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Dr George Charles JULIUS [51]
Isabella Maria GILDER [52]
William SMITH of Nottingham [2423]
Peggy HEATON [2424]
(Abt 1778-)
Dr Frederick Gilder JULIUS MD FRCS [50]
Ellen Hannah SMITH [49]

Archbishop Churchill JULIUS D D [56]


Family Links

1. Alice Frances ROWLANDSON [576]

Archbishop Churchill JULIUS D D [56]

  • Born: 15 Oct 1847, The Old Palace Richmond SRY
  • Baptised: 19 Nov 1847, St Mary Magdalen Richmond SRY
  • Marriage (1): Alice Frances ROWLANDSON [576] on 18 Jun 1872 in Holy Trinity Church, Bournemouth, UK
  • Died: 1 Sep 1938, Cloudesley Christchurch N.Z. aged 90
  • Buried: Linwood Cemetery Christchurch

bullet  General Notes:

Churchill Julius was born about quarter past 10 in the evening Oct 15 1847. Baptised Nov 19 1847 by Mr Dumergue at Old Church Richmond. Dr Julius, Henry Julius and Miss Julius stood sponsor's.
From the entries in Burkitt on the New Testament.

Educated at Blackheath, Kings College, The Strand 1861, London and Worcester College, Oxford. Mat. Oct. 16 1866. Aged 19 years. He took his B. A. degree in 1869 and M. A. in 1873. He was ordained deacon by Bishop of Norwich in 1871, and appointed Curate of St. Giles Norwich.
In 1873, he became Curate of South Brent, Somerset and in 1875-78, Vicar of Shapwick-cum-Ascott, Somerset. While there he was appointed assistant Diocesan Inspector of schools for the Diocese of Bath and Wells.
In 1878 he was inducted as Vicar of Islington, Holy Trinity, Cloudesley, a well known London church capable of seating 3,000 people. In 1884 he was appointed Archdeacon of Ballarat Victoria Aust.
In 1889 appointed Bishop of Christchurch New Zealand, consecrated 1890. Primate and Archbishop of New Zealand 1922 to 1925. Instrumental in the funding and completion of Christchurch Cathedral N.Z, begun by Bishop Patterson in the 1870's. Retired 1925.
Ref: Unattributed.

Illness of Archdeacon Julius.
Melbourne, This Day.
Archdeacon Julius, of Ballarat, is seriously ill from jaundlce and overwork.
Ref: The Australian Star (Sydney, NSW) Mon 21 May 1888

Muscular Christianity.
A Clergyman Catches a Wife Beater.
A singular scene was recently witnessed in the streets of Ballarat. The Ven Churchill Julius, Archdeacon of that golden city, previously a famous Oxford athlete and a hard-working Liverpool clergyman, while doing his rounds caught a rough hulking wife-beater red-handed. He seized the brute, overpowered him after a struggle, and personally marched him off to the lock-up without bothering the police.
Ref: Leicester Daily Mercury 5 June 1889.

South Brent.
Presentation. On the occasion of the Rev Churchill Julius leaving this parish, where, during his ministry as curate to the Rev J Ditcher, he has gained the love and esteem of all, he was presented with addresses, in which the appreciation of the parishioners of the seal displayed by him in the discharge of his duties was set forth. . . . . .
Ref: Western Gazette 21 May 1875

The trustees of Trinity Church, Islington, have appointed the Rev Churchill Julius MA, vicar of Shapwick, to succeed the Rev R C Billing who has been appointed to the Rectory of Spitalfields.
Ref: Somerset County Gazette 6 April 1878

A Churchill Julius aged 36 arrived in Victoria September 1884 aboard the South Australian from Britain.
Ref PROV - Unassisted Immigration to Victoria 1852-1923

JULIUS Churchill : Alum Ox.
Worcester Call Mat 16 Oct 1866 age 19 B.A. 1869 M.A. 1873.
Vicar of Shapwick, Somerset 1875-78, of Holy Trinity Islington 1878-84. Archdeacon and Vicar of Christ Church, Ballarat; Australia since 1884.

CHURCHILL JULIUS : Although a man of the cloth, he was a colourful figure who would not have had much time for the slavish use of the honorific's above, as his story below will convey. Known as the "Radical Bishop" he is described as one of the most remarkable men who ever donned apron and gaiters. Wise, outspoken, and intensely human, he was one of the master builders of the Anglican Church in N.Z.
Reared in a strictly evangelical household "Our Sundays were rather dreary" he tells us, but the household, other than that, was full of life, bustle, and interest.
When he was 10 years of age (1857) Churchill was sent to a private day school at the back of Richmond Old Church, he had no recollection of learning anything there! then after some years went to Blackheath Proprietary School, but; "a few happy years came to a close through breaking my arm at football. I was sent home for recovery and then developed a serious nervous disorder which confined me to a darkened room for six months, and which had a lasting effect upon my after career."
At about the end of this time, being quite unfitted for school or any close study, I was sent to a country village in Norfolk [Buckenham], whence I made daily visits to Norwich for some sort of study under a tutor.
The Vicar of the Parish was a well known missioner" (The Rev Haslam a controversial "Billy Graham" figure of his day). "Under his guidance I learnt something of mission and even parish work, which was to serve me in after days. It was no particular credit to either of us that I preached my first sermon [in his absence] at the age of 14 years. Here it was that I came to know and love the grand old city of Norwich, connected with my life in later years."
Following his years at Oxford Churchill returned to Norwich as Curate of St Giles, then to South Brent and Shapwick in Somerset and Holy Trinity Islington London. He made a profound impression in these Parish's and also became very involved with children's education, he was gifted in his ability to communicate with young people.
In 1883 Churchill invited the visiting Bishop of Ballarat Australia to preach at a festival at Holy Trinity, the occasion was a great success and some months later he received a "call" from the Bishop to become the Archdeacon of Ballarat. Asked "Will you go" Churchill replied "I've got to go" in a way that perhaps he sensed his future would be better served in the New World.
After many tributes and greatly to the regret of the large congregation to whom he ministered, he left for Melbourne in 1884 on the "South Australian" and became Vicar of Christ Church, Ballarat, Archdeacon of a diocese half the size of England, and a Canon of the Cathedral.
Here was ample scope for exhibiting the energy and unique ability of his character, Christ Church Pro Cathedral was plain and inadequate, and the Parish neglected. Working through his rapport with the young people he revitalised the Parish and got work started on a new Cathedral, construction however ceased after he left, never to be restarted. Entrusted with the origination of a far flung Archdeaconry, he travelled extensively to support more than 80 churches.
In 1889, he was elected Bishop of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand, and was consecrated in 1890. He became Primate and Archbishop of New Zealand in 1922 a position he held until he resigned all his official ministry in 1925. During his retirement he travelled to Australia and England, suffering some ill-health, but he remained active in church work until 90 years of age.
The extent of Churchill's work in NZ stands alone as a topic and is well detailed in the publication "A Power in the Land" an inspiring and amusing read see the Books section of this website.
Details, and quotes by Churchill Julius from "A Power in the Land" by Gertrude & Anthony Elworthy, Whitcombe & Tombs 1971.

