August 17, 2018

“Auden, The Psalms, and Me” - A Talk by J.Chester Johnson at Southwark Cathedral, London

On Tuesday, October 23rd, 2018, at 7:00pm, J. Chester Johnson will give a talk at Southwark Cathedral in London, England on Auden, The Psalms, and Me. The following is the written promotion of the event and a link to register.

In the nearly 40 years since the advent of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer, the retranslation of the Psalter created for that book has become a standard, used not only by Episcopalians, but adopted by others into their own worship service books and liturgies.

Now J. Chester Johnson, one of the two surviving members of the Committee that produced the retranslation, has agreed for the first time to calls to tell the story of this Psalter and the little-known but vital part played in it by acclaimed poet W. H. Auden, whom Johnson replaced on the committee when Auden decided to return to live in England.

Despite Auden’s ambivalence about changes in the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer, he wrote associated articles and poems, authored many letters—some of special liturgical and spiritual significance— and attended Psalter drafting committee meetings. Auden, The Psalms, and Me not only illuminates this untold part of the Episcopal Psalter story but also describes the key elements that drove the creation of this special retranslation.

J. Chester Johnson was the poet on the drafting committee for the retranslation of the Psalms, the version now contained in the 1979 Episcopal Book of Common Prayer. He served in this role from 1971 until the project ended with the final publication of a newly retranslated Psalter. For this service to the Episcopal Church, Johnson received a special citation in December 1979 from the Church's Standing Liturgical Commission. He also authored the Litany of Offense and Apology in poetry and prose for the national Day of Repentance (October 4, 2008) when, with the Presiding Bishop officiating, the Episcopal Church formally apologized for its role in transatlantic slavery and related evils.

To register for the event CLICK HERE.

Southwark Cathedral, London, UK


J. Chester Johnson Presents on Auden, the Psalms, and Me in London and in Oxford

Auden, The Psalms, and Me - A Talk by J.Chester Johnson

A Review of Auden, the Psalms, and Me – Posted On The Florida Diocese of the Episcopal Church Website

The Magazine, Talisman, Recently Reviewed Auden, The Psalms, And Me.

Review of Presentation by J. Chester Johnson on His Two Recent Books, Now And Then: Selected Longer Poems and Auden, the Psalms, and Me, held at The Culture Center, NYC

American Book Review Features Poetry of J. Chester Johnson

J. Chester Johnson Makes Three Presentations As McMichael Lecturer – Fayetteville, Arkansas

J. Chester Johnson Is Guest for National Radio Interviews on “Ed Tyll Show” - 1/11/18

J. Chester Johnson Presenting His Two Newest Books at Poet's House

Video for Auden, the Psalms, and Me authored by J. Chester Johnson

J. Chester Johnson Interviewed on the Televised ‘In The Arena’ Program

Save the Dates!
Upcoming Events Related To My Two Books Published In 2017

Distinguished Alumnus J. Chester Johnson spoke on April 26th & 27th, 2017 at the University of Arkansas

Reflection and Reconciliation: The Elaine Race Massacre – Delta Cultural Center, 141 Cherry Street, Helena, Arkansas on Sunday, April 23rd, 2017



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