100 years ago: September 1900
Canadian Churchman reported that a merely sentimental religion may be quite as dangerous as a mere intellectual religion. We are glad to see this side of the truth brought out in one of our American contemporaries; and we are happy to quote some extracts from an article on the subject. “It may be admitted,” says the writer, “that a severe, extreme type of intellectual piety is much more repulsive than attractive. And yet, when all is said that can be brought against such piety, it remains true that the general advancement of Christianity in all ages has been due more to the intellectual forces which have dominated it than to the emotional and affectional elements which have had any connection to Christianity. I am not saying that there should be no heart-power in personal religion; nor do I say that the emotional element should be excluded, but I contend that the leading force in personal piety and in Church life should be highly and agressively intellectual. The whole of the New Testament is pre-eminently intellectual.”
50 years ago: September 1950
Canadian Churchman reported that about 60 cars attended the first “drive-in” service attempted in Winnipeg on Sunday evenings in August. The service was conducted by Canon R.J. Pierce, Warden of St. John’s College, Winnipeg * This autumn the Church of St. Michael and All Angels, Toronto, is conducting the experiment of holding its Sunday School sessions at 9:45 a.m. with only the adult Bible Classes on Sunday afternoon. The advent of Sunday sports in Toronto has indicated the need for some earnest re-thinking of the Church’s Sunday timetable and the experiment at St. Michael’s will be watched with interest.
25 years ago: September 1975
Canadian Churchman reported that almost five years has passed since members of the Canadian House of Bishops met in a concerned group to discuss ways in which their corporate leadership role could be strengthened and developed in the life and witness of the church. During the meeting they deplored the fact that a credibility gap existed between themselves and the rest of the church and they acknowledged that they have abdicated responsibility for the health and growth of the national church by their lack of corporate leadership. Although this concern is still paramount, there are signs which suggest the vitality and well-being of the national church may again play second fiddle to the local and regional desires of our 28 dioceses. One bishop said his people and clergy tell him he is spending too much time away from his diocese. “We elected you and you are our bishop,” he said, quoting statements made to him.