Meeting of synod

By on June 11, 2015

(This story was first published in the December 1881 issue of the Canadian Churchman.)

From Our Special Correspondent

On Monday evening the Synod was formally opened by choral evensong in the cathedral. The Ven. Archdeacon Bedford-Jones acted as precentor the Very Rev. the Dean and the Rev. Canon Bleasdell reading the lessons. The sermon was preached by the Rev. G T. Lowe, of Carleton Place, from the text “The Body is one and hath many members.” (1 Cor. Xii. 12.)

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The Synod assembled for transaction of business on Tuesday morning, when seventy-one clergy and forty-eight lay representatives were found to be present.

The Lord Bishop, in his address, stated that he had been unable to hold a session of Synod at the usual time, on account of his absence in England. This absence had been occasioned by the resignation of the Ven. Provost Whitaker, of Trinity College, and the subsequent commission of himself and the Lord Bishop of Toronto, to find a successor.

Their mission had been eminently successful, and the gentleman decided on, the Rev. C. Body, M.A., would, he had no doubt, fill worthily the Provost’s chair in that institution to which the diocese of Ontario was so deeply indebted for its supply of well-educated clergy. Having accomplished the object of his mission, it had been considered best by his medical advisers that he should spend some weeks in Switzerland. He was thankful to say that the trip had been of great benefit to him, and that he now felt fully prepared for the duties of the coming year. Since the last meeting of Synod, 991 persons had received the rite of Confirmation, of whom 024 [sic] had been their first communion at the same time; and four deacons and one priest had been ordained.

THE PERMANENT DIACONATE.-The following portion of his Lordship’s address was warmly applauded, and is commended to the consideration of the laity. His Grace the Archbishop of Canterbury recently approved, in no measured terms, of the course recommend: “You are aware that at the last session of the Provincial Synod the following canon was enacted: ‘A Deacon need not surrender his worldly calling or business (said calling being approved by the Bishop) unless he be a candidate for the office of a priest, and he shall not be admitted to the priesthood, till he shall have passed a satisfactory examination in Latin and Greek, and have further complied with such other requirements as the Bishop of the Diocese may impose.’

“I had the pleasure of ordaining the first deacon under this canon last Sunday, and I earnestly hope that as time goes on many religiously disposed laymen, whose secular pursuits are not inconsistent with the office of a deacon, may be disposed to devote part of their time and energy to giving assistance to priests of large parishes and missions, and so enable them to cover ground now unoccupied. It seems to me that the Synod ought to pass a canon regulating the designation and status of such deacons, declaring whether they shall be qualified to be members of the Synod or not, and providing that they shall not, by virtue of their ordination or licence [sic], have any claim on the funds of the Synod. It might be well to appoint a committee to report on this important matter during our present session.”

Subsequently the Ven. Archdeacon Bedford-Jones, Rev. E. P. Crawford, and Mr. G. A. Kirkpatrick, M.P., were appointed a committee to consider the best means of having the permanent diaconate properly recognized.

Petitions were read from the vestry of Chris Church [sic], Belleville, asking permission to sell the present church site prior to investing in a new one and from the vestry of St. Peter’s, Chrysler, asking permission to sell the site of the mission church at Chesterville.

On motion of R. T. Walkem, Q.C., these and all other petitions were referred to a special committee composed of the Rev. Rural-dean Bogert, Dr. Wilson, White, Matheson, and the Chancellor. The auditors’ report was read in the afternoon by Mr. R. T. Walkem, Q.C., and showed the affairs of the diocese to be in a most satisfactory condition. Under the careful management of the present clerical secretary the financial embarrassments occasioned by the defalcation of his predecessor, are being rapidly done away with. The losses due to this unfortunate cause were most serious, amounting to over $13,000, but the accounts are now in a clear and satisfactory condition.

The report of the Clergy Trust Fund Board, read by the Rev. E. Lewin, chairman, showed that there were twenty-three mortgages covering a principal sum of $27,220.12; twenty-three debentures $19,350; cash in the Bank of Montreal, $7,791.87; and premiums of Brockville debentures, $427.50.

