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By William Durban T is, as a seventeenth-century lord The Bishop of London's biography may remarked of Lady Mary Wortley, a be briefly told, and his ecclesiastical
perfect education to know some peo- position can be tersely enough defined. ple. One of these most edifying person- It is his relation to the great movements alities is Dr. Arthur Foley Winnington of the age which is most worthy of exIngram, who has been appointed Bishop tended notice.
tended notice. Born of a clerical family, of the great See of London, at an age this prelate is one of those hereditary phenomenally youthful for the English priests who are very numerous in Engprelacy.
land. He is son of a Worcestershire The progress of what is specially un- vicar, and grandson, on the maternal side, derstood in England by the expression of the noted Bishop Pepys, of Worcester. * Christian Socialism ” is particularly He belongs by every tie to a preaching marked by this preferment of the young race, and it is not wonderful that, of all Bishop of Stepney to the higher metro- his many great attributes, the homiletic politan position; for this famous clergy- faculty shines out the most brilliantly. A man is the leading representative of the man who can rivet, Sunday after Sunday, school of dignitaries in the Anglican com- a throng of five thousand in the vast nave munion who have followed in the wake of St. Paul's, thrilling one of the most of Frederick Denison Maurice, Charles cultured audiences in the world by sucKingsley, and, to name the most illustri- cessive peals of eloquence, in alternate ous of their lay coadjutors, John Ruskin. declamation and argumentation, must be The brightest lights of this section of the reckoned one of the great masters of pulclergy are Canon Scott Holland, of St. pit logic and rhetoric. His career has Paul's Cathedral, and the new Bishop. been wonderfully rapid. He is an OxoniDr. Winnington Ingram is the fourth of an graduate, and has done more than any the English Bishops of our time to win living man besides to draw his grand unithe popular epithet of “The People's versity into the popular social current of Bishop." The celebrated Fraser, of Man- modern progress. He was for a short chester; the manly and athletic Selwyn, time curate in the beautiful West of Engfirst of New Zealand and then of Lich- land, but soon removed to the most field; and the beloved Walsham How, of crowded scene of London life, being Bedford and then of Wakefield, have each appointed rector of the teeming hive of in turn gained the appellation. This poverty and toil called Bethnal Green. latest Bishop of London, however, even Here it was, in a sad, squalid parish, the more than any of these famous prelates, living catacomb of the metropolis, that he has ingratiated himself in the esteem of learned to know the common people, to the masses.
love them, and make himself the subject Dr. Ingram is being loaded with dis- of sympathy, affection, and gratitude in a tinctive descriptive titles. He is the degree almost without precedent. * King's First Bishop." He is par excel- Accepting a cordial invitation to lunchlence the “up-to-date Bishop.” He is the eon with the Bishop, I found him in his “ Bishop of the Slums.” He is an “om- study waiting to give me his own sponnibus Bishop.” The poverty-stricken taneous account of his life and his work. East Enders delight specially to claim No man I have ever known has seemed him as “our Bishop.” Some admirers more pleased to gratify the legitimate denominate him “the breezy Bishop.” I curiosity of an admirer of his extraordinary have heard him entitled The Poor Man's career. But I at once detected in him Bishop.” Indeed, the catalogue of his that playful and innocent simplicity which designations threatens to become intermi- was the main secret of the ineffable fascinable. They form a splendid index to nation of C. H. Spurgeon's personality. his many sidedness.
The same broad smile, the same frank
flash of recognition of a visitor as a Chris- House at the East End, but here I had tian friend and brother, the same instant approached the fountain-head of the stream outburst of fluent words expressing what- of influence. ever thoughts happened to be uppermost, “I was only thirty, a very young parand the same conscious desire to pour out son," said the Bishop, “when, on All Souls' as much as possible lest others should day, 1888, I started the Oxford Settlecome to interrupt the colloquy, mark ment. It was very bold an initiative this equally busy worker. No two men on the part of one of the junior clergy like could be at once more alike and yet myself thus to invade the very citadel of unlike.
• Darkest London,' and, above all, to bring Amen Court is so still and secluded cultured and exclusive Oxford, with all that it might be imagined to be a hundred its patrician and traditional conservatism, miles away from London, yet it is situated into direct contact with the “roughs,' the in the very heart of noisiest London, under 'toughs,' and the . Hooligans' of the subthe shadow of the most glorious of Eng- merged million. But when once Oxford lish cathredals. The retreat of the busi- House was inaugurated, it became the est of all the prelates lies here, in the center of enthusiastic interest. presquaint but beautiful mediæval precincts of ent Prime Minister has from the beginthe ecclesiastical center of English life. ning been a generous patron, both as a It is a bachelor's home, for the Bishop of sympathizing friend of the movement and London is unmarried. As I looked at as a contributor to the funds. And Lord him, I remembered how he was called to Salisbury's son, Lord Hugh Cecil, became the bishopric of Stepney: in East London, one of the residents, and has been an only three years ago, and how that event occasional lecturer." happened only seventeen years after he Though the Bishop did not say so, I was ordained a clergyman. I could see felt that it was not surprising, in the light that, though only forty-three years of age, of these remarks, that Lord Salisbury had he looks even younger than that, so buoy- secured the King's assent to the appointant is the whole expression of personality ment to the Metropolitan See of the man conveyed by feature, gesture, and de- whom he had been for the last few years meanor. Private intercourse shows him deservedly honoring by this kind of pracas a happy Christian, as witty as the tical sympathy. I proceeded, at the first venerable and evergreen Archbishop of pause in his talk, to ask Dr. Ingram what Canterbury.
