Participation Type

Paper

Presentation #1 Title

Preachers and the Foundling Hospital Chapel: "There but for the grace of God go I"

Presentation #1 Abstract

In 1856, James Augustus Hessey gave a sermon to the governors of the London Foundling Hospital; its contents hold surprising clues to the calculus that measured the respectability of petitioning unwed mothers. The homily revealed the questions asked of the woman and then asked his congregation to examine their conscience. This paper will explore the preaching practices of guest and in-house preachers at the London Foundling Hospital Chapel. Located in Bloomsbury near Brunswick Square, the Foundling Hospital Chapel offered insight to the children under the care of this esteemed London institution. Typically, the public mission of the institution aimed to preserve the lives of children born out of wedlock. Privately, it salvaged the reputations of domestic servants who for this one event fell into sin. The research will be based on unpublished and published sermons held at the London Metropolitan Archives.

At-A-Glance Bios- Presenter #1

Jessica A. Sheetz-Nguyen is Professor of History at the University of Central Oklahoma

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Preachers and the Foundling Hospital Chapel: "There but for the grace of God go I"

Montréal, QC

In 1856, James Augustus Hessey gave a sermon to the governors of the London Foundling Hospital; its contents hold surprising clues to the calculus that measured the respectability of petitioning unwed mothers. The homily revealed the questions asked of the woman and then asked his congregation to examine their conscience. This paper will explore the preaching practices of guest and in-house preachers at the London Foundling Hospital Chapel. Located in Bloomsbury near Brunswick Square, the Foundling Hospital Chapel offered insight to the children under the care of this esteemed London institution. Typically, the public mission of the institution aimed to preserve the lives of children born out of wedlock. Privately, it salvaged the reputations of domestic servants who for this one event fell into sin. The research will be based on unpublished and published sermons held at the London Metropolitan Archives.