Canon Stanley Maurice Hind. A.K.C.
Born in 1929 in
Hightown,Cleckheaton,West Yorkshire. At St Barnabas church Stanley
Hind began Serving at 8 years old. Educated at Heckmondwicke Grammar
School, and National Service with the Royal Signals Regiment, he
studied for the Church at Kings College London and St Boniface,Warminster
graduating A.K.C.with Honours;the first awarded for five years.
He served his Title at St James the Great, Haydock in Liverpool
Diocese,Ordained in the Cathedral, as Deacon in 1954 and Priest in `55. He
also married in `54, at Christ the Saviour, Ealing Broadway to Ann Brough.
Their son Martin ( Tim ) was born in `55.
In 1957 Stanley Hind returned
to Wakefield Diocese for his second curacy at Elland;in charge of
All Saints.Here, daughter Rebecca was born in 1957. His first
Living, in Mirfield at St Paul`s, East-thorpe in the middle town carried an
unusual brief; to persuade many of his parishioners to worship
elsewhere !. Old properties in town and the canal
- side were being demolished to replace with flats the people being
evicted. The idea to build allegiance to Churches in places people
found themselves allocated was sound; but they didn`t want to go.Their
vicar guided them through considerable distress and wrestled with
his P.C.C about loss of congregation and income. Tempers often flared
and grumbling became an almost Olympic sport ! A churchwarden
complained to me "You can`t row with our vicar " I said I
should hope not." He`s not here to row with people "
" Ah !" he said " ..but `ave you noticed he
allus gets his own way ! "
calm,ever-smiling,Theological sholar; sociable ,welcoming and hospitable who
loved a party ,be it with Clergy and their wives; Servers Guild and
supporters; P.C.C`s;parishioners of all sorts,kinds and sizes;parents of
Children in Care ...or the Children themselves; Church Lads Brigade Officers
and C.L.B. Boys and Girls, camping in the Vicarage Garden or the Church
field, ( lads and lasses of his parish challenging them at games)
and barbecues .. he would play his mouth-organ to the amazement of all !
Father Hind ? Never ! he was far too formal for a mouthorgan
at a campfire; they must have imagined it.!
From Mirfield in
1967 challenged to build up a single-figure congregation, of which
every member was the P.C.C.and took turns to ensure a congregation (
often one person} at Evensong. The Diocese determined to close it; but Bp John
Ramsbottom said he knew someone who would take it on ! To Stanley he said
" I have something to ask that I think God is calling you to do ".
Inducting him in February 1967 to St Michael`s, Carleton;a village grown almost
to a suburb of Pontefract;uniting it in 1972 with rural St Stephen`s, East
Hardwick,to hold in Plurality. "In Tandem " Stanley said " Like
riding a bicycle built for two " !
Stanley launched his
campaign via the dirty, near-derelict Parish Hall....locally called The
`Ut!. Leaving the door open he hammered loudly,nailing down dodgy floorboards
and the ilk. As he expected,the noise and clouds of dust drew attention.
Old chaps came in and went home for their tool-bags. He brought home lovely
quotes. "Nay Billy. Tha dunna hammer screws ! Tha hammers nails and
tha screws screws " In the Hall kitchen I cleared cups left
half-empty so long -ago that fungi grew in them. Wives of the
joinery team came, neighbours too with sleeves rolled - up. They brought
jugs of tea and buckets of hot soapy water. In the evenings,able - bodied sons,
parents talking about " something youngsters can do."came.
From dust and cameraderie grew a congregation, growing slow and
steady,month by month. What a Christmas at St
Michael`s ! The Tree; the Setting of holly, ivy and flower-arrangements.
At the Heart of Everything, where it belongs; the Stable and the Holy
Family.Our first Christmas at Carleton ,exactly forty years ago !
Amongst it all, Stanley
Hind began 19yrs of attending International Ecumenical Conferences in Germany
and Brittany;debating,lecturing and preaching in German and less often,in
French. With Jews he discussed interpretations of Biblical passages and joined
Christians mediating between Middle-Eastern Moslems and Jews; becoming a
member of the ouncil of Christians and Jews early in the 1980`s.
Stanley Hind refused
parishes elsewhere , until he learned that Morley Parish Church was
losing heart. In 1978 he was Inducted to St Peter`s and All Saints
Churwell. Numbers of everything were on a large scale;but as a parish
accustomed to being central in Town and Civic Life,it lost all that
interest and dignity when Morley lost Independence and became part
of Leeds. Churchyard weeds grew high and buildings shabby in a sea of
vandalism. The Faithful were exactly that ! Faithful. To St Peter`s
and to the Faith; but comers- in on the new estates felt no encouragement
if their past contact with the Church was slim; and St Peter`s had little charm
visible from the bus .A new problem,a new challenge and under such
circumstances it " almost worked" for eight years.Things got a lot
better until Stanley believed the parish needed push;a young
man with vigour and new insight. He considered telling his Bishop,Dr
David Hope,when an extraordinary thing happened. His private joke when
other parishes were offered, to only the family he`d say "
Now If they would offer me Womersley I`d go in a flash !" A High
Churchman`s ideal; a pretty village with a Sister Parish of Kirk
Smeaton,two Medieval churches; two good Communities. His friends Canon Dick
Phillips and Father Robert Garrod had both been Incumbents; had loved the
Parish and were loved by it. He opened the morning post,
grinned and passed me a letter . Dr Hope and Lord Rosse took pleasure in
offering him St Martin`s Womersley and St Peter`s Kirk Smeaton ! and
there he served with new energy and Joy ...through a near-condemned Spire,
entailing mountainous Money - Raising ; English Heritage ; builders and
scaffold; negotiatingand cleaning and wonderful co-operative Congregation. Then a
crisis.Near- failure of ( by now Canon, Hind )`s health; with which
he battled, determined to complete his time before Retirement.
participation in Conferences on the Continent he built a wide
correspondence with monks and academics overseas; and began to learn
Yiddish ! He`d never heard of an easier life ! ....a smoother ride !
Nuns, monks and others visited our home annually,and in Retirement we
returned to Carleton ( after an absence of 18 yrs ) to a cottage bought
in 1970 for elderly relative. Canon Hind did Sickness locum
for his great friend Fr Stewart Ramsden; then Interregna of almost
year each at Hemsworth, Altofts, Ackworth and shorter ones elsewhere in
Barnsley Deanery. Resting now-and-then when forced to.. He did years of holiday
locums at Dorchester -on-Thames Abbey where daughter Rebecca lives and son Tim
and their families live nearby.
It has been a marvellous,
Joyful and Fulfilling Life as Stanley Hinds`wife for 53 years; having taken the
advice my father proffered " I like that one " he said
sternly."He knows where he`s going and he`ll make his own way..and if
you`ve any sense you`ll go with him "! .I thank God I was
asked ! It has been a great Privilege. Thankyou to your editor who asked
me to write an Obituary. Specialists and Surgeons gave us many years more than
we would have had without their skills,even genius. Now his family Grieve. Two
huge congregations at Requiem Mass and the Funeral in Womersley, say as much
as I have about what he built from his Calling and the Influence he
May he Rest In Peace and Rise In Glory .
Catharine Ann Hind.
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