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.Messrs D. Wood and A. McClure, churchwardens, reported as: follows'; — "The annual balance sheet reveals very

satisfactory financial progress. The total indebtedness has been reduced by £207. A sum of £125 18s has been paid off the debt on the Vicarage, which now stands at £981 5s lOd, and the overdraft has been reduced from £176 10s lOd to £95 7s 3d. On the other hand a further analysis shows that, when compared with last year's receipts, although fairly large sums have been received for patriotic purposes, there is a falling off of £25 in the moneys received for actual church work. This, no doubt, is due in a great measure to the influenza- epidemic, which necessitated the closing of the church for nearly the whole of November. It must be acknowledged that until the loan money is very materially rediiced the vestry will find it difficult to extend the church's usefulness by appointing a Curate to assist tKe Vicar, and we confidently look to parishioners to maintain^ if not increase, the support given in the past. We cannot conclude without expressing our hearty thanks to the Ladies' Guild for never failing to render considerable financial,. assistance when most•needed. This band of. faithful • workers. handed over to the vestry the very handsome sum. of £110. \We hope every parishioner will regard it as a duty to support the efforts of these ladies who, year in and year out, give so much of' .their, time for the benefit of St. Stephen's. The following officers were elected :— Vicar's warden, Mr D. Wood; parishioner's church warden, Mr A. McClure; jnombers of vestry, Messrs W. Osman, F. W. Watt, W. Chikls, C. Allard, F. Pritchard, R. Peters, E. Smith, R. Stock, C. J. Buckto.n, and E. H. Mansell ; Fairfield representative, .Mr Cootes; auditor, Mr W. Woods. Mr IX Wood was appointed to represent the Parish at the Synod.

Th© Vicar stated that it was suggested to spend Mr Harper's. £50 donation in an iron fence at the church. The estimated cost of the fence had not yet been obtained.

Mr Hillier paid a tribute to the choir, and stated that one 'had only to go to another town to appreciate all the more St. Stephen's 'Choir on his return. He considered the parishioners owed a debt of gratitude to the choir.—The Vicar supplemented Mr Hillier's remarks, and stated that the attendance of the rchoir throughovit the year had been excellent, and often^put ! the congregation to shame in "that respect.—A hearty, vote of thanks was accorded the auditor (Mr W. Woods). Mr D;. Wood moved a hearty vote of thanks to the Vicar and his .wife. He' stated that Mr Wright had carried out his duties admirably, while Mrs Wright had worked hard to supplement the finances of the church.—The motion was carried by acclamation. Special thanks was accorded the' workers and lay readers, Messrs C. Allard and R. Peters. . | Mrs Service .suggested that the Parish .should have a deaconess.—The Vicar replied that there was no reason why they should not have a deaconess, but the difficulty at present was that no deaconess was available. This was due to their services having been absorbed in orphanage work. Failing a deaconess he considered that ' they might get a good Parish worker. ,

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Bibliographic details

CHURCHWARDENS' REPORT., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9603, 7 May 1919

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CHURCHWARDENS' REPORT. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9603, 7 May 1919

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