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The Right Rev. John Clark Buchanan

The Right Rev. John Clark Buchanan
  • May 6, 1933 - April 15, 2020
  • Charleston, South Carolina

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“John enriched lives wherever he served. He was a man of grace; he was an encourager. He certainly encouraged me and showed grace to me and my...Read More »
1 of 9 | Posted by: Norman Raiford - Stuarts Draft, VA

“Dear Peggy, I am so sorry to hear of John's death. I have such fond memories of your family's time with us in Darlington. John introduced me to the...Read More »
2 of 9 | Posted by: Rosanne Brasington - Darlington, SC

“Dear Peggy, Mary, Margaret, MaryElla and John:Our heartfelt sympathy goes to you at the loss of your dear John. He was one of the warmest and most...Read More »
3 of 9 | Posted by: Elsie Kohlenberg - Charleston SC, SC

“Dear Peggy,Bob and Jane wrote to tell me about Bishop John's death even before our diocese (Southern VA) sent word to all the clergy. I remember...Read More »
4 of 9 | Posted by: Julia Dorsey Loomis - Portsmouth, VA

“Dear Ones, We are heart broken for your loss. And for all of us who will miss John. We have been so out of touch and now , we just want you to...Read More »
5 of 9 | Posted by: Rick and Anne Belser - Charleston, SC

“Sending prayers for healing to all, with the firm knowledge that your father has heard Servant well done many times and that his service will...Read More »
6 of 9 | Posted by: Laura Waring Gruber

“Margaret and Family, I first knew your father when he was at St. James Church very early on in his life in the ministry. Through your friendship with...Read More »
7 of 9 | Posted by: Gloria Purcell - Charleston, SC

“I came to love and respect Bishop Buchanan so much. I just wish we could have worked together longer. ”
8 of 9 | Posted by: Mary Schrom Breese - Independence, KS

“PeggyJust spoke with Ben Legare, who is a dear Citadel Classmate of B, and I asked if he knew you and he informed me of your Husband's passing. I...Read More »
9 of 9 | Posted by: Lois Sawyer Lott - Orlando, FL


The Right Reverend John Clark Buchanan peacefully entered into eternal rest on Wednesday, April 15, 2020 at home surrounded by his loving family. John Buchanan was born May 6, 1933 in Joanna, South Carolina to the late Ella Virginia Clark Buchanan and Dock Jones Buchanan. He served in the US Air Force from 1951-1955 and then went to the University of South Carolina where he earned a BA, 1958 and JD, 1961. He returned to Laurens County to practice law. In 1966 he received the call to the priesthood and began his studies at General Theological Seminary (GTS) in New York.

Upon graduation from GTS in 1969, Bishop Buchanan began his ordained ministry in the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina. He served three congregations as a rector. The first being St. Barnabas' Church, Dillon, followed by St. Matthew's Church, Darlington, and lastly St. Andrew's Church, Mt. Pleasant. In 1988 he was elected as Bishop Coadjutor to the Diocese of West Missouri. He began his tenure as Bishop in 1989. During his Episcopate, Bishop Buchanan spearheaded the vision of what was to become the Bishop Spencer Place retirement community in Kansas City, Missouri. As the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Bishop Spencer Place, he led a five-year effort through property acquisition, design and construction culminating with the ground breaking ceremony in 1995. He faithfully served the clergy and parishioners as the VI Bishop of West Missouri until his retirement in 2000.

In retirement, he continued to serve his dearly loved Episcopal Church in many different capacities; Parliamentarian for the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church (2003-2013), Bishop-in-residence at St. Michael's Church (2000-2004), Assisting Bishop Diocese of Texas (2004-2006), Interim Bishop of the Diocese of Southern Virginia (2006-2008), Provisional Bishop of the Diocese of Quincy (2009-2013), and Assisting Bishop Diocese of Chicago (2013-2014).

Bishop Buchanan and his wife, Peggy moved to Bishop Gadsden in 2014 where he actively participated in the spiritual life within the community when called upon. He was a devoted servant of God and loved the Episcopal Church with his whole heart. Bishop Buchanan spent much time in recent years using his unique talents to bring about reconciliation within the Episcopal Church. He believes that there is always an opportunity for redemption and you can always start anew.

His faith in his Lord Jesus Christ was first and foremost followed closely by his love and devotion for his family. Bishop Buchanan adored and cherished his wife, Peggy. He dearly loved his daughters and his precious grandchildren who always made him smile. Bishop Buchanan spent a great deal of time combing through libraries and court house documents looking for family records and history. He loved family reunions with his sister, nieces, nephews and cousins where he could share his genealogy findings with them.

Bishop Buchanan was preceded in death by his parents Ella Virginia Buchanan and Dock Jones Buchanan, his brother, Kenneth Orin Buchanan and his son-in-law, Charles Thomas Bryant.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Peggy Brown Buchanan and his two daughters; Mary Ryan Buchanan Aimar (Alton) of Savannah, GA and Margaret Clark Buchanan Bryant of Mt. Pleasant, SC and; sister, Linda Buchanan Hardwick of Walterboro, SC; and grandchildren: John Clark Bryant and Mary Ella Bryant.

There will be a private family service at Grace Episcopal Church in Charleston on Saturday, April 18, 2020. There will be a public memorial Eucharist at a later time to be determined. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Bishop Gadsden Charitable Fund (www.bishopgadsden.org/giving/) or Kanuga Camp and Conference Center (www.kanuga.org/giving/).