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Stitch in Time.

[No title]


Forden Clerk Complimented.


£ 200 A YEAR.


£ 200 A YEAR. Minimum Wage for Parsons. The Best Kind of Church Defence. They Must Stay or Starve." Revelations at a Welshpool Meeting. The Bishop of St. Asaph draws a salary of F-80 a week. But in the Powis Memorial Church House. Welshpool, last Wednesday afternoon, the story was told of a clergy- man in his diocese, who, after years' ser- vice in the same parish, was receiving the sum of P-64 a year net-" 25s a week, not the wages of a skilled mechanic," declared the indignant speaker. This gathering was intended to stimulate the interest of Powvstand laity in the St. Asaph Diocesan Clergy Sustentation Fund," o that they might give it increased support. The object of the fund is to make grants in parishes with a population of less than 500, where the tithes do not ensure an income of £ 200 a year to the Vicar, also to- help to provide pensions for the clergy, so that they can retire at the age of 65. As the clergy and laity entered the room they were heartily welcomed by Mr Forrester Addie, estate agent of the Earl of Powis, who has the power to appoint the spiritual guides in nearly a score j IÎ Montgomeryshire and Shropshire parishes. In due course Lord Powis himself arrived in his motor-car, and also made himself very agreeable, shaking hands with such supporters as ,'Ir John Lloyd, "Mayor of Trewern." The _)ev R. Evan Jones, vicar of Llanllwcllaiarn, pied a foremost seat in the audience, an i followed the proceedings throughout with evidently great satisfaction, which often showed itself in appreciative smiles. Al- together the assembly numbered about 60 or 70, including the Rev D. Grimaldi Davis, vicar of Welshpool Canon Williams, New- town Rev E. D. Thomas, curate of Welsh- pool Rev J. Latimer Jones, vicar of Llan- fair Rev John Jenkins, perpetual curate of Buttmgton a group of leading Welshpool Anglican ladies, Mrs Salter", Mrs Edward Wyke, Mrs Wall-Griffiths, Mrs Manford, and Miss Oakley Messrs Charles Shuker, G. D. Harrison, J. J. Jestico, H. H. Treasure, Dr Marston, etc., etc. The Chairman\s table was on the plat- form, but Lord Powis and Dr Davis lifted it -down to the floor on a level with the audi- ence—after the manner of the chairman's table at Welshpool Town's Meetings Mr Addie also rendered a little assistance. Lord Powis took the chair, with the Hon. Laurence Brodrick, Abergele, on his right- Mr Brodrick is a brother to Lord Midleton, who recently addressed a Conservative meet- ing at Welshpool, and is probably the most active propagandist on behalf of the Clergy Sustentation Fund in the diocese. On the Chairman's left, there sat a strange clergy- man—the Rev Alured Elliott Black, organiz- ing secretary of the Clergy Pensions Insti- tution. In these days of political storm and stress might be thought- as well to keep a cool iaad But Lord Powis asked permission to keep his hat on. I think it is just as well 5°. the toP one's head warm these h,e reuiarks?d amid, smiles. His Lord- iu ^fortunately had a coid. Altogether iasted two h°urs and tl4en the audience was refreshed with tea. Points from the Speeches. LORD powis. Every dty we are more exacting as to the .sort of clergyman we require to minister to our parishes. We expect to have a man of education, a gentleman in whom we have implicit confidence. You cannot have a man of education unless he has some proper salary, so that he can keep up a position in his parish in which .there are so many calls upon his purse. It is extraordinary how the clergy of the country parishes and the town parishes are able out of their slender incomes to give trie amount of charity which they do. We need to arouse ourselves from the joyrnoot of our inherited endow- ments. "We at the present day almost en- tirely live upon the endowments, which our forefathers were good enough and thought- ful enough to provide for the maintenance of the clergy in their days. In some cases teat is sufficient, in others it is not, because we all know time changes, the value of money changes, and all sorts -of changes take Place, and amongst other things, tithe. And i a.t has altered what in many cases was an < ample provision into a mere penury at the present time. To keep up a parsonage house and to deal with the many calls that there are upon the clergyman in a parish, and to keep up his position properly, such as we should wish him to do, an income of E200 a year is not a very fat living at any time. It is not a very high ideal to set before us. simply the provision of £ 200 a year for a clergyman. Let us go on then towards a higher ideal, and hope to see the incomes raised to £ 250 and £ 300 (applause). Still we must be satisfied with the smaller sum first. We (the council which administers the fund) do not feel that it is desirable in the interests either of the clergy or of the laity that there should be published throughout the length and breadth of the country who are recipients of this charity. MR. LAWRENCE BRODRICK. This work is the very best kind of Church Defence that can possibly be done. The reason that we have to go in for Church Defence, whether we like it or whether we don't, is that there are those who think that we are not efficient, and who for that reason are wishing to spoil us—wrongfully, I admit, most wrongfully! But, if our work is kept at the highest efficiency, that if we draw people to us by the fact that we are the most spiritual body, and are fulfilling that work for which we are sent, then I say that we cut away the ground from under their feet, and that there will be no more necessity for Church Defence (applause). In this country people haven't awakened to the fact-or are only slowly awakening to the fact-that the present provision and the provision during the last 20 years for the maintenance of the clergy is and has been not only hopelessly inadequate, but a scandal to one of the richest churches in the world (applause). In spite of all that has been done by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in raising livings, where there is a population of 500, there are in this diocese something over one-quarter of the whole livings—between 50 and 60 in number—which are still under -2200 a year. I received a letter the other day from an incumbent in this diocese who after 40 years' service in the same parish-and a longer service than that in the service of the church—is receiving the sum of £64 a year net,—(cries of Shame! ")-25s a week, not the wages of skilled mechanic! And that man has laboured for 40 years, year in, year out, keeping a respectable appear- ance, ministering to his parishioners, sup- plying in the