On 9 January I was announcing that Fr. Michael Harper, an Anglican priest and former leader of the charismatic movement, who joined the Antiochian Orthodox Church after the Church of England decided to ordain women, went to be with the Lord.
I had the honour of meeting Fr. Harper, in Cambridge, last year, and I was impressed with his deep and genuine piety, in spite of his obvious frailty.
Here are a few details about him from the memorial page dedicated to him on the website of the Antiochian Church.
It was with sadness that we heard this week of the repose of Fr Michael Harper. A lover of Dorset he, and his wife Jeanne, visited St Edward’s when they were on holiday in the area, and I was glad to find in him a true friend, both to Lesley and me, and to St Edwards. Only two months ago he had resigned as Dean due to continuing ill health.
Fr Michael had had a truly remarkable ministry spanning some fifty years. In the Church of England he was a noted Evangelical, preparing for Ordination at Ridley Hall, Cambridge. Between 1955 and 1964 he served a number of curacies but then, arising from his work with the Fountain Trust he became widely known in international charismatic circles, addressing assemblies of hundreds, even thousands of people. For five years, until 1980, he was Hon. Curate of Holy Trinity Church, Hounslow before moving to Haywards Heath where, in 1984, he became a Canon of Chichester Cathedral.
Almost ten years later, Fr Michael resigned his canonry and from the active ministry of the Church of England as a result of developments in that church, having decided to become Orthodox. He was with the first group of priests to be ordained by the then Bishop Gabriel, although at the time he had no parish. He was appointed Dean, a valuable enabling role within the new Deanery. Fr Michael was the link between the parishes and Bishop Gabriel who, even at that time, was in a poor state of health which prevented him taking a fully active part in the new Orthodox Jurisdiction in England.
Note for Romanian readers:
Marturia convertirii Pr Michael Harper, reunita in cartea Lumina cea adevarata. Calatoria unui evanghelic spre Ortodoxie, poate fi citita online AICI.