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Clergy charity is struggling

02 December 2016

December 1st, 1916.

WEEK by week for two years we have recorded in our Roll of Honour the heavy toll which the war has levied upon the homes of the clergy. Their sons were among the first and the most eager to volunteer, before military service became compulsory; their losses have been proportionately heavy. Upon many desolate homes there now presses a constantly increasing load of anxiety. The war has made upon the clergy many fresh demands, to which they have responded to the limit of their ability. The normal difficulties of parochial finance have increased; the swift rise in taxation and in the cost of every necessary of life has far outstripped the slow rise of tithe. Many of the clergy are now impoverished, not a few are in actual want. It is disquieting to learn that the Poor Clergy Relief Corporation, at the moment when the needs have become greatest, is for the first time in sixty years faced with the fear of being unable to minister to those needs. It has suffered, in common with many long-established societies, by the competition of war-funds, and by the inability of some of its subscribers to continue their support. We cannot think that the appeal which it now makes will be unheeded by Churchmen who have the power to respond. (The office, by the way, is at 38, Tavistock-place, W.C.) They will understand that the spiritual work of the Church cannot be maintained in efficiency if the clergy are themselves weighed down with temporal cares and hampered by poverty and privation.


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