The Rev. Mr. Dudne M. Breeze of Belmont, MA passed away peacefully on July 5, 2020. Dudne is survived by his wife Gail, and his children, D. Murray Breeze III of Modesto, CA; Duncan Breeze of Wilmington, NC; and Andrew Breeze and his wife Elizabeth Cathleen Breeze of Norwalk, CT.
He was born in Boston, and grew up in Belmont. During high school he played football and was a state dash champion in two events. After graduating Cum Laude from Tufts University, he studied at his beloved Union Theological Seminary in New York City, working two summers in a struggling black neighborhood in Baltimore, MD.
After ordination in Belmont’s Plymouth Church, Rev. Breeze served Collinwood Congregational Church in Cleveland, Ohio where he met and married his wife, Gail. He was tasked with community outreach to this multi-ethnic neighborhood when black kids were bused into Collinwood. The ensuing community disorder was featured for many days on national news.
His second parish was Pilgrim Memorial Church in Pittsfield, MA where he founded MICAH, a corporation to provide low income housing. He served as Chaplain and preached at the County House of Correction, represented the local civil rights organization by going to Clarksdale, Mississippi to engage in voter registration, and helped his blue-collar parishioners to survive a General Electric strike.
Next was the Newton Highlands Congregational Church in a Boston suburb where he also served as a visiting instructor in homiletics at Andover Newton Theological School. Parish work in Newton involved cooperation with other churches in joint programming and inter-denominational sharing. Rev. Breeze supervised six seminarians who all chose to be ordained in the Highlands sanctuary.
In 1977, Mr. Breeze was awarded a Merrill Fellowship at Harvard University and Divinity School. Some of his fellowship endeavors included a course in “Ethical Aspects of Corporate Policy” at the Harvard Business School and “Moral and Social Inquiry” with psychiatrist Dr. Robert Coles.
Rev. Breeze next spent twelve years at First Church Congregational in Kalamazoo, MI where he savored being in its pulpit as the church grew in its service to downtown social issues such as crack cocaine use.
Rev. Breeze’s last full ministry was in Wilton, CT where he experienced corporate America, after which he did interim ministries in Lynnfield, Danvers, and Methuen.
Dudne loved his family and relished their company. He was a prodigious reader in many subjects and could read quickly and remember everything. Arguing politics animated him as did his passion for golf and tennis. Every year he was trying to perfect yet another golf swing!
Most of all he was a lovely, kind man with a wide generosity of spirit that was present all of his life. His was a life well lived. Any gifts in his name should be directed to First Church in Cambridge, Congregational (11 Garden Street) in Cambridge, MA 02138.