The Catholic Movement and the Society of the Holy Cross.
By J. Embry, M.A.,
Vicar of St. Bartholomews, Dover.
London: The Faith Press, 1931.
YEARS OF PRUNING.
The year 1874 was underlined by many high personages, both in Church and State, as a special time for "putting down Ritualism." In addition to the suits against the Rev. A. H. Mackonochie already in process, two other brethren of the Society,the Rev. C. Parnell, Vicar of St. Margaret's, Liverpool, and the Rev. J. Edwards (afterwards known as Baghot de la Bere), Vicar of Prestburywere being prosecuted with a view to enforcing the Purchas Judgment. In April, the Archbishop of Canterbury (Tait) had introduced the Public Worship Regulation Act, but while it speedily became Lord Shaftesbury's Bill rather than his, yet it was accepted by the Primate and many other of the bishops, who were anxious for speedy legislation against the "ritualists."
The forces opposed to Catholic Truth were very formidable. The Hierarchy, almost as a whole, Parliament and the general Press showed the bitterest animosity. Nothing seemed too absurd or too manifestly false to be believed if said of those who sought to uphold the Catholic Faith. Truth had become imagination and charity a forgotten virtue, where the "ritualists" were concerned. Especially was this the case with the majority of the public press. Even the journals that did not sink down to the use of abusive epithets played their parts by trying to kill the Movement with ridicule. There were cartoons of "Father Chasuble" and "Father Candlestick." The phantom donkey of Palm Sunday had been known to walk in certain churches. Fantastic reports both of priests and services were printed, in which the credulity of the public was only equalled by the ignorance of Catholic ceremonial which catered to it. On All Saints' Day (sic) the Vicar of a well known church carried his coffin into church and lay down in it, in the presence of a large congregation. An illustration of a "ritualistic service" represented a priest clad in a hybrid vesture, half cope and half chasuble, wearing the headgear of an Oriental Priest and reading, presumably, Morning Prayer, while kneeling in an old-fashioned reading desk of the semi-pulpit type. Old ladies shivered in warm drawing-rooms at the contemplation of Smithfield fires, or were enlightened by hedge parsons on the meaning of "the three frogs," and "the number of the beast." A protestant publication solemnly warned fathers of families to "beware of curates with trinkets dangling at their waistcoats," for one might turn out to be the dreaded symbol of the S.S.C. for which no devised ostracism was too wide. No means were too base to be used for the suppression of "ritualism."
There were, too, in the Catholic lines at that time, not a few who came to the conclusion that Catholic truth and practice had no place in the Church of England, and so some withdrew their open support and retired to the safety of "The old Anglican position," while others severed their connection with their friends, and sought peace and refuge by secession to Rome. But S.S.C. felt that there was but one thing that could save the situation, and so its watchword became that which the Cross suggested,No Surrender and No Desertion. It never expected that the "offence of the cross" should cease, and so it resolved that each should stand shoulder to shoulder, and that if one should be swept away, here and there, it would only close up and fix its feet more firmly in the ground. In the conviction that it must fight, it resolved to fight bravely and wisely. The Society was convinced, amid all this discord, that it had a message for England. It was to tell her that Catholic truth alone could heal the breaches of the Church and meet the cravings of the human mind. The value of individual safety became a cipher, if at such a cost so great a work could be done for God and England. The cause might suffer for a time, but if truth suffered not through it would in the end win the day.
It would be superfluous to dwell at length on the attitude of the Society to the Public Worship Regulation Act. To all Catholics, its origin, its objectionable clauses, the ignorance of the nature and constitution of the Church manifested in the debates, its aggravation to the consciences of the faithful, and the entire absence of any spiritual authority whatsoever in its provisions, made the Bill simply abhorrent. On the practical side of its opposition, the Society formed a Committee, which drew up a valuable Report and resolved to communicate with the President of the English Church Union with a view to co-operation between the two Societies. The first to be prosecuted under the new Act was at the time a Brother of the Society, the Rev. R. J. Ridsdale, Vicar of St. Peter's, Folkestone. Of those who went to prison, the Rev. A. Tooth, the Rev. T. P. Dale and the Rev. R. W. Enraght were at the time members of the Society, while the last imprisoned priest under the Act, the Rev. J. Bell Cox, although he had retired some time before his prosecution, had been for many years a very senior brother of the Society. Two other Brethren of the Society attacked in the early operations of the Act were the Rev. C. Bodington, Vicar of St. Andrew's, Wolverhampton, and the Rev. T. T. Carter, Rector of Clewer. Both of these persecutions however, were terminated by the respective Bishops (Lichfield and Oxford) exercising the veto which the Act allowed. A brother of the Society, the Rev. J. L. Fish, who waged a courageous fight at St. Margaret Pattens, faced a Vestry which passed a resolution to prosecute him under the provisions of the Public Worship Regulation Act, on the day it came into force.
