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Lincoln Arts Festival

P.O. Box 391

Boothbay Harbor, ME 04538


Phone: (207) 633-3913



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  AUGUST 10 - 12



In 1997 Jean Webster, a poet and Lincoln Arts Festival board member established a poetry program in the region. The first year poets from New York presented a program. Their leadership created an enthusiasm among local people who write poetry, and over the years the poetry workshop has continued to thrive.
J. Barrie Shepherd will lead the workshop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on September 8th at St. Columba's Episcopal Church, Boothbay Harbor, ME.  Enrollment limited.
The Rev. J. Barrie Shepherd retired in March 2000 after serving for the previous eight years as senior minister of historic First Presbyterian Church in the City of New York. First Church, situated on lower 5th Avenue in Greenwich Village, is the mother church of New York City Presbyterianism and boasts a long line of illustrious preachers, from Jonathan Edwards in the early 18th century to Harry Emerson Fosdick in the 20th. Prior to that Shepherd served for 16 years as senior minister of the Swarthmore (PA) Presbyterian Church. Previously he has served as Campus Pastor and Minister to Westminster Church at the College of Wooster, Chaplain and Assistant Professor of Religion at Connecticut College in New London, CT and Campus Minister at the The University of Connecticut (Storrs, CT).
Shepherd is a graduate of The University of Edinburgh, Yale Divinity School,  Yale University Graduate School,  and Hartford Theological Seminary, and also holds the degree of Doctor of Letters (D. Litt. Honorsis causa) from Muskingum College. He is a native of Great Britain (growing up in the small town of Bathgate just west of Edinburgh), a Royal Air Force veteran, and a former high school drop-out.
The Shepherds - Barrie and Mhairi - have four daughters, alison, Fiona, Nicola and Catriona and three grand daughters. Shepherd has written extensively in the area of religious studies. His fourteenth and fifteenth books, Faces by the Wayside - Persons Who Encountered Jesus on the Road and Between Mirage and Miracle - Selected Poems for Seasons, Festivals and the Occasional Revelation were published in January and June of 2012 by Wipf and Stock of Eugene, OR.  In July of 2015 Wipf and Stock published Shepherd's sixteenth book, Destination Bethlehem - Meditations, Prayers and Poems to Light the Way to the Manger. Some 700 of his poems have appeared in publications both sacred and secular.

He has preached and lectured at Harvard (where he served two terms on the Overseers' Committee To Visit The Memorial Church and delivered a William Belden Noble Lecture in 1995), Yale (where he delivered the William Lyman Beecher Lectures for 2002), Princeton, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke and other universities and colleges and many of the major seminaries as well as distinguished pulpits across the USA and in the UK, Europe, and Africa. Among his many lectureships he lists service to the faculty of the College of Preachers of the National Cathedral in Washington D.C.


In 2006 Shepherd received the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Presbyterian Writers Guild. He is currently a national board member of The Covenant Network and a trustee of Saint Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, Scotland. Past President of the Saint Andrew's Society of Philadelphia (founded in 1747), Shepherd also serves as Chaplain to the New York chapter of that society. The Shepherds now reside in Scarborough, ME where Barrie spends his time guest preaching, teaching, writing, and playing euphonium in various local musical ensembles.


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