MISSIONS.-The report of the Mission Board was submitted by the chairman, Rev. G. W. White. In it allusion was made to the illness of the Ven. Archdeacon Lauder and the Rev. Canon Forrest, both active and prominent members of the Board.

Reference was made to the report presented to the Synod last year in which it was stated that for several years the expenditure had exceeded the receipts. Synod accordingly at its last session (1880) had recommended a policy of retrenchment, and this had worked most satisfactorily, as this year there is a balance to the good of $759.69, the disbursements having been $9,334.31, and the gross receipts $10,94.00 [sic].

Last year the receipts were only $7,942.74. The estimates for the ensuing year make provision for a grant of $600 to the Diocese of Algoma. The Board of Foreign Missions reported that they had received $991.10, of which over $600 had been given to the Diocese of Algoma.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS.-The Rev. A. Spencer was re-elected Clerical Secretary, and Mr. R. M. Moore, Treasurer, without opposition.

The diocesan delegates to the Provincial Synod were elected as follows:-Clerical,-The Very Rev. the Dean, the Ven. Archdeacon Lander, the Ven. Archdeacon Bedford-Jones, Rev. Canon Pettit, Rev. Rural-dean Bogert, Rev. Rural-dean Krkpatrick, Rev. J. W. Burke, Rev. C. W. White, Rev. Henry and Rev. William Lewin. Substitutes:-Revs. Canon Bleasdell, E. P. Crawford, A. Spencer, C. P. Emery, G. J. Lowe, A. C. Nesbitt.

Lay Delegates:-J. A. Henderson, D.C.I., G. A. Kirkpatrick, M.P., Q.C., Judge Macdonald, R. T. Walkem, Q.C., Dr. Wilson, James Shannon, R. V. Rogers, D. Collins, Henry Harney, S. Keefer, C. F., A. J. Mathieson, and D. F. Jones, M.P.

The election of members of the Mission Board resulted as follows:-Elected by Synod: Rev. Canon Pettit, Rev. Rural-dean Bogert, Rev. J. W. Burke, Rev. E. H. M. Baker, Rev. G. W. White, Rev. E. P. Crawford, Rev. A. C. Nesbett, Rev. Rural-dean Kirkpatrick, G. A. Kirkpatrick, M.P., Q.C., E. H. Smythe, James Shannon, James Reynolds, A. J. Mathieson, Edwin Rose, E. Hartney, and J. B. McGin. Appointed by his Lordship the Bishop: Rev. Henry Wilson, D.D., Rev. H. Pollard, Rev. G. W. C. Grant, Rev. W. Lewin, J. A. Henderson, Q.C., D.C.I., Dr. Wilson, Judge Macdonald, R. T. Walkem, Q.C., and S. Keefer.

THURSDAY’S SESSION.-A motion of condolence with the family of the late Rural-dean Carroll was passed. The Rev. Canon Pettit’s motion regarding the Strachan Memorial Church was passed over. The proposed Canon on “Parochial Disputes” was laid over, although Rev. J W. Burke urged its consideration.

THE LATE CLERICAL SECRETARY.-The rules of order were suspended to admit a discussion of the affairs of the late Clerical Secretary, Archdeacon Parnell. A sub-committee appointed last session reported that all the security he could offer for a deficiency of $13,000 was $939. All his life policies had however been assigned to the Synod. These policies represent about $5,800. It was resolved that they should be kept up, and the payments should be made pro rata to the various funds which are short. His Lordship appointed Rev. E. P. Crawford, Rev. A. W. Cooke, Rev. H. Pollard, and Messrs. Matheson, Reynolds and Walker, a committee to prepare a canon for submission to Synod at its next meeting, relative to the payment of missionaries’ stipends.

