Page 8, 26th June 1936

26th June 1936
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Page 8, 26th June 1936 — NEWS FROM THE COUNTRY
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NEWS FROM THE COUNTRY

Pilgrimage Of Grace

400th Anniversary Northern Crusade Against The

Reformation

What is believed to be the first public commemoration at any time of the Pilgrimage of Grace took place in Yorkshire on Sunday last.

Under the auspices of the Leeds Catenian Circle and kindred organisations over a hundred men and women visited the village of Aughton in East Yorkshire and the city of York to pay a tribute of reverence and respect to the memory of Robert Aske (of Aughton), Sir Robert Constable (of Flamborough), Lord Darcy (of Templehurst), and two hundred and sixteen noblemen and monks who were executed four hundred years ago—Robert Aske and many others at York, Sir Robert Constable at Hull, and Lord Darcy in London.

All were condemned on an unjust charge of high treason after the King's pardon had been proclaimed and the King's pledge given that the pilgrims' demands would be granted.

MR. FIELDING'S ADDRESS AT STILLINGTON

The Leeds party assembled at Templenewsam, once the home of the Knights Templar, who fought in the Crusades in the Holy Land, and proceeded by road to Aughton, the birthplace and ancestral home of Robert Aske, the leader of the Pilgrimage of Grace.

At the parish church where Aske was baptised the party was shown by the vicar, the Rev. F. C. R. Darwent, the brass memorials to the Aske family in the floor of the chancel, and the inscription about Robert Aske on the front of the tower.

From Aughton the party. continued to York to see Clifford's Tower, where Aske was executed, and from there to Stillington Hall, which the Alexian Brothers recently acquired from the Liddell farnily for use as a convalescent home.

At the hall an address was given by Mr. J. F. Fielding, of the Catholic Herald, Leeds.

Struggle Against Reformation

There was a widespread but fallacious impression, he said, that the people of England accepted the Reformation in a Spirit of meek submission and resignation.

Nothing could be farther from the truth. There were numerous insurrections all over the country, but the greatest and most powerful and the one that most nearly achieved success was that in Yorkshire and the North of England.

The Pilgrimage of Grace was often dismissed contemptuously as "The Bloodless Rebellion." In a way that was the greatest compliment that could be paid it, as its bloodless record was strictly in harmony with its spiritual character.

Had it succeeded, as by all moral laws and principles it actually appeared to have done, it would inevitably have changed the whole course of English history during succeeding centuries.

The forces under Robert Aske's command numbered 40,000, said Mr. Fielding, and constituted the largest army assembled at that period in the history of England. It represented nearly all the available man power of the North.

Crookedness

The movement failed because the leaders resolutely refrained from engaging in armed conflict and trusted to negotiations, first with the Duke of Norfolk and then with Henry VIII himself, which resulted in the granting of their petitions and the dispersal of the pilgrims in what they naturally believed to be the hour of triumph.

Mr. Fielding pointed out that the forces sent against the pilgrims at no time had been sufficient to cope with them in the battlefield. At least one-third of Henry's army was known to be in sym-' pathy with them, and the leaders of the army, attached as they were to the old faith, were in no heart to give battle in any case.

Deceit and treachery was the only course left to the king. Under the pretence of a free pardon and a false promise to redress their grievances, he succeeded in inducing the pilgrims to lay down their arms and return home.

He made no effort to carry out his promises.

When a further rising took place, this time against the wishes of the leaders of the pilgrimage, who still cherished hopes that the king would keep his word, the king swept down on the now defenceless leaders and had them executed for high treason.

Spiritual Objects and Ideals

Mr. Fielding said that the spiritual objects and ideals of the pilgrimage were emphasised in abundant manner. The very name "Pilgrimage of Grace" was eloquent of its high purpose and aspirations; the Pilgrims' Oath, the hymns they sang, the banners of the Five Wounds of Christ they carried, the badges of the same sacred symbol which they wore on their breasts, the proclamations they issued, the petitions they drew up for presentation to the king, the fact that for the first time in English history peers, gentlemen and commons had taken up arms for one common cause, the fact that. the leadership was not entrusted to one of the many (Continued from previous column.) distinguished soldiers, but to Robert Aske, a man trained in the arts of peace, and an advocate of the king's law—all pointed to the high and noble purpose of the pilgrimage.

