The Dean

The Very Rev. Dr. Benjamin Shambaugh,

Dean, The Cathedral Church of St. Luke, Portland

Father Shambaugh is an Episcopal priest whose ministry has included living in and around New York, Chicago, Washington, DC, Paris,  Barbados, and the National Parks, doing development work in Africa, Haiti, and Indian Reservations in the American West, and leading study tours to the Holy Land.

Ordained in 1988, he has served four congregations and has had a wide variety of mission experiences including time as a chaplain at the National Cathedral in Washington, as Canon Pastor to the American Cathedral in Paris, France and his current position as Dean of St. Luke’s Cathedral in Portland, Maine.

In Portland he serves on the boards of Preble Street, the Religious Coalition Against Discrimination,  and St. Elizabeth’s Essentials Pantry and has been active in campaigns for marriage equality and for health care reform.

As adjunct faculty member of Bangor Seminary, he has taught courses in Liturgy, Mission, and the future of the church in Maine.

He serves as a member of the Standing Committee for the Episcopal Diocese of Maine and is the chair of the Maine Deputation to the Episcopal Church’s General Convention (July 2012).

He has a BA in psychology from Northwestern University, an M.Div. from the General Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. from Seabury Western Seminary.

He is married and has two children. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and playing his tuba in a local band.

What is a Dean?

A dean is the pastor or rector of a cathedral, which is the seat of the bishop and chief mission church for the diocese.

If you remember in history that universities began through cathedrals and think of academic deans, you can then think of the dean of the cathedral as dean of the “college of clergy” of the diocese of Maine.

The “very” in “Very Rev.” is a traditional English way of recognizing this unique role.