VTS Press Release on Dr. Fuller
April 5, 2007 (ALEXANDRIA, VA) – The Very Rev. Martha J. Horne, dean and president of Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS), announced today the death of the Reverend Dr. Reginald H. Fuller, professor emeritus of New Testament at VTS and world-renowned scholar and teacher. Dr. Fuller died on April 4th in Richmond, following a fall last week (on the day after his 92nd birthday) and from complications following surgery for a broken hip.
Born in Horsham, England, Dr. Fuller was educated at Cambridge and Queens College, was ordained into the priesthood in June of 1941, and served churches in England and Wales throughout the 40’s and 50’s. In 1956, Dr. Fuller was received into the Episcopal Church in America and began teaching at Seabury-Western Seminary as Professor of New Testament Language and Literature. In 1966, Dr. Fuller served as the Baldwin Professor of Sacred Literature at Union Theological Seminary until 1972 when he became the Molly Laird Downs Professor of New Testament at Virginia Seminary. He taught at VTS in this capacity until his retirement in 1985.
Said Dean Horne, “Dr. Fuller was a mentor to many, many students over the years who not only studied New Testament and Greek with him, but who witnessed his faithful life of prayer, study, fellowship, and devotion to family and friends.”
In February of 2006, the president of Westminster Canterbury retirement community in Richmond, Virginia, presented Dr. Fuller with their Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans Award for distinguished volunteer service. In 2001, Dr. Fuller was recognized by the Washington Theological Consortium with their very first Consortium Ecumenism Award for his deep commitment to ecumenical relations. He was a member of the World Council of Churches’ Study Commission, served as a representative on Anglican-Lutheran dialogues, and in October of 2000, preached for the Lutheran Reformation Day service at the Washington National Cathedral.
Dr. Fuller was a prolific author and co-author, and contributed two writings to the Encyclopedia Britannica. Some of his books include, The Mission and Achievement of Jesus, The Use of the Bible in Preaching, Preaching the New Lectionary, A Critical Introduction to the New Testament, among others. He was a well-known translator from German to English of the writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and other theologians, and held honorary degrees from General Theological Seminary and the Episcopal Divinity School.
He was married to Ilse Barda for 65 years and had three daughters.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, April 7, 2007 at 11:00 a.m. at Emmanuel Church, Brook Hill, in Richmond. The committal with interment of ashes will take place in the VTS cemetery at 11:00am on Friday, April 20th.
Cards and notes can be sent to Ilse Fuller at 1600 Westbrook Avenue, Apt. 320, Richmond, Virgina 23227.