While the Act was being concocted and its authors "breathing out threatenings," Fr. Mackonochie, true to his principles and withal dignified, urged that no one should turn in panic because a flood had arisen, but after the example of what others had done during the last nearly half a century, make their way up stream. It is refreshing to recall how well the Society responded to this advice. It discussed its Statutes, a favourite proceeding for many years, not altogether unlike the sea captain's tact, who when work fell short, to keep his men out of mischief, always issued the order for the anchor to be scrubbed. A Society that could calmly turn its attention to the revision of its Statutes at such a time had certainly mastered the quietness and confidence which had been the strength of their Tractarian forefathers.
The Society at that time entered into all the episodes of the day which affected the Church directly or indirectly, and went on giving its contributions to the serious things of Catholic truth and practice. Its membership at this time was at the highest point in numbers it had ever reached, while in the meetings, whether at the Synods or at the Monthly Chapters, there was little to indicate the anxieties pressing at the time. The Society was filled with the courageous and silent example of its Master (A. H. Mackonochie) and joyously as it were, "clasped the burning robe round, thanking God." In 1875 we find the Society suggesting the general rule of Western Christendom, which has since become a practice in these Provinces and is now printed in Church Calendars, that when Lady Day falls in Holy Week its observance should be transferred until after the Octave of Easter.
Children's Treats were not overlooked at this time and came up both for criticism and suggestion. It was insisted that what in so many cases was "noisy selfishness and gluttony" should be turned into the channel of right recreation. Fr. Nihill, at St. Michael's, Shoreditch, had tried the experiment of a Christmas Play with a chorus, and a priest in cope had read the Gospel story describing the scene. Again recently at Christmas 1874 he had done the "Flight into Egypt."
In 1875 the religious world was aroused by the visit of the two American revivalists, Messrs. Moody and Sankey. The great impression they exercised and the methods they adopted, which on the whole were new to England, produced a movement which it was impossible to ignore. The humour, story-telling and persuasiveness of the one, and the solo-singing of the other, attracted thousands. They belonged to no particular dissenting community and were not antagonistic to the Church. They made no attempts to administer sacraments. Their teaching was defective in two respects. They substituted an easy remedy for sin in place of .the hard work of penitence, and in pressing our Lord as Saviour, failed to recognise Him as Emmanuel. A society like S.S.C. which had its origin in real evangelistic work and the desire "to dig the pit for the Cross " in London, was bound to form some decided opinion of this startling movement. The Society freely recognised that although the methods of the two revivalists were strange, yet the Holy Spirit did sometimes work in other channels external to the Church, and that uncatholic England might in the first instance be touched by uncatholic means, to be brought into the full light of Catholic truth. To mission preachers like the Rev. R. R, Bristow there was much in the Movement that called for assistance as far as it was allowable, and to one who knew the criminal world and the dark side of life, like the Rev. J. W. Horsley, there was in spite of its one-sided doctrine, a wish of God-speed to it, in the face of London's immorality. It was felt that while Catholic priests were bound to stand aloof, it should be in passive sympathy and prayer and not in censoriousness, and so while recognising the defective doctrines of the teachers and their imperfect methods of dealing with individual souls, the Society resolved that, although it was prevented from any active co-operation, yet it would pray earnestly that both the preachers and the hearers might be rightly guided into all Truth.
Quite interesting in another kind of way and far removed from a consideration of the methods of Messrs. Moody and Sankey was the suggestive, not to say subtle, suavity with which the Society Considered the attitude of Catholics Towards Freemasonry This at a time when doctrines were being attacked under the mask of tirades against ritual gave it a special piquancy. There were a few members of the Society, who owned to being Freemasons but had not attended Lodges since their ordination. There was nothing advanced of the pros and cons which had not been said many times before, and doubtless will be said again. There were no strong remarks on either side and the conclusion arrived at was that it needed discrimination and care. An amusing possibility of questionable strategy was quoted, in the story of a priest (not of the Society), which might have made the P.W.R. Act a dead letter from the first. This particular parish priest had been able to put down the opposition which had been raised against him, by threatening to bring the ringleaders, who were Masons, before the Lodge.
