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Fr Benson goes to his crown

16 January 2015

January 15th, 1915.

On Fr Benson's death (Features), the Church Times said in a long leading article that "In his ninetieth year he has gone to his crown, leaving behind him the odour of a life entirely sanctified, and his works do follow him." In its Summary column, it said: 

WITH the death of Fr Benson of Cowley, which we record with deep regret, a great career of Christian enterprise has closed. Ordained, as far back as 1848, on the title of a studentship of Christ Church, Oxford, Mr Benson two years later was appointed Vicar of Cowley, with which parish his name will ever be associated. At the very beginning of his ministry his mind was preoccupied with the need of applying new methods to the evangelization of the world. The idea took shape for him in the establishment of a religious community the members of which, carefully trained and prepared, could be employed in missionary work at home and abroad, under the direction of the Superior and the Society. In the face of hostility and ridicule the Society of Saint John the Evangelist was founded, Father Benson himself becoming the first Superior, and from its humble beginnings has developed into a great and vigorous institution, with a stately church of its own, besides its domestic buildings, and with daughter houses in India at Poona and Magazon; in South Africa at Capetown and St Cuthbert's, Kaffraria; in the United States at Boston. At home it has a London house at Westminster, and another branch settlement at Cambridge. Obedient to the rule of the Community, Fr Benson, when age came upon him, resigned the headship and took a lower place in the Brotherhood. In this humbler capacity he did some service in India and America.

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