Although "The Church Intelligencer" continues to be published, the volumes for 1907 onwards are missing from our archives so we have used the "Church Association Annual Reports" (which began in 1867) to compile a summary of the activities of the Church Association from 1907 onwards.
Report of the Council presented at the 43rd Annual meeting held in Caxton Hall, Westminster, on Monday May 4th 1908.
P.5-6 – The Council comprised 23 members while the General Committee numbered 84 of which 43 were clergymen.
P.7 – ‘In the last report, attention was called to the scheme for reviving the use of Mass vestments to the Church of England which was originated by what the Times called an “honourable collusion” between the Bishop of Chester and the Archbishop of Canterbury. As a result, a Protest signed by 118,624 lay members of the Church of England was presented by the Church Association to the Archbishop, declaring their determination to “resist to the utmost every such attempt to subvert the Reformation Settlement, which would result in the disruption and ruin of our National Church and introduce a fresh element of disunion and strife into every parish”.’
“Bishops Agitate for Mass Vestments”. ‘Six months later, however, Letters of Business were procured from the Crown directing the two Convocations to report upon the “desirability and the form and contents of a new rubric regulating the ornaments (that is to say, the vesture) of the ministers of the Church at the times of their ministrations, and also any modifications of the existing law relating to the conduct of Divine service and to the ornaments and fittings of churches”.’
P.9 - “Convocation Supplied with Sham ‘History’”. ‘It subsequently came to the knowledge of the Council that secret papers were being sent to the members of both Convocations containing absolutely false “historical” information designed to misrepresent the facts of the Reformation proceedings; and the Council at once sent out a Memorandum to each member of both Convocations exposing the unreliable and misleading nature of the fables which were being thus stealthily disseminated.’
‘It was not until February 5th in the present year that the first of the three reports, advocating the restoration of Mass vestments, was at length given to the world. The Chairman, the Bishop of Salisbury, told the Royal Commissioners that the King’s “judges had made a mistake, and might probably accept ‘new light’ upon the subject!” In this report of the sub-committee we have an illustration of the competency of episcopal amateurs to set right such men as Lord Selborne and Lord Cairns on questions of law and fact.’
P.14 – “‘Public’ Patronage Employed to Foster Lawlessness”. ‘Next to the abuse of Ordination by the admission of unfit and disloyal Churchmen into the ministry, ranks the abuse of “Public” patronage. The Council have from time to time published lists of such abuses both on the part of the ministers of the Crown, and still worse on that of the Episcopate and of the Dean and Chapter of St Paul’s. In the case of Dr Linklater, the Council deemed it necessary to forward to the Bishop of London the following protest:- “That the appointment to a prebend at St Paul’s of the Rev R Linklater, vicar of Holy Trinity, Stroud Green, a member of the Council of the English Church Union, and of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, who violates the law by wearing Mass vestments and burning lights ‘before the sacrament’ and celebrates Masses, at some of which there are no communicants, who elevates the host and publicly genuflects before it, and was reported to the Royal Commission as using wafer bread, and the sanctus bell, and retains in his church the crucifix, stations of the cross, declaring publicly that ‘all his services have the sanction of the Bishop of the diocese’ is nothing less than a public outrage and a scandal. . . .’
P.16 – “Re-union with the Greek Church”. ‘The Chairman addressed in January last a remonstrance to the Archbishop of Canterbury against the action of individual bishops or other ecclesiastics in making overtures to the unreformed Greek Church, which is both in doctrine and ritual, as the Nineteenth Article of the Church of England witnesses “not only in their living and manner of ceremonies but also in matters of faith”.’
P.20 – “Colporteur-Evangelist and Van Mission”. A tabulated statement gives details of the activities of eight vans, indicating that three have been taken out of service. ‘The Council hope that through the generosity of those who value the principles for which the Association is contending they will be enabled to replace the vans which have become worn out, and to still more largely develop this important branch of their work.’
P.24 – “The Ladies’ Committee”. ‘It was thought that the influence of the Committee would be widened and the work generally strengthened, if several ladies, of known Protestant sympathies, were invited to become Vice-Presidents of the Ladies’ Committee.’ The names of eleven titled ladies who accepted this invitation are recorded.
P.26 - ‘Two advowsons have been placed under the Church Association Trust, viz. Fowey and St Pinnock.
P.29 – “The Cope Devereux Ten Commandments Fund”. ‘Since last year grants have ben made to churches for the setting up of the Ten Commandments, thus making a total of fifty churches in which, by means of this Fund, the Commandments have been restored.’