The Temperance Question was much to the fore in the seventies, and so we find it discussed in S.S.C. in the Catholic spirit which would be expected. While it was agreed that the Baptismal Promises rendered a special pledge superfluous, nevertheless the line taken by the C.E.T.S. was considered a safe one. It was impossible, in face of the controversies of the day, to resist some playful allusions to the regalia of Good Templars.
Of the many effects of the Catholic Movement on the religious mind of England, few have been more marked than the change in the treatment of the Christian Dead. It is with a shiver that we think of hatbands and scarves, of metal coffins, of inserted glass face plates, of feasting the living instead of offering Requiem for the dead. Yet these were the ceremonies still in vogue in the early seventies. The Guild of All Souls, which has had such beneficial influence in reviving Devotion to the Faithful Departed, was founded in 1873 and was at that time in its infancy. The Society had done and was doing a great deal towards creating an atmosphere of reverence in the celebration of funeral rites, and in emphasising the truth that "our bodies are the temples of the Holy Ghost." The Rev. R. R. Bristow and other Brethren of S.S.C. formed Burial Guilds in their parishes. The use of lights in the chamber of death, or a proper mortuary fittingly arranged, open funeral cars as being preferable to closed hearses, were advocated. The use of flowers, with burial on the third day, as often practised in the North of England, was thought a means to counteract the mistaken notions of respect for the dead shown by burial delay and sombre surroundings, so prevalent in the south. It was pointed out that a funeral celebration was nearly always appreciated by the people. Should anyone doubt the influence which S.S.C. has had in promoting reverence to the Christian dead, he has but to watch a funeral procession go down the road to-day and see every man's hat raised in reverent salutation as the hearse containing the body passes by. Habits of devotion have ever been infectious, but it has not been uncommon for people to be unaware of the source from which a pious custom came, or who, it was that was the first definitely to revive its use.
In other ways the Society was endeavouring, as its deliberations show, to vary its paths of usefulness and to watch, in every direction for the exercise of spiritual impress. Even such things as Men's Clubs and the best use to make of Harvest Festivals in towns became subjects of absorbing interest. Still more far-reaching, and at that time quite unique, was the attention drawn to the theatrical profession. The Society urged that priests who had the opportunity should strive to reform and purify the stage, so that it might become "a power making for righteousness."
The literature side of the Society was not being neglected. It continued its issue of Tracts and other approved pamphlets. A Paper read before the Society on,"The Procession as an Act of Worship," by the Rev. J. B. Powell, was printed, and also an epoch-making Sermon, by the Rev. J. W. Horsley,"Are Catholics Catholic?" Another Sermon peculiarly adapted to the times, by Fr. Mackonochie, was also printed,"Who is this Son of Man?"
The Society always held a meeting at each Church Congress as it came f round. This not only helped to extend a knowledge of the aims of S.S.C. and bring earnest-minded priests to its ranks, but in the Congress itself it bore its witness. At the Stoke Congress, for example (1875), members of the Society had taken part in the debates on Confession, and Lay Agency, their contributions to which had been very valuable and they had well held their ground. At Croydon, three brethren of the Society were placed on the "Subjects' Committee."
During this time of special anxiety, it was inevitable that the question of Disestablishment should arise. Not only in the minds of Catholics, some of whom looked upon it as a moral necessity, but even in the minds of those who thought the union of Church and State to be the most precious asset, there was a general feeling that it was a political act that could not long be delayed. In the Society opinions were divided, but it inclined to the side of reform rather than of severance. The Rev. H. D. Nihill, who was nothing if not pointed, said two or three things in connection with the discussion, which are worth recording. One was that if those who seemed so anxious to be rid of their "endowments" would send to him the proceeds thereof, he would relieve their consciences from the burden by devoting them to religious purposes unconnected with the Establishment. In answer to two favourite questions of the time, he replied,"Our Lord, Who is not only the same to-day and for ever, but yesterday as well, did found an Established Church amongst His ancient people. When St. Augustine came over to convert England, he went straight to the king, and used the world's power for God, and all the Monk missionaries were wise enough to do the same."
