The collect for today, the commemoration of John Keble (1792-1866), Priest, Tractarian, Poet (source):
Father of the eternal Word,
in whose encompassing love
all things in peace and order move:
grant that, as thy servant John Keble
adored thee in all creation,
so we may have a humble heart of love
for the mysteries of thy Church
and know thy love to be new every morning,
in Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord,
who liveth and reigneth with thee,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
John Keble’s Assize Sermon entitled “National Apostasy“, delivered at Oxford on 14 July 1833, is regarded as the beginning of the renewal movement known as the Oxford Movement or Tractarian Movement. In that sermon, preached at the University Church of St Mary the Virgin, Rev. Keble condemned the growth of liberalism in the Church of England and took the nation to task for turning away from God and ignoring the prophetic calling of the church. The sermon caused a sensation across Britain.
Between 1833 and 1841, Keble, John Henry Newman, Edward Bouverie Pusey, and others issued a series of 90 pamphlets called Tracts For The Times (hence Tractarian Movement), in which they presented their views on ecclesiology and theology. Tractarianism emphasised the importance of the ministry and the sacraments as God-given ordinances and ultimately developed into Anglo-Catholicism, which has been highly influential in the Anglican Communion as well as other Christian traditions.
Keble College, Oxford, was founded in his memory in 1870. The College was designed by William Butterfield, a leading exponent of Victorian Gothic who had been raised in a Nonconformist family but later became a convinced High-Church Anglican. He and other architects influenced by the Oxford Movement looked to medieval cathedrals for inspiration and designed churches full of colour as a celebration of God’s creation. The walls of Keble College Chapel are lined with brilliant mosaics showing scenes from the Old Testament and the life of Christ, and patristic and medieval saints. Some see Keble College and Chapel as the high point of Butterfield’s architectural achievements.