feEVISHfG THE PRAYER-BOOK,
■ PROPOSED ALTERATIONS OF THE RUBRICS. LONDON". February 19. The Committee of the Church of England appointed to revise the PrayerBock has just issued its first report, af-j ter two years' inquiry and deliberation.l From the public point of view the most interesting features of the report are probably those dealing with the use of Eucharistic vestments and the alteration of the rubric about the Athanasian Creed. In regard to the former the Committee is divided. The majority recommend two alternative vestments for the minister at the time of celebrating the Holy Communion, viz., (1) the surplus with stole or scarf and the hood of his degree, (2) the Eucharistic Vestments commonly so called. They consider it expedient to recognise both these vesturps as "lawful under proper regulations," but they do not define •the "proper regulations." The Dean of Canterbury and Canon Henley Henson dissent from this recommendation, for reasons which it would take too long to specify here. With regard to the Athanasian Creed, the committee propose that for the "Quicunque vult." the present rubric be ■iltered by substituting "may be sung or said" for "shall bo sung or said." But to this there are two minority reports. The Archdeacon of Oxford. ChanWorlledge, Canon Hammond, Prebendary Ingram, and Canon Bartram "would greatly, deprecate the disuse in the public worship of the Church of this most valuable statement of belief," while the Principal of Cuddesdon desires its continued use "without the monitory clausPS." These six presumably Tepresent the amount of support to be found in a committee ot 24 for the present system of compulsory public recitation. The other "minority report," which is signed by the deans of Canterbury, ■Westminster. Winchester, and Christ Church, merely give reasons why the substitution of "may" for "shall" is ■nnsatisfartory and insufficient; nan-ely, that it throws the onus of decision on the minister: it still gives the Church's sanction to the public recitation of the monitory clauses; as a plain, it is inferior to that of merely printing the Quicunque at the end of the Prayer-book, "as an ancient document of the Church," without the existing rubric. GENERAL PROPOSALS. A' very large number of suggestions occupy the greater part of the 80 pages of the report. They include the revision of the Leetionary, with a view to the occasional substitution of lessons from the Old Testament "more profitable for the members of congregations generally"; the retranslation of certain passages in the Psalms; permission for some "other fit person appointed by" the minister to read the lessons; the substitution of other Psalms on occasions frpprotvfedf bytbei ordinary; permission for the use of the Litany after the third collect at morning or evening prayer, or before the administration oi the Holy Communion, or as a separate service; the much-needed revision of the first six "prayers" and the last seven "thanksgivings/ with the addition of prayers for home and foreign missions and for the convocations "during their sessions: the suggestion of a form of bidding prayer ("this form or to this effect"); the omission in the Commination Service of the phrase about the restoration of "the said discipline" being "much to be wished," from which Chancellor Worlledge dissents; and the correction of unfortunate passages such as "our vile body," the interpolated clause about the "three witnesses," and "the gift of divers languages." There are altogether 128 clauses in tlie recommendations. The most interesting group themselves round the Sacraments, the Communion of the Sick, and the Burial Service. THE BURIAL OP THE DEAD. The Committee have proposed a new and alternative Burial Office of great beauty and simplicity. It includes Psalms 13 ("Ueque quo, Domine"), 130 ("De Profundis"), and 23 ("Dominus regit mc"), and other more "comfortable" lessons, while its prayers incorpoTate such petitions for the faithful "departed as correspond to the careful position of the Church of England in this matter. This proposed qffice "may be used whensoever the kindred and friende cf the deceased so desire." There is also a proposed "Order for the Burial of Children who have been baptised."
CHTTBCH NEWS AND NOTES.
King Edward las forwarded a cheque for lOOgns to General Booth. The covering letter states that it is a "donation from His Majesty towards the great -work dn which you and your officers are, ■svith such success, daily engaged, in relieving .the necessities wf the deserving poor." J The important question of- insurance is receiving attention by the English Presbyterian Church. The property of the various congregations,, including churches, halls, mission-halls, tout *_ot manses, is insured for £1,707.713, representing an annual -premium of £1280. Archbishop Colgan, of Madras, is said to be the oldest. Prelate in the world. H« -sraa in India, before the provinces of Otago and Canterbury were founded in this Dommion.
It is evident that the Chinese ere making strenuous efforts to overcome the opium habit. The Rev. IL. Lloyd, writing to the Church (Missionary Society from Fuh-chow, states that as the AntiOpium Society is very active in that neighbourhood, there is now not a single acre of land under poppy cultivation in the -whole region. It is believed the day is not far distant when stringent regulations will make it almost impossible to obtain opium, except fox -medicinal purposes. Dean Gregory, of St. Paul's Cathedral, is over 90 yeare of age. He was for 40 years a canon, and has been dean for 19 years. The appeal to the Baptist Churches in England for a week of self-denial on behalf of the Baptist Missionary Society ds reported to have been very successful. It is probable that the threatened deficiency of £i 13,000 at the end of March ■will be entirely obviated. As there are 424.003 members and 578,344 scolars, one shilling from each worshipper would raise fully £20,000.
The R-ev. W. P. Dott has been appointed seereta>ry to the department for medical missions in connection with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. Mr. Dott v.-as for four and a-half years rector of Woodstock, near Cape Town. There are appeals already before the Socieny for 38 doctors, 20 hospitals, and 21 dispensaries in various parts of the world.
