Alabama Academy of Honor

George Mosley Murray

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 1975 and in 2017.

The Right Reverend George Mosley Murray, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast, was born in 1919 in Baltimore and became an Alabamian when he moved to Bessemer as a small child.

He graduated from the University of Alabama in 1940 with a B.S. degree in business administration and worked for the General Electric Company in Charlotte, North Carolina, until 1942.

Four years of military service, including seventeen months' duty on the submarine Pintado in the Pacific, confirmed his desire to become a minister in the Episcopal Church. So after his discharge in 1946, he entered the Virginia Theological Seminary and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1948.

The year 1948 proved to be significant for Bishop Murray. After his graduation, he was ordained in Alabama by the Bishop of the Diocese, Bishop C.C.J. Carpenter, and shortly after, he accepted his first position in the church as the Episcopal student chaplain at the University of Alabama.

Five years later, at the age of thirty-four, he was elected the Suffragan Bishop of the Alabama Diocese, and after his consecration at the Church of the Advent in Birmingham, became assistant to Bishop Carpenter. In 1959, his election was virtually assured when he was made Bishop Coadjutor and thus was slated to succeed Bishop Carpenter. And in 1969, he became the Ordinary of the Diocese.

But he remained in the post only two years. When the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast was created from the southern one-third of Alabama and the Florida panhandle, he accepted the call to become its Bishop and left for Mobile, the new see city. Under his leadership, the new diocese has prospered; by the end of 1971, it numbered fifty-six congregations and more than 12,000 communicants.

Bishop Murray received a number of notable honors after he was elevated to the episcopate. In 1953, the year he was made Suffragan Bishop, the University of Alabama gave him its Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, and the College of Preachers at Washington Cathedral invited him to participate in a special six-week refresher course. A year later, he was made an honorary Doctor of Divinity by the University of the South and his alma mater, Virginia Theological Seminary. In 1956, he was given an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by the University of Alabama. And in 1968, St. Bernard College in Cullman, Alabama, made him an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

As a member of the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church from 1964 to 1970, Bishop Murray raised an influential voice in government of the church. And as a member of the Board of Regents of the University of the South (Sewanee), he maintained continuous touch with the academic scene after 1959.

Bishop Murray was married to Margaret Macqueen, and they resided in Fairhope, Alabama. Murray had three children with his first wife, Elizabeth Malcolm Murray: George Malcolm Murray, William Gerard Murray, and Sarah Duncan Murray. He also had three grandchildren: Sean Douglas Murray, Erin Elizabeth Murray, and Andrew Stuart Murray. Bishop Murray passed away on July 14, 2006, at the age of 87.