AND CENTRAL EUROPE
Chapter I. An Intrepid Traveller
Chapter II. A Personal Picture
Chapter III. Stimulating Experience
Chapter IV. A Far-Flung Diocese
Chapter V. A Busy Bishop
Chapter VI. A Clerical Diplomatist
Chapter VII. Glimpses Here and There
THIS is a charming account of a singularly charming man.
I gave my tribute to him as I stood in front of his coffin in S. Stephen's Church on January 19, 1933. But I should like to add a few words as to his social gifts. He was one of the most 'interesting' men I have ever met. About every six weeks, I lunched with him, when he was in England, in his flat in Greycoat Gardens, and every time the moments flew past and I found it was the time for my afternoon engagements before we had nearly finished our conversation.
This book expresses why he was so interesting. He had been all over the world and had gone through so many experiences, and therefore he had a broad outlook on men and things. This was very useful in our monthly discussions at Fulham, when I meet all my suffragan bishops and archdeacons, as he was able to give us an 'outside' view of our domestic problems.
I am very glad that this little book has been written. It expresses to some extent the secret of my old friend's influence and will be read with great interest by the many people who loved him.
A. F. LONDON:
S. Luke's Day, 1933
THE task of preparing this little Memoir was self-allotted. Bishop Bury's biographer has yet to arise. In the meantime, I felt that some record should be available of the life of one who could never pass unheeded on his journeyings in both hemispheres, whose experience of men and affairs was world-wide, and who, both by example and precept, helped us all to meet our daily problems and perplexities, and to observe and enjoy the playtime hours.
I should like here to acknowledge the courtesy of The Churchman Publishing Company, by whose kind permission certain extracts from Bishop Bury's writings have been included in this book.
S. McD. H.
I FEEL it my duty to write a few lines in this Memoir in attempting to show my great appreciation and gratitude to my Father, although what I say here will be inadequate in expressing exactly what I feel. The moment that as a choirboy of ten years of age I came under his guiding influence, my outlook on life changed for the better, in fact I was brought into close touch with God by his influence, and but for him this might never have been my good fortune at all.
This has not only been my experience but that of many a boy who has come under his care, and I know there are many like myself who are also very grateful to him.
Once a friend always a friend--he never lost sight of you--always ready to give help when in distress, whether spiritually or materially. All know his wonderful optimism, how it brought out the very best that was in us and made us do things that seemed impossible.
From 1903, I accompanied him on his summer holidays abroad, finally going with him on his two first visits to Central America. These years were among the happiest in my life and are full of the most cherished memories. Wherever my Father went, there was evident his amazing power to win over the hearts of all men to whom he gave God's message, whether white or black. In doing this he was prepared to take any risk, enduring personal discomfort and often perilous conditions; but all this can be found in the books he has written. I don't think there is any man of the present day who can be said to be more like the Apostle S. Paul. The response given by the negroes in the prison of British Honduras after his talk with them was most wonderful and inspiring; while there are those in prison to-day in this country who are able to live a fuller and better life through his personal visits to them even in the last year.
All know of his wonderful and successful work in America and Europe, how his addresses have helped to bring nations and peoples into closer touch.
His war services, too, were outstanding in this respect; but here he has been allowed to pass on without the smallest recognition from his country. Yet the greatest honour that was given to an Englishman during the war came to him. He was the only one officially allowed into Germany to visit the British civilians in Ruhleben. At this time, feeling between the two countries was at its worst, nevertheless the enemy knew they could trust a true Christian. What a joy his visit was to the segregated men is remembered by all; but his true report on the conditions found there did not find favour in his own country. I must mention here that he never spoke of this injustice himself, it is my own opinion entirely, and, I must add, there was no one more faithful and proud of his own country.
I conclude these lines by saying that I have not so far met anybody who so did his utmost to live up to what he preached to others, and enter here the words written in his last two diaries:
'"January 1, 1931.--My ideal for the year--"To be God's Almoner." I begin the year with the deepest thankfulness to God."
'Christmas Day, 1932.--How thankfully I got up at 7 a.m., and what a joy my Christmas Communion. All day it seemed making room for Him in the Inn. A most beautiful Eucharist at S. Anne's, Soho, when I really think I was happier than I have ever been in an ornate Service and greatly enjoyed my sermon.
'Monday, December 26th.--7.5 a.m. with thankful thoughts of a singularly happy and thankful Christmas Day where every part of it was with God.'
As all his diaries had to be burnt, and had been kept daily for over fifty-eight years, you will understand that these thoughts are not just idle words, but very heart and soul of a man in communion with God.
H. V. B. ROCHESTER