Julius Churchill. 1s of Frederick of Richmond SRY., M.D.; Worcester Coll. Matric 16 Oct 1866 aged 19; BA 1869; MA 1873; V of Shapwick SOM, 1875-8; of Holy Trinity Islington, 1878-84; Archdeacon and Vicar of Christ Church, Ballarat, Aust., since 1884.
Alumni Oxonienses 1715-1886. NZSOG.

Bishop Julius, of Christchurch (N.Z.), preached a sermon on a recent Sunday to trades-unionists. He declared that the tendency of the present age was to abandon individualism in favor of socialism. He deslared himself a socialist because he was a Christian, and socialism was taught in the New Testament. Trades-unions had done good in the past, despite their faulty methods, but he did not think trades union would cure the evil of the present system. Sin was at the root of the present system, and no system of socialism, however complete, would bring happiness without righteousness. Reform must be brought about slowly, and he did not therefore believe in suddenly nationalising the land or of confiscating other people's property, as was proposed by those who advocated the prohibition of the liquor traffic. He deplored the fact that the working cldsses did not pay sufficient attention to the education of their ohildren to fit them for the changed condition steadily approaching.
Ref: Illawarra Mercury (Wollongong) Tue 26 May 1891

Plucky, If Rash.
There is probably not another Church of England Bishop in the world who would have the nerve to do what Dr Churchill Julius, Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand, did the other day. He laid the top brick of his cathedral spire at a height of 270 feet from the ground, having been hauled up seated in a chair fixed at the end of a rope. Dr Julius was a Norwich curate and an Islington vicar before he went to the Antipodes.
Ref: Hartlepool Northern Daily Mail 18 September 1891

And Unconventional Bishop.
There is at least one Anglican Bishop who makes no concealment of his possession of a meerschaum. Dr Churchill Julius, late Norwich curate and Islington vicar, now Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand, recently concluded an episcopal speech with the unconventional observation "That's all for the present; I want to go home and have a smoke." Dr Julius is the same prelate who not long ago was hauled up at the end of a rope to a height of 290 feet to lay the top brick of his Cathedral spire. He is also prone to administering personal chastisement to wife beaters, to going on visitation tours in the ordinary two wheeled cart of commerce, to espousing the cause of labour and preaching strong sermons against heartless capitalism, and to doing various other things that would shock the average Anglican prelate
Ref: Dundee Evening Telegraph 18 November 1891

University Intelligence.
At a special Convocation of Oxford University held on Thursday, the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity was conferred upon the Right Rev Churchill Julius, Worcester College, Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand. . . . . The Provost of Queen's presided, and there was a crowded attendance. The Bishop of Christchurch was presented by the Regius Prof of Divinity. The recipients of the degrees met with a very hearty reception.
Ref: Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser 25 March 1893.

A Bishop on Wheels.
A Bishop on a bicycle has not yet been seen in the streets of London, but he is coming. One of the latest interesting items of news from New Zealand, the land of the lady mayor, female suffrage, and the incipient prohibition of intoxicants, is the announcement that the Rev Dr Churchill Julius, Bishop of Christchurch, has been seen propelling a tricycle. No doubt, by the time the next Pan Anglican conference assembles at Lambeth, his Lordship will be in a position to dispense with the superfluous wheel.
Ref: The Star (Guernsey) 11 February 1896

"The Grace of God - And Three Months."
Dr Churchill Julius, the Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand, has been visiting his diocese on a tricycle. In a sermon during this visitation, he found occasion to denounce the contribution of bad coins to the offertory. He said "to offer to the church, to the cause of God, money that the Baker or the Butcher would not accept shocks me. The man who would do that wants the Grace of God badly - and three months"
Ref: Lancashire Evening Post 7 April 1896

Bishops Court
Christchurch NZ
Jan 23 1908
My dear Harold
We have just heard from the girls with great sorrow of your Father's death. Aunt Alice is writing to your mother and I am sending a few lines to assure you of our loving sympathy. I know how hard these sorrows are to bear when we are far from home. God comfort you dear boy. It is so much better for him to have passed without the lingering helplessness which another stroke might have brought, and he was a good man living always in the fear of God, for whom we sorrow with good Hope. I am so glad that my girls saw and stayed with him before the end. God bless you dear Harold and give you a grace to walk in your Father's steps.
Your loving uncle
C. Christchurch
Letter to Harold L Fenn.

Bishops Court
Christchurch NZ
August 7 1908
My Dear Vandy,
It is much on my conscience that I have a letter of yours of January 8 as yet unanswered.
You wrote very kindly to tell me of your father's death, and I ought to have written to you as well as to your mother.
Harold gives me reports of you all when I run down to Pareora but my visits are not very frequent. Next week he comes up to Christchurch for the annual dissipation known as race week, and we shall see something of him.
You will like to know that Arthur Elworthy thinks very highly of him, he is . . . . . he seems to me a very good person and I should clearly like to get hold of him for work in this diocese. But since then I have been laid up with an accident, then I went off to Sydney, and have just . . . . . and don't know where to find him. Bertha is to be married in October and Ada will be the small . . . . . of our big family
A section has been cut from this letter to Ernest V Fenn.

