
He returned to the United States after nine years of missionary service, and assisted at parishes in Jacksonville, Austin, and San Antonio. He was rector of All Saints Church in Corpus Christi, Texas from 1981-1990, and was a visiting professor of biblical studies at the Seminary of the Southwest.
In retirement, he and his wife Mary Anne moved to her hometown of Cochran, Georgia, where he served Trinity Church, the local parish, for nine years, and trained a team of ministers to continue in the work after him, while serving as a trusted guide to other local clergy.
Harvey was preceded in death by his wife and is survived by three children.
The Rev. Theodore L. “Ted” Lewis, who helped build up the Anglican Church in Congo while working as a foreign service officer, died July 11, aged 93.
A native of Long Island, Father Lewis served in the army during World War II, and then graduated from Haverford College and Harvard University. As a foreign service officer, he was first posted to French Indochina, where he became a lay reader in the Anglican congregation in Saigon and began to discern a call to ordained ministry. He was later posted to Karachi, Pakistan, where he assisted the local bishop in visitations to rural villages.
He prepared for the ministry at Virginia Theological Seminary, and following his ordination in 1964, served as curate of St. Columba’s in Washington D.C. He returned to Saigon in 1965, working to coordinate food importation for South Vietnam as the Vietnam War raged. Father Lewis was then assigned to Kinshasa, Zaire, where he started a small Anglican congregation, and helped to encourage the creation of the first Anglican diocese there, in Boga. He remained an advocate for the Congolese church for the rest of his life, coordinating sponsorship for advanced education for clergy and serving in more recent years as the church’s American commissar. This was followed by additional postings in South Korea and Laos.
Returning to Washington, he assisted in several parishes, and was theologian-in-residence at All Saints’, Chevy Chase, in recent years. He focused on scholarly work in retirement, traveling regularly to Duke and Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, where he made many friends. Father Lewis was the author of two books, To Restore the Church and Faith and the Foreign Service, as well as many articles on Anglican Communion matters for several publications, including The Living Church. He is survived by a son.
The Very Rev. Dr. Edwin Norris, also known as Protodeacon Gregory, a former monk and Anglo-Catholic priest, who served later as a deacon of the Orthodox Church in America, died June 25, aged 90.
Born in Ohio, and raised in a nominally religious family, his faith awakened while serving in the army during the Korean War. Following his graduation from the University of Denver, he entered St. Gregory’s Monastery in Three Rivers, Michigan. He took Gregory as his name in religion, as a token of his respect for the great English Benedictine liturgist, Dom Gregory Dix. He was sent by the abbot to study for the priesthood at Nashotah House and ordained in 1963. A firm supporter of the civil rights movement, he marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Selma in 1965.
After 13 years of monastic life, Father Norris was released from his vows, and became rector of the Church of the Ascension, an Anglo-Catholic shrine parish in Chicago. He led the parish for 24 years, an era filled with significant changes in the local community and the Episcopal Church. As one of the senior leaders of Anglo-Catholic traditionalists, Father Norris was instrumental in founding the American Catholic Clerical Union and, after the ordination of women to the priesthood in 1976, the Evangelical and Catholic Mission. One portion of the latter group later merged with Forward in Faith, while another portion formed the first 20th-century continuing Anglican churches.
He retired from the Church of the Ascension in 1994 and was received into the Orthodox Church. He served as a deacon for 24 years in Texas and had a wide-ranging ministry of spiritual direction. He was given the honorary title of protodeacon shortly before his death. He was also a gifted violinist and played in retirement with the Irving New Philharmonic Orchestra and the Mesquite Symphony Orchestra. He is survived by three brothers, many godchildren, and several close friends.