Dr. Peter Toon, priest and theologian, passed away on the evening of the feast of St Mark the Evangelist, in San Diego, California, where he and his wife have resided for the last months. He will be sorely missed by all those who love the Anglican Way. Dr. Toon has been, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the most vocal and prolific defender of the theology of the Anglican Reformation and the traditional Book of Common Prayer over the last decades. The absence of his voice on so many issues facing the church today will be an irreparable loss. Clarity of mind, depth of knowledge, and vigor of presentation marked his work, making his arguments both distinctive and convincing. An evangelist like St Mark, he was a lion of the faith.
During the last year, Dr. Toon has been suffering from a rare disease called amyloidosis. Diagnosed last spring, he underwent various treatments that were intended to slow the progress of the disease. Sadly, the disease was stronger than the medications, and we have lost him sooner than was hoped.
At the end Dr. Toon was attended by Fr Tony Noble, rector of All Saints' Episcopal Church, San Diego. Over the last weeks they have prayed together with the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, and his final words to Fr Noble were to the praise of God who he has served and loved so well. In his last hours, Fr Noble prayed with Dr. Toon the commendatory prayer.
O Almighty God, with whom do live the spirits of just men made perfect, after they are delivered from their earthly prisons: We humbly commend the soul of this thy servant,our dear brother, into thy hands, as into the hands of a faithful Creator, and most merciful Saviour; most humbly beseeching thee that it may be precious in they sight. Wash it, we pray thee, in the blood of that immaculate Lamb, that was slain to take away the sins of the world; that whatsoever defilements it may have contracted in the midst of this miserable and naughty world, through the lusts of the flesh or the wiles of Satan, being purged and done away, it may be presented pure and without spot before thee. And teach us who survive, in this and other like daily spectacles of mortality, to see how frail and uncertain our own condition is; and so to number our days, that we may seriously apply our hearts to that holy and heavenly wisdom, whilst we live here, which may in the end bring us to life everlasting, through the merits of Jesus Christ, thine only Son our Lord. Amen.
May light perpetual shine up on Dr. Toon. May the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace.
Dr. Roberta Bayer
The Prayer Book Society of the United States of America
The Prayer Book Society will hold a memorial service at All Saints' Episcopal Church, San Diego, California, at a future date.
Obituary of Dr Peter Toon