The Archbishop used to recall how his father bought for him one of the first seven mechanically propelled bicycles, invented in France, to come into London. Propulsion was through the front wheel as in a boy's tricycle today. It was a tremendous advance on the clumsy velocipede which its rider be-strode and propelled with feet on the ground. Later he rode a 'penny-farthing,' and for using it on Sunday to give his horse a rest was called to solemn account by the local clergy. His defence about the horse's rest disarmed the deputation, but its members murmured something about the wicked 'pleasure' he got out of it on the Sabbath. "In Christchurch Archbishop Julius was in earlier days a familiar figure as he moved about the city on his modern pneumatic-tyred cycle."
When motor-cycles came in, he bought one of the early machines to travel the diocese with, because it was speedier when going if less reliable than buggy or coach: but at last disaster befell him. It was then he bought the famous 'one-lunger' Rover with its solitary Cyclops-eye lamp projecting ahead of the radiator, but with a windscreen and pneumatic tyres. In that vehicle he chugged his way to every part of the diocese. After that he had several cars each more modern than the last, and fitted with many efficient 'gadgets' of his own devising.
Only in the last year or two did he give up driving personally his modern 10 h.p., after someone ran into it broadside on and gently tipped it over, happily without material damage to either Archbishop or car. After the spill he drove it off under its own power. "Perhaps the toughest vehicle he ever drove was the lever-propelled 'jigger' lent him by the Public Works Department when the line to Arthur's Pass was being laid down." . . . . .

Churchill is reported as constantly getting into trouble with the Christchurch police, for speeding, finally at 86 they refused to renew his licence.

THE LYTTLETON TIMES - 9 March 1893 pg 3.
Reports that Bishop Julius was attacked (in his absence) at a meeting of the Christchurch Presbytery by a particular reverend gentleman concerned about the sanctity of the Lord's Day. " The Bishop had stated that he could conceive circumstances under which fishing and mountaineering would be justified on a Sunday, and the public interpretation of that utterance would do immense harm" Most present seem not to have agreed with the reverend gentleman.

Churchill, his wife and daughters Alice Ethel & Mary Ellen sailed from London to Auckland in 1893 on the Ruahine.
Also Churchill and Alice sailed the 24 Oct 1912 on the Orama, London to Auckland.

"A contributing cause to his longevity and the retention of his faculties, in spite of the natural loneliness which is inseparable from old age, when most of one's contemporaries have passed on, was undoubtedly to be attributed to his interest in useful hobbies. It is well known that he was a mechanical genius and that he specialised in mending clocks.
His "clock hospital" was always a feature of Bishopscourt, and his visits to country parishes were eagerly anticipated by those whose clocks had gone back on them. After the session of General Synod in Auckland in 1922, the year in which Bishop Julius was unanimously chosen as Primate and Archbishop, I invited him to spend a week at Paihia in order that have a rest after his strenuous labour's but he devoted the whole of his resting time to renovating the old organ in the Paihia Church and mending 'bellows,' which had suffered extensively by the incursion of rats into the church.

In Churchill's own words. 'Just before my examination for Priest Orders my Vicar broke down, and I was left with the services, the schools and the parish generally in my hands, together with such reading as I could manage at night. Early rising was not as easy as I could wish. I therefore attached a little alarm clock to my gas bracket which turning on the gas at the appointed hour, boiled some water in the kettle, blew a loud whistle and fetched me out of bed. On the night before my examination I placed a new heavy and expensive book on the gas in place of the kettle, and was roused in the morning by volumes of dense smoke. I showed the mutilated fragments to the Canon who murmured something about the lunatic asylum, and left it at that. Happily my spell of hard labour was drawing to a close.'
Of all Churchill Julius's special gifts, of which there are so many, surely the art of clock-mending will always be one of the most readily remembered. It was at South Brent that we first hear of his natural bent in this direction. The clock in the church tower is one of the oldest in the country which is still in perfect order. Concerning it the Rev. A. C.Schofield, vicar of the parish 1923-1947, wrote in the local magazine: 'More than 50 years ago, after several of centuries of service, our ancient clock stopped. The professional clock-doctors operated without success.
The vicar's young curate then tried his hand. He took the clock home, boiled it in his copper, dried and oiled it, and his dramatic treatment proved a lasting success. Hearing the story, I remarked [before learning his name] that a young man of such resourcefulness and courage was assuredly destined for big things. He died a month ago
Dr Churchill Julius, retired Archbishop of New Zealand.'

