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The Induction and Institution of the 18th Rector

Officially becoming the rector of Trinity Wall Street is a two-step process. After the Rev. Dr. James Herbert Cooper, 17th Rector, retires on February 15, the Rev. Dr. William Lupfer will first be inducted and later instituted as the 18th Rector of Trinity Wall Street. These two ceremonies represent the care of the souls of Trinity and the custody of the church.

Dr. Lupfer’s induction will take place on Sunday, February 22 in a ceremony unique to Trinity. The senior warden, Christopher McCrudden, will give the keys to the church to Dr. Lupfer at the Broadway entrance of Trinity Church. They will use the keys to open the doors of the church together. The keys will then be handed over to David Jette, Head Verger.

This is based on Trinity’s charter, which states that the church and rectory are under the care of the rector until he dies (the position of rector was typically a lifelong appointment at the time the charter was written) or retires, at which time they return to the vestry, which then passes them on to next rector. This ceremony in its current form has been taking place since at least the induction of Benjamin Moore in 1800.  

The institution will take place on Ascension Day, May 14. This is a traditional liturgy from the Book of Common Prayer.

The Trinity charter states that the “Rector shall have the care of the souls of the inhabitants within the said parish.” This is reflected during the liturgy when Dr. Lupfer will pray these words: “Make me an instrument of your salvation for the people entrusted to my care, and grant that I may faithfully administer your holy Sacraments, and by my life and teaching set forth your true and living Word.”

Dr. Lupfer will be given symbols of his office, typically things like a copy of Trinity’s charter and bread and wine to represent the Eucharist. The Rt. Rev. Andrew M.L. Dietsche, Bishop of New York, will celebrate.


Induction: February 22, 2015, 11:15am, Holy Eucharist - the Rev. Dr. William Lupfer will be given the keys to Trinity Church

Institution: May 14, 2015, 6pm, Ascension Day Eucharist - the Rev. Dr. William Lupfer will be instituted as the 18th rector of Trinity Wall Street

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