Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Jersey and New Jersey - Part 1

I had no idea of the complex connections between Jersey and New Jersey, which are mentioned in this article, published in “The Pilot” in 1963.

Trinity Cathedral in Denton has a granite altar stone from Gorey Castle, while in Jersey, there is an acknowledgment of that gift, and a replica of the seal of New Jersey in the States Chamber and a flag of State and Diocese, which I hope is still in place.

It is a pity that today’s church in Jersey cannot rekindle the links of the past, but in the meantime, here is a fragment of Jersey history that you may not easily find elsewhere.

Incidentally, Francis de Lisle Bois was Deputy Bailiff from 1962-1968, but never became Bailiff.

The Diocese of New Jersey-A visit paid, A link strengthened Ancient And Modern 
From "The Pilot",  1963

The link between the ancient Deanery of Jersey and the modern Diocese of New Jersey, U.S.A., has been strengthened by the recent visit of our Deputy Bailiff, Mr. Francis De Lisle Bois.

During his brief stay in that1 American State, Mr. Bois displayed a keen interest in the Diocese and Cathedral Church of Trenton, with its altar of red granite stone from Mont Orgueil Castle. In the following article, exclusive to "The Pilot", Mr. Bois recounts his experiences.

The association between the Island of Jersey and the State of New Jersey in recent years has probably been closer in the ecclesiastical sphere than in any other. No less than three Bishops of the Diocese of New Jersey have visited the Island. The first visit was by Bishop Paul Matthews in1930.

Eighteen years later, in 1948, Bishop Wallace J.Gardner visited the Island in the company of the Very Reverend Frederic Magee Adams, Dean of Trinity Cathedral, Trenton, the Cathedral Church of the Diocese. More recently, we have had a visit from the present Bishop, the Right Reverend Alfred L. Banyard, D.D., S.T.D., and, in August of this year, we are to receive the Reverend Henrv A. Male on a visit of goodwill from the Diocese of New Jersey.

When I was in New Jersey for the opening of the Tercentenary Celebrations, I asked if arrangements could be made for me to visit Trinity Cathedral, particularly as I wished to see the Jersey altar in the Crypt of the Cathedral. The altar incorporates a red granite altar stone from Mont Orgueil Castle, the offer of the stone by the Island to the Diocese resulting from the visit of Bishop Gardner in 1949.

Visitors to the States' Chamber will see hanging on the wall an acknowledgment of the gift under the Seal of the Diocese. They will also see, at the members' entrance to the Chamber, a display consisting of a replica of the Seal of the State of New Jersey, which was presented to the Island by Governor Harry Moore, flanked by the Flag of the State and the Flag of the Diocese, both presented to the Island by Bishop Gardner to mark his visit. In due course, the Cathedral will have another piece of Jersey built into it, as it is intended, when the last two bays of the Church are erected, to include a stone from the Parish Church of Saint Helier amongst the stones of the floor.

I was invited to attend matins on Sunday, January 5th, but I was unfortunately unable to accept this invitation as I had to leave for home on the preceding day. I was, instead, invited to visit the Cathedral on the Friday, when I was most kindly received by the Bishop, the Dean of the Cathedral, the Very Reverend Lloyd D. Chattin, and Canon Edwin W. Tucker of the Field Department, as well as by Mr. Arthur J. Holland, the Mayor of Trenton.

Trinity Cathedral is situated in West State Street, Trenton, a wide, winding, wooded avenue. Steps for the creation of a Cathedral parish and the ultimate construction of a Cathedral were first taken in 1930. The site chosen was that of All Saints Church, now a chapel of the Cathedral. This was the second church of that name, the original having been converted for use as a parish hall. This has now been reconverted into a Synod Hall and is used for diocesan, church school and parish activities.

The Cathedral Church and the Crypt are new, and the tower, in which hangs a carillon presented by Dean Adams, is that of All Saints Chapel.

All the buildings form a single unit and include a suite of offices. There are many things of interest to see, some fine stained glass windows, and, to my mind, the most attractive of all, a number of framed ikons forming the reredos of an altar.

The Bishop made me a most welcome gift a memento of my visit: a framed drawing in colour of the Seal of the Diocese. The Seal has a strong association with Jersey as the shield in its centre symbolizes the historical connexion, both ecclesiastical and secular, between the Island and New Jersey. The shield's dexter bears the three bend lets or (gold) on a field azure (blue) of the Deanery of Jersey and the sinister bears the Arms of the Island, with a variation of colours, the lions being sable (black) and the field argent (silver).

I had a very happy hour at the Cathedral and, while I was sorry to have been unable to attend a service there, I was glad to have had the opportunity of seeing the results of the efforts of members of a vigorous and living church.

My all too brief visit to the State of New Jersey has left me with many pleasant memories, and one outstanding memory is that of the cordial and friendly way in which I was received at Trinity Cathedral.

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