It happened one day that, walking along the road, I met an old lady carrying a heavy American clock. 'Why, mother, where are you going?' 'I be going to Highbridge', she said, 'to get my clock mended.' Highbridge was three miles distance, the lady was old and the clock was heavy. . 'Take it to my room,' I said. 'I will mend it for you.' There was a distant corner of the parish where, in a farmhouse, I was accustomed to hold a service once a fortnight.
As I walked in that direction a woman of no very good character came out of the house. 'Please, sir, would you be good enough to look at my clock for me?' she said. I went in and fell a-talking about matters which required much more urgent mending. The clock was on the mantel shelf, and as I talked I quite unconsciously opened the door, set the pendulum going, heard it was out of beat; put my hand in and adjusted the escapement and then said, 'Well, when I have time I will come in and see your clock.'
A week later I went to my farmhouse and was quite staggered when the good farmer's wife assured me that it was no use my coming as there wouldn't be a soul at the service. But why not?' said I. 'What happened?' 'Oh, Mary Curtis has been around the place telling everyone that you bewitched her clock, that you just looked at it and it has been going ever since.' She was quite right, no one came to the service, explanations were quite useless and with many other sins of my life, I had to live it down.
Complaint was made to me after a while that the boys of the village, after evening service, were so noisy and troublesome that the people begged me to secure the help of a constable. Of course, the constable was out of the question, but having a large kitchen I opened it and invited the boys to come in for a social after evening service. They came and almost crowded me out. Dear lads, there was no harm in them.
On one Sunday, having urged each boy present to bring another on the Sunday following, promising to supply a bigger room and forgetting all about it, I found my room crammed to suffocation. Among those present was one, Dickey Williams, a notable fighter and cock of the village. There he was hemmed in by a couple of chairs in the corner of the room. 'What brings you here, Dickey?' said I. Please, sir.' said a quiet lad I brought him in by the hair on his head.' So Dickey became a regular attendant, maintained order and discipline in the company and when I was gone, became Superintendent of the Sunday School.
Before the end of my first year, my second son Awdry was born. He always carried weight, or at least I did when I carried him to Burnham and back through the fields, a matter of four miles.
There were lighter touches even amid the anxiety and privation of the war years. The bishop found himself urging people to give up alcohol for the duration of the war and in return was challenged by a professor friend to give up smoking, a luxury he dearly loved to indulge. He agreed to do so if his friend would give up drinking whisky. The bargain was sealed, but unfortunately the professor substituted brandy for his accustomed tipple, while the bishop suffered the consequences of keeping his word.
His depriving himself in this way soon became public knowledge and even prompted clever sketch by F.H. Cumberworth, entitled 'His Dream Pipe', which appeared in the local papers at the time. Julius, incidentally, must have lost no time in resuming his pipe once the war was over. The habit, in fact, continued to get him into scrapes with some of the elderly female parishioners, and there is a story of his lunching with one old lady who even drove him from the verandah of her house with the words:' My lord, the diocese may be yours but the house is mine. Kindly smoke on the lawn.' many years later the doctor restricted himself to one pipe a day, he bought the largest pipe he could find and somehow contrived to keep filling it without ever relighting it.
In the first decade of the 20th Century means of transport and modes of travel were improving rapidly, and as regards these changes Churchill Julius was the last person not to keep up with the times. From his undergraduate,days, he had shown a keen interest in cycling, and all through the early years of his Christchurch episcopate he was still gaining much of his exercise as a 'pedal-pusher. When the motor-cycle appeared on the scene, the bishop immediately bought one and traversed his diocese on it.
In 1907 he became the proud possessor of his first motor car, the famous 'one lung' Rover, which had one enormous brass gas headlamp and an engine with only one cylinder; the metal to metal clutch ran on oil and three gears, with a reverse, gave speeds of up to 30 m.p.h. This eight horsepower car took the bishop to nearly every part of his diocese. Needless to say he spent many hours of his leisure time greasing and maintaining his mechanical equipment - more than this he designed and all sorts of improvements and modifications to his vehicles. These included a safety door-checking device, still to be seen on one of his later acquisitions, and early English three-seater 'Cabriolet,' now owned by a veteran car enthusiast in South Canterbury who maintains it in perfect working order.
Bishop Julius also experimented with an automatic, mechanical gramophone record stop. He built test models which worked without fail, using the now familiar run-off track from the inside grove. The early Julius system had a run-off track only, the present oscillating groove an improvement on the original method. Long before electric clocks were on the market commercially the bishop made up a number of them, turning all the parts up on a lathe. There was a 'master clock' controlling all the others.
In retirement, however, Julius's most happy hours were without doubt spent in his beloved workshop at Cloudesley. Here he was frequently found, wearing an old pair of 'blues', oil to the elbows and loathe to be disturbed. His grand-daughter has vivid memories of being driven into Christchurch by him, with cyclists diving in all directions for cover, and then being taken to some incredible junkyard, where he browsed through a heap of unpromising bits and pieces until he found what he needed for something he was constructing. He once made an automatic hen-feeding machine, which scattered the grain for the birds in the afternoons, thus releasing Ada from her daily chore.

CHURCHILL writes to his daughter Bertha, about the "Four Legged Club" while travelling his Diocese on the West Coast of NZ in 1899 ;
The Yellow Lamb, a corresponding member of the Club, desires me to send you a few extracts from our monthly report.
I am etc.,
Cruso (Dog)
Sec; "Four Legged Club"

July 14 1899 Brother Turpin (Horse)
Yes that is my name. I was so called after a famous missionary Bishop Julius on the box seat. I was instructed by the Club to take note of him. He is much like other men only his fur is rather different. He is heavy - very heavy. Says he is cold. Why doesn't he get down and pull? He smokes. So do I when I am hot. I like smoking, drivers never whip hard when they are smoking.

July 14 Tabitha (Cat)
I am the cat at the Bealey - THE cat, mind. Of course there are other cats. I sit in front of the Bealey fire . That is my place. I don't like the Bishop. He turned me out. Men are so selfish. Poor Turpin seems very tired tonight. He says it is the Bishop. But the Bishop isn't so heavy. I have found out what it is. He opened his bag and I saw he had six of his sermons inside. No wonder the handle gives way.

July 15
I am a spider at the vicarage Kumara. You will wonder how I come to be a member of the "Four Legged Club". Well two of my legs were cut off by a traction engine, so they admitted me to the Club. And I have eyes; - Oh, yes. I saw the Bishop go to bed in his clothes. Well not all his clothes. Dirty habit, I call it. Then he reads in bed just when I want to walk about. There is a blue bottle on his pillow, asleep I think, I mean to have it.

July 16 Snap (Dog)
I am Snap, a Dog, and I belong to Waimea. At least, Waimea belongs to me. I went to church with two other dogs to hear the Bishop. We joined in the singing. Then the Bishop preached. It was very dull; so we got up a fight, and they turned us out. I don't think much of the Bishop.

Christchurch May 1899.
At the conversazione for the completion of the Cathedral, held at the Art Gallery last night, Bishop Julius read an unpublished letter from the late Mr Edward Gibbon Wakefield to the mother of Sister Francis. The letter ran as follows: "I am still bent on New Zealand, and think I shall surely go. Tell Charles (Torlesse) that we have reason to hope that a Bishop will be appointed. We project, therefore, not a wooden church merely, but a cathedral of stone, fitted as the chief religious edifice of the Polynesian Archipelago. He may smile, but I am in earnest."
Ref: Star , Issue 6495, 26 May 1899, Page 4

