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HULL CONFERENCE. WHAT the Archbishop of York described as those great wonderful gatherings of men in the years 1905, 1903, and 1910— gatherings which resulted in the infusion of new life into the Church of England Men's Society—were recalled at Hull last week, when the first conference of the York Diocesan Union of the C.E.M.S. was held in circumstances which will live long in the memory of those who were privi- leged to attend it. The keynote of the proceedings, which lasted two days-Friday and Satutday- may be adequately described in the poignant question asked by the Archbishop at the opening of the Conference "Is the Church of England's Men's So- ciety a spent force, or will it take on a new lease of life when the effects of war have passed?" asked his Grace. From that point onward the proceedings were refreshing and enthusiastic, and their general tone left no doubt as to what the answer to the Archbishop's question would be. Previously the delegates, coming from all parts of the diocese, were entertained at a reception at the Guildhall by the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Hull (Mr. and MTS. P. Gaskell); and among the guests were the Archbishop of York, the Bishop of Beverley, Canon Nolloth, the. Bishop of Hull, Archdeacon Lambert, Mr. H. E. Kemp (lay secretary of the society), and Mrs. Buchanan, wife of the Rev. L. G. Buchanan (Vicar of Hull), who was not present owing to indisposition, he having recently undergone an operation. In welcoming the delegates, the Lord Mayor of Hull expressed his pleasure that Hull had been chosen for the first confer- ence of the York Diocesan Union of the C.E.M.S. His lordship suggested that the beautiful parish church of Holy Trinity, Hull, was large enough to accommodate a Bishop of Hull when those in authority condescended to make Hull a cathedral city." He would not, however, refer to the stipends of the clergy, though he was not aware that they had ever threatened to down tools. Returning thanks to the Lord Mayor, the Archbishop of York said that, as members of the C.E.M.S., they were now at the be- ginning of a new epoch of hope and faith for that great society, and one which would test to the full its capacity to rise to great opportunities. There was never a time when there was a. greater need for shch a movement among the great body of citizens in this country who were members of the Church of England. The only way in which we could meet the present condi- tions was to fill the whole body of the nation with a true spirit, both of com- radeship, faith, and loyalty to the prin- ciples of Christ. Growth of C.E.MS. Following the .reception, the opening session of the conference was., presided over by the Archbishop at the Royal Institution. After tracing the growth of the C.E.M.S. from its inception in 1901 as far as 1914, his Grac& went on to refer to the effects of the war. The strain of war, he said, had produced effects that were not ex- pected. Many men had come back per- plexed and troubled. The monotony an 1 savagery of war had crushed out of them the spirit of Christianity, and spiritual lassitude w&s widespread. The C.E.M.S., he believed, had a great opportunity to become a power, and that it would resolve not to be unworthy of the days that had gone before them. Referring to their War work,,his Grace said the society had raised £ 30,000: for the building and management of huts by the, Church Army in its name. He believed the conference would result in the great resolve that they would not be unworthy of the days that had gone before them and of the call God had spoken to the society. Mr. H. E. Kemp, the lay secretary, said the present wave of superstition, masque- rading under different names, showed that the people blindly seeking after their spiritual, nature. The only thing that could stand up rigainst this was a firni statement that they in the Church of God stood for spiritual truth, and that God was present amongst them. If the society was to be of any use, they must have men who would stand for the highest ideals in married life and who would refuse to re- duce that holy mystery to a pastime. Prior to the resumption of the confer- ence on Saturday a Communion service was held at St. Mary's Church, Lowgate, and the delegates were entertained at breakfast at Hammond's Restaurant by invitation of the Hull Federation. Opportunities. At the Conference Session on Saturday, the delegates listened with interest to an address on the oppottiuiities of the C.E.M.S. with regard to demobilised men, by the R-e-v. R. T. Newcome, a former chaplain, who remarked that as a result of the clergy associating with the men as chaplains at the front, the latter had lost a feeling -of < Pàrson-shyness" which existed before the war, and had come to regard the clergy in terms of tin-hats in- stead of top-hats. Opportunities for extending work among ex-Service men were afterwards described by the speaker, who said that the teach- ing of the Church to the masses wanted good publicity. He suggested advertise- ments in cinemas, open-air meetings, clubs and bright Eervices. The de- mobilis.ed men were not dissatisfied with religion, but with their idea of religion. I They wanted Christ, not their idea of Christ.. At Luncheonj After the closing of the Conference, the Archbishop was entertained at a luncheon in celebration of the jubilee of All Saints' Church, Hull, and in his