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New era at Bury St Edmunds

28 March 2014

THE festival of Our Lady was observed in the county of Suffolk with the inauguration of a new era in the history of the Church in East Anglia. St Edmundsbury, a town with a tragic past, which is visibly marked in the pathetic ruins of one of the greatest of English religious houses, became on Wednesday the seat of a Bishop, and the parish church of St James assumed Cathedral rank, when the first Bishop of the new See was solemnly enthroned. Outwardly impressive as the ceremony of enthronement was, its true significance lay in the opening of a new chapter in the record of the town and county. The formation of new Sees in our day has everywhere been followed by a fresh and vigorous outburst of quickened Church activity, and we cannot doubt that, by the Divine blessing, the Church in East Anglia will increase in strength, though, as the new Bishop said in his sermon, the severance from Ely and Norwich which is involved will at first be felt with regret by many Churchpeople. The Bishop read a happy omen in the very name of Felix, the saint whose name is plainly seen in Felixstowe and can be dimly discovered in other place-names that have undergone phonetic changes; and pointed to the fact that the faith which St Felix believed and taught will still be taught and believed in East Anglia.

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