Bishop Julius on New Zealanders.
According to Bishop Julius, of Christchurch, there are signs of change in the working of the human mind. Speaking at Palmerston North, the Bishop said everybody was talking about socialism. Some hoped it would come, others feared it. When it did come would there be absolute revolution. Was there not in this a definite sign that something was to come which must imperil every existing order. Were we prepared, or were we like other nations who had turned tbeir back and faded into nothingness beoause of tbeir unbelief. He believed in the old saying tbat the nation that was prepared for war was the nation that could best afford to dwell in peace. And how about the Dominion of New Zealand. We were simply playing with the question of defence. The volunteers had done what they could, aud he believed they were animated by a real desire to serve their country. But what could such a small number do ? Every man in the Dominion ought to learn how to hold a rifle and how to use it. We had a great idea of building an empire, and were always talking about it, as if mere bigness were better than power. We went about in hysterical fashion, crying "Rule Britannia'' and playing our little tin trumpets, and saying what a great nation we were. Now Zealandors were the narrowest people on earth. There might be people who had an horizon, but they were not in New Zealand. We thought tbat New Zealand was the hub of the universe, and that Great Britain was dependent upon us; but bless your hearts, he continued, we are dependent on England for the very breath we breathe. Let her close her markets and we are done. Tbe fact is, we are very little and we talk big. The New Zealander was not even as big as his country. With him it was a question of his class or his party, and that was what he called his horizon. Men might say there was not much to do, and that an individual could do nothing, but the Empire had been built up by individuals, and everything depended upon what each man was going to do, whether be was going to live a noble life or, live a life of ease and pleasure, that would eventually bring decay upon the nation. It was essential that every man of the Empire should recognise the necessity for this sacrifice, and help forward tbe life of the Empire with a little less bragging, a little less boastfulness, a little less big talking, and a great deal more earnest, honest, faithful service.
Ref: The Scrutineer and Berrima District Press (NSW) Sat 4 Jul 1908

Honorary Degrees
Next Friday's Ceremony.
Honorary degrees will be conferred on Friday next on the Archbishop of York and six bishops. A procession will be formed in the Library Arcade at 3.5 PM, pass round Senate House Yard and enter the Senate House by the south door. The degrees will be conferred in the following order: . . . . .
Doctors of Law . . . . . The Right Rev Churchill Julius, Hon. D.D., Oxford (Lord Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand). . . . .
Ref: Cambridge Daily News 10 July 1920.

Churchill and daughter Ada, sailed from London to Sydney the 16 Oct 1920, on the Orontes. They also sailed 28 Jan 1927 on the Cathy from London to Lyttleton. Their London address was recorded as 72 Kensington Rd W11.

In 1924 Churchill purchased new from David Crozier Ltd of Christchurch a 1924 Austin 12/4 Coupe for his own use. This car was bought in 1961 by B N Bain of Invercargill, who in 1984 was planning its restoration.

A Zealous Prelate.
Extracts from an unattributed English newspaper cutting - Sept 1938
Churchill was brought up in an early Victorian, strict and spartan regime.
"He and his three brothers were noted watermen, and their swimming was acquired by the alarming method of throwing themselves into the river to find their own way to the bank, while another male relative only came to the rescue if things were looking really serious for the water baby"
As the new vicar of Islington. " After early weeks of poor congregations he lost patience and one Sunday evening, armed with his dinner bell, he went into the streets of Islington. As the wondering inhabitants ran out of their houses he invited them to follow him to the church. And they came and stayed"
He was not one to be drawn into arguments on churchmanship.
"Once before preaching at Teddington, he asked . . . . . do they have incense there? No said a layman . . . . . don't you like it? With a twinkling eye, came the diplomatic and sincere answer, I prefer baccy"

Ever interested in technology Churchill had his first flight with Francis Chichester in 1930 aged 83. He was accompanied by his daughter Ada.
Ref: Brian Conlon <

Anthony Dermot Elworthy writes in 2020.
Churchill Julius and all his children, save one, were born in England. The exception was my grandmother, Bertha, born in Ballarat in 1886, the year after her brother Arthur (born in Milner Square) died at a young age; the family moved to Christchurch when Churchill took the job there. The children, with the exception of George (the eldest), all lived out their lives in New Zealand. I imagine that George, after obtaining his degree in Christchurch, judged that there would be restricted opportunities in NZ for someone of his very considerable abilities and that prospects would be much better in the larger and more technically developed Australia. Apart from infrequent visits to his siblings, the adult George seems not to have maintained any particular association with New Zealand.
George's brother Awdry followed his father into the Church and the five sisters married into local families, all of whom were connected with farming in the South Island. Two Julius sisters married two Elworthy brothers, one of whom was my grandfather and that is how I am connected with the Julius tribe.
As is well recognised, the Juliuses were clever. Apart from his horological interests, the Archbishop invented a number of ingenious devices born of his mechanical aptitude and it is clear that George inherited many of his manifold abilities from the old man. Music does not feature in the Archbishop's accounts and I don't know to what degree George might have been drawn musically but my great Aunt Ella was a very accomplished pianist and my grandmother a violin player of considerable distinction - she had once studied with Maud Powell, a pupil of the great Joseph Joachim. Years later, long after she had ceased playing, I took her to W E Hill's shop in Wardour Street to sell her 18th century Guadignini. The Elworthy/Julius marriages were spectacularly successful and whilst the family acknowledged the cleverness of George - "he invented the totalisator, you know" - there really was little understanding of his inventions and even less of the mechanics involved. Certainly, there was insufficient appreciation of what George had achieved in terms of Australian scientific and technical advance. But in fairness, perhaps that might be said of his adopted country as well! It was inevitable that George in ploughing an individual furrow in a different land, to some degree would become isolated from his NZ connections and would found a new dynasty having little in common with the "old order". I remember "Gentleman" George Y Julius cropping up in conversation more often than his father.
I mention all this to demonstrate why I have such scant knowledge of Uncle George, his accomplishments and manufacturing arrangements. Such knowledge as I have largely is thanks to you. I find this absence of understanding personally irritating because I feel that Uncle George and I might have shared several things in common, albeit vicariously since he was a couple of generations ahead of me and died when I was much too young to engage in matters of possible mutual interest.

