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COURANT Office, Tuesday Evening.






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HARVEST FESTIVALS. ♦ HOOLE. The harvest festival was observed at All Saints' Church, Hoole, on Thursday evening, when there was a crowded congregation at the service. As usual, the church was prettily decorated with harvest produce, this work being undertaken by the following ladies:— Mrs. Leet, Mrs. Fenna, the Misses Anderson, Miss Carline, Miss Lloyd, Miss Jefferson, and Miss Baynham. The service was taken by the Rev. A. H. Fish, and an appropriate sermon was preached by the Rev. C. Bird (minor canon of the Cathedral). The musical portion of the service was most effective, the efficient choir, conducted by Mr. Fenna, being heard to excel- lent advantage. Their efforts were certainly praiseworthy, specially on account of the evident labour and painstaking in preparation. The anthem, 'He watereth the hills,' was exquisitely rendered, the music being extremely fine. Solos were assigned to Masters Frearson and Lewis, who acquitted themselves with success, and Mr. Fenna also gave a fine bass solo. The other chants in the service were sung to special tunes, together with the usual harvest hymns. The offertory was devoted to the national schools of the parish. The festival will be continued on Sunday, when anthems and other special music will form features of the service. SAUGHALL' On Monday evening a large congregation assembled in the Primitive Methodist Chapel, when the harvest festival services were held. The chapel, which has recently been renovated, presented a very pretty appearance, the decora- tion of corn, fruit, flowers, and vegetables being very tastefully arranged. The sermon was preached by the Rev. H. Davenport, of Chester. The musical portion of the service was well rendered by the choir, the solos being under- taken by Miss P. Evans, Mrs. Minshull playing the instrumental portions. The collection and the proceeds resulting from the sale of the fruit &c., went to the Chapel Building Fund. HELSBY. The first of the harvest thanksgiving services was held in St. Paul's Church, on Thursday evening, a large congregation being present. As usual, the decorations with flowers, fruits, and corn were very tastefully done by the ladies of the congregation. The late vicar (the Rev. A. Spafford), now vicar at Holy Trinity, Bir- kenhead, preached an eloquent sermon, taking for his text the words Be still then, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.' The special anthem, 'Praise the Lord, 0, my soul,' was excellently rendered by the choir. The offertory, which amounted to L4 7s. 9d., was devoted to the new Lighting Fnnd. NESTON. RESTORATION AND REDEDICATION OF THE OLD FONT. The annual thanksgiving service was held on Wednesday evening, and was attended by a large congregation. A large and experienced staff of workers were engaged upon the decora- tions during the week, and the interior of the building was quite transformed by the wealth of flowers, grain, evergreens, fruit, &c., lavished upon every available object. In accordance with a growing custom, wreaths of flowers were placed upon many of the graves in the church- yard, and on the memorials in the church. The monument upon the family vault of the late vicar, which has recently been restored by his children, was specially decorated by his former gardener, Mr. T. Evans. The service was intoned by the Rev. H. It. Sherwen, and the special lessons were read by the Vicar (the Rev. Canon Turner). The anthem was Elvey's The eyes of all wait upon Thee.' The sermon was preached by the Rev. H. Grantham, rector of St. Mary's, Chester, from the words Man goeth forth to his work and te his labour until the evening.' In his closing remarks he dwelt upon the noble work which was being done at the Chester Infirmary and the local Convalescent Home, and asked the congrega- tion to contribute liberally towards the offertory which was to be devoted to these objects. The decorators were as follows:— Mrs. Turner, Mrs. Barrett, Mrs. Bulley, Mrs. Joseph Conway, Mrs. Montgomery, Mrs. R. L. Price, the Misses Busby, Miss Henry, Miss Croston, the Misses Gamon, Miss Montgomery, Miss P. Sawers, the Rev. H. R. Sherwen, Messrs. Knowles, W. Beaty, S. Briscoe, and T. Evans. A special feature of the service was the re- dedication of the old font, which has been restored by Miss Hurle, niece of the late Canon Gleadowe, and a few friends of the late canon. Local antiquarians who have a strong aversion to new friends with old faces learned with a feeling akin to consternation from the parish magazine that such a project was being carried out. The font dates not later than the early part of the fifteenth century, and at a reason- able computation some 20,000 infants received by its side the name which was henceforth to accompany them on their journey through life. It is an "extremely elegant piece of workman- ship" says Mortimer, "erected rather more than four hundred years since. The base is octangular, with a slender shaft and basin, corresponding in form and diameter with the lower part of the base. The lower part of the shaft is ornamented with niches and trefoils, and each side of the basin with panelling, con- taining quartrefoils and other ornaments of the early part of the fifteenth century." When the church was restored about twenty years ago, a new font was presented by the late Mr. Uvedale Corbet, and the old font was placed in the churchyard, where it remained exposed to the weather for several years, this treatment eliciting strong remarks from some of the local historians. Finally, it was again brought into the church, and placed at the west end by the belfry, and now amid the changes, brought about by the whirligig of time, it has in its turn supplanted its successor, and the latter is relegated to the position of comparative obscurity which befel the old font. To' touch up' the familiar liniments of the old font seemed to savour somewhat of