It was the faith, and the faith alone, he maintained, which gave the pilgrimage its impetus and its character, made it in all essentials a crusade for the defence of the sacred rights and principles of the Catholic Church.

Ungrateful Oblivion

There were minor issues involved, it was true, but the speaker maintained that these had been unfairly allowed during the succeeding centuries to overshadow the great and dominating issue.

The pilgrims had died, he declared, to keep pure and unsullied the heritage of the ancient faith of their. land, and he expressed the hope that the commemoration of their heroic sacrifice would not be allowed to be forgotten in the ages to come.

Mr. Fielding for the address and the Alexian Brothers for their hospitality were thanked by Mr. B. Taylor (president), Mr. J. M. Travers, Mr. A. Laverty and Mr. E. Fitzgerald Hart.

The Brother Superior, in welcoming the visitors, mentioned that it was the largest Catholic gathering that had ever assembled at the hall since it had passed into their hands, and the visit would be regarded as a red letter day in the revival of the Faith in that part of Yorkshire.

STONYHURST'S GRAND ACADEMIES

Stonyhurst boys presented three scenes, in the Academy Room, for the Grand

Academies, held last week. These performances were respectively a selection from the Thesmophoriazousae of Aristophanes; "The Discomfiture of Pistol" (two scenes from Shakespeare's Henry V); and a French farce : Le Portrait de mon Oncle.

After the distribution of prizes, the rector (the Rev. E. D. O'Connor, S.J.) gave a short address in which he recorded the successes of the school during the past year.

Tea was served indoors owing to the unsettled weather, and afterwards the drums of the Stonyhurst contingent of the O.T.C. beat the Retreat. The distribution of athletic,prizes took place in the ambulacrum, followed by a gymnastic display.

KNOWLE AND DORRIDGE

A garden fete to be held at "Barnfield," Knowle, to-morrow, by the invitation of Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher, will benefit substantially it is to be hoped the building fund of the new church serving the Catholics of Knowle and Dorridge, on which a debt of £3,000 remains.

This church, it will be remembered, replaces a temporary building which was destroyed by fire in 1934. It is a matter of deep regret to the parish priest, the Rev. G. Watts, and his congregation that the architect, Mr. J. Arnold Crush, has not lived to see the completion of his design.

BIRCH OR PRISON OR TALK

HOW TO DEAL WITH YOUNG CRIMINALS?

An Example From Liverpool

From a Correspondent Juvenile delinquency is proving one of the gravest problems of post-war days, and how to deal with it is puzzling the public, the police, and the magistrates.

The increase in delinquency, it is suggested in a Home Office report, is due to the fact that there is less reluctance now than formerly to charge children who have committed offences, because the treatment they receive in juvenile courts is more sympathetic than the older methods of dealing with them. Such a condition of things rather encourages the belief that with wise and sympathetic treatment, which need not be in any sense sentimental, many of the juvenile offenders will grow up into normal law-abiding citizens.

On the other hand, particularly in large cities, some people think that the magistrates are too lenient with some of the children brought before them, and are in favour of the birch being used more frequently.

That these people have sound arguments in favour of their views can be proved by many examples.

For instance, in Liverpool, by complaints from engine-drivers, firemen and guards, who have been compelled to make a united protest to their divisional superintendent, that on a certain section of the line daily they have to stop their trains to remove all kinds of dangerous obstructions, and in doing so are stoned from the surrounding walls and embankments.

The railway police admit it is no use prosecuting, as the magistrates do not seem to realise the gravity of the offences and treat the matter as " boys will be boys," with the result that the children treat this particular stretch of railroad as their playground.. To most persons this type of conduct is nothing but wanton mischief, fully meriting the birch.

Psychological Considerations

The state of affairs is peculiar to the present age because the delinquents, it must be admitted, have been subjected to special conditions. The scientific mind looks into the heredity and the environment of the individual.

First, they were conceived, born, and nurtured in a war atmosphere, which must have affected their nervous temperament. The general tendency to destroy might well be due, in some measure, to this fact.

Secondly, with regard to the environment, there is one outstanding concomitant of juvenile growth in the past two decades which is overlooked often by many, namely, the films. The disastrous effect upon the minds of young children of many of the films which are prepared to excite and entertain adults must be very great. It is a powerfully suggestive force brougAt to bear upon plastic minds at the imitative stage of their development.

What is Wise Treatment ?

