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Published: Sunday, 5/9/2010

Episcopal rector added art, humor to sermons

BY MARK ZABORNEY
BLADE STAFF WRITER

The Rev. Lynn Chiles McCallum, 67, a rector of Episcopal churches in West Toledo and Oregon and an artist whose vivid drawings illustrated his sermons with humor, died Monday in Healthpark Medical Center, Fort Myers, Fla., of complications from an auto-immune condition.

Father McCallum retired in July, 2007, after nearly a decade as rector of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church.

"Lynn did wonders and he was a beloved individual," said Rich Preston, the treasurer and a former senior warden of the congregation. "He just really revitalized St. Andrew's; he enabled that to happen. Through his leadership, people responded."

To Father McCallum, a parish was a shared ministry.

"At St. Andrew's, it would be fair to say that 90 percent of the congregation were stakeholders in the whole thing," his wife, Mary, said. "It was their church.

"He was the opposite of clergy people who want to be the star of the show," his wife said. "He could be a star, but his favorite role was to lovingly empower others to do their role."

He began his visual ministry while at St. Paul's Episcopal in Oregon, where he was rector from 1985 to the mid-1990s. He took themes from his sermons and drew them in modern dress. A series on Jesus preaching around the Sea of Galilee was drawn as the Galilee Theater Co.

John the Baptist was drawn as the founder of the Judean School of Broadcasting. Some weeks at St. Andrew's, churchgoers got a script as they walked in so they could act out the week's lesson.

He also was at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Trenton, Mich., from 1996-98.

He was born Aug. 30, 1942, near Scottsbluff, Neb., to Dolores and the Rev. Mark McCallum. He was a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha and Virginia Theological Seminary. He followed his father into the Episcopal priesthood and was ordained in 1968. An early position was as rector of Christ Church on Capitol Hill in Washington.

He left parish ministry for eight years. He worked in fund-raising at what is now the University of Findlay. He had some church-related jobs, but it was a time of searching and sabbatical, his wife said.

"When he returned to the parish ministry, it was truly a calling," his wife said. "It's not like voices spoke to him, but he knew this is what he was meant to do. He knew that this was the right place for him to be."

He painted into retirement. Downtown Latte is a cubist view of two women in conversation; another work shows houses stacked like cards along Western Avenue, his wife said.

His art was shown in a Warehouse District studio through the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo.

He was previously married to Judith Moe.

Surviving are his wife, Mary, whom he married Feb. 21, 1981; mother, Dolores McCallum; son, Donald Andrew McCallum; daughter, Jessica McCallum; stepson, Malcolm Campbell; stepdaughters, Leah Campbell and Towle Campbell Hooker; sister, Carol Kay Smith; brother Duncan Kent McCallum, and four grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 3-7 p.m. Wednesday at Ansberg-West Funeral Home. Services will be at noon Thursday in St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, where the body will be after 10:30 a.m.

The family suggests tributes to St. Andrew's Episcopal Church.

Contact Mark Zaborney at:

mzaborney@theblade.com

or 419-724-6182.



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