Fleming Rutledge

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Fleming Rutledge
Born1937 (age 81–82)
Alma mater
ReligionChristianity (Anglican)
ChurchEpiscopal Church
  • 1975 (deacon)
  • 1977 (priest)

Fleming Rutledge (born 1937) is an American Episcopal priest, and now an author, theologian and preacher. Ordained to the diaconate in 1975, she was one of the first women to be ordained to the priesthood of the Episcopal Church.

Rutledge is widely recognized in the United States, in Canada, and in the UK not only as a preacher and lecturer, but also as one who teaches other preachers. Her particular expertise is the intersection of biblical theology with contemporary culture, current events and politics, literature, music and art. She has often been invited to preach in prominent pulpits such as the Washington National Cathedral, the Duke University Chapel, Trinity Church in Boston, and the Harvard Memorial Chapel.

Early life and education[edit]

Rutledge was born in 1937 in Franklin, Virginia. Rutledge graduated from Sweet Briar College in 1959 magna cum laude with highest honors in English. She was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received her Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York in 1975. She was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Virginia Theological Seminary in May 1999.[1]

Ordained ministry[edit]

Ordained to the diaconate in 1975, Rutledge was one of the first women to be ordained to the priesthood of the Episcopal Church (January 1977).

For fourteen years Rutledge was assistant and then Senior Associate at Grace Church in New York City, a parish celebrated at that time for its youthful congregation and evangelistic preaching. She was actively involved in the renewal there. Her previous position was at Christ's Church, Rye, New York, where she was known for her creation and leadership of an extensive Christian program for high-school youth.

Rutledge served as interim rector of St. John's, Salisbury, Connecticut (1996–1997), and has twice been a resident Fellow at the Center of Theological Inquiry in Princeton. During the 2008 fall term, she was resident at Wycliffe College, Toronto, where she taught preaching. Most recently, she was a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy in Rome (April 2010).


  • The Bible and The New York Times (1998)
  • Help My Unbelief (2000)
  • The Undoing of Death (2002)
  • The Battle for Middle-Earth: Tolkien's Divine Design in "the Lord of the Rings" (2004)
  • The Seven Last Words from the Cross (2004)
  • Not Ashamed of the Gospel: Sermons from Paul's Letter to the Romans (2007)
  • And God Spoke to Abraham: Preaching from the Old Testament (Eerdmans, 2011) – ISBN 1561011975[2]
  • The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ (2015)
  • Advent: The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ (2018)