2 Saint Margaret Anglican Church: Play Dirty and Pray

Play Dirty and Pray

Bishop James Mote
The Rt. Rev. James Orin Mote, Rest in Peace!

Play dirty and pray!” was a favorite saying of Bishop Mote. To those who knew Bishop Mote, they would often hear this phrase come from the good bishop’s mouth. “Play dirty and pray!” The meaning is clear to those who understood Bishop Mote - i.e., prayer is a powerful weapon and can lead to many miracles, many conversions, etc. Bishop Mote spent his entire life in prayer as a priest and then later as a bishop. Bishop James Mote (1922 - 2006), from Indianapolis, Indiana, was the first bishop of the “Continuing Church.” Bishop Mote, pastor of St. Mary’s Church in Denver, Colorado, led his parish out of the Episcopal Church in 1977.

Bishop Mote was a true pioneer, a man of God, a humble priest and bishop. He loved the Blessed Sacrament with all his heart and offered and/or attended Mass every day for over fifty years as a priest. He loved the Church and was a true Anglo-Catholic through and through. Bishop Mote was a friend to most of the original founding members of St. Margaret’s Anglican Church in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was one of a kind, indeed. He is missed by many, many souls here at St. Margaret’s!

Bishop Mote's
obituary in the New York Times.


Father Todd's Memories of Bishop Mote . . . . 

Fr. Todd Bragg, the current priest in charge of St. Margaret Anglican Church, has many fond memories of Bishop Mote.  Fr. Bragg writes:

"I think of Bishop Mote often.  In fact, every time I celebrate Mass I remember Bishop Mote and think of him when I say the Mass because I am using his chalice and patten that he gave to me before he died.  When I was at St. Edward the Confessor parish (ACC) in Indianapolis as a curate, Bishop Mote came back to Indianapolis after living in Florida.  I got to know Bishop Mote very well during the final years of his life.  I found Bishop Mote to be not only a prayerful man, but also a very humble man.  When I was ordained as a priest, and it was my turn to celebrate the daily Mass, Bishop Mote would insist on being the server at Mass for me.  I felt bad, quite honestly, because here I was a newly ordained priest and Bishop Mote was acting as server for me.  I would beg Bishop Mote to say the Mass, so that I could be the server but he insisted that he would serve the Mass for me.  What an incredibly humble man.   Even as a bishop, he would insist on "taking the lowest place."  Many a dinner at St. Edward, I would see Bishop Mote serving meals, collecting dishes, or washing dishes."  

"Bishop James Mote was truly a man of God here on earth. He inspired me to see what a true 
servant was like.  Unlike some in authority, who constantly like to remind others . . . . and themselves as well . . . that they are the ones in authority, Bishop Mote was a servant and chose to serve those around him! He was truly a humble man, a prayerful man, someone who, in my humble opinion, truly lived his life as a Christian! I am very happy that I got to know him and I still miss him after he has gone from us. To me, he showed what a true priest is: someone who comes to serve and not to be served!"