Garfield Bromley Oxnam

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Garfield Bromley Oxnam (August 14, 1891 – March 12, 1963) was an American Bishop in the Methodist Episcopal Church, elected in 1936.[1]


He was a graduate of the University of Southern California in 1913[1] and of the Boston University School of Theology in 1915. He served as a Pastor for many years, including of a large Los Angeles church. He then served as a Professor of Social Ethics at Boston University.

He was accused of being a communist by Donald L. Jackson and went before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Un-American Activities.

He became the President of DePauw University, Greencastle, Indiana in 1928. As President he achieved a high level of national and international recognition, bringing DePauw unprecedented public attention. He stepped down as President upon his election as Bishop.

In 1958, Bishop Oxnam was successful in helping to found the School of International Service (SIS) at American University, the national Methodist university in Washington, D.C. In that effort, Oxnam was able to convince the General Conference of The Methodist Church to contribute over $1 million for the school's creation. The founding of the SIS was part of a vision held by Oxnam to create an academic institution "pledged to the study, proclamation and practice of the principles of freedom and the maintenance of civil, economic, and religious liberty by training competent and consecrated men and women for the international service of the state, the community and the church."

Bishop Oxnam was also responsible for the relocation of Westminster Theological Seminary from Westminster, Maryland to a location in Washington, D.C. on land belonging to American University. Once relocated, the seminary was renamed Wesley Theological Seminary.

After Oxnam's death in 1963, his ashes were interred at Wesley Seminary in the chapel that bears his name.[2]

His son, Robert Fisher Oxnam, was also president of a Methodist-founded university, Drew University, from 1961 to 1974.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b The Methodists.. ISBN 0-313-22048-4. 
  2. ^ "Oxnam Dies at 71. Methodist Bishop. Leader in Church and Public Affairs Was Outspoken In Church Leadership". New York Times. March 14, 1963. "Bishop Garfield Bromley Oxnam of the Methodist Church died here last night in the Burke Foundation Rehabilitation Center. He had undergone surgery in New York last December for Parkinson's disease. He was 71 years old and lived in Scarsdale." 

External links[edit]

Selected Writings of G. Bromley Oxnam[edit]

  • Russian Impressions, Los Angeles, 1927.
  • Personalities in Social Reform, New York: Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, 1950.
  • I Protest, New York: Harper, 1954.

Writing about G. Bromley Oxnam[edit]

  • Robert Moats Miller, Bishop G. Bromley Oxnam, Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1990.

External links[edit]