All Go in the Name of God

By Blythe, Ronald | The Spectator, April 8, 2006 | Go to article overview

All Go in the Name of God


Blythe, Ronald, The Spectator


RUN O ' THE MILL BISHOP by John Bickersteth Cappella Archives, £24.50, pp. 345, ISBN 1902918215

The Bickersteth family has performed its Levi-like role in the Church of England for several generations, providing it with some of its best traditional pastors.

Rectories, vicarages, deaneries, palaces have homed them and parish churches and cathedrals have long witnessed their work. And work it still is, as this autobiography of a 20th-century bishop proves, although the word in any put-upon or compulsive sense never seems to have entered his head. His chief motivation has been Christ's brief instruction 'Do this.' John Bickersteth is candid, some might think to the point of naivety at times, and his book reads like an opened-up diary, a free view of himself in which he shows pleasure rather than vanity. He knows that he has had a good time. If any member of the Church of England wants to read a hands-on and wonderfully readable account of the manifold changes which have overtaken its classic structure in a single lifetime, then they need go no further than this buoyant confession.

A decade ago John Bickersteth, now late Bishop of Bath and Wells, edited one of the most moving accounts of life in the trenches, The Bickersteth Diaries, written by a military chaplain. They reflected a Church of England which would hardly be recognisable today, one which the war decimated and which had to be repaired.

John Bickersteth was born into this faulty yet seemingly unchangeable structure soon after the war. It was the middleclass world of comparative poverty with servants and this straightforward account of it manages to surprise with its cold attics and Evensongs. Two contrasting lives of service ran side by side in the Canterbury house. At the Deanery George Bell was raising funds by the novel method of making donors 'Friends of the Cathedral'. The excellent 1928 Prayer Book was being projected and the infancy of today's worship was in the air, so to speak. Essentially a religious and social security reigned, if a bit uncomfortably. One of the most engaging aspects of Run o' the Mill Bishop is the way in which it reveals the freedom of the spirit in an established organisation. We are a ceremonial nation and an unconventional one at the same time. We have a way of breaking out while staying in, and are thought very odd because of it. We manage to alter the framework without damaging it, although we haven't done so well with its language. What we need now is a great liturgical writer for the 21st century and beyond. It is now considered a pity not to hanker for the old words. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

All Go in the Name of God
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.