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BISHOP JULIUS IN ASHBURTON.

I _,—„ The Eight Rev. Bishop Julius has paid his first visit to Ashburton and gone hence to visit other parts of his diocese, leaving behind him a sense of invigoration on the part of all who had the privilege of meeting and of hearing him, and carrying away with him the love and esteem not only of members of the. English Church bufc of Christians of all denominations. His Lordship arrived on Saturday by the | express from Cliristchurch. There was a large number of people on the platform, and His Lordship was welcomed by the Rev. E. A.v Scott, and Messrs John Curtiis and C. Littlecott, Churchwardens ;Mr Geo. Jameson, Lay Reader, and several members of the Vestry. After salutations, His Lordship, accompanied by the Rev. E. A. Scott, Mr Jameson and Mr Curtis, drove to the Parsonage in a carriage and pair, handled by Mr E. Cookson, while the bells of St. Stephen's rang out a peal of welcome joined in, we were pleased to notice, by that of the Church of the Holy Name of Jesus (R.C.). In the evening,' ftt the invitation of the Rev E. A. Scott, the Churchwardens and members of the Vestry were received at: the Parsonage by Bishop Julius and took tea with his Lordship. At eight o'clock a 1 PUBLIC MEETING took place in St Stephen's Schoolroom, there being about 200 present—a number which would have been doubled or trebled had the meeting happened on any other evening than Saturday.' The Rev E. A. Scott occupied the chair, and on the right of the platform were seated the Church officers, the Revs J. H. Gray (Wesleyan Church), A. -R 1-1:-"Pr-:-;--:--\ and J. Boothroyd ■!''■'■■■'■ v. Vi- i.,;.. . and on the left the choir under the conductorship of ,Mr H. Gates, Mr. W. C. Walker, M.fl.R., occupying a seat on the left of ■ thechairman. An apology was received for i the absence of the Rev J. N. Buttle. Hymn No. 363 havingbeensung and prayer offered, the Rev. the Chairman opened ; the proceedings in a short address. He ; said he felt it to be a privilege as well as i a pleasure to introduce to those ■ present the new Bishop of Christchurch, though ; His Lordship was not a stranger to them, as they had learned a grest deal about ■ him through the public press. He, the . speaker was a little disappointed that < there was not a larger meeting on this , occasion, but this was to. be attributed i to the fact that it was Saturday night, and a great many were unable to leave i their stores and places of business. That Ashburton was indeed glad to see his : Lordship would he felt sure be abundantly testified on the morrow; and on behalf of • those who were absent that night as well as . on behalf of those who were present, and ' on behalf of all the people of this ! part of the diocese, he begged^ to . extend to His Lordship the most hearty ; welcome, and to thank him for thus ; early taking an opportunity of coming i among them." He, took this as. a good ; augury that Bishop Julius would take a > lively interest inthe welfare of the country : districts, who would have no cause to' feel • as they had felt, that they had been left i a little out in the cold" by the" "clergy of L Christchurch. He trusted his Lordship i would long live to use his great gifts for l the good of the Church, and that .God i would abundantly bless the fruits' of all ; his labors. The Chairman then asked Mr ' Littlecott to read an address of welcome that had been drawn up for presentation 'to Bishop Julius. , ,', ',*".';' ; I Mr Littlecott addressed the meeting at » some length, expressing the pleasure with l which he had read the Bishop's manly ; and outspoken utterances on the Dockers' ; Strike in London—a bloodless revolution > the conduct,of<■ which with its, entire, . absence of disorder'—not even a pane of ■ glass being broken, reflected credit.on; i those men who took part in it. The ' Church could not afford to .stand aloof . from all the great movements of the time, ■ and he was rejoiced indeed that they had i in their Bishop the exponent of a manly i and vigorous Chris! i;»ii(y suited to the . age in whicK we live. lly then read arid , presented to his Lordship the following | address of welcome :— „'" To the Right Rev Churchill Julius, Lord • Bishop of Christchurch:—May it please your ! Lordship—We the undersigned, the church- • wardens and vestry of the parish of St Stephen's, Asliburton, in the name and on . behalf of the members of the Church ■of England in this parish of your Diocese, ; desire to extend to your Lordship the most ; cordial welcome, and to express our high appreciation of the solicitude for the welfare of all parts of the Ecclesiastical province committed to your Lordship's charge, manifested by your thus early taking occcsion to come among us. Having for many years been blessed with the faithful oversight of your Lordship's venerable predecessor,, the first Bishop of Christchurch, we, $3 churchmen, since the announcement of Bishop Harper's intended resignation, have looked forward with anxious hope to the appointment of a worthy successor to one who has proved to us and to the whole church in New Zealand, in verity a father in God. and our hearts were rejoiced when we. found that under the- guidance of the great Head of the Church," the choice of the Synod had \ fallen upon yoiu'self, of whom the praise has gone out through all tJi§ churches. We recognise in your Lordship one who is bold in the cause of the truth, one whose influence will be felt far and near, and whose great gifts will add lustre to the high and holy office to which you have been called, and we feel persuaded that both clergy and laity will find in your Lordship a Bishop indeed, a loving father, a ■ faithtul councillor, and a helper in every good word and work. We rejoice in welcoming your Lordship on this your first; visit to Ashburton, and earnestly pray that He whose minister you are will abundantly bless your Lordship in the office of chief pastor, and in your person and family. We are, your Lordship's faithful servants, John Curtis, Claries LittlecoLt, Chuchwardcns ; George .Jaint'ton, J. H. Twentymaii, J. R. Bland, ■ X .1. Paul, W. J. Steward, W. G. Eccs, A, 11. Field 2Vestryme.n,' <