measure that he could those numberless calls, which are apt to be for- gotten, from his purse of £64 a year. By your efforts we have been able to make a substantial grant of £ 70 or Y.80 a year dur- ing the last four or five years—(applause)— to bring fresh heart and fresh hope to that man's life, to help him in his declining years to feel that the Church for which he has laboured is not altogether oblivious of his temporal interests. That is no isolated case. In a good many parishes the parson—as he was known I like that good old word he was the person" in the parish-we thank God he is in many parishes still the person," the man of intelligence, of educa- tion somewhat superior to his parishioners, of sympathy, of light, of leading. In the past year there were 750 individual subscribers from the four Montgomeryshire deaneries, and a total sum of something like P-220 was sent. Last year incumbents in these four deaneries received grants ag- gregating F-550, or over double what was sent up from the deaneries (applause). THE ORGANIZING SECRETARY OF THE CLERGY PENSIONS INSTITUTION. The Sustenation Fund provides the sinewrs of war for the Church in that which is most fundamental and essential and vital to her, namely, to provide the conditions that are essential to the efficient ministry of the living agent. This stands first. Nothing can come be- fore this. I don't care whether it is the building of churches, or education, or mis- sions, or other philanthropies or morali- ties. Whatever comes second, there is no second till this first is done! Sacred obligation," my lord, as I am sure you will agree with me, is the char- acteristic and the most dignified note of English Churches. Sacred obligation is the thing that seems to mark us out from all the other forms of Christian faith that differ with us. There are no more generous set of people than Churchmen. Take the contri- butions of Churchmen out of the subscrip- tion lists of the great philanthropic societ- ies, take them out of the hospitals, out of every call made for the public weal and welfare, whether in the county, my lord, or in the country at large, what would become of these funds ? How sadly would they be depleted! How woeful would be the deficit! Brother Churchmen and sister Church- women The time has come when you must discriminate the essential needs of your own churches. Your contributions must no longer be dictated by sentiment and the appeal to emotion it must be dic- tated by solemn and sacred obligation to what is needed and essential in Church work to-day (applause). Our contributions as Churchmen must be stimulated and in- spired by the sense that they are given on the ground of reason, and that they are given on the ground of sacred obligation. There is no professional man in the world who has less control over the spend- ing power of his income than the clergy of the Church of England. If a clergyman is keen and want to get on, and wants some new development of Church work in his parish which his people don't always quite see from his point of view. he has got to take the lead, he has got somehow financially to engage himself. I know that of my own experience. Many of the men who have served the Church faithfully for many years have come to the time when their days of active, beneficent service is ended. No one is more conscious of that than they. They talk to me in confidence. I don't know of anything sadder or anything more de- serving of the sympathy and pity of Churchpeople than a man who knows he can nf4 longer cope with his work. He has built it up by his zeal and energy and de- votion, and then he sees it slipping away from him like a melting snowball. These clergymen cannot go. They must stay, or they must starve. They have got to stay on, and to see the whole thing drifting from them. They say, "It runs through niv whole work. It would be a mercy to me, it would be a blessing to my people, if I could be able to retire. He can retire to-day under the provisions of the Incumbents Resignation Act, the meanest, clumsiest, most miserable- (laughter and hear, hear)--provision that was ever made through the united efforts of Church and State. It means that money that our ancestors in their munificence gave to continue an efficient ministry is dis- tributed in order to provide for a superan- nuated one. It means that a man who has had good emoluments in his life is going to have a good pension. And it means that a man who has had very hard work and very little pay is going to get a very little pension. It means everything that it ought not to mean. The Bishop of London said the other day that the Church was never in time. The fund is in time. What is going to be- come of the clergy when the Church is disestablished and disendowed ? Here is provision being built up—outside the en- dowments of the Church-which no one can touch, against the day of necessity. THE VICAR OF WELSHPOOL. At the present time it is much easier to get the sympathy and the support of Church people towards almost anything ex- cept the support of their own clergy. And that, I say, is due chiefly to us clergy our- selves. We have been diffident in bringing this matter forward. We may build churches, but the living agent is the most important thing, and if the clergy are, as it were, ground down by poverty and by despair, how can you pos- sibly get the best out of them? We are only human beings like you. The Church, you know, is going through a very, very trying time, and a great deal depends upon the way in which the laity will support and back up the clergy at the present time. MR. H. H. TREASURE. I believe we are the only body of Chris- tians that don't support our own ministers. —(Mr Brodrick: Hear, hear.)—That is per- haps why our subscriptions appear greater, as Churchmen, to hospitals, etc. Noncon- formists-I don't mean anything disrespect- ful-have to support their own ministers we haven't. It is a sad thing to think that any clergy- man should try to bring up a family on so small a sum as E200 a year (hear, hear). Some of the clergy do marry. And they have sons, and they want to educate them very often as clergymen. And many of our best clergymen are men who had father as clergymen. And how they are to go it, if they don't get £ 200 a year, I don't know. ARCHDEACON D. R. THOMAS. I should like to say, as having gone through the mill, that the trials and the difficulties of a clergynfan's house are such as I should not wish a layman to go through.—(Mr Brodrick: Hear, hear). The time when I myself have been hard- est up was when I was vicar of a large parish. In those days we had to provide funds for all sorts of necessities in most of the parishes.

With His Own Stick.