When in Advent should the Christmas crib be placed in
As it is a Christmas feature rather than an Advent feature, it
should be placed there as near to Christmas as is possible. Even if
it is placed there somewhat earlier, the Christ-child should not be
placed there until the blessing of the crib at the midnight
The three wise men are not placed in the crib until the eve of
Epiphany, when the shepherds and cattle are removed, and the wise
men take their place.
In the church at Landkey in north Devon, the three wise men are
traditionally placed on a ledge at the back of the church on
Christmas Day (having "seen the star"), and arrive at the crib at
The Christmas crib is a wonderful teaching aid if the placement
of the Christ-child and shepherds with animals and wise men takes
place at the correct time.
(The Revd) Geoffrey Squire SSC
Goodleigh, Barnstaple, Devon
Our parish was established by an Act of Parliament in
Victorian times. Why was it necessary for an Act of Parliament to
be passed for the parish to come into being?
In the Victorian Church of England, the formation of new
parishes was controlled by parliamentary statutes. By the beginning
of the 19th century, besides pastoral care in spiritual matters,
parishes had acquired considerable public social functions and
responsibilities, all of which had legal implications, and for
which the State had concern and interest.
Parishes had become important units of civil administration in
the locality: the business of many parish vestries extended far
beyond levying church rates, and embraced many of the secular needs
of the community Another matter of importance was the parish
boundary: this had always been jealously guarded, but,when new
parishes were established, it was essential that their limits were
precisely drawn and recorded for the legalities of marriages and
burial rights of parishioners.
For these reasons, and to meet the growth and changing
distribution of the nation's population, new parishes were formed
under the New Parish Acts of 1843 and 1856, whereby schemes
submitted to the newly established Church Commissioners (1836) were
confirmed by Acts of Parliament and an Order in Council.
(Canon) Terry Palmer
Do pew rents survive anywhere in the Church of England?
If not, how were they eradicated? M. S.
Address for answers and more questions: Out of the Question,
Church Times, 3rd floor, Invicta House, 108-114 Golden
Lane, London EC1Y 0TG.