22 FEBRUARY 1952, Page 18

By Candlelight SIR,—It is not often that my old friend

Mr. Stock wood and I have similar views on any question. But 1 ,wholeheartedly agree with his letter on this subject in your issue of February 8th. It was because I had neither the desire nor the time to engage in correspondence on such unimportant matters that I did not answer Janus's first provoca- tive remarks. However, I now feel bound to point out that the litigation and stupid publicity about six candlesticks was none of our seeking. My people simply desired to erect memorials in their church com- memorating their departed and to beautify God's house. The scheme was known to the whole parish of sixteen thousand persons, not merely to regular church-goers. Not a single objection was raised to the scheme, and the largest part of the money subscribed came from the non-church-goers. Imagine our astonishment when, in spite of all our pleas, it was insisted that the case must be argued in the ecclesiastical court. Likewise how surprised we have been at the amount of news- print which has been wasted on this matter.

However, we rejoice that all this unsought publicity has not had any adverse effect upon the parish, and we appear to be the least con- cerned of any about the number of candlesticks. But I can assure, your readers and correspondents that my congregation is not indifferent to the Master's work. There is not a parish priest in England who has a more faithful, hard-working and self-sacrificing congrega- tion than L Their one vital concern is to win souls for Christ.—