Phases of Church Work
CHARLES H. DANT
ANTHONY TREHERNE & CO., LIMITED
3 AGAR STREET
The Author acknowledges his indebtedness to Mr Frederic Lowndes' Bishops of the Day (published by Grant Richards) for several facts connected with the lives of two or three of the Bishops whose biographies appear in the following pages, and to Whitaker's Almanack; Hazell's Annual, and Pears' Cyclopaedia, for some interesting details in regard to the geographical position, etc., of Zululand.
We live in an age when people are prone to the idea that there is nothing new under the sun. Be that as it may, a spirit of emulation is rife. Day by day we witness a growing disposition on the part of men and women to value the efforts of others who achieve success in laudable walks in life, and who, in vindication of the philosopher's theory that imitation is the sincerest form of appreciation, copy their ideas and seek to disseminate good with the same gratifying results.
Holding tenaciously to this view of things, I trust no apology is needed for the presentation of the accompanying unpretentious volume. In the matter of Church life and Church organisation the ways and means which have answered with profit in the past, and are still doing so in the present, cannot be too widely known; nor will the man whose labours have been happily crowned with success regard with jealous eye the comrade who judiciously adopts, or enlarges upon, his ideas and follows closely in his footsteps. At any rate, let it be urged that the Church is a body—a brotherhood, if you will—working together for good—not of individuals but of the Cause, the Cause dear to the hearts of all true members. About the publicity of ideas there is this one great advantage—it tends to make them common property; they, in fact, get put into operation by the many instead of the few or the individual, and the outcome is the more pleasingly abundant.
In the preparation of the present volume the object has been to deal, in language readily understood by all, with some distinguished Churchmen of the day and the particular phase of the work with which each has prominently identified himself. There is no assumption that the volume is so comprehensive as to embody all the distinguished men of our time; nor is it to be supposed that all phases of the work have been brought under review. There is a limit to all things, especially to a volume. To avoid misunderstanding, however, explanation of one or two points is necessary. In the first place, the collection has purposely been restricted to men in Orders; and in the second place, there has been a serious endeavour to give balance to the book and to avoid favour towards members of any particular party. The responsibility attaching to the narratives, let it be made clear, belongs to myself; but, with regard to the dialogues, I gratefully acknowledge the valuable help afforded, at my solicitation, by the gentlemen through whose mouths the different stories of the work—promoted and sustained as it is in many lands—come with far greater weight than would have attended them had they simply emanated from myself. Above all, it must be distinctly understood that each Churchman concerned has tendered his contribution quite irrespective and independent of what the others may have conveyed.
The deduction to be drawn from it all is that the scope for the Church's influence is ever extending, and those who profess allegiance to her need to watch carefully, and to respond loyally to, the requirements which this extension entails.
To be taken for what it is worth the volume is launched upon the world. That it may serve to quicken interest in the numerous channels through which the Church strives to fulfil her mission—that it may help to call forth more labourers, and to spur on those already in the service to more strenuous exertion, is the sincere wish of
- "INGLEDENE," COLLIER'S WOOD,
- MERTON, SURREY.
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