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SAINT-WORSHIP. WALES in the past, was a land teeming with saints. Indeed, if we believe the old chro- nicies, there were in existence at one time rather more saints than sinners. The pity of it was, that the saints of those days were not discovered until many years after 4iair departure. Totbeircontemporaries they were simply faddists and agitators; ireu who lived in the world, and yet were not of it. In reality, the world was not worthy of them. Posterity has done them justice, and possibly more than justice, but as far as the human mind can see. a little recogni- tion of their merits and the purity of their ¡ aims during their lifetime, would have been preferable, not only to themselves and their contemporaries, but also to their me- mories in days that were to come. But however much those old heroes were neglected during their lives, they are wor- shipped after their death in a way that is apt to nauseate a zealous Protestant. It is true that they have not yet been elevated quite into gods, but they have been endowed with qualities, which the 'saints' themselves never dreamt that they possessed. These remarks are applicable to the titular saints of the four British nations—Welsh, Irish, English, and Scotch, as well as to many if not most of the 'saints' canonised centu- ries after their death by the Church of Rome. St. David is more or less of a myth, and so are St. George, St. Patrick, and St. Andrew. Now, however, gallons of wine are consumed to their honour, and every unfortunate chairman of a public dinner has to ransack his brain for something to say about them. 0 We, as Welshmen, are more concerned with St. David, of whom a great deal is heard on or about the first of March in each yair. and very little at any other period. However little we know of St. David, we make long speeches about him, all the details of which are generally sum- med up in the words that he was a good man.' But every good man in the true sense of the word is a saint, although we cannot go so far as to state that every saint' is or was a good man. Out of the mythology of St. David, there has, however, been built up a temple of nationality-, to which we do not in any way object.. St. David is placed on & pedestal, and there a halo of Welsh sentiment encircles his bead, making it next to impossible for any loyal Welshman to re- fuse to bend the knee in adoration. This is not prohibited worship, it is an outlet for the Welsh soul, which is often placed far away from its own beloved land. It has often been asked why it is that the Festival of St, David is honoured with more unanimity out of Wales than it is at home. We find that there is more enthusiasm about St. David an i his day' in English and other I foreign' towns than in Wales itself. It affords an occasion for all classes and all creeds, who love their mother country, to meet together and to indulge in that senti- tifnent of nationality which is free from selfish ness, and above political consideration. A I Welsh Chiirel)r-rian iii one of our con- temporaries emphasises this difference of feeling in England and Wales and lays the blame on the right shoulders :— 'The continued popularity of the St. David's Eve service at St. Paul's Cathedral is a scathing comment on the policy that has so long controlled the administration of the Welsh Church. The Deans and Chap- ters of the Welsh Cathedrals draw thou- sands upan thousands in the main from Welsh national property. In their official capacity they shut their doors against the language of the nation, whom they exist to serve. The canon law of the undivided Church does not forbid vernacular Welsh sermons the twenty-fourth article of the Church of England declares that' it is a thing plainly repugnant to the word of God and the custom of the primitive Church to have public prayer in the church or to minister the Sacraments in a tongue not understanded of the people,' while the ordi- nary courts of England have alike in the days of Queen Elizabeth and George III. condemned English services in Welsh speak- ingparishes as an infringement of thecornmon law rights of Her Majesty's subjects. Yet, in spite of all this the Welsh cathedrals, existing, as a Weish Dean has said, to give a high model of religious service to their several dioceses, choose in spite of all warn- ings to remain what Norman swords made them—the last strongholds of a religious system repugnant to Welsh sentiment. Our cathedrals,' wrote the Welsh Princes to the Pope in 1200, which should be glorious and noble, are ruined by this sub- jection to England and Canterbury and this, after seven hundred years, remains un- redressed. If Welsh Deans and Chapters were willing to be but as good Welsh patriots as the Dean and Chapter o" St. Paul's, Lon- don, if they in their official capacity were willing but to make one day in the year— and that the. day of the Welsh national saint, from whom their proudest cathedral takes its n,tme -p. time when the national language of a religious people might resound from their pulpits, when the grandest hymns in Christendom might re-echo through their ancient aisles, they would do more, as the success of the St. Paul's experiment proves, to bring back Welsh Nonconformity to the Church than by a century devoted to the working out of the problems of the statis- tical theology of the St. Asaph school. One sees evidence occasionally tuat some con- ception of this truth is dawning on the more II educated members of the Welsh clerical body. If power or fraud could have ex- tinguished a race and a language, Welsh nationalism would long since have passed away. Deserted by its nobles, betrayed by its Church, Welsh nationalism resting in the hearts of the Welsh people, threatens to survive the one and to defeat the other. English Churchmen and Welsh Churchmen I in England are beginning to grasp this truth, and well will it be for the higher digni- J taries of the Church in Wales when they begin to do the same.' Another clergyman—the Rev. Mr. Prit- chard, vicar of Phoslianerchrugog-preach ing last Sunday, gave a true description of the attitude of the Church towards Welsh national movements. In reviewing the Church in the past, he pointed out its deS- I ciencies and the causes which had led a arge number of the Welsh people to leave the fold. He urged that the Church should aim at winning the sympathy and love of j the Weish nation, and this she could best do by respecting Welsh national, movements and throwing herself into all the great ques- tions which concerned the prosperity of the Welsh race, If she did this, a Church so venerable in years, so jinked with national history, could not fail to command the es- teem and veneration of the Welsh people as one that ''loveth our nation.' J. We hope that the traditions of the past interwoven as they are with the facts of the present, and the aspirations of the future, will cause the Church in Wales to recognise its true position, and resolve to work in its proper sphere. Any movements that are for the benefit of the Welsh nation we heartily commend irrespective of the party or creed that inaugurates them. There is plenty of room for work in which we can be all united, and the Church of England may yet do a vast amount of good work in Wales, although it can not be for long what it has never deserved to be—the Established Church of the nation.



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