13 SEPTEMBER 1873, Page 12


Sin,—There is much, I fear too much, truth in your " Warning to the Clergy" of Saturday last. But ought you not to make

some little allowance for the habit, which, to their misfortune, is so engrained in the minds of the country clergy, of looking upon• themselves as the especial patrons of the labouring man ? Hence their opposition to attempts from any other quarter to improve his position.

So long as the labourer is content to touch his hat, and to accept with gratitude whatever the parson will do for him, I

imagine that the parson, for his part, would make many sacrifices for him. But the moment any one else interferes (no matter with how good an object), then the parson's pride is touched, and instinctively he opposes the intruder. This habit of looking upon the labouring classes as beings whom they have a right to patronise, and in whom they may work out their own benevolent schemes, is the great error into which the clergy fall_ Is it not very nearly related to that feeling of the Conservativea which will give up much to the masses, provided only that the receive it humbly from the hands of their patrons, that is, accept- ing it as a favour, not claiming it as a right?

Liberalism appears to me to aim at teaching the people to help themselves. Conservatism, on the other hand, would help them, but would at the same time treat them as children who cannot help themselves.—I am, Sir, &c., WILL:um GoonaLL, September 10, 1873. Curate of Armley, Leeds.