Citizens with the Saints

Lyman N. Harding

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In the early stages of planning for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Diocese of Fredericton, the Ven. F. H. Hazen suggested that the brief history, One Hundred Years of Church Life, prepared anonymously in 1945, be revised and updated. The task, which has resulted in the production of an almost totally new book, fell to me, and it was perhaps inevitable that it should. When I first came to the diocese as a student in 1959, a green Upper Canadian recruited by Archbishop A.H. O'Neil, I noted certain subtle differences in the nature of the Church in New Brunswick. They are difficult to delineate clearly, but there was a greater emphasis on the sacramental life, a greater respect for the offices of both the bishop and clergy, and a fuller appreciation of the Church as the living Body of Christ than I had previously encountered. The tradition which produced these characteristics fascinated me, and led to a year of graduate study on Bishop Medley at the University of New Brunswick, and a paper read to the Canadian Church Historical Society in Fredericton in 1966. So the opportunity to expand that work into a more complete history of the diocese in which it has been my privilege to serve as a priest for thirty years, has been a welcome one.

There is one person above all others who must accept responsibility for my appreciation of the particular characteristics of Anglicanism here in New Brunswick--Mrs. Freda Brundage, a life-long parishioner at St. Paul's, Oak Point, in the parish of Greenwich. It was with Freda and her late husband, Leslie Brundage, that I boarded when I came to serve in the parish of Greenwich and Petersville thirty-five years ago. Freda greeted me with the best advice I have ever received: "Young man, you take us as we are, and we'll take you as you are, and we'll get along all right." Her love for and devotion to our Lord and his Church continue to this day, and it is my privilege now to minister to her in a retirement residence in Saint John. It is to Freda Brundage, with sincere gratitude, that I dedicate these pages.

I am grateful for the assistance and co-operation of many people in the preparation of this work, most particularly to the Most Rev. H.L. Nutter, who has worked closely with me in this undertaking, and whose unparalleled knowledge of the diocese has been invaluable. I am grateful for the work of J. Lee Potter, whose M.A. thesis on Bishop Kingdon gave me a new appreciation of our second bishop, providing much of the material used in Chapter 3, and to the Ven. F.H. Hazen, the Rev. Richard McConnell and the Rev. John Matheson for supplying important material. Special credit must be given to Mrs. Gillian Liebenberg, a graduate in history of the University of New Brunswick, whose research, made possible by a generous grant from the Crake Foundation of Sackville, N.B., provided much of the material for the later chapters. I am grateful to Mrs. Audrey Dawe, president of The Diocesan Board of Anglican Church Women for the fine account of that organization's important work (Appendix I). The assistance of our Diocesan Archivist, Harvey Malmberg, who searched out many of the pictures used as illustrations, and staff members at the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, where our diocesan archives are housed, and the Harriet Irving Library at the University of New Brunswick, as well as the staff at synod office, has been most helpful. I must, of course, accept full responsibility for the finished product.

I must also express my thanks to the people of Trinity Church, Saint John, for their patience and forbearance while this work has been "under construction"; to my secretary, Catherine Steed, who has cheerfully accepted extra work, and Ian C. Wetmore of Wycliffe College, Toronto, my student assistant for the summer, Mrs. Pam Ross, and. Chris Waldschutz, who have done much to help in proof reading and correction. Many others should be included, but I cannot omit thanks to my wife, Margaret, for her support and encouragement, and tolerating the early morning tapping of a computer keyboard during much of her vacation, as well as to my daughters Anne and Jennifer who, though on holiday, have assisted their inept father in mastering a recalcitrant computer, and made many helpful suggestions and their sister Victoria whose support from a distance has been no less real.

August, 1994

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