Twice a week I post a quote from saints from the Episcopal Calendar of Saints that week. They are to be meditative and mindful, playful and thought inducing. I hope they are helpful in your spiritual journeys.
William Temple (1881 - 1944)
Archbishop of Canterbury
n 1926 Britain experienced what was known as the General Strike, in which most workmen in all trades and industries went on strike, not against their particular employers, but against the social and economic policies of the country as a whole. In Manchester this meant primarily a coal stoppage. Temple worked extensively to mediate between the parties, and helped to bring about a settlement that both sides regarded as basically fair.
He excelled, it would seem, not as a scholar, but as a moderator, and above all as a teacher and preacher. In 1931, at the end of the Oxford Mission (what is known in many Protestant circles as a Revival Meeting), he led a congregation in the University Church, St Mary the Virgin, in the singing of the hymn, "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross." Just before the last stanza, he stopped them and asked them to read the words to themselves. "Now," he said, if you mean them with all your heart, sing them as loud as you can. If you don't mean them at all, keep silent. If you mean them even a little and want to mean them more, sing them very softly." The organ played, and two thousand voices whispered:
Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were an offering far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.
For many who participated, it was a never-forgotten experience.
Temple became Archbishop of Canterbury in 1942 and died of complications of his gout in 1944.