His Lordship, Bishop Julius, who was loudly cheered on rising to reply, said that some little time ago he passed through Ashburton for the first time. It was evening, and he saw nothing of the beauty of the place, but he did learn something of the warm and hearby feelings of the people. The church bells were ringing—he had nob heard church bells for many a day ; and he mefe Ashburton people on the platform. His welcome at Ashburfcon was the earnest of that great welcome which he received—and which he never* would forget—in Christchurch. He was anxious to see all parts of his diocese as soon as possible, and he was now on his way. on- a visit to the. various districts committed to his charge. Why 'he should have pitched upon Ashburton as the first place to visit he did not know —in fact he was afraid that it was an ac-; cidenfc—(laughter.) It had been arranged for him to go somewhere else, but that fell through, and so he came here, and he thanked them for the kindly welcome they had given him that night—(applause.) He felt that that welcome was accorded rather to the Christianity he represented and the great Church of which he was a mem- | ber, than to himself, who was but a poor humble member of the Church of God. He was told that Ashburton was only about 16 years old. If so, a 'stranger would be surprised that so much had been, accomplished in so short a time, and would look with wonder at what had been achieved—at their large warehouses, their big street (a laugh)— Well, it was a big street (Laughter.) But coming from another Colony he was quite used to seeing even great cities spring up in a few years. As for himself, he was an Englishman, a Cockney as a matter of fact. He f had been accused of being an Irishman ; he did riot object to that, because he liked Irishmen, but still he had. not one drop o\ Irish blood in his veins. He had also , been told that he was a Scotchman, and he could have taken off his hat for the honor, but the fact remained that he was 1 a cockney and nothing else. But although |He was a cockney he had seen English villages, and if one asked the age of one of these—say a hamlet of about 800 inhabitants—he would probably be told that it dated from before the time of Alfred the Great. But in this new world and hemisphere the towns rose up very quickly. He came from a colony very vigorous and very go-ahead, and he was not surprised to see what energy and commercial activity had accomplished here. He wanted to congratulate them that they had no great city overwhelming the life of the country districts. As a good Ballarat man he did not like Melbourne, which swallowed up all they in Ballarat wished to retain for themselves. He was very glad that Christchurch was not a Melbourne, and he hoped that it never would be. There was one other matter on which he had to congratulate them, and that was that the seat of Government was in the North Mand, and that they in the South could pack their legislators on board ship, and get rid of them for three months "in the year. (Laughter). He could.not see anything which tended to the peace, of the couutry more than this. )Laughter.)' His Lordship said that many people seemed to think that he intended making sweeping ■"changes in the diocese, but such was not ,his intention. He was taking the place* of a venerable and deservedly loved Bishop, to whom the diocese owed a lasting debt of gratitude. It was hard tm stand in the shoes of a man like that, and as he. looked around on the difficulties of the position he felt almost overwhelmed with them. There was the matter of finance ;,he did not love 1 finance, perhaps because he never had much money of his' own, and if his wife had not kept his accounts hewouldhavebeenin the workhouse long ago (laughter). They would understand his feelings when plunged among leases, mortgages, and , debts. If there was anything he hated it was a debt, and a Church debt more than all. In Victoria the Church had no property and could not borrow imoney but here the temptation seemed to have been too great and they got i horribly into debt. People did rn-^ !"ko p-vr^n? doV= ho h-.r\ never seen j.M.V'fo w!:;> till ir.,i !■.<■ "i-ii-cl the, Church would never rest till she was clear of all encumbrance. He trusted that everything-would be settled ere long so that the Church might devote ' her whole attention to the great work of spreading the Gospel far and wide throughout the country. He trusted that the Christchurch Cathedral would realise the true functions of a Cathedral, that it would be the heart of the diocese, sending force and life throughout the whole. He hoped that it would never fee said that Christchurch had a cathedral and the country none, but that a man in Hokitika or Westland would feel that it belonged as much to him as to anybody else. There was, a time in., England when an English Cathedral was the mo^t idead and alive place anyone Wuld see in a da'y's^march. He was not an old man, but he could remember when only two or three hundred worshippers assembled in St Paul's, when the service was conducted by two or three sleepy church v dignitaries, and someone ground out a sermon which nobody was the better for. But go jfco St Paul's now. In the-.workmenfs dinner hour, during Lent) 'thr£e >£hbu'sand men congregated under that dome, and on a Sunday morning 7000 people attended. It must be remembered too, that it was r not merely the congregation,who were benefited, but that the influence of that Cathedral was felt throughout the whole diocese, and that everybody in London :was the better " for " it. That was the. true idea.of, a Cathedral, and'he trusted thak theirs in Christchurch would realise it. He hoped that the edifice would ere long be completed, and that ifc would exercise the influence which it should from one.end of the diocese to the other. He had always thought that a gr.eat mistake, had ■ been, made by t , those who planted'the church' in'these colonies, in too slavishly adhering to the system existing in the Old Country. One of the evils thus imported was, he thought, the' parochial system. Because that system was suited to the conditions of the Old Country, it appeared to have been thought that it must necessarily be good here, but that was not so. It might be decent and good enough in this town,.but it would not do for the country which stretched between the town and the mountains. In many instances the consequence of this system was a poor clergyman, placed in a 1 district which it was thought would go ahead, but which didn't, getting thinner | j year by year. A fine Church had been built—by running into debt—and the re-! suit was that the poor clergyman, who 1 had been pitchforked into his place, I worked on amid manifold discouragements, losing heart more and- more, and at last sinking into a mere toiler for his daily bread, a position which he should never occupy (applause), He thought that instead of a lot of little parishes they should, have one great district, and he thought that in this direction other ohurches had taught the Church of England a lesson which it would be well for her to lay to heart. What a grand thing it would be for a country church'to send up its vicar to Christchurch for'three months and have him ( come, back refreshed and vigorous. Men could not go on preaching to the same congregation year af^er year. In this way men in the^ity should go out into the country and men in the country go into the city, aye, and into the slums—he supposed they would have them in Christchurch before' long — for he was sure that the sooner the ministers of the Church got among the masses the better it would be for the Church. It hud been said that: he Av;is going 1o make great changes, but ho was following in the footsteps of a '..:,, man. He came hero to try and learn, and, to carry on the work of his prede-

