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Dorothy L. Sayers Research: Welcome


Kathryn Wehr's research focuses on Dorothy L. Sayers's The Man Born to be King, a 12-part life-of-Christ radio play cycle. Other areas of research include theology and the arts, spirituality, and Church history. See below for a list of publications.

Kathryn Wehr edited The Man Born to be King: Wade Annotated Edition (IVP Academic, 2023) with introductions and annotations for each play, in partnership with the Marion E. Wade Center - the archives that are home to the largest collection of Sayers materials in the world. 

The Man Born to be King was first broadcast on the BBC from December 1941 to October 1942, and the 1943 published scripts continue to delight readers and has been reprinted numerous times.  Sayers's friend C.S. Lewis often re-read them during Holy Week.  Kathryn loves writing about Sayers's deeply theological and relevant portrayal of Christ that is yet a quirky artifact of its own day.

Sayers and Wehr, The Man Born to be King_cover A0533.jpeg

Dorothy L. Sayers (1893-1957) is best known for her Lord Peter Wimsey mystery novels but also wrote poetry, drama for the stage and radio, non-fiction books and essays, and translations of Medieval French and Italian poetry, notably Dante's Divine Comedy.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD - Divinity, University of St. Andrews, Scotland

  • Grad Cert - Spiritual Direction, St. John's School of Theology, USA

  • MA - Pastoral Theology, Anglia Ruskin University, England

  • MCS - Christianity and the Arts, Regent College, Canada

  • BA - Theatre Arts, Bethel University, USA


Sayers Research

Dorothy L. Sayers - Books

  • The Man Born to be King, Wade Annotated Edition. By Dorothy L. Sayers, Edited by Kathryn Wehr.  IVP Academic: 2023.

  • PhD Dissertation: Bible and Theology at Work: The Creative Energy of Dorothy L. Sayers' The Man Born to be King, University of St Andrews, School of Divinity/Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts, 2017.

Dorothy L. Sayers - Peer-Reviewed and Other Articles

  • “The Zeal of Gervase of Canterbury; Politics and Intrigue Behind the Source Text for Dorothy L. Sayers’s The Zeal of Thy House.” VII: Journal of the Marion E. Wade Center 39 (2023).

  • "My Imagination Seems to Have Gone on Strike" Off The Shelf, blog of the Marion E. Wade Center, January 11, 2022. Read it. 

  • "Dorothy L. Sayers's Christology in The Man Born to be King" Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture  23, no. 3 (Summer 2020). Read it here or read an excerpt in Lumen, Winter 2020. 

  • “Sayers’ Use of Secondary Sources in The Man Born to be King.” VII: Journal of the Marion E. Wade Center 35 (2018).

  • "‘Nobody…must be allowed to 'talk Bible'; Dorothy L. Sayers’ Use of the Authorized Version and the Coverdale Psalms in The Man Born to be King.” The Journal of Inklings Studies 8, no. 2 (2018).

  • “The Psalms Hidden in the Slang: Sayers’ radio plays on the life of Christ.” The Church Times (24 March 2017). Read it

  • “Disambiguation: Sayers as a Catholic.” VII: Journal of the Marion E. Wade Center 33 (2016).

  • “Dorothy L. Sayers’ Use of the Four Gospels in The Man Born to be King.” The Journal of Inklings Studies 6, no. 2 (2016).

  • “Hearing Visual Art in Dorothy L. Sayers’ The Man Born to be King.” Transpositions: Theology, Imagination & the Arts. 2016. Read it.

Other Research

Art Notes for Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture 

  • "The Calm Before the Creative Burst: Henry van de Velde's Père Biart Reading in the Garden." Logos 28, no. 3 (2024) forthcoming.

  • "Mosaics of the Florence Baptistery" Logos 27, no. 2 (2024). Read it.

  • "The Glorious and Untidy Mix of Art, Culture, and Faith." Logos 27, no. 1 (2024). Read it.

  • "The Mysteries within Rembrandt's Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee." Logos 26, no. 4 (2023). Read it.

  • "The Holy Family in the Hollywood Hills: Edouard Antonin Vysekal’s The Herwigs.Logos 26, no. 3 (2023). Read it

  • "A Haven for Grief in William Dyce's St. John Leading Home his Adopted Mother.Logos 26, no. 2 (2023). Read it.

  • "Transformed into Light: A Reflection on William-Adolphe Bouguereau's Temptation." Lumen, Fall/Winter 2022. Read it.

  • "Fall and Apocalypse in the Painting of Benjamin West." Logos 26, no. 1 (2023). Read it.

  • "Letting Art Become Prayer in the Work of Fr. Dunstan Massey, OSB, of Westminster Abbey, Mission, BC." Logos 25, no. 4 (2022). Read it.

  • "Awakening Our Liturgical Imaginations with La Bretagne Mystique by Hippolyte Dominique Berteaux."  Logos 25, no. 3 (2022). Read it.

Spirituality, Singleness, and Consecrated Life

  • "From Augustine to Benedict: Interviews with the Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary." American Benedictine Review 74, no. 1 (2023).

  • "A St. Joseph Testimonial" Mount Carmel; a Review of the Spiritual Life 69, no. 1 (2021). Find it. Watch the video story here.

  • "Contemplation, With Lettuce" Mount Carmel; a Review of the Spiritual Life 67, no. 4 (2019).  Find it. Watch the video story here.

  • “A Pilgrimage Together.” with Brittany Bump Blanski. Presence; An International Journal of Spiritual Direction 19, no. 1 (2013).​

  • Booklet: Singleness and the Early Church: Encouragement for Living the Single Life in Christ Today (Cambridge, UK: Grove Books, 2012). Find it.

  • “Virginity, Singleness and Celibacy; Late Fourth Century and Recent Evangelical Visions of Unmarried Christians.” Theology and Sexuality 17, no. 1 (2011).


 Eastern Orthodoxy

  • "The Pentecost Liturgy as a Call to Unity and Mission.” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly 59, no. 2 (2015).

  • Review of Introducing Eastern Orthodoxy by Andrew Louth. Two Cities, 2015.

  • “The Orthodox Bioethics of Cremation.” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly 55, no. 4 (2011). 

  • "The Churching of Women"

  • “Understanding Ritual Purity and Sin in the Churching of Women; From Ontological to Pedagogical to Eschatological.” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly 55, no. 1 (2011). 

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