VTS Board Member Donates Rare Book to Bishop Payne Library


Media Contact: Curtis Prather
Tel: 703-461-1782
Email: cprather@vts.edu

Alexandria, VA – Virginia Seminary is proud to announce the generous donation by VTS Board Member, Mr. James Lowe, Jr., of a rare publication to the Seminary’s Bishop Payne Library.

The volume is three books bound together into one, each published in London in 1628: a King James Bible with intricate woodcut Genealogies, the Book of Common Prayer, and the Whole Booke of Psalmes Collected into English Meter by Thomas Sternhold and John Hopkins.  “In private houses, for their godly solace and comfort, laying apart all ungodly songs and ballads, which tend only to the nourishing of vice, and corrupting of youth,” is what the subtitle on the Psalter tells the reader that Psalms should be sung.

The remarkable book was a gift to Lowe from his four grown children to honor their father’s service as chairman of the Washington Theological Consortium Board.  

“We celebrate the dedicated service of a Board member to the seminary, his family’s appreciation for his gifts, the growth of the Bishop Payne Library, and the ecumenical family of faith that is embodied in our consortium,” said Dr. Mitzi Budde, Head Library for the Bishop Payne Library. “From across the ages the faith of the church set into print in 1628 continues to inspire students, faculty and library patrons for posterity. Such is the communion of saints.”

The volume is now part of the Library’s “rare book collection,” which contains over 1,570 works, including editions of the Bible, biblical commentaries, theological works, Anglicana, Episcopal Church history, and editions of the Book of Common Prayer. The collection goes as far back as the 15th century.

Founded in 1823, Virginia Theological Seminary is the largest of the 11 accredited seminaries of the Episcopal Church. The school prepares men and women for service in the Church worldwide, both as ordained and lay ministers, and offers a number of professional degree programs and diplomas. Currently, the Seminary represents more than 42 different dioceses and 5 different countries, for service in the Church.