The Living Church

Year Article Type Limit by Author

The Living ChurchNovember 23, 1997Bishop Emrich of Michigan Dies 215(21) p. 6

The Rt. Rev. Richard Stanley Merrill Emrich, 87, retired Bishop of Michigan, died Oct. 31 at his home in Rome, N.Y. Bishop Emrich was the seventh Bishop of Michigan, serving from 1948 to 1973.

Bishop Emrich was born in Mardin, Turkey, the son of Congregational missionaries to Armenian refugees there. He was a graduate of Brown University, the Episcopal Theological School, Union Theological Seminary (N.Y.) and earned his Ph.D. at the University of Marburg, Germany.

He was ordained to the diaconate in 1936 and to the priesthood in 1938. He was assistant at St. John's Church, Waterbury, Conn., 1936-37; rector of St. Anne's, South Lincoln, Mass., 1938-42, and rector of St. Gabriel's, Marion, Mass., 1944-46. He also was a faculty member at the Episcopal Theological School from 1937 to 1946.

In 1946 he was elected Suffragan Bishop of Michigan. Two years later he was elected diocesan. Under his leadership, social services in the diocese were expanded, ecumenical relations were emphasized, churches in the diocese were integrated, 35 new missions were begun, and 42 missions became parishes.

Bishop Emrich was named honorary commander of the Order of the British Empire, awarded by Queen Elizabeth II in 1958. He was the author of two books, numerous pamphlets and published sermons, and was a columnist for Detroit newspapers during the 1960s and '70s. He retired in 1973.

His wife, the former Beatrice A. Littlehales, preceded him in death in 1994. He is survived by two sons, the Rev. Richard Stanley Merrill Emrich III, of Rome, N.Y., and the Rev. Frederick Ernest Emrich III, of Greenfield, Mass., seven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.