KERN, JOHN ADAM: Methodist Episcopal, South; b. near Winchester, Va., Apr. 23, 1846. He studied at the University of Virginia 1868-70, having already entered the ministry of his denomination in 1864. For twenty-one years he was engaged in pastoral work in the Baltimore Conference. From 1886 to 1893 he was professor of moral philosophy in Randolph-Macon College, of which he became vice-president in 1893 and president in 1897. Since 1899 he bas been professor of practical theology in Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn. He has been elected four times to the General Conference of his denomination, and in theology is Evangelical, and favorable to all reverent and scholarly study of the Scriptures and development of Christian doctrine. He has written The Ministry to the Congregation (Nashville, Tenn., 1897); The Way of the Preacher (1902); The Idea of the Church (1906); and The Listening Heart (1908).
KERO: A monk said to have lived in the monastery of St. Gall during the rule of Abbot Othmar (720-759) and formerly supposed to have been the author of the Old High German interlinear version of the Benedictine rule and the "Keronian glosses." This tradition, however, originated with Jodocus Metzler (d. 1639), and owes its currency chiefly to Melchior Goldast (d. 1635). Other works were also attributed to Kero, probably on the basis of the name Kero or Kerolt written at the end of a St. Gall manuscript which was burned in 1768. There was actually a Kero at this monastery in the latter part of the eighth century, but he can not have been the author of the translation of the Benedictine rule prepared shortly after 802 at the command of Charlemagne, for this version, uncouth, corrupt, and grossly unintelligent, was the work of several hands. The Keronian glosses, moreover, are an extract from an Old High German interlinear translation of a Latin dictionary, the version apparently originating at Freising about 740.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: On Kero consult: B. Pez, Thesaurus anecdotorum novissimus, i. 3, p. 586, Augsburg, 1721; W. Scherer, in Zeitsehrift für deutsches Alterum, xviii. 145-149; KL, vii. 393. On the Benedictine rule, P. Piper, Nachträge sur ältern deutschen Litteratur, pp. 22-162, Stuttgart, 1898; on the glosses, R. Kögel, Ueber das Keronische Glossar, Halle, 1879.
KESSLER, JOHANN (JOHANNES CHESSELIUS, or AHENARIUS): Reformer and chronicler of St. Gall; b. at St. Gall, Switzerland, 1502 (1503?); d. there Feb. 24, 1574. He studied theology at Basel, and in 1522, attracted by Luther's fame, went to Wittenberg, where he was fully won for the Reformation. On his return to St. Gall in 1523 he abandoned the idea of taking orders, and became a saddler. Nevertheless, in 1524 he began to preach and hold meetings in private houses, and the impression he made was so strong that the magistrates became alarmed and interfered. In 1525 he resumed his ministerial work, and in 1536 he became, with the consent of the council, the regular preacher to the Evangelical congregation of St. Margaret. Vadian introduced him into the circle of his friends, and the council elected him to various positions. In 1537 he became teacher of ancient languages at the gymnasium, and in 1542 regular pastor of St. Gall. On the death of Vadian in 1551 it became the task of Kessler to continue the Reformation. He was a careful observer and made use of his leisure hours to write a chronicle on the persons and events of his time, which he entitled Sabbata (ed. Ernst Götzinger, in Mitteilungen zur vaterländischen Geschichte, v.-x., St. Gall, 1866-68). It is one of the best and most fruitful sources for the history of the Swiss Reformation from 1519 to 1539, and for the history of the inner life of the time.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Sources are his own letters, preserved at St. Gall and his writings. A new ed. of the Sabbata, with notes and biography, was published by E. Egli and R. Schoch, St. Gall, 1902. Consult also: J. J. Bernet, Johann Kessler, ib. 1826; Schaff, Christian Church, vi. 385, vii. 127; S. M. Jackson, Huldreich Zwingli, New York, 1903.
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