While these years were filled with varied efforts of propaganda and of usefulness, it must not be forgotten that the frown of the Public Worship Act was always present. Fr. Mackonochie had once compared it to a hawk poised in the air, waiting to pounce, and no one knowing on whom it would pounce next. For Catholics, these were years of pruning to bring forth more fruit, for they were years of threatening, and in some instances of determined attack as well. These were times when the trend of events made it necessary to utter no uncertain sound and as a consequence the attitude of Catholics to this recent legislation had to declare itself. The policy of the Church Association was to "snipe" certain prominent priests, whose ministry had been signally blessed by God and, as measured by all known standards.
Til strikingly successful, and they found allies in a few of the more protestant bishops, whose sole aim was to stamp out Catholicism. As brethren of the Society were the men marked out to be attacked, so they relied, not only on the sympathy and prayers of their brethren, but also on the united line of policy which the Society could offer them on canonical grounds.
The Society knew that it would be called upon to fight, and so had resolved to do it both bravely and wisely. It was determined to deal with the bishops as bishops, but not as officers of the New Court, and so when a case was likely to be brought forward under the Act, it was thought strongly advisable that the priest concerned should deal at once, if possible, with the bishop in his spiritual capacity, so as to induce him to stay proceedings and avoid any legal action under the Bill. If, however, a priest found that a bishop was proceeding under the P.W.R. Act, then the priest should respectfully inform the bishop that he was unable to recognise his jurisdiction in so far as he was acting under the provision of the Act.
The Society, all through this trying period, made it quite clear that it was impossible to address the bishops as Spiritual Fathers and State Officers at the same time. It never lightened its emphasis in declaring that Canon Law did not mean an Act of Parliament, and that an incumbent had rights as well as the bishop. A bishop's action underlet of Parliament was null and void. If any inhibition or deprivation was issued from the P.W.R. Court, even if supported by the Diocesan Bishop, or Provincial Archbishop, on the authority of the Court, it was canonically null and void. It would ordinarily be the duty of any priest, thus inhibited or deprived, to remain in his parish, and to minister, as far as circumstances permitted, to the wants and necessities of his flock. In these utterances the Society was upheld by the convinced opinions and co-operation of the English Church Union.
There is no necessity to follow the bad odours of the P.W.R. Act. In the history of S.S.C. it was an occasion of silent suffering, not of debate. The Act failed ignominiously in its purpose. It has fallen into desuetude, whose repeal is scarcely worth the time necessary to bring it about. That it has failed in its fell and blundering purpose is owing chiefly to the faithful priests, who fought "both bravely and wisely."
From these external events, which affected the public policy of the Society, we turn for a moment to its internal life. The Society's Synodical year which ended with the Invention of the Cross (May 3rd) was in 1876 marked by a change of presidency. A revision of the Statutes had enacted that no one should be capable of holding the office of Master for more than three years consecutively, and Fr. Mackonochie, who had held the Mastership for thirteen years in succession, wished that the new Rule should come into operation at once. He was thus released from a position which must have taxed his energies more than can be known, for during the whole of the period he himself had been harassed by the unsought anxieties of St. Alban's, born of the persecution to which he was subjected. He had never swerved in his devotion to the Society, which for thirteen years he ruled with unusual tact, wisdom and enthusiasm.
It was announced that Fr. Lowder had been elected to the Mastership by the votes of the Society but, at his earnest request and by permission of the Synod, he was released from holding the Office. The choice then fell upon the Rev. F. L. Bagshawe, Vicar of St. Barnabas', Pimlico, a priest held in high esteem, no less for his personal devotion, sound Catholicism and largeheartedness, than by the association of his church environment. As will be seen later, the time of his Mastership was destined to be contemporary with the period of greatest difficulty, odium and trial through which the Society has ever passed.
