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Henson consecrated

by
09 February 2018

February 8th, 1918.

ON SATURDAY, the Feast of the Purification, Dr Henson was consecrated to be Bishop of Hereford. The feeling of the Church upon his appointment has been made abundantly clear by the abstention from the consecration of all the more influential of the comprovincial bishops, 11 in number, and by the protests made by hundreds of the clergy and tens of thousands of the laity. Dr Henson has been forced upon a diocese which does not want him, and from which the only words of welcome which have yet been recorded have been addressed to him by Dissenters. We do not envy him the task that lies before him. A diocese which has already for many years been without effective leadership and alienated from its bishop, which has steadily ignored all efforts to dragoon it, will certainly not quietly suffer coercion now, and episcopal sarcasm falls there upon amused ears. Meanwhile, Churchmen have to set themselves to the task which the incident has demonstrated to be necessary and inevitable. They have been taught by this bitter experience what are the consequences of bondage. With no momentary fire of indignation, which might quickly burn itself out, but with steady, unflagging labour, they must essay the task of self-liberation. It is a task which must be done, lest in clinging overlong to her possessions the Church finds that she has endangered her hold upon the Faith. And it must be accomplished within a short time, lest the Latitudinarians, aided by the politicians, should entrench themselves in the hierarchy, to the peril of the liberated Church.

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