ON CHURCH COMPREHENSION.
LTO THE EDITOR OF THE "SPECTATOR.")
SIR,—In ten years after an event, it is easy and excusable to forget details. I hope you will allow me to correct an important error into which you have fallen, in alluding to my trial and deprivation,—" important," not only to myself, but to the bear- ings of your remonstrance with Bishop Ryle. You say, in the Spectator of the 22nd inst., "Mr. Voysey found that there were limits, when he distinctly and categorically denied what the Church of England distinctly and categorically teaches."
Allow me to say, that this was the very thing that I did not do, the very ground on which I appealed to the Privy Council; and that I had not done so was fully admitted by Lord (then Sir John) Coleridge, as counsel on the other side. It was, I say, distinctly admitted that I had "affirmed what the Articles do not deny, and had denied what the Articles do not affirm."
Eleven years have not sufficed to efface the proud memory of that admission from my prosecutors, and I think I am entitled. to whatever credit may belong to it. Certainly, only a fool would be guilty of "distinctly and categorically denying what the Church distinctly and categorically teaches." As bearing on the question of comprehension, allow me to say that I have always considered my condemnation as both just and unjust ; "just," because the spirit and purport of what I taught were subversive of certain Christian dogmas ; "unjust," because my teaching was based upon and strictly eomformable to certain other portions of the Church formularies ; " unjust," also, because we are all more or less in the same condemnation.
I was also condemned because I had violated prevailing sentiment. Many a clergyman now in the Church believes and teaches as I did, and as I was condemned for teaching ; but the day is passed for similar heresy-hunting. Relax your sub- scriptions and Act of Uniformity, and I will come back to-morrow.
—I am, Sir, &c., CHARLES VOYSEY. Camden House, Dulwich, October 281h.