The sea of trouble into which the Society was plunged in 1877, over The Priest in Absolution, made the Master's part a very difficult one, especially as the matter, when it arose, was left to him to deal with according to his own discretion. This crisis in the Society's history will be dealt with separately; it is sufficient for the moment: to record that the possibility of an official condemnation, by a panic-stricken Convocation, influenced by a biased Episcopate and a protestant agitation, made it appear probable that for the general good of the Church, S.S.C. ought to be disbanded. The advisability of doing this was actually suggested. The unhappy affair cast an entire dark shadow over Fr. Bagshawe's Mastership, while in no way of his own creation. He had no misunderstanding of what S.S.C. was. His policy, could he have been free to carry it out, would have been to impress, as his predecessors had done before him, the great object of the Society, as a Confraternity of priests bound together by definite rules of life. He was imbued with the true spirit which the Founders of S.S.C. possessed, and grasped its aim for the deepening of the priestly life. He dreaded in consequence any approach on the part of the Society in going beyond its province, by laying down or defining either dogmatic decisions in theology, or regulations of an iron-bound uniformity in matters of ceremonial. His contribution towards deepening and strengthening the principles of the Society could be summed up in the two words, which he himself employed as his own ideal of it,sanctity and counsel. After the close of his second year of office, Fr. Bagshawe, feeling personally that the uncompromising position taken up by the Society at this time was strategically unsound, placed his resignation of it in the hands of the newly-elected Master (T.T. Carter, 1878). A resolution in Chapter begged him to reconsider this decision, while expression was given to the deep regret which S.S.C. would feel should he withdraw. In a subsequent letter written in affectionate terms he adhered to his resolve. During the remaining short time of his life, he sent greetings to the Brethren in Chapter when occasion offered and remained f one with the Society in all "great questions." He passed away in the summer of 1879. The Society in Chapter sent a resolution of "sincere regret" to his mother (Mrs. Bagshawe) and further resolved that his name should be placed on the list of Deceased Brethren in the Roll.
Apart from the "crisis" and the discussions arising out of it, the chief event of interest in the Society's procedure in 1878 was the strong line it took towards the Order of Corporate Reunion. Reference to this will be found in a subsequent chapter.
Canon Carter held the Mastership for one year only. At the May Synod, 1879, Fr. Mackonochie, after an interval of three years, was again elected Master.
The five years that have been under consideration saw the removal, by death, of some of the Society's most valued Brethren.
The Rev. J. C. Chambers passed away on the Octave of the Ascension (May 21st) 1874. He came from Perth of St Mary's, Crown Street, Soho, about the time the Society was founded and was one of its very early members. He was one of the Founders, in 1863, of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, whose first meet-pings were held in Crown Street. We have already seen that S.S.C. held its first meeting here, and that in the same place the S.S.J.E. Cowley had its rise. In the Memories of a Sister of St. Saviour's Priory, we are told that Fr. Chambers was "a true friend and wise counsellor," whose "charity was unbounded," and that those "who knew and loved him, always spoke of him as 'Father John,' for he was indeed the Father of his people." He was a lucid, solemn and powerful preacher, well-versed in Patristic writings and the mystical interpretations of Holy Scripture. A set of Addresses delivered in Crown Street, during Advent, 1872, and published after his death by J. T. Hayes, entitled The Destruction of Sin, well illustrate his powers as a mission preacher and his aptitude for clothing accurate theology in simple language and edifying illustration.
His wide learning made him an authority in his day on Canon Law, Ritual and Liturgiology. He was also a good moral theologian, the writer of the Essay "Private Confession and Absolution" for the Church and the World (Ed. O. Shipley, 1867), and gained also a posthumous notoriety from belligerent protestantism, as the author of The Priest in Absolution. He was Master of S.S.C. in 1862. One who had worked with him in Soho wrote at the time of his death:"There are few about whom .one's hopes are so strong as to his fate in the unseen world. That loving heart of his could only come from its being replete with the Holy Spirit of Love. A rough casket indeed to enshrine so valuable a pearl was the body now hastening to decay. God grant him light and peace." (Preface to The Destruction of Sin.)
Dr. Joseph Oldknow, Vicar of Holy Trinity, Bordesley, who passed away September 3rd, 1874, was a priest of great learning and simplicity of life, with immense love for the Church, and to the people to whom and for whom he ministered. In Wakeling's Oxford Movement, he is described as a "learned divine and writer and an excellent parish priest, the friend of Dr. Neale and many of the early Tractarians, and the result of his labours was shown in a hearty and beautiful service appreciated by a large congregation." In pressing the suitability of practical musical services, he was one of the many pioneers of Hymns Ancient and Modern. He was an early introducer of a printed book of hymns and tunes, which he had selected for the use of his own parish. An illustration of his wide learning and ecclesiastical knowledge may be seen in the Essay "Latitudinarianism," which he wrote for The Church and the World (1867). His thoughtful, clear and Catholic mind was evidenced in his preaching and some published sermons of his Upon Doctrine and Practice had at one time a wide circulation. His priestly ideals, devotional, and liturgical instincts were passed on to others in The Priest's Book of Private Devotion of which he was the Compiler.
