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Unlikely NY scribe handwrites Good Book in 4 years

May 6, 2013 • National News


Phillip Patterson transcribes the King James Bible at this home on Tuesday, April 30, 2013, in Philmont, N.Y. Four years after starting with Genesis, Patterson will finish up the final lines of the Book of Revelation during a ceremony at his church, St. Peter’s Presbyterian in Spencertown, N.Y., on May 11. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)

PHILMONT, N.Y. (AP) — In the beginning, Phillip Patterson decided to write out every word in the Bible.

On empty pages, he wrote of Adam, an ark, locusts, loaves, fishes and the resurrection in his neat, looping cursive. Four years of work begat more than 2,400 pages and left a multitude of pens in its wake. Now, as he copies the last words of the last book, Patterson sees all that he has created.

And it is good.

“I hadn’t counted on the fact that it would end up being beautiful,” Patterson said. “Or that it would be so exhilarating. And so long.”

Patterson, 63, might seem like an unlikely scribe for the King James version of the Bible. Tall and bald with a hearty laugh, the retired interior designer is neither monkish nor zealous. He goes to church but has never been particularly religious. Health issues — including AIDS and anemia — have sent him to the hospital and slowed the work. He relies on two canes and will lean on walls and furniture to get around his apartment near the Massachusetts Login to read more

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