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pair the church, and to provide the requisites for divine service; but there is no longer any mode of compelling them to do so. Vide CHURCH-RATE.

A parishioner having the right, which a stranger does not possess, to sue in the Ecclesiastical Court, the nature of his interest must appear on the proceedings. (Phill. Judgm. 334.)

Under the P. W. R. Act, 1874, three parishioners of a year's standing, having in writing declared themselves to be "members of the Church," may set in motion the special machinery for meeting the three kinds of offences which that Act was passed to meet. Vide DISCIPLINE: DISSENTER: SEATS: Member OF THE CHURCH.

Parson-Persona Ecclesiæ.

This ancient title, which at first signified only rector, vicar being of later date, has now been almost superseded by incumbent.

It is, however, still applicable to any beneficed clerk, whether rector, vicar, or perpetual curate.

Under 31 & 32 Vict. cap. 117, the incumbents of new parishes, if authorized to publish banns, solemnize marriages, etc., and entitled to the entire fees arising therefrom, are styled vicars, and their benefices vicarages.



Or the holding of more than one benefice, is now dealt with by the following statutes:-1 & 2 Vict. cap. 106; and 13 & 14 Vict. cap. 98. It is sufficient here to say that, as a rule, no clergyman may hold more than one benefice and one cathedral preferment. In certain cases however of small benefices close together, two may be held by one incumbent under a

licence or dispensation from the Archbishop of Canterbury. This is however guarded by very special conditions. Acceptance of a second cure contrary to law renders the first ipso facto void. There are special provisions for archdeacons, for honorary canons, and for clergymen appointed before Dec. 23rd, 1837. As to the holding of a benefice under certain conditions by a Dean, see stat. 13 & 14 Vict. cap. 94, sec. 19.


Length of usage is regarded by the law as establishing a right, which is then said to be founded on prescription, e.g., as applied to the Church, if for forty years a certain sum has been paid on visitations without question, it will be assumed that the payment is legal.

Long usage has often been deemed to have created a right at variance with the general law. Thus a man may "prescribe" for an old pew or vault: and if evidence of long user be given, accompanied, in the case of a pew, by evidence that his predecessors have kept it in repair, it will be hard to displace him, or resist his claim.*

On this principle the parishioners may possibly claim to elect both churchwardens, or to throw the repairs of the church on the incumbent.

As the general law is liable to be thus superseded, it is advisable for a newly appointed incumbent to make minute inquiries as to the local usages, especially as regards repairs of the church, and the nomination. of its officers.

Privy Council: vide JUDICIAL Committee.

*The law on this point was lately considered in Crisp v. Martin, 2 P. Div. 15.


A word with two distinct meanings in Ecclesiastical Law:

(1.) The parochial and beneficed clergy of each district choose a proctor as their representative in Convocation.

(2.) The legal agent in an ecclesiastical suit is styled a proctor. This was until lately a distinct branch of the legal profession; but the privileges of proctors having been taken away by recent statutes, their number is diminishing. In fact, nearly all proctors are also solicitors; and any solicitor is, under an Act of 1877, at liberty to act as a proctor. (40 & 41 Vict. cap. 25, sec. 17.)


A small payment or offering, anciently in kind, but now in money, made by ancient custom to Bishops and Archdeacons towards their maintenance during visitation tours. The legal amount was in one case fixed at 6s. 8d.; but the amount depends on the custom of the diocese or archdeaconry; and if several churches be visited in a day, the amount ought to reduce in proportion. These payments will not be enforced by the temporal Courts. (Saunderson v. Clagett, 1 P. W. 657.)


A writ of prohibition may be issued by the High Court when an Ecclesiastical Court is believed to have exceeded its jurisdiction; and this exercise of prerogative dates from 13 Edw. 1. In this way an error of the more obvious kind fallen into by any Ecclesiastical Court may be corrected; and prohibition may issue at a very late, even at the latest stage of the proceeding.

A rule absolute for prohibition was granted by the

Q. B. Division (1877) to the Court of Arches to restrain proceedings against Mr. Dale (St. Vedast, London).* This was on the ground that the Archbishop, as interested in the living-a fact of which few, if any, were aware―ought not to have taken any part, and that another prelate should have been called on to act (P. W. R. Act, 1874, sec. 16); and it became unnecessary to rule on another objection, that the Court of Arches did not sit in the right place.

This last point arose in Mr. Tooth's Case, Q. B. Division, Nov. 1877, before the L. C. J. and two other Judges. The Court held that all the proceedings were irregular and coram non judice by reason of the fact that Lord Penzance had heard the case at Lambeth, which was not a place where it could legally be heard. Counsel for Lord Penzance in vain contended that he sat with all the powers of a Dean of Arches. The Court held that the terms of the Act and the Rules must be strictly followed in suits under the P. W. R. Act; and that as (by mistake) the Archbishop's precept to hear the case had omitted to authorize a hearing at Lambeth, the rule for a prohibition (staying the suit) should be made absolute.

Provincial Court: vide ARCHEs, Court of.

Public Worship Regulation Act, 1874:



(1.) Of churches. Can. 85 places on the churchwardens the duty of seeing to the repairs of churches, for which purpose a rate may be levied, which, as explained elsewhere, cannot be enforced. The chancel is ordinarily repaired by the rector, clerical or lay; and if this be neglected, the churchwardens ought to make a presentment of the fact. But it must always be borne in mind that the obligation to repair may by Serjeant v. Dale, 2 Q. B. Div. 558.


special custom be elsewhere. Thus the parishioners were in one case charged with the repairs of the chancel. Care should be taken, while repair or resto-, ration is in progress, that no material change or addition be admitted without a faculty from the Bishop.

(2.) Of glebe houses. The incumbent is bound to keep his residence in repair (1 & 2 Vict. cap. 106, sec. 41.) If this be neglected, the surveyor, who may be put in motion by the Archdeacon or Rural Dean, will examine and report to the Bishop.



A statement of facts in writing:

(1.) Under the Incumbents Resignation Act, 1871 (set forth in the Appendix), by an incumbent

desirous of retiring from duty by reason of incapacity, addressed to the Bishop.

(2.) Under the P. W. R. Act, 1874, sec. 8 (also set forth in the Appendix), to be made by the Archdeacon, or by a churchwarden of the parish, or by three parishioners being members of the church. This is addressed to the Bishop or, in case of his being patron of the living, or incapacitated by illness, to the Archbishop. For the subsequent proceedings, the Act, printed in the Appendix to this volume, must be referred to.


Of the clergy on their benefices is enjoined by 1 & 2 Vict. cap. 106, sec. 32. Under special circumstances, as set forth in that Act, a licence for non-residence may be obtained on petition to the Bishop. No licence for non-residence is to continue in force beyond the end of the year after the year of its issue (sec. 46). Certain fees are payable to the Bishop's officers on the issue of such licence (sec. 47). Licences of non

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