Monday, 15 December 2008

The Rev. Dr. Peggy Bosmyer Campbell

She was a force to be reckoned with. And one of the most caring forces you would ever know. She was a friend, colleague, mentor, and perhaps her most important role in our lives, the mother of our two godchildren. Peggy was the first woman ordained an Episcopal priest south of the Mason Dixon line in 1978. The number of lives she touched, transformed, mentored, and nurtured is countless, and some even unknown. She and her husband, Dennis, another touchstone in our lives, and the priest that led me through the process toward ordination, helped a few others officially "introduce" me to the Diocese of Olympia at my consecration in September 2007. It was the greatest honor to have them there. Had Peggy and Dennis been given the opportunity, they would have surely been able to tell some stories! Shortly after that Peggy received her diagnosis. Not long after that, my wife and I talked to both of them, and we asked Peggy what she needed from us. She did not miss a beat and said, "Just love my babies."

Peggy died at the age of 60, this past Saturday, December 13th. Ironically, that same day, just hours after she died, our son, Austin was confirmed in the Episcopal Church. A few weeks ago as we checked in with Dennis we had told him about Austin' s big day on the 13th of December and he had assured us that we would be in their prayers. We remarked upon hearing the news, that Peggy had once again taken our request straight to the source, this time the source of all things. My son has vowed, along with the other vows he took on Saturday, to learn as much as he can about Peggy and to always remember her when he remembers this day. While I wish, as much as I could wish anything, that it were not so, since it is, I am thankful my son will have this day, and this great saint of the Episcopal Church, and of our faith, to carry with him on this journey. Her family reports that she was watching "It's a Wonderful Life" at the time of her death. She reminded so many through her life and ministry of that very truth, that it is a wonderful life. She certainly reminded the Rickels of that and for the moment, it is just very difficult to imagine this life without her in it. Your prayers for Dennis, the children, and all who grieve her loss would be a gift to me.


  1. With and for the family and friends of Peggy will we pray. May she rest in peace, and rise in glory.

  2. These prayers you have. The one and only time I met Peggy was at your consecration last year as Bishop and I wished there had been more.


  3. Greg, I am so sorry to hear about Peggy. I met her over 25 years ago at a Youth Ministry training event at Kanuga. I met her through a man from the Diocese of AR who also did youth work and I became quite close with. A year after I met him he was killed in a plane crash and because I had not yet met his friends and family in AR I really had no closure on that relationship. When I heard Peggy was at your consecration I sought her out to reintroduce myself and talk to her about Joey. It was so great to talk to her and strangely I felt a real sense of peace after doing that. I will keep her family, you, Marti and Austin in my prayers

  4. i went to Peggy's church and she truly changed my life. I am fifteen years old and i hope that her memory will live on forevor. After every service she used to say go in pece go in love go to serve others Go forth into the world in peace;
    be of good courage;
    hold fast to
    that which is good;
    render to no-one evil for evil;
    strengthen the faint-hearted;
    support the weak;
    help the afflicted;
    honor all people;
    love and serve the Lord,
    rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit
    and these words live in me forever untill the day that i die and meet her in heven once agin your sevent Yaker St. Margrents youth 2009