The Roman Catholics of Dannevirke cleared £400 by the bazaar held ■to ra&e funds for the reduction of the debt on the Church building. A pastoral letter from the Dutch hierarchy was read in all the Old Catholic churches in Holland on Quinquagesinia Sunday, announcing that- the use of the vernacular, instead of Latin, will henceforth be adopted for Mass and other liturgical offices by the Church of Holland. The Imperial Sunday Alliance, which has for its object the better observance of the sacred day in England, is gaining ground steadily in the Old Country. There is a growing feeling that the ona day in the week should be one of quiet rest. A revised order of iunernl service, containing an appreciable amount in English, besides the traditional passages in Hebrew, has bean prepared by Rabbi Cohen at the request of the Board of Management of the Great Synagogue, Sydne}, and is now being printed for the use of congregants and other mourners. The religious welfare of those engaged in the Antarctic expedition whs evidently cared for. "On the way down," a member of the Ximrod's crew stated, " there were a number of cases put on board for the use of the ship's party. These were opened, and it was found they contained tracts. Why, we had enough tracts to paper the South Pole with! They were spread a-bout all over the ship for weeks, and we were nearly going to give an armful or two of them to the people at HalfMoon Bay. It's all right being religious, but tracts don't make you feel any more cheerful when the ice is hanging from your whiskers." It is considered probable that the Rev. Father Holbrook, of Cambridge, will shortly be transferred to Auckland. In fact, several changes may take place after Easter. The Right Hon. Lord Kinnaird is the new president of the London V.M.C.A. This organisation is about to undertake the erection of a home for young men in London at a cost of £ 150,000. The home is to contain several hundred bedrooms.
The next convention of the World's Sunday School Association will be held in Washington, D.C., U.S.A., from May 19 to 24. This Association has branches all over the world, and is entirely interdenominational in character. Its object is by co-operating with missißnary organisations and in other ways to seek to extend the work and increase the efficiency of Sunday schools. The chairman of the executive committee (Mr Geo. Bailey) has forwarded a circular letter, which states: "We deeire to secure a large delegation from' New Zealand to this convention. From the success of our previous conventions, held in Jerusalem and Rome, sve are warranted in expecting that the Washington Convention will be the greatest missionary Sunday school gathering the world has ever known. Representatives from every important country of the globe will be present, and of course, New Zealand will be benefited in proportion as that country i 3 represented. I have had the pleasure of meeting a number of young men from New Zealand who are students in the University of Pennsylvania, and from these I have learned more about New Zealand than I ever gathered from books. You have an interesting country and are doing a splendid work along Sunday school lines, and we need your assistance in bringing the rest of the world up to the high standard which you have established." <g. The World's Missionary Congress is to be held in Edinburgh in June, 1910. It is intended that Lord Balfour of Burleigh shall be chairman, with Lord Reay, Sir John H. Kennaway, Bart., and Sir A. H. L. Fraser as vice-chairmen. The congress will continue for a period of about ten days. Eight commissions have been appointed, each having not more than 20 members, and these commissions will make a thorough investigation of the larger missionary problems. Amongst the subjects to Be considered are: (1) Carrying the Gospel to all the world; (2) the native church and its works; (3) education in relation to the Christianisation of national life; (4) the missionary message 5n relation to non-Chris-tian religions; (5) the preparation of missionaries; (6) the home base of missions; (7) missions and governments; and (8) co-operation and the promotion of unity. Every society administering ■funds and sending out missionaries for the propagation of the Gospel among nonChristian peoples, and possessing an annual home income of £200 and over will be entitled to one representative af the conference and societies having £4000 of income and upwards will be entitled to two representatives, with an additional representative for every further £4000 of income. The delegates may be members or secretaries of the society, missionaries from the field, or representatives of mission churches.
"Ideals and their relation to the coming camp" was the subject of a stirring address delivered by Mr. Ernest P. Hay to the members of St. Peter's V.M.B.C. ■last Sunday. He was accorded an excellent bearing, and an interesting discussion followed. Another address will be delivered on April 4 by Mr. Hector McILean, M.M., agent of the Youth of the Church Committee. Mr. Hay ie the secretary for 'the Dominion camp of the Presbyterian Y.M.B.C, that as to be held at Kohimarama this Easter.
The Auckland Methodist Mission has decided to celebrate the 25th. anniversary of the Rev. James Wilson's entrance to public life. On May 24 is the "silver jubilee." For the past eight years Mr Wilson has laboured in this city; during the last six years has founded and built up the mission now housed in the Eaststreet Hall. The first congregation was composed of 15 people, in the old Foresters' Hall. To-day the congregation is from 1000 to 1500 on special occasions. The mission workers are taking hold of this "silver jubilee" celebration to present a purse of gold, which will be devoted entirely to carry on the forward evangelistic ■work, Mr Wilson refusing to accept any personal money present.
A great many people ask why is P.S.A. so continuously advertised with the Auckland Brotherhood meetings. and work. We find that this is a well-known meeting, formed nearly 30 years ago by Mr John Blackham, England, and everywhere he founded a "Pleasant Sunday Afternoon Service" it was branded P.S.A. This badge was the mystic sign for more than a-quarter of a century in England. Out of this work for 10 years or more past has arisen the Brotherhood movement, which to-day is moving every city in the United Kingdom. France began in August, 1908, Her first Brotherhood P.S.A.; to-day there are 20 societies. Brussels opens a society on Whit Sunday, while that veteran worker I-i the Brotherhood and P.S.A. movement the Eev. F. B. Meyer, is on the eve of planting the P.S.A. banner in Rome and Constantinople. It is hoped that he may be in Auckland in 1910, the guest of the Brotherhood and P.S.A.
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