Death came peacefully for Churchill Julius shortly before nine o'clock on 1 September 1938 at Cloudesley, during the later stages of a long illness. His body lay in Christchurch Cathedral for one day, under a watch kept by sisters of the Community of the Sacred Name.
A choral service in the cathedral preceded the funeral at Linwood Cemetery. St Margaret's College was given the great privilege of providing the only flowers on the coffin the white cross which he had asked for from the children. A tablet commemorating Julius was set up on the outside wall of the cathedral chancel. It was unveiled by the Governor General, Lord Galway, on 7 October 1940.
I approach this address,' he said,' with a sense of deep humility because I feel inadequate to express all that I know you would like me to say about such a well loved man as the Archbishop.
In the Cathedral at Christchurch there is a memorial to him at the Altar Rail and a screen.

The Times 3 September 1938 pg 12 col D.
Dr Churchill Julius.
Former Primate of New Zealand.
The Most Rev Churchill Julius, D.D., who was Archbishop and Primate of New Zealand from 1922 to 1925 died on Thursday at the age of 90, states Reuter message from Wellington. Born at Richmond, Surrey, on October 15, 1847, he was the son of Frederick Julius, MD., who at one time was the chairman of the Church Association. Like his father he was formerly a staunch Evangelical, but in later life developed on Broad High Church lines. After graduating from Worcester College Oxford, and having served curacies at St Giles Norwich, and South Brent Somerset, he became vicar of Shapwick, and then of Holy Trinity, Islington, where he left an unmistakable mark, his preaching being both vigorous and luminous, his tone fervent and rousing, and the social condition of the people receiving his wholehearted sympathy. The congregation speedily increased, and the various departments of church life and work were carried on with great energy.
When on a visit to the parish Dr Thornton, then Bishop of Ballarat, was so impressed with the work and the personality of the vicar that in due course he invited Julius to be Archdeacon of Ballarat and vicar of Christ Church pro Cathedral. For seven years Dr Julius filled this double position to the satisfaction of Diocesan and people, and there was great regret when the parting came on his election as Bishop of Christchurch in succession to Dr Harper. In his own Cathedral at Christchurch he was consecrated on May 1, 1890, by the Primate of New Zealand (Dr Hadfield) and the other bishops of the Province.
The new Bishop's first aim was to add the transepts and the chancel to the already existing nave and temporary choir, and was to finish what Bishop Harper had so well begun. Few Cathedrals outside the Mother Country surpass in beauty and design the noble building which stands in the centre of the city of Christchurch. In spite of delicate health Bishop Julius threw himself with zeal into his various duties; he was an ardent but restrained advocate of temperance, and a devoted champion of religious education, while as a lecturer he was everywhere welcomed. He was acting Primate from 1920 to 1922, when he was elected Archbishop and Primate of New Zealand. In 1925 he resigned, and continued to live in Christchurch. Dr Julius was Hon D.D. of Oxford and hon D.D. of Cambridge and Select Preacher at Cambridge in 1897 and 1912.
In 1872 he married Alice Frances daughter of Col M. J. Rowlandson, and she died in 1918. There were seven children, two sons and five daughters. The elder son is Sir George Julius of Sydney NSW., chairman of the Commonwealth Council for Scientific and Industrial Research; the younger son, the very Rev J. A. Julius has been Dean of Christ Church New Zealand, since 1927; and one of the daughters is the wife of the Right Reverend Dr Cecil Wilson, of South Perth, Western Australia, who was Bishop of Bunbury from 1917 to 1937.

The Times 15 September 1938 pg 12 col D.
Dr Churchill Julius
The Rev E. C. Crosse, the headmaster of Ardingly writes:
All who were privileged to know Dr Churchill Julius, formerly Archbishop and Primate of New Zealand, will agree that by his death that the Anglican Church has lost one of its foremost personality is and one of the most lovable of men.
Julius a magno demissum nomen Julo,
Triginta magnos volvendis mensibusorbes,
Imperio explebit.
For 34 years, exactly the same time as his great predecessor, Bishop Harper, he served the Church as Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand and though he retired in 1924 he continued to work almost until the day of his death. As an orator he had few equals whether in the pulpit or on the platform, and there was about him a wonderful dignity which none could forget. In the rugged life of the Dominions there is no room for anything which savours of ecclesiasticism. Dr Julius spoken language which all men could understand, but somehow he always left his audience with an abiding sense of his vocation. As an actor, as a musician, above all as a mechanic, he possessed gifts of the very highest order. When it came to mending a clock there was hardly anyone in New Zealand who could compete with him, and everything mechanical was to him a delight. He was, I think, the first person in New Zealand to ride a motorbicycle.
But it was mainly for his inimitable remarks that he will be remembered by those who knew him. When he interviewed me for a post in New Zealand his first remark as I came into the room was "Are you married Mr X.?" and when I replied "No" he added "any hope of salvation?". Later on when I became engaged I sent him a telegram "Saved" to which he immediately replied "Halleluia Primate". In the same spirit, when shortly before his death he recovered from a serious illness, he sent a cable to his son in Australia, "No hurry, funeral postponed". Remarks of this nature fell from his lips every day, and as he was quite fearless in what he said his conversation and speeches were a continual delight. Wise, out spoken, generous, and intensely human, he assured lea deserves to be reckoned with Selwyn and Harper as one of the Master builders of the Church in New Zealand.

Churchill's son-in-law Percy Elworthy writes of him in his memoir "Of him I can say very little that has not been said or written by so many but I can tell of my great affection for him and of his and Mrs Julius's unfailing kindness to me. He was a man of outstanding ability who could have been a great engineer and inventor (and was), musician, barrister and actor, but who took no pride in his gifts.

Churchill's will was filed for Probate Christchurch 12 Sept 1938 No.19638
NZSG Index.

Julius Churchill of Claudesley 39 Mac Millan Ave off Hackthorne Rd Cashmere near Christchurch Canterbury New Zealand died 1 September 1938 Probate Christchurch to Arthur Stanley Elworthy and Percy Ashton Elworthy sheep farmers.
Effects 2348 15s 11d in England. Sealed London 29 November.
Ref: Ancestry National Probate calendar.

Buried in the Julius Grave, marked by a cross in Linwood Cemetery
K J Kitto 2005.