were the chief difficulties which he had My part was to listen, and I soon found encountered in firmly establishing the that the Bishop loves a good listener as Settlement. much as did Dr. Johnson or Samuel • There was no difficulty so far as the Taylor Coleridge. He is a brilliant con- University was concerned. I used to go versationalist, and the stream of beautiful down to Oxford occasionally to push the talk is full of musical charm. Each ques- propaganda and to enlist new recruits. tion which punctuates the conversation But the real obstacle was the spiritual sets gushing a new current. I wanted to inertia of the East Enders. I never realknow something from the Bishop himself ized before, nor did the young Oxonians, of that great Oxford Movement of which what the paganism of East London meant. he was the head and center. This is of It was the heathenism of absolute stolidcourse something totally different from the ity, of apparently heartless indifference, Oxford Movement of which the world has not of malignant hostility. I was appalled heard so much for three-quarters of a to discover that scarcely one in a thoucentury, which was initiated by Pusey, sand of the residuum ever crossed the Manning, Newman, Faber, and Ward, and threshold of any sanctuary.” was religious, ecclesiastical, Anglican, ritu- “ Was not much of your most effective alistic, and Romanizing. The newer and work done in the shape of open-air preachinfinitely more glorious Oxford Movement ing and lecturing ?" I asked. is social, philanthropic, industrial, eco- “ Assuredly. Those Sunday lectures nomic, popular, plebeian, ameliorating, were memorable occasions. I became elevating, humanizing, and eminently re- President of the Christian Evidence Sociligious. I knew many things about Oxford ety for East London, and threw myself
actively into the task of counteracting the No manservants serve and no kitchenmaids influence of secularist orators, who made Victoria Park their happy hunting-ground.
The frugal repasts of this Suffragan Bishop.” The audiences were, naturally, almost Suddenly breaking off some of his reentirely composed of workingmen. They marks more particularly connected with came in great numbers. But the scene the affairs of the Church of England in the was often a very exciting one. Tremen- East End of London, the Bishop exclaimed, dous tussles went on, and I had to stand as he hastily, with one of his customary up to picked champions of infidelity. It jerky actions, pulled a worn note-book from was often my reward, after a heated de- his pocket, “ Just look at this ! This will bate, while the hundreds of artisans and tell you whether my life is still a busy laborers watched and listened, with Aushed
Glancing at the little diary, I saw faces and eager eyes, to hear the listeners that every page was crowded with appointshout, • The parson has got the best of it!ments for most of the hours of every day. But the reflex effect on the lay residents “ How do you get through it all without from Oxford was splendid. Young Ox- breaking down ?" was my natural query. ford found a new gymnasium for intel- • Oh, I have never thought of lectual and spiritual athletes in Victoria breaking down, and have never been anyPark. When the late Archbishop of Can- where near that!” This rejoinder was terbury, Dr. Benson, paid his last visit to uttered with a really merry little peal of East London, he was so gratified with laughter. “I simply do the next thing, what he saw and heard that he soon and take all very quietly, and God helps afterwards wrote me a note, in which he me through,” he went on. " But I must said, I envy you your College of Cardi- tell you that total abstinence and cycling nals. Of course all this was very absorb- have been the two sheet-anchors of my ing. I often had to prepare my sermons physiological immunity. During my Stepon the top of an omnibus, to think out ney bishopric I have gone off at seven every my speeches for important meetings in morning on my wheel to meet a • Boys' tram-cars, and to eat my luncheon in under- Club' at Whitechapel and have a spin ground trains. I was at times astonished, before joining in at some breakfast to a as Suffragan Bishop of Stepney, to find lot of poor people. But there is a fearful how much my doings were being noticed, amount of hard work to be done in that as if it were some novel thing for a Bishop East London. Some of my summer holito be engrossed with the welfare of the days have had to be spent in wandering common people. For instance, after I about England on begging expeditions had, in a speech, been alluding to my 'cadging' for Bethnal Green. The rich hurrying and scurrying, Punch' took in this country do not know how the poor up that speech of mine in the following live and suffer and die ; and some of us vivacious style :
have had to toil tremendously to make
them understand. In 1896 I went tour* THE SUFFERING BISHOP
ing through Worcestershire, my native ** From morning till evening, from evening till
county, and held a series of garden meetnight, I preach and I organize, lecture and write ; ings at parties in the chief houses. The And all over London my gaitered legs fly- result was that a Worcestershire AssociaWas ever a Bishop so busy as I ?
tion was founded for the help of the When writing my sermons the best of my metropolitan poverty. work'll
“ I have found,” testified the Bishop, Be done in the trains in the underground circle; “that isolation of one class from another I can write one complete, with a fine perora
is the root of all the social evils. Contact tion, Between Charing Cross and the Mansion
with the neglected people and the lapsed House Station.
masses was the method of Christ's recla
mation of the lost. It is the only method For luncheon I swallow a sandwich of ham, As I rush up the steps of a Whitechapel tram; that can succeed now. Accordingly, while Or with excellent appetite I will discuss I was rector of Bethnal Green, I not only A halfpenny bun on a Waterloo 'bus.
went about the slums, but also got the No table is snowy with damask for me ;
people to come about me. Every SaturMy cloth is the apron that covers my knee. day afternoon during the summer we had