Page:The Irish in Australia.djvu/256

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himself, had sympathies in that direction by reason of his many Catholic relatives and friends around his native city of Limerick. The coming of Sir Richard Bourke was coincident with a complete reversal of that avowed anti-Catholic policy, which previous governors took a shameless delight in administering. A powerful despatch of his to the Right Hon. E. G. Stanley, Secretary of State for the Colonies, under date September 30th, 1833, dealt a knock-down blow to the pampered little state Church which his predecessors had laboured so hard to erect on Australian soil. He pointed out with clearness and effect the grossly unfair manner in which the annual grant from the public treasury for Church purposes was distributed, £11,500 being grabbed by the Church of England, whilst the Roman Catholics, notwithstanding their large numbers, received only £1,500, and the Church of Scotland £600. "The chaplains of the Church of England," he proceeded, "are provided with glebes of forty acres each, or with a money allowance in lieu, and with houses or lodging money. No advantage of this kind is possessed by the clergy of the Church of Scotland, or by the Roman Catholics. Such an unequal distribution of support cannot be supposed to be acceptable to the colonists, who provide the funds from which this distribution is made. Accordingly, the magnitude of the sums annually granted for the support of the Church of England in New South Wales, is very generally complained of, and a petition to the governor and the Legislative Council has been lately prepared at a public meeting, and very numerously signed, praying for a reduction of the expenditure. In a new country, to which persons of all religious persuasions are invited to resort, it will be impossible to establish a dominant and endowed church without much hostility, and there is great improbability