Churchill Julius was born at Richmond, Surrey, England, on 15 October 1847, the son of Frederic Gilder Julius, a surgeon, and his wife, Ellen Hannah Smith. He first attended a private day school in Richmond, then the Blackheath Proprietary School, and finally the junior department of King's College, London. He graduated BA from Worcester College, Oxford, in 1869 and MA in 1873. The University of Oxford conferred a doctorate of divinity on Julius in 1893 and the University of Cambridge a doctor of laws degree in 1920. Julius was ordained deacon in 1871 and priest in 1872. He was curate of St Giles, Norwich (1871--73), and South Brent, Somersetshire (1873--75), before becoming vicar of Shapwick (1875--78), and Holy Trinity, Islington (1878--84). From 1884 to 1890 he was vicar of the cathedral parish in Ballarat, Victoria, Australia, and archdeacon of Ballarat. Julius was consecrated Anglican bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand, on 1 May 1890. The predominant early religious influences on Churchill Julius were evangelical and low church in character, although he had some contact with the Oxford movement in his student years. His appointment to Holy Trinity, Islington, suggests that he continued to be well regarded in evangelical circles. Increasingly, however, he came to sympathise with liberal high church views, and once described himself as 'Perhaps . . . . . an evangelical Broad Churchman with High Church views, or perhap . . . . . a Broad High Churchman with loving sympathy for everybody who differs with me.' Generosity of spirit, informed by first-hand experience of slum conditions in London, helped shape and sharpen Julius's views on social issues. While in Ballarat his defence of London dock strikers gained him notoriety. 'I am a Socialist', he said in 1891, 'because I find Socialism in every page of the New Testament.' This aptly suggests the content and emphasis of his social message. Julius avoided recommending specific changes in economic and social arrangements but urged the abandonment of individualism, and the co-operation of capital and labour. Despite some vagueness Julius was, nevertheless, a staunch defender of trade unions and a ready critic of poor working conditions at a time when such views were not fashionable among Anglican church leaders. Early in his episcopate Julius criticised attempts to legislate for prohibition, believing that moral persuasion would be more effective. Later, influenced by the abuses of the liquor trade and impressed by the enactment of prohibition in the United States, Julius came to support this cause. However, education was the issue on which Julius was most persistently vocal. Early in 1892 he appointed a commission to consider the work of the church in this area. Addressing his diocesan synod in 1899 Julius remarked that 'We regard the secularization of education as not merely indifferent, but actively hostile to religion.' He fostered the work of existing denominational schools such as Christ's College and the Cathedral School and was instrumental in the foundation (in 1910) of St Margaret's College for girls; he was less successful in his efforts to encourage the development of parochial day schools. In 1916 a permanent Sunday school organiser was appointed; two years later the Christchurch Diocesan Board of Education was created. Julius was a strong supporter of moves to inject some form of religious teaching into the public schools and urged co-operation with non-Anglicans in such moves. He had hopes of establishing both an institution for training teachers and an Anglican teaching order. These schemes came to nothing, but assisted by funds from the bishop's own income The Bishop's Hostel (Bishop Julius Hostel) provided accommodation for female students at the nearby teachers' training college and university from 1917. He was a member of the board of governors of Canterbury College from 1891 to 1904 and from 1905 to 1919. Churchill Julius left several enduring legacies from his episcopate. He played an active role in the moves which led to the completion of Christchurch cathedral, consecrated in 1904. Toleration was extended to Anglo-Catholicism in the diocese. Bishop Henry Harper's ruling in the Carlyon case in 1877 had helped to open the way to this, but Julius seems to have been even more positive in his attitudes. He gave a ruling favourable to C. E. Perry, vicar of the Church of St Michael and All Angels, over the introduction of Anglo-Catholic ritual. Julius had been impressed, while curate at South Brent, by the social service work of women in religious orders. On a visit to England in 1893 he obtained the services of Sister Edith Mellish to found what was at first envisaged as an order of deaconesses, but which became, in 1912, the Community of the Sacred Name. The duties that Julius performed were not solely diocesan. He attended the Lambeth Conference of bishops in 1897 and 1920, and was the principal instigator of moves which led to the creation of the Standing Committee of the General Synod in 1916. He was, however, unsuccessful both in attempts to establish the primatial see in Wellington and also in his opposition to the adoption of the title archbishop. In 1922 the General Synod elected him primate and archbishop but he held the office only until his retirement in 1925. Julius married Alice Frances Rowlandson at Bournemouth, Hampshire, England, on 18 June 1872; they had five daughters and three sons. By comparison with her husband, Alice Julius remains a shadowy figure. She was active in a variety of organisations, but seems to have been, perhaps because of ill health, a reserved person. Although she managed her household effectively she was, in public, overshadowed by her voluble and extroverted husband. She predeceased him by some 20 years. Churchill Julius died in Christchurch on 1 September 1938 aged 90. He was a gifted speaker, tolerant in many respects, and forward looking. He was a long-time advocate of the right of women to participate in the Anglican church's governing bodies and reacted positively to biblical criticism. He did not altogether transcend the limitations of his time and opposed contraception partly on the ground that it would diminish the English-speaking population. But he quickly, and on the whole deservedly, became respected for his wide sympathies, liberality and eloquence. He was noted, too, for his mechanical ingenuity. While a student he devised a tea-making machine; in old age he built a grain feeder for hens, and was an expert clock maker. Regrettably his election as primate came late in his episcopate and diminished what might have been a more decisive impact on the national scene.
Bowron, H. M. 'Anglo Catholicism in the diocese of Christchurch, 1850--1920'. MA thesis, Canterbury, 1975 Elworthy, G. & A. Elworthy. A power in the land. Christchurch, 1971
HOW TO CITE THIS BIOGRAPHY: Brown, Colin. 'Julius, Churchill 1847 - 1938'. Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, updated 7 July 2005 URL: The original version of this biography was published in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography Volume Two (1870-1900), 1993 Crown Copyright 1993-2005. Published by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Julius (Churchill). Bishop of Christchurch, New Zealand. Seal 1890. Seals. CXLIV 36
Ref British Library 2007

bullet  Research Notes:

