(E)pistle: A Letter from Professor Stafford

One of the great privileges of my time with you as Interim Dean has been to work with Prof. Bill Stafford.  In addition to being a fellow medievalist, Prof Stafford was also a Dean for many years.  His experienced counsel and advice has been invaluable to me. In a short time he has become a good friend.

I share with you this letter from him announcing his retirement.  He will be much missed by this school!


William Stafford

Dear CDSP Community,

This letter is to let you know that this will be my last academic year at CDSP. My 75th birthday is approaching as I write, and it is time for me to retire fully while my health is still good.

I have deeply appreciated my ten years of teaching at CDSP. Warm and stimulating faculty colleagues, a responsive and effective staff, and a legion of great students have made my ministry here a pleasure. After many years of teaching, starting at Brown University, serving as teacher and administrator at Virginia Theological Seminary, and culminating in my years as Dean of The School of Theology in Sewanee, it has been a joy to be back in the classroom (without any administrative duties!) at CDSP. You all have stretched me in fresh directions in ways too many to name. Full retirement will give me more time with my wife, Barbara, and my numerous family, and give me flexibility which a life of academic schedules has usually made impossible; I look forward to it.

Most of all, I commend you to God’s mission and the Holy Spirit’s power. Bearing witness to Christ’s death and resurrection and building missionary communities together stand as a great challenge in the secular and skeptical culture I have found outside church walls, where yet God still is moving. Thank you for all the generosity of spirit that has surrounded me here at CDSP; God bless you all.

Bill Stafford+

(The Very Rev.) William S. Stafford

Visiting Professor of Church History