The crux of the question apparently, from the public point of view, is what constitutes the " wise and sympathetic treatment " referred to in the Home Office report.

Is corporal punishment included in this category ?

From newspaper accounts of offences committed by juveniles there is little doubt it is essential in certain cases—not as something to glory in, but as an

unfortunate beneficial necessity. It is kinder to birch a delinquent than to send him. to prison, and it is kinder still in the long run than to let him imagine that he can continue to flout the laws of society with impunity.

It is only by such an expedient that certain types can be jerked into the state of mind which enables them to see that violence, cruelty, and wanton damage to property are offences against God, their fellow-men, and themselves.

OUT OF SLUMS INTO . . . ?

COUNCIL HOUSING CREATES POVERTY More Rooms But Less Space

By a Special Correspondent The L.C.C. Housing and Public Health Committee expresses the view that if a complete redistribution of dwellings were possible there are enough houses in London occupied by small families to meet the need of large ones. While there are 278 overcrowded families living in two rooms who require five rooms, there are no fewer than 25,125 families living in five rooms who, on the same standard, require only two rooms.

Here is the rub, though, even if it were possible so to redistribute houses proportionate to the size of families, in many cases those families have not the proportionate income to meet the rent. If a family, living in two ramshackle rooms, is moved to a new house of six rooms with a higher rent to pay, the money remaining over from rent is consequently reduced and the upkeep of the house suffers.

Eventually the new housing estate becomes only a new slum.

All these difficulties have been very forcibly expressed by miners in Durham, who at present are being moved from their old colliery houses into new council ones.

Speaking to one couple, who have twelve children and are being moved to a house with six bedrooms, the mother described to me the horror of possessing " ten upstairs windows to find curtains for." (This big house, by the way, has proved something of a curio. During the first few days no less than 140 people came to look over it—causing the tenants to remark, " If we'd charged them all a penny apiece we'd have got a week's rent.")

Rent Increases

The rent of this house is to be 13s. 3d. As 5s. of this will be received from the colliery company in lieu of free house, the couple will have 8s. 3d. per week less than formerly for food and clothing. Their weekly income is usually under O. Other people with smaller houses will have from 3s. to 4s. 6d. more rent to pay. " If poverty makes slums," some of them say, " they'll soon have to clear us out o' here."

It costs over £.1 to move, I was told.

Ye have a week's rent to pay in advance, and five bob for the electricity meter. And then there's the cost o' shiftin'." Clearly slum-clearance is not for the very poor.

Another grievance concerns the size of the rooms. " Ye hevn't room to turn round in the kitchen or the sitting-room or anywhere else," a man complained. He offered to wager that his new house is actually smaller than his old one, although it has two rooms more.

The fumigator is also setting many

people's backs up. All furniture, bedlinen, etc., has to pass through it before

going into the house. Many people protest that they have never had any vermin in their lives. Yet all their belongings (except the fire-irons, but including the piano) have to go into the fumigator. They remain there four hours and afterwards have to stand in the open for some time " to get the stink off them."

Many people, too, had built-in washhouses in their old homes, but these are not allowed at the new ones. No wooden erection is allowed in council-house gardens—not even a tool-shed or a rabbit hutch. Owners have been moved over a mile farther away from their allotment gardens, most of which contain greenhouses, hen-houses, pigeon-lofts, etc.

Houses to Live In

" We'll just have te sell our stock, if we can get anybody te buy et," a disgruntled pigeon-fancier told me. " We cannot gan aal that way two or three times a day te feed the bords an' let them out an' fasten them up. There's any amount o' room here for our crees, but the councell not let us put them up cos et'll spoil the view. As if owt could mak these reed (red) cow-byres look uglier. Asides, we want houses te live in, not te look at."

The slum-cleared people find themselves farther from the schools (many mothers will have to accompany their little ones to school every day). They are also farther from the churches, clubs, Welfare Park, and—most important— shops. Said one woman : " Et's a good job we've got a nice lot o' fresh air up here. We'll probably have te live on et sometimes, especially as et'll tak' our Mary half a day te gan te the store now."

Her husband also waxed sardonic: " They sayed at the last election, Out o' the slums inte the sunshine,' but et's out o' the slums inte No Man's Land, if ye ax me." Already some of the people moved have expressed a strange determination. It is to leave their new houses as soon as eyer they get the chance.

It will assist us if you place a standing order for the " Catholic Herald " with your newsagent.




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