Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fredrick William Faber (1814-1863)

Born  June 26th 1814 the son of an Anglican cler­gy­man,  Faber developed a deep understanding of the love and Grace of God, enblazened with a mystic heart and driven by his love for his fellow man he went on to become a noted Hymn writer, poet, theologian.  Fa­ber grad­u­at­ed from Bal­li­ol Coll­ege. In 1836, He won  the Newdigate Prize for a poem on "The Knights of St John," 

By 1837 he had given up the Calvinistic views of his youth, and had become an enthusiastic follower of Cardinal John Henry Newman;

In 1841, a travelling tutorship took him to the continent; on returning, he published Sights and Thoughts in Foreign Churches and among Foreign Peoples (London, 1842), which he dedication to his poet friend William Wordsworth.

Or­dained an An­gli­can min­is­ter, in 1843, Faber,  be­came Rec­tor of Elton in Huntingtonshire. However, a strong Methodist presence existed in the parish and Dissidents packed his church each Sunday in an attempt to ridicule his Catholic leanings. Few were surprised when in November of 1845, after a long and painful internal struggle, he left Elton and joined the Roman Catholic Church.

He founded a religious community at Cotton Hill, called Wilfridians over which He presided until his death. In spite of his weak health, an almost incredible amount of work was crowded into those final years. He published a number of theological works, and edited the Oratorian Lives of the Saints.

Faber put pen to paper to create some of the most profound and beautiful verse:

"For the heart only dwells truly dwells with it's treasure
And the langour of love capptive hearts can unfetter
And they who love God cannot love Him by measure
For their love is but hunger to love him still better"

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