sacrilege, but the work of restoration has been carefully and artistically done by Mr. Haswell of Chester, and the antiquated appearance of the font has not suffered in the slightest. The ravages made by time have been carefully repaired, the bowl has been lined with metal, and a handsome carved oak cover has been added, while an additional base, and a new plinth of Yorkshire stone, over four feet across and five inches in depth, has added to its imposing appearance. A brass plate inserted in the surface of this plinth at the rear of the font bears the following inscrip- tion :—" Ad maiorem Dei gloriam et in niam memoriam, Richardi Gulielmi Gleadowe in oed Cath. Cestr Hon. Canon, hujus parocbiae lustra prope VIII. Vicarii qui anno aetatis suae LXXXVI., III. Kal April, MDCCCXCVII. Emeritus requievit. Hunc Fontem vetustate dilapsum restituendum curavere nonnulli ex amicis." The re-dedication took place after the third collect, when the clergy and surpliced choir proceeded down the nave to the font. A special service had been compiled for the occasion by Canon Turner, and printed copies were distributed to the congregation. The concluding prayer referred to the work of restoring this font' undertaken for the glory of Thy name and to the memory of Thy departed servant.' HAWARDEN. Dedication and harvest festivals were cele- brated at the Hawarden Parish Church (St. Deiniol's), last week. On Tuesday (Holy Cross Day) full Gregorian evensong, and sermon by the Rev. J. C. Joyce, warden of St. Deiniol's Library, formed the anniversary dedication festival. A belfry service was held on Monday evening, for the anniversary of the church bells, and concluded with the ringing of the Dens, un i nursaay the church was tastefully decorated with flowers, fruit, and grain, and a large congregation joined in the harvest thanksgiving service. 'He shall dwell,' by Barnby, was rendered by the choir. The sermon was preached by the Rector (the Rev. S. E. Gladstone), who took his text from Matthew xiii. 30, 1 Let both grow together till the harvest.' Touching allusion was made to the death of the late Archbishop of Canterbury, whose death happened nearly a year ago, and it was mentioned that it is intended to hold a memorial service on the 11th October, when the memorial Cross and brass tablet will be placed in the church. CONNAH'S QUAY. On Tuesday evening the first harvest thanks- giving service in this district took place at the English Wesleyan Chapel. The building was artistically decorated with corn, vegetables, fruit, and choice plants and flowers, kindly sent by the lady members of the church, by whom also the decorations were carried out. The sermon was preached by Mr. W. Bibby, circuit missionary. At the conclusion of the service Mr. Bibby in feeling terms alluded to his departure from the circuit to Liverpool, after having laboured nearly two years among them. Mr. J. Lamplugh, on behalf of the church, expressed regret at the impending departure of Mr. Bibby, and hoped he would be successful in his new sphere of work. HANDLEY. On Thursday evening, at the parish church of All Saints', the annual thanksgiving services for the ingathering of the harvest was held. The sacred edifice was beautifully decorated. At the entrance to the nave were placed choice specimens of garden and field produce, relieved with varigated holly, miniature sunflowers, and asters and dahlias, the handiwork of Miss Spencer. The same lady was also responsible for the decoration of the font, which looked charming. Much pains had been bestowed on the windows in the nave by the Misses Challinor and Parker, while the pulpit was ornamented by Mrs. Ostrehan and the lectern by Mrs. Jackson. The Rector had decorated the Communion table. In the centre was a lovely cross of white flowers, relieved with maidenhair fern, and on each side of the cross was a brass vase containing white flowers. Miss Kelly had tastefully ornamented the choir stalls and Communion rails. The service, which commenced with Come, ye thankful people,' was fully choral, Tallis' festival responses being sung. The Rector intoned the prayers and read the second lesson, while the first lesson was read by the Rev. A. E. Hutton, vicar of Hargrave, who also preached the sermon, from St. John xii., 24—' Except a grain of wheat.' SANDYCROFT. The harvest thanksgiving services in con- nection with the school-chapel St. Ambrose was held on Sunday. The interior of the sacred edifice was tastefully decorated with fruit, flowers, vegetables, &c., by Misses Rigby, Fox, Dutton, and Jane Griffiths, Mr. Higgs, and the Sunday School teachers. At the morning ser- vice the sermon was preached by the Rev. W. T. Williams, curate-in-charge, and in the evening by the Rev. W. H. Bowers, rector of Chatham. FRODSHAM. The annual harvest thanksgiving services were held in Trinity Chapel on Sunday, when excellent sermons were preached by the Rev. J. R. Hargreaves. The edifice presented a pretty appearance, being tastefully decorated with harvest produce, fruit and flowers. The following ladies helped in the decorations:— The Misses Jayne, Andrews, Nicolas, Layock, Rimmers, Shore, Mrs. Hargreaves, Mrs. Conway, Mrs. Nicholas, Mrs. Proud, and Mrs. Andrews. Special hymns were sung, as also the anthems, The earth is the Lord's,' by Lowes, and And the glory of the Lord,' by Darnton. Mr. W. Pickering presided at the organ. The offer- tories amounted to JE5 Is. 3d. A special service was also held on Monday nigct, when the Rev. J. Christian, of Runcorn, was the preacher. SHOTWICK. The harvest festival was held in the old parish church on Thursday evening, and was con- tinued on Sunday. The preacher on Thursday evening was the Rev. J. Dicker, M.A. of Birkenhead. On Sunday morning the vicar, the Rev. G. D. White, M.A., preached, while the pulpit in the afternoon was filled by the Rev. L. M. Farrall, M.A., vicar of Holy Trinity Church, Chester. The congregations at the various services were large.






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