MORTGAGING CHURCHES.-Mr G. A. Kirkpatrick, Q.C., moved “That it be inexpedient to grant permission to mortgage any church edifices.” Rev. E. P. Crawford disapproved most strongly of mortgaging consecrated churches, but did not object to mortgaging buildings in course of erection. He thought the motion should be altered. Mr. R. T. Walkem, Q.C., offered an amendment which was lost. After considerable discussion, in which the Rev. G. W. Harrington, Rev. F. L. Stephenson, Rev. Canon Mulock, and the Ven. Archdeacon Bedford-Jones took part, Mr. Kirkpatrick’s motion was carried.

THE MARRIAGE LAW, ETC.-A motion of Archdeacon Bedford-Jones to the effect that the Synod petition the House of Commons against the bill legalizing marriage with a deceased wife’s sister was, after some discussion, withdrawn.

Considerable discussion also took place on a motion to set apart $400 for the payment of an assistant to the Clerical Secretary. In the course of the argument it came out that over $600,000 was under the control of that official, and that he had more work to do than could possibly be attended to by one man. By the advice of the Bishop the matter was deferred.

The Rev. Henry Wilson, D.D., made an eloquent address on the spiritual life of the Church. He discussed at great length the spiritual needs of the diocese, and the best means of supplying them. He was warmly applauded on sitting down. Rev. Mr. Pollard moved that Synod meet only once in two years for the transactions of business, the intervening years to be devoted to the discussions of matters affecting the spiritual welfare of the Church. His Lordship suggested the propriety of having meetings at stated periods for the specific purpose of discussing these matters. He did not think that Mr. Pollard’s motion would supply the proper remedy. The motion was withdrawn.

SUPERANNUATION FUND.-The following committee was appointed to consider the formation of a clergy superannuation fund:-Ven. Archdeacon Bedford-Jones, Rev. E. P. Crawford, Rev. W. Muckleston, Rev. A. W. Cooke, the Chancellor, G. A. Kirkpatrick, M.P., and Mr. Matheson.

CHURCH OFFICERS.-Mr. Hartney, of St. Alban’s, Ottawa, moved that “No person shall be eligible to fill any office, or be appointed to, or hold any position in any church in this diocese, except he be a communicant of the Church of England.” He objected most strenuously to non-Churchmen taking part in the high choral services. The motion was carried unanimously.

BONUS TO THE SECRETARY-On the motion of the Rev. C. P. Emery, Synod resolved to grant a bonus of $200 to the Rev. A. Spencer, Clerical Secretary of the diocese, in consideration of the large amount of extra work done. Mr. R. T. Walkem, Q.C., moved the appointment of a committee to consider the Secretary’s salary and the mode of assessment of the same against the several diocesan funds.-Carried.

REPORTS OF COMMITTEES.-The reports of the Mission Board was read and adopted, as were those of the following committees:-Book and Tract; Episcopal Trust Fund; Assessment; Divinity Students; Foreign Missions; Mortgage Securities; Executive, and those of the Auditors and Treasurer.

TEMPERANCE.-The following committee was appointed to consider the advisability of establishing a branch of the Church of England Temperance Society in the diocese:-Revs. Rural-dean Kirkpatrick, J. W. Burke, E. P. Crawford, H. Pollard, and Messrs. Featherstone and R. V. Rogers. His Lordship announced that he intended to hold a conference with the Archdeacons and Rural-deans as soon as practicable, with a view to arranging some definite of clergymen’s fees.

DOMESTIC MISSIONS.-The Rev. F. W. Kirkpatrick, Rural-dean, introduced the following resolution, which was carried:-“That this Synod regards the suggested contribution of $1,250 per annum from the diocese in aid of Domestic Mission work of the Church in Canada as a reasonable one, and its members, clerical and lay, undertake to use their best exertions throughout their various parishes to raise the amount named annually until the next meeting of the Provincial Synod.”

After the transaction of a large amount of routine business, which want of space prevents us from noticing, resolutions were passed thanking the citizens of Kingston for their hospitality, after which his Lordship pronounced the benediction, and the Synod was declared adjourned until 1882.

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