Presiding Bishop receives honorary degree from Oxford University

Posted Jun 26, 2014
Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori is awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Oxford University on June 25.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori is awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Oxford University on June 25.

[Adapted from an Oxford University press release] Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori was among five prominent figures from the worlds of science, the arts and religion to receive honorary degrees from the University of Oxford on June 25.

Jefferts Schori, who received the Degree of Doctor of Divinity, said: “[Oxford] is a place where the life of the mind is honored, where creative thought and connection-making is the primary task of the human being: critical thinking, creative and artistic and beautiful thinking is a way of searching for truth.”

The degrees were awarded at Encaenia, the University’s annual honorary degree ceremony. Lord Christopher Patten, chancellor of the University of Oxford, handed the honorands their degrees in the Sheldonian Theatre before lunch was held in The Codrington Library at All Souls College.

Sir Anish Kapoor, one of Britain’s foremost sculptors, and Robert Silvers, founding editor of the New York Review of Books, received Degrees of Doctor of Letters.

Professor Jean-Marie Lehn, a recipient of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1987 for his pioneering studies on the chemical basis of molecular recognition, received the Degree of Doctor of Science.

Sir Harrison Birtwistle, a leading British composer, received the Degree of Doctor of Music.

Kapoor said: ‘It’s a wonderful thing. I’m thrilled. Oxford is one of the great universities, and I’m thrilled to be part of it. My daughter’s at university here, so that makes it a doubly wonderful thing. [She couldn’t attend the ceremony because] she has exams, alas!

‘‘[Oxford] is a wonder. It somehow remains properly alive, because it has such a big student body. Education in great spaces – what more could one ask for?’

Lehn said: ‘When you’re an academic, university is the place in which knowledge and education is being gained and transferred. Among those places, there are some very special ones. Oxford is among those very special ones. So it’s a great pleasure and an honor to be here today.’



Comments (5)

  1. Erna Lund says:

    This Oxford honor bestowed on our Presiding Bishop is quite a surprise to many of us Episcopalians–that may be irrelevant–Presiding Bishop Schori has played it safe and in many venues that is the politiclly smart thing to do, regardless of the critical demands of our world, on the church, on moral justice for all peoples. Thus it must be said we in the Episcopal Church, which has been progressive in the past, is now looking forward to a new Primate/Presiding Bishop to be the Exemplar to act with strong spriritual moral leaders and be the Strong Voice for all the voiceless and vulnerable in our world today.

  2. Michael Patterson says:

    With respect to Ms. Lund, nonsense. Bishop Jefferts Schori has lent the Presiding Episcopate dignity, courage, wisdom and grace during difficult times for our church and world. She makes me very grateful.

  3. Margo Fletcher says:

    Privilege saluting privilege! What is new here!
    I suppose the honorary theology degree for feeding the hungry, housing the homeless
    challenging the ‘mighty’ 1% on their economic thrones for justice for the rest of us
    might exist in Podunks Community College but constraints of time could not allow
    to be included on a PB’s agenda.

  4. John B Hills says:

    What did Oxford University officially say of the Presiding Bishop and to the Presiding Bishop when the degree was awarded to her in the Sheldonian Theatre that day? That is important.

    I continue to be impressed by what she is like as a person, by her broad and deep concerns, by the depth and breadth of her mind, by what of Jesus I see and hear in her, and by her spirited service to the Church as bishop and chief pastor.

    1. Richard Harris says:

      Then I respectfully say Mr. Hutt, you are not looking very closely.

Comments are closed.