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THE BISHOP OF LONDON
We fear that we with others have caused the “Lord Bishop of London” some annoyance by the sermon published in our May issue which purported to have been preached by his lordship on Christmas day last: this we regret.
We stated, in connection with our publication of it, our surprise that so remarkable an event should have remained quiet so long, and merely published the clipping as we received it from a Brother in Ohio. We now have evidence that no such sermon was ever preached. The following letter settles the question.
20 June, 1888.
Dear Sir:— I am directed by the Lord Bishop of London, in reply to your letter of the 10th inst., to inform you that the statement in the “Watch Tower” is absolutely without foundation. Harry W. Lee.
We also procured a copy of London Justice, of the issue said to contain this Christmas sermon. We found it therein, verbatim, but preceded by a few words which the Ohio paper had neglected to copy. The original article had the following heading:—”A Christmas Sermon which the Bishop of London has been asked to preach in Westminster Abbey on Sunday Dec. 25th.” Thus, it appears that the sermon as printed was merely suggested, as a good and suitable one, for the Lord Bishop of London to preach.
We are glad to correct the mistake, but are sorry that it needs correcting—very sorry that it is not true, for the Lord Bishop’s sake, as well as for the sake of the powerful influence which such a sermon and such an act would surely have carried throughout Great Britain and throughout the world.
We have no regrets on the subject, except for the annoyance of the Bishop; for we doubt not the unintended mistake has had some influence for good, in suggesting what might and should be done by many in high places. And the very fact that the sermon was suggested shows that some appreciate the situation, even if the bishops and lords do not.
— July, 1888 —