March 21: +Ronald Hayward Haines (2008)

Ronald Hayward Haines served as the Seventh Bishop of Washington for the last decade of the 20th Century. Carved on his tomb at Washington Cathedral are the words, “Courageous and Staunch Advocate For All People.” His life’s journey had taken many twists and turns. A native of Wilmington, Delaware, he was a graduate of the University of Delaware School of Engineering and for ten years pursued a career in that field. It was due to a significant health crisis that his wife suffered that Haines had a spiritual reawakening. Participation in local prayer groups led to seminary study and eventual ordination to the priesthood. After serving at parishes in New York City and North Carolina, Ronald Haines was called to Washington, D.C.

Several historic events at Epiphany marked Haines’ ministry over the next 14 years. In special diocesan conventions held at Epiphany, Haines was elected bishop suffragan (1986) and then bishop diocesan (1990). In 1991, Bishop Haines ordained at Epiphany the Rev. Elizabeth Carl, an open lesbian, which caused a period of protest and internal examination. Following Bishop Haines’ call for an election for a new suffragan bishop, a special diocesan convention at Epiphany elected Jane Holmes Dixon, the third woman in the Anglican Communion to become a bishop. In 1994, Bishop Haines instituted Randolph Charles as Epiphany’s 14th rector. Near the end of his episcopate, Bishop Haines joined Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold at Epiphany in celebrating the ministry of Pamela Chinnis.

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