A Man Called Mark

The Biography of Bishop Mark Dyer

Tom Linthicum

Jul/2018, 224 Pages, Paperback, 5.5 x 8.5

ISBN-13: 9781640650978



Well-known and well-loved bishop of the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion

This official biography tells the compelling story of the Rt. Rev. Mark Dyer: Irish Catholic boy from New Hampshire, U.S. Navy vet, Roman Catholic then Episcopal priest, bishop, and seminary professor—and one of the most influential, beloved leaders of the American Episcopal Church and the worldwide Anglican Communion. Following a dispute with ecclesiastical authorities, Dyer left the Roman Church for the Anglican Church of Canada. Later received as priest in the Episcopal Church, his gifts as teacher, preacher, and pastor were recognized with election as Bishop of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. There, he established a new model of leadership, delegating administrative duties to concentrate on spiritual direction, pastoral care, and creating mission projects at every church in his diocese. Also renowned as a story-teller, many of his favorite stories appear here, told in his own voice. Called by leadership of the Anglican Communion to a variety of roles, for more than 20 years Bishop Dyer was on the front lines of the most contentious issues facing the church throughout the world, including ordination of women and gay people. He also was co-chair of the ecumenical dialogue between the Anglican and Eastern Orthodox Churches, which produced a landmark agreement after 17 years of meetings.

Tom Linthicum, is a freelance writer who spent nearly 35 years as an award-winning journalist, primarily for The Baltimore Sun. He currently teaches journalism at the University of Maryland. A lifelong Episcopalian, he knew Mark Dyer for 10 years and was selected by the bishop to be his biographer. He and his wife, Dorothy, also a writer, have two grown children and three granddaughters and live in Alexandria, Virginia.

"Bishop Mark Dyer was a gentle, affirming, caring human being with an inbuilt moral compass pointing in the direction of Ubuntu. His appreciation of our inter-dependence, that we are made for each other––God-carriers all, none superior, none inferior and none more or less entitled––inevitably placed him on the righteous side of church discussions on contentious issues; the side of the disregarded, marginalized, ostracized, and oppressed."––Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu

"If you ever had the pleasure of speaking with Mark Dyer, Tom Linthicum's book will allow you to relive it. Here is the same clarity and generosity. Here complex issues are made easier to understand. And here is the same low-keyed sparkle that made Bishop Dyer simultaneously charismatic and unassuming. In both tone and content, A Man Called Mark is an experience of the man."––Jim Naughton, Canticle Communications

"One of the best ways to read history is to read biography. And this book is the perfect example. Through the remarkable life of Bishop Mark Dyer, the reader learns about the history of the Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion, twentieth century Ecumenism, and the challenges of theological education. Beautifully written, one is invited into a remarkable world of faith, hope, and love."––The Very Rev. Ian Markham, President and Dean of Virginia Theological Seminary

"Mark Dyer was very much a gift to the church at home and abroad. His theological reflection was deeply rooted in his faith, and bore witness to the words of Evagrius, 'A theologian is one who prays.' As a bishop, Mark was a pastor after the manner of the abbot in the Rule of St. Benedict—able to listen to different voices with care, compassion and discernment. A Man Called Mark allows those of us who knew him to know him, perhaps, more fully, and for others to meet this wise and seasoned man of the Spirit for the first time."––The Most Rev. Frank T. Griswold, XXV Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church

"For someone who only knew Mark at the end of his life, this book opened my eyes to how influential he was in the broader church. Tom Linthicum masterfully captures the captivating and Spirit-filled relationships and stories of Bishop Mark Dyer's holy life."––The Rev. Christopher Miller, rector of Immanuel Episcopal Church in Mechanicsville, Maryland

"A beautiful and inspiring story of beloved Bishop Mark Dyer, a true witness in the 'cloud of witnesses.' This book brilliantly illuminates how his life lived in deep faith continues to radiate through those who knew him, who were taught and mentored by him, and especially those who shared a part of his journey and had the privilege to pray with him. A must read; the theological values and principles he developed and taught are vital to the continued transformation of the church today."––The Very Rev. Robyn Szoke-Coolidge, Dean, Stevenson School for Ministry, Diocese of Central Pennsylvania

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