ccssor, applying his strength and vigor to ; the extension of that work, and if there " were new methods which it was advisable to adopt, he would bring them, on as time served, and as God helped him. He would make no pledges. He remembered a story of a Bishop in Australia who said that he never meant to lay hands on a man for ordination who had not taken a University degree, and the first thing he did was to ordain two men who not only had never taken a University degree, but were a pair of the most unmitigated > duffers:>-.<.-the speaker had ever met. This was verywrong on the part of the Bishop,. but it was wronger still to make any.! .pledge on the subject at all.. God" help^ r 'lum*lie wanted to show all the '.-sympathy iirhini for the struggling churches, and for the Christian community of the,wh,oie diocese. He wanted, to, live full" of; sympathy,' :lmd ; love "with the clergymen"' of other churches.. He .would, not f sacrificf,Jbhe principles of his' own* 'church^itiiwere' 1 folly to do'so—butii was his earnest desire to work ■ hand in: hand' and heart with heart with them. ■ For: let it be re-. membered that^wheir they came i»- tfece the great problems of the day^'.the spread , 'of indifference and stepticism, and 1 those , dark shadows now spreading over thefoce • of our Nineteenth Century civilisation, there wsis surely a call to men of every " church to draw closer together and realise that bond which united them,' so that'fhey might present one heart, one soul, and one united front to; meet the difficulties of the.day. ;He must confess that those difficulties were very great, and here 1 he .was reminded of ,C»n experience hV had with a. cab, driver.^ /Asking to be driven to a friend's house the man said " Oh your.Reverence I donttknowjwjiere , it is." .On being, tjpldvthat^he must' fin 3 it the man replied, " Well your Reverence I'll find, it, by going /there ''-T^kaghter.) He suspected that? he would have to f find these difficulties and the way p^ifc-qf; them by "going .there. "And he knew this much, that difficulties which often seemed overwhelming^ would, if j; met manfully, melt away. His liordship concluded by thanking them .heartily for meeting him so kindly, and said that he would not ; readily forget the reception; he; h»d re- „ ceiled .in this town~(loud applause). ' The Rev Chairman having thanked the Bishop fpr his address,; and ;againj expressed the pleasure of the people at hia .thus early, paying, a visit to Ashburton, a hymn was sung, and the meeting was terminated by His Lordship pro.nouncing the benediction.,,'j., (.. r^

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Bibliographic details

BISHOP JULIUS IN ASHBURTON., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2433, 19 May 1890

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BISHOP JULIUS IN ASHBURTON. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2433, 19 May 1890

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