Page:Distinguished Churchmen.djvu/103

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75
THE DEAN OF MANCHESTER

particular had been warmly discussed, Dr Maclure made this astonishing declaration, “I wish you to understand that I am not a Papist nor a Ritualist. I am a downright, good High, Low, Broad, Catholic, Protestant, Evangelical, Churchman!” The newspapers immediately seized upon the declaration, and the Daily News, conspicuous in its endeavours to unravel the party mystery, ingeniously arrived at the very safe conclusion that Dr Maclure was “a broad-minded Dean!” One or two other organs treated the declaration light-heartedly, and dubbed him “a funny Dean, brimming over with humour.” For the most part, however, the press rightly conceded that Manchester possessed a Dean who had the courage to strike out for himself a somewhat original course, and to stand to it fearless of all consequences.

Patience and a good, genial spirit may be said to have stood Dr Maclure in excellent stead. Than he, probably no man was wider awake to the fact that originality can only be maintained at the cost of much difference of opinion, much criticism, verbal and literary, possibly even much abuse from the mouths of extremists. If so, conjecture for once was well-founded. To-day it is nothing new to readers of both London and provincial journals to find their Church news prefaced with some such line as “The Dean of Manchester and His Critics.” The deduction is two-fold: Dr Maclure, while loyally adhering to the principles of the Church, as