Marion Kelleran, 81, was ACC Leader

Episcopal News Service. July 11, 1985 [85157]

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (DPS, July 11) -- Marion Macdonald Kelleran, an internationally-known figure in Anglicanism, died June 27 after a long illness. She was 81.

Well known in the Episcopal Church as an innovative educator and leader in empowering women, she rose to international prominence as a founding member and officer of the Anglican Consultative Council. As Council chairman, she was the only woman among more than 440 men in the formal portrait of 1978 Lambeth Conference participants.

At the time of her election in 1970 as one of three Episcopal Church representatives to the new Anglican Consultative Council, Kelleran was a member of the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church and a senior member of the Virginia Seminary faculty. The Anglican Consultative Council elected her as vice-chairman and then, in 1973, as chairman. She chaired the body until her successor, Australian John Denton, took over in 1980. At the request of then-Archbishop of Canterbury Donald Coggan, the Council had a major role in planning and supporting the historic 1978 Lambeth gathering.

A native of Canada, Kelleran was a graduate of the University of Buffalo. She married the Rev. Harold C. Kelleran in 1934. Shortly after his death in 1946, she became director of Christian Education for the Diocese of Washington, a post she held until 1962. The following year, she joined the Seminary faculty as an associate professor. She retired in 1973 as a full professor and chairman of the pastoral theology department.

Dr. Charles R. Lawrence, president of the House of Deputies, followed Kelleran as the Episcopal Church's lay representative to the Council and noted that "she is still remembered with great affection by the Council which she chaired so very fruitfully during those years when it was growing into the cement that holds the Anglican Communion together.'"

"She had a great feeling for the Church and for our portion of it, which to her meant the whole Anglican Communion," echoed colleague and neighbor Dr. Cynthia Wedel. "She was fascinated that this Church -- with its northern European heritage -- was still able to reach out and attract people from all over the world; people who now are strong leaders themselves shaping the Church. She was both a missionary and a devoted Anglican."

Funeral services were held at Immanuel-on-the-Hill in Alexandria, Va., her parish since 1963, with Virginia Seminary Dean Richard Reid presiding.

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