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Bishop Geo. D. Gillespie Honored by Rector Henry Tatlock of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church

Bishop Geo. D. Gillespie Honored by Rector Henry Tatlock of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church image
Parent Issue
Day
15
Month
December
Year
1899
Copyright
Public Domain
OCR Text

At the banquet given last evening ii Grand Rapids to conclude the twc ays' celebration of the 25th anniver iary of the ccmsecration of Bishop p'Gillespie and the organization of th Diocese of Western Michigan, the Rev ï Henry Tatlock, of this city, was on I of the speakers. At the time of hi I election to the episcopate Dr. Gilles I pie was rector of St.Andrew's church L and Mr. Tatlock went to Grand Rap i ids to carry to the bishop the congrat E ulations of his oíd parishioners. H e spoke as follows : "I have come to bring to this anui K versary festival the greetings of th P parish from which your diocese re l ceived its bishop 25 years ago. Men ■ are priests before they are bishops I and to the felicitations which you are offering today to George DeNorman die Gillespie, in testimony of the work which he has done, in the ser vice of God and man, in these years in which he 1: a? been your bishop anc chief pastor, the parish of St. An ; drew's, Ann Arbor, begs to add its tribute of loye, in memory of the great and gracious work wihch he did, in the same service, in the thirteen and a half years during which he was its beloved rector. ü%i& "If there be one proof more patem than another of the love and care oí the triune God for Christ's churoh in Michigan, it is to be found in the work of the spirit, when He seiii George D. Gillespie to Aun Arbor in 1861. In that day there was needed in the university city of the state, a leader of the church who was blameless and holy in life, in whom the love of God and the love of man was the supreme motive oí' his heart, who was wise and strong and courageous, who conld discern the signs of the times and foresee the issues of coming years, who would rest his spiritual work upon the one foundation of Jesus Ohrist, and execute it in the generous conception which is born of faith and hope, and who, by his devotion and loftiness of aim and breadth, and yet sanity of visión, could win to his aid the loyalty and the enthusiastic support of other men. Such was the man that was needed in the church at Ann Arbor 38 years ago ; and when he who is now your bishop became its rector, that man was here. "He carne to the church in a critical moment of its history - in a day when its future hung in tlie balance. He set himself to the work, furnished with the spirit and armed with the powers which I have named. He gathered together the little flock of Christ's people, and led them to the fonntain of living water; he songht out the wandering sheep, and bade them return to the f old, ; he tenderly cared f Dr Christ's lambs; he preached Christ to the prisoner, and gave gifts to the poor. The greatest sinner against God and the most neglected of his fellowineu, he ministered to witt the same love and devofcion witli which he ministered to all; for he held all alike to be the children of his Father in heaven. It is 110 wondei that the people loved him and trusted him. It is no wonder that the church grew in numbers and in spiritual power. "Under the influenoe of such a leader, the iinpossible becomes possible. The stately and beautiful clmrch of stone which this reetor anc the congregation which he had gathered about him built in Ann Arbor in 18(57-68, is a standing marvel. There is not in the state of Michigan a house of God more worthy of his honor, more expressive of the love and devotion of his people, than that church. The labors and the self-denials which that congregation were inoved to perform, in order that that church might be nobly built, were proof of the most [ conviucing character that they had í become possessed of the spirit of their ; rector. This church has stood for a I generation, and will continue to I stand, let us hope, for generations to I come, as a memorial of the wisdom l and power of the spiritual leader % whose thought and spirit it enshrines. "But there are other buildings, I more lasting than stone, which that same leader was instrumental in making. The men and women whom he gfed with the bread of heaven, and whose characters he helped to fashion laf ter the pattern of Christ,are spiritfeual buildings which neither time nor Peternity can destroy. ' These bear upon them the impress of his life, and carry with them the inspiration of his love. These thank God for the light and life and joy and peace of the Christian faith, which they were brought to ihid through him as the chosen vessel of God'sgrace; and for this priceless service they rise up today and cali him blessed. Few of ,them are left in thè old parish of his love and blessed labor; many are scattered over the land ; many more have entered into life eternal ; but wherever they are, in the old parish or elsewhere, on earth or in paradiso, they send today their greeting of [ove and gratitude to their beloved pastor. They rejoice in his joys as they have sorrowed in his sorrows ; and they bless God that, in his goodness,heper mitted them to know tiiat jiastor, por ciiUed them to como under the infiu eucc of his life and to share in the de Jight of his love. "And while I would thus ccnvey to our Reverend Father the salutations of his former parishioners, I beg also to offer to him my personal tribute of gratitude for the happiness that has come to ine in knowing him, and for the help and inspiration that I have received from his work and exnmple in the parish in which I am his unworthy sucoessor. Tor ten years I have been permitted to observe the results of his enduring work ; and more and more, as the years come on, I feel the silent power of the life he lived and the labors he performed in that parish years ago. He will rejoice to know that today his old parish is the largest ( save one, in the state of Michigan. ' For this, and for other benefits that have come to the parish, to him, of ( human agents, belongs the largest share of credit. He planted and watered, auJ. others have entered into nis labors ' "Keverend Father, in the name of your old parish and old home, in the name of the generation that knew you, and in the name of the genera-tion that knows only the effect of your Jife and the results of your labors, I beg to offer you this greeting of love and gratitude, and to teil you that, while I hope this message frora your friends may be pleasant to you, the remembrance and thought of you is blessed to them. "