address, bearing on the generosity of the congregation, his Grace remarked that it was preposterous that the Church of England should ask its clergy—men of education and learning— I to keep up benefices, paying rates and taxes, and endeavouring to meet the in- creased prices of the present times on wages that a railway porter would not I accept. A Noble Thankoffering. Preaching at All Saints' Church on Sun- day night, the Archbishop, after referring to the thank-offering of £1,000 for the en- dowment of the vicar of the parish, said he could hardly trust himself to speak of any congregation which had not sym- pathy and insight enough to know how impossible it was to expect spiritual leadership of men who were hampered by poverty. Taking as his text: a Seek first the Kingdom of God," his Grace said the day was long passed when they should regard churches as comfortable places, where people had their own pews, and went to enjoy just what they liked to hear. In the churches and through them, the message of Christ, the uplifting power of His worship, and the strength of His grace should be brought home to the people. j
PETERBOROUGH READERS QUIET DAY AT PALACI, By the kind invitation of the Bishop of Peterborough and Mrs. Woods, the mem- bers of the Lay Readers' Association were entertained at the Palace on Saturday and Sunday last. About forty members were able to avail themselves of this oppor- tunity of spending a quiet time for prayer and social intercourse. The proceedings began with service in the Cathedral. The Readers robed in the Palace and, headed by the Bishop, walked in procession. The sermon was preached by the Ven. Archdeacon of Oakham (W. G. Whittingham), Warden of the Association. At this service the Bishop "returned the- licences, and admitted several new Readers,, who had been serv- ing on temporary licences. After tea in the Palace, the annual meeting took place, at which the Bishop presided, supported by the Warden and Rev. Dr. Riabie, Rector of Cottingham, and Registrar of the Association. Representatives were chosen as follows: Messrs. Rowell and Holland, for the Archdeaconry of Leicester; for that of Northampton, Messrs. Arlidge and Barton; and for Oak- ham, Messrs. Marshall and Chapman. The Bishop welcomed the new Warden and Registrar, and referred to the debt of gratitude they owed to the Revs. A. I. Greaves and W. Watson, who had served the Association well in that capacity. A paper was then read by Mr. E. Turner, op r Leicester, on The Position and Useful- ness of a Lay Readers' Association." A lively discussion followed. The first service on Sunday was Holy Communion at 8.15, in the Cathedral, when the Bishop was the celebrant. At 11 the members robed again in the Palace, and, with Dr. Woods, went into the Cathedral for Matins, when an able sermon was preached on behalf of Foreign Missions- in connection with the C.M.S., by the Hon. Secretary, the Rev. C. C. B. Bardsley. But the outstanding feature of the Conference, and what the members appreciated most highly was the inspiring services for prayer and de- votion in the private chapel, at which the Bishop delivered three splendid and up- lifting addresses dealing with the Com- mission and the opportunities, laying special emphasis on the work of the Holy Spirit. Altogether a very happy time was spent, and the members came away feeling that it was indeed good to have been there, and full of gratitude to Mrs. Woods and the Bishop for their hospitality. Dr. Woods- expressed the hope that it might be only the first of such gatherings in the future.
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CHURCH AND INDUSTRY. LAYMEN IN THE PULPIT ST. MARTIN-IN-THE-FIELDS was crowded on Friday, November 7, at a mid-day service, the first of a series organised by the Industrial Christian Fellowship of Church House, Westminster. Mr. George Lansbury gave the address, Has the Church a Message for the World at Large To-day? He wished to see the Church in the same position as it was 2,000 years ago. He longed to see Christians in conflict with the present social order. It was the com- mercial competitive system of life that was on trial to-day. The only thing that could break it down was a change in the mental and moral outlook of men. It was the duty of the Church to preach this and to bring it about by appealing to men and women to see, in the life and death of our Lord, that the greatest thing in life is serviceI What each had to give was "All that we have to give" in the great ser- vice of the whole human family of man- kind. The preacher at the next'service, on Fri- day, November 14, at 1.25 p.m., will be Mr. B. Skene MacKay, of the National Union of Vehicle Builders.
SUNDAY OBSERVANCE. THE; present slackness in the ob- servance of the Sunday is a moral disease," declared the Bishop of Man- chester on Monday at a meeting in the Queen's Hall London, in connection with the Lord's Day Observance Society. Major-General E. Owen Hay, who pre- sided, maintained that the growing laxity in the observance of Sunday had been largely responsible for all the sorrows we as a Christian people had gone through during the past five years. The Bishop of Manchester remarked that it was necessary to undertake afresh the work of educating the nation to the kind of observance of the Sunday which ¡ obtained years ago. A resolution was passed viewing with alarm the injury caused to this country j by the growing disregard of the Sabbath.