Fitts, Frederic Whitney

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Fitts, Frederic Whitney

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Frederic Whitney Fitts was born in Lowell, Massachusetts on April 11, 1872. He graduated in 1893 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and earned his B.D. from the Episcopal Theological School, Cambridge, in 1901 before completing his education with a degree from Harvard University in 1902.

From 1902 to 1907, Fitts served as an associate priest of St. Stephen’s Church, Boston, and as an associate rector of St. John’s Church in nearby Roxbury. Both parishes, which served primarily poor and minority communities, were among the leading Anglo-Catholic congregations of the otherwise low and broad churches in the Diocese of Massachusetts at that time.

He became rector of St. John’s Church in 1908, a position he held for 37 years, where he was known for his instructional classes. He mentored Massey Shepherd, who was an assistant at St. John’s Church in the early 1940s. Fitts was a lecturer of interest on Church symbolism; well-known for using the Sarum ritual and scheme of liturgical colors, which was rarely practiced in the United States; and he maintained a close relationship with the Order of St. John the Evangelist in Cambridge.

Frederic Fitts died in 1945.

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