Page:Distinguished Churchmen.djvu/239

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THE BISHOP OF CALEDONIA 201

had sufficed to establish for Mr Ridley a reputa tion for wide knowledge of languages, and on the strength of his masterly grasp of the languages of the East, notably Arabic, he was very soon after invited by the C.M.S. to organise a College of Divinity at Jerusalem, and to be its first principal. The idea, unfortunately, was never brought to a practical issue, owing to ecclesiastical and financial difficulties.

Then came a most interesting epoch. It became Mr Ridley s good fortune to be appointed Chaplain of the English Church in the Kreuz Strasse at Dresden, and there he remained for three years, during the time of the never-to-be- forgotten Franco-German War. Assisted by his congregation and, most assiduously, by Mrs Ridley, it was his privilege to do a great deal for the sick and wounded, and to mix among the French prisoners, of whom there were 22,000 in Dresden at one time. While ministering to the bodily necessities of the sufferers occasion was also properly taken to deliver the Message, and pris oners and sufferers alike, it is said, were wont to greet Mr and Mrs Ridley in the most friendly way. But, alas ! this obviously desirable work was brought to an untimely end by the intervention of a French Bishop, who complained to the military authorities. The result, however, was only a limitation of Mr and Mrs Ridley s influence. As

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