Relics of Paganism in Christianity as Approved by English Bishops.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, on being questioned as to certain Roman observances carried on at St. Bartholomew's, Dover, admitted |There may be irregularities,| but added |they do not appear to be of any importance.| One of these |unimportant irregularities| was the introduction of the Confessional.
The Archbishop of York considers the use of incense, which is a relic of paganism, |a most beautiful and significant symbol of Divine Service| -- and though the services at Christ Church, Doncaster, are known to be but a very slightly modified form of the Romish ritual, His Grace has not seen fit to interfere. The parish church of Hensall-cum-Heck, in the Archbishop's diocese, is entirely Roman Catholic, and the Vicar, Mr. E. H. Bryan, might from his practices, be a priest of Rome endeavouring by secret methods to |convert| his parish to the Holy See.
The Bishop of London sanctions the use of incense and permits children's Masses and hymns to the Virgin.
The Bishop of Chester advises the Rev. W. C. Reid, Vicar of Coppenhall, to use incense preceding the service of Holy Communion.
The Bishop of Chichester ignores the fact that at St. Bartholomew's, Brighton, seven hundred confessions were heard before Christmas, 1898, and that ten thousand were heard in that parish last year.
The Bishop of Lincoln preached at |High Mass| at St. Mary Magdalene, Paddington, on January 7, 1899. The only difference in the service on this occasion from that of the Roman Church was the use of the English language instead of Latin.
The Bishop of Oxford, on being appealed to by parishioners on January 11, 1900, attending at the Church of St. John, Cowley, Oxford, and asked to suppress the Romish practices carried on there, which were totally out of keeping with the simplicity of true Christian worship, gave them no redress.
The Bishop of St. Aibans, charged in the House of Lords with favouring practices not lawful in the Church of England, declined to answer. On this point the Daily Telegraph wrote -- |Does the Bishop of St. Albans understand that he is responsible to the State as well as to his own conscience? Has he any inkling of the notorious fact that the proper administration of a diocese is not a private or a personal matter, but an onerous public task, for which he is rightly held accountable?|