Porter Taylor

Visiting Professor of Episcopal Studies

Taylor joined the School of Divinity in 2017 to initiate an Episcopal Studies Program. His interests in this area include The Book of Common Prayer, Episcopal history and liturgy and Anglican theology. Taylor is working on a project to use personal storytelling of one’s faith journey as a tool for evangelism and conducts workshops in this area.  He has taught homiletics classes at Virginia Theological Seminary and The Theology School of the University of the South. Before being ordained, Taylor taught American Literature at Belmont University. As a consequence, he has a passion for using stories, novels, and poems as a theological lens. Taylor is the sixth Episcopal Bishop of Western North Carolina and retired from that position in 2016.  He is trained as a Spiritual Director by the Shalem Institute.

photo by Carly Geis Photography
photo by Carly Geis Photography


BA, UNC Chapel Hill; MA, University of South Carolina; MDiv, University of the South; PhD, Emory University

Religious Affiliation


Courses Taught

  • Christian Mysticism from St. Teresa to the Present
  • The Art of Preaching: Using Fiction and Poetry in Sermons
  • Evangelism as Storytelling
  • The Christian Year
  • The History of the Episcopal Church
  • The Book of Common Prayer
  • Writing Your Spiritual Memoir


  • From Anger to Zion: An Alphabet of Faith, Morehouse Publishing, 2004.
  • To Dream as God Dreams: Sermons of Hope, Conversion and CommunityMorehouse, 2005.

Select Journal Articles, Book Chapters, Book Reviews

  • Contributor to Feasting on the Word: Preaching from the Revised Common Lectionary, John Knox Press, 2009.
  • “General Convention,” The Great Smokies Review, Issue 7, Fall 2012.
  • Contributor to Living Well Through Advent 2015, Living Compass, 2015.
  • “Hungry for God,” Bearings Online, Collegeville Institute, May 9, 2016
  • “Repairing the Breach,” 2016 Lenten Meditations, Forward Day by Day.
  • “Hungry for God,” Bearings Online, Collegeville Institute, May 9, 2016.
  • Contributor to Ashes and the Phoenix: Meditations for the Season of Lent, Forward Day by Day, Spring 2017.

Select Academic Lectures

  • “My Story, Our Story, The Story—Storytelling as Evangelism.” Evangelism Matters Conference, Sponsored by The Episcopal Church, December 2016.

Select Sermons, Educational Series, Church Presentations

  • 2019 Keynote Speaker, Clergy Conference Episcopal Diocese of Ohio
  • May 2019 House of Bishops Theology Committee
  • 2018 Storytelling as Evangelism, Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky and The Episcopal Diocese of Western Pennsylvania
  • 2017, “The Gift of Recovery from Addictions.” Keynote Diocese of Louisiana Convention.
  • 2017 ,“My Story, Our Story, The Story—Storytelling as Evangelism” Mepkin Abbey May and Christ Church, Ponte Vedra, FL.
  • 2016, “Growing in Christ”  Retreat for Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina.
  • 2016, “Our Life as Disciples” Clergy Retreat for Episcopal Diocese of Western North Carolina.
  • 2014, Retreat Leader for The Episcopal Church in South Carolina Clergy, “Being Faithful Disciples”
  • 2013, Quiet Day for The School of Theology, Sewanee: “Embracing Conflict; Facing Your Demons; Growing in Community.”
  • 2011, “Bishops as Pastors” House of Bishops’ Meeting, Camp Allen, Texas.
  • 2009, Clergy Retreat, The Diocese of Glasgow, Scottish Episcopal Church.
  • Clergy Retreat, The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta.
  • 2006,  Clergy Retreat, The Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky.

Select Honors and Awards

  • Louisville Sabbatical Award, 2009 and 2015.
  • Lily Sabbatical Fellowship, 2002.
  • Spirituality Conference, World Council of Churches, Geneva, 1993.
  • Teacher of the Year Award, Belmont University, Nashville, TN, 1991.
  • Fulbright Award, Oporto, Portugal. 1984.


Email: taylorgp@nullwfu.edu

Phone: 336.758.3637

Office: Davis Tower 406

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