To most people, Dr. J. B. Dykes, who passed away January 22nd, 1876, is known by his popular hymn tunes, anthems and musical settings; to S.S.C. he is better known as a devout Catholic priest who made a courageous unswerving confession of faith and practice, and whose health broke down fatally under the strain. Vicar St. Oswald's, Durham, he was picked out by the Church Association for persecution. The Bishop of Durham (Baring) took the petty course some bishops followed of making the parish suffer for the supposed mistakes of the incumbent, by refusing to license him a curate. The saintly Vicar held on single-handed till health and strength gave way. It was Dr. Dykes's Service at St. Oswald's that Lord Beaconsfield had in mind when he coined the offensive phrase,"Mass in masquerade." It was, moreover, this open attack on J. B. Dykes that caused his friend J. Beresford Hope not only to vindicate him in the House of Commons, but also to write a book widely circulated at the time of the ritualistic controversyWorship in the Church of England. It is recorded of Cardinal Newman that he once said, "Lead kindly light" owed its popularity chiefly to Dr. Dykes's tune. His talent in contributing to the literature of ecclesiastical music may be seen from the section, "The Manner of Performing Divine Service," in Blunt's Annotated Book of Common Prayer.
At this period of its history S.S.C. had three branches in Scotland, viz.,Aberdeen, Dundee and Edinburgh. One of the most energetic as also learned of the Scottish Brethren was Canon H. Humble, St. Ninian's, Perth. His integrity of purpose may be gauged from the courage with which he presented the Bishop of St. Andrew's to the College of Bishops for arbitrary conduct in the interpretation of the Cathedral Statutes. He possessed also a genius for drawing attention to forgotten truths. His Essay on Infanticide showed, theologically and metaphysically, the subtle connection there always is between lust and cruelty. In unambiguous language he spoke of the injustice allowed and practised, where the seduced were concerned, and the leniency measured out to the seducers. He forestalled nearly all that Preventive and Rescue Workers advocate to-day. With the same genius his Essay on the Invocation of Saints and Angels, filled as it was with evidence of the most erudite order, did much towards the revival of true Catholic belief and practical application of the Communion of Saints. Not the least point of his thesis was the proof that no great Anglican Divine had ever denied it. The impulse given to the devotion by the writer led eventually to the production of a manual of Devotions on the Communion of Saints, by C. Walker, with a Preface by Dr. Littledale. Canon Humble passed into that higher Communion of which he wrote so convincingly, and devotion to which he had such a laudable share in reviving, on February 7th, 1876.
The Rev. R. Collins, referred to in an earlier chapter, Vicar of St. Saviour's, Leeds, entered into his rest on November 25th, 1876.
Other priests of the Society, who entered the ranks of the Deceased Brethren during these years were:The Very Reverend R. K, Thorn, Dean of Brechin, who, at Mr. Gladstone's suggestion, was the first to assent to the nomination of Dr. Alexander Forbes as Bishop of Brechin, the Rev. J. Briggs, St. Andrew's, Plaistow, and the Rev. G. Hervey, the first Vicar of St. Augustine's, Haggerston, a devoted priest of great mission powers, who died of scarlet fever contracted during work which he carried on as long as strength permitted. Others were, the Rev. W. H. Lanphier, sometime of Shipston-on-Stour; the Rev. J. Maskery, Pitton, Chester-le-Street; the Rev. R. C. L. Brown, Rhodes, Manchester; the Rev. J. D. Jenkins, Aberdare; the Rev. E. M. Chaplin, Rector of Chilton, Bucks; the Rev. A. E. O'Brien, Barrow-in-Furness; the Rev. E. T. Gibbons, Christ Church, Oxford, a scholarly deacon, who at the time of his early death was gathering material for a Treatise on Fasting Communion; the Rev. T. B. Hill, Bassingbourne, who joined the Society in 1863; the Rev. C. Harrison, North Curry, who had joined the Society at its very beginning in 1856; the Rev. H. M. Price, a young priest who had joined the Society when at Brasenose College, Oxford, and whose short and varying residences, in places climatically mild, and death at Madeira, tell their own story.
On October 8th, 1876, the Right Reverend Addington Robert Peel Venables, Bishop of Nassau, passed away. He was the first bishop to be a member of the Society, to which he was admitted in the year 1858. He died at his post, bearing his cross. He did wonderful work in Nassau. He made his diocese Catholic and was spared long enough to make it independent. If it were needed to keep his name green in the Bahamas, "Addington House," Nassau, would be the reminder of him.