Farley Snell, a native Floridian, holds an A.B. degree
from Florida Southern College and a M.Div. and Th.D. from Union
Theological Seminary in New York. He served as chaplain at Southwestern
University for 27 years, from 1972 until his retirement in 1999. As the chair
of the Department of Religion and Philosophy, Snell was a rather unconventional
chaplain who spoke on topical events within a religious context and who
valued his time in the classroom. He coordinated the Religion Lecture Series
bringing scores of internationally recognized scholars and theologians to campus.
The university historian, Bill Jones, described Chaplain Snell as “a person of
independent mind who refused to be forced to do what he did not believe in, he was
splendid preacher, always preaching from the lectionary.” Snell spoke eloquently
on the place of religious values in the academy and he was appointed Presider for
the creation of the new Master Plan for the University. At the time of his retirement,
the university published a book of his sermons entitled Sometimes a Surprising Word.
Snell retired to Asheville, North Carolina after 27 years at Southwestern. He was a frequent
lecturer at Senior University in Georgetown, TX and now gives lectures around Asheville on religion.
Scope and Content Note
Printed sermons and sermons in audio tape dating from 1978 to 1999. The papers also include the book that the university published at the time of his retirement, Sometimes a Surprising Word.
Sermons are titled by book, chapter, and verse and are arranged chronologically.
Box and Folder
20.9 Sermon Book 1978-1991
20.10 Sermon Book 1992-1998
Source for biographical information: Jones, William B. To survive and excel: the story of Southwestern University, 1840-2000. Georgetown, Tex.: Southwestern University, 2006.
Restrictions to Access
Processed by: Mendoza, Carolina
Date Processed: 04/2010