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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 69

Bishop Suter to Bishop Hadfield

page 5

Bishop Suter to Bishop Hadfield.

The following is an extract from the letter addressed by Bishop Suter to Bishop Hadfield two days after receiving Bishop Harper's resignation of the Primacy. Having stated his belief that the office of Primate was now vacant, the General Synod having had no power to elect a successor to Bishop Harper until the vacancy had been created, he proceeded to say:—"I suggest, therefore, that the matter be referred to the Standing Commission, as it is a question of interpretation of various Canons, especially of Clause 28, Whether "until the General Synod shall make other provision, is to be constructed to mean unless the General Synod shall have made," &c. For this I am prepared to state a case for the consideration of the Standing Commission; or, which I venture to think a speedier method, to have a special meeting of the General Synod convened at Wellington for the express purpose of validating certain proceedings in connection with the election of a successor to Bishop Harper as Primate. * * * As it can easily be set right where there is no disposition to disturb the express will of the General Synod, I have the less reluctance in proposing this, as it is most desirable that there should be a Primate without delay, and that his title to the position should be unquestioned."

When this is taken in conjunction with Bishop Suter's letter to Bishop Harper prior to the resignation by the latter of the Primacy, it may confidently be asked, what more the Bishop of Nelson could have done to meet the difficulty.