New Zealand
JULIUS, Churchill
Born 15 Oct 1847 Wardrobe Court, Old Palace of Sheen Richmond Surrey
baptized 19 Nov 1847 S Mary Magdalen Richmond
died 01 Sept 1938 Christchurch buried Linwood cemetery;
third son (among eight children) of Frederic Gilder JULIUS MD of Richmond a surgeon, president Church Association and anti-Ritualist campaigner, who latterly lived mostly in Egypt born 28 Feb 1811 Bristol Gloucestershire died 04 Jan 1886 Richmond buried Richmond cemetery
married 1839 S Mary Magdalen, Richmond son of George Charles JULIUS of East India Company, physician to king George IV born 06 Jun 1775 at Nichola Town St Kitts West Indies died 1867 married 1795
and Isabella Maria GILDER born 1774 baptized 08 May 1774 Aspeden Hertford died 1867 Hastings fifth daughter of the Revd Jonathan GILDER
and Mary; and Ellen Hannah SMITH
born 1813 died 20 Aug 1869 Hastings daughter of William [or James?] SMITH of Nottingham; married 18 Jun 1872 Holy Trinity Bournemouth Hampshire by ELIOT later dean of Windsor,
Alice Frances ROWLANDSON of Bournemouth
born 1845 Madras India died 30 Sep 1918 Christchurch buried Linwood cemetery youngest daughter (of nine children) of Colonel Michael John ROWLANDSON
medical officer Indian army, Madras
born 1804 died Jun Qtr. 1894 aged 89 registered Christchurch Hampshire
and Mary Catherine AWDRY born c1805 died Dec Qtr. 1896 aged 91 Christchurch Hampshire daughter of the Revd Jeremiah AWDRY (vicar Felsted Essex) of Bath co Somerset and Maria Emelia MAY first daughter of H MAY of Hale House Hampshire (249;113;150;287)
1857 private day school Richmond Old Church (113)
Blackheath proprietary school (headmaster SELWYN EJ)
21 Oct 1862-King College school The Strand London
16 Oct 1866 matriculated Worcester College Oxford
1869 BA Oxford
1871 MA Oxford
23 Mar 1893 DD (honorary) University of Oxford
1920 LLD (honorary) University of Cambridge
04 Jun 1871 deacon Norwich
26 May 1872 priest Norwich
01 May 1890 bishop (in Christ Church cathedral) Wellington (HADFIELD primate), Nelson (SUTER), Dunedin (NEVILL), Waiapu (STUART), and HARPER (113;150)
1869 private tutor Bushey Heath (113)
05 Jun 1871 assistant (to RIPLEY) curate S Giles city and diocese Norwich
02 Aug 1873 assistant (to DITCHER Joseph) curate S Michael South Brent Somerset diocese Bath and Wells
05 May 1875-30 Apr 1878 vicar Shapwick with Ashcott Somerset
22 May 1878-23 May 1884 vicar Holy Trinity Cloudesley Square Islington Middlesex diocese London
31 Mar 1881 residing with wife five children four servants 44 Milner Square Middlesex London
17 Sept 1884 incumbent Christ Church cathedral parish Victoria diocese Ballarat
17 Sep 1884 archdeacon Ballarat (111)
24 Mar 1890 arrived Bluff ROTAMAHANA (113)
01 May 1890-20 Apr 1925 bishop (2nd ) of Christchurch New Zealand
1890-Dec 1924 warden Christ's College (19)
1891-1904, 1905-1919 member board of governors Canterbury University College
10 Apr 1891-11 April 1891 baptisms on Chatham Islands (diocesan archives)
05 Jan 1893 departed Lyttelton DORIC for England
Apr 1893 vice president CMS (113)
17 Aug 1893 arrived Lyttelton TAKAPUNA
1893-1929 founder and visitor Sisters of Bethany later Community of the Sacred Name (79)
18 Jan 1894 departed Lyttelton TE ANAU to Hobart Church Congress (89)
Feb 1897 attended Lambeth conference of bishops
05 Oct 1897 from Melbourne arrived Lyttelton WAIKARE
11 Jun 1904 breakdown in health, departed Lyttelton TONGARIRO to England
16 Apr 1909 to Hobart for re-opening of cathedral
09 May 1912-Dec 1912 departed Lyttelton MAORI on leave to England (69)

1917- residing own home 'Cloudesley' 39 Macmillan Avenue Cashmere Hills
1920 attended Lambeth conference of bishops (22)
1922-20 Apr 1925 primate and (1st ) archbishop of New Zealand (150;113;69)
04 May 1924 departed with JULIUS Miss MAUNGANUI for England (140)
30 Mar 1927 arrived Lyttelton CATHAY (69)
youthful photograph (6)
Oct 1937 an appreciation, and photograph in car with pekingese (69)
02 Sep 1938 p10 obituary (41)
09 Sep 1938 obituary Church Standard (111)
Oct 1938 obituary and in memoriam (69) (15;167)
Some statements in this account of Churchill are not accurate.

The Anglican Gradual and Sacramentary.
Fixed Holy Days in September
23 September
Richard Rolle
Adamnan, Abbot of Iona, 704
Dedication of Raphoe Cathedral
Grito de Lares, 1868
Churchill Julius, First Archbishop of New Zealand, 1938 NZ


bullet  Other Records

1. Census: England, 30 Mar 1851, The Green Richmond. Churchill is recorded as a son aged 3 born Richmond

2. Census: England, 8 Apr 1861, 2 Old Palace Richmond SRY. Churchill is recorded as a son aged 13 scholar born Richmond SRY

3. Census: England, 2 Apr 1871, 2 Old Palace Richmond SRY. Churchill is shown at his fathers home aged 23 single born Richmond

4. Census: England, 3 Apr 1881, 44 Milner Sq Islington London. Churchill is described as head of house married aged 33 Vicar of Holy Trinity Islington - MA has been added as rank

5. Churchill Julius: He was very interested in the mechanical world.

6. Pictures over Churchill Julius life time.
NZ bishops 4th from left - Standing Mules, Nelson, Wilson, Melanesia. Seated Neville, Dunedin, Cowie, Auckland, Julius, Christchurch.

Postcard of Churchill ascending the Cathedral spire to lay the capstone - 1891

Plaque in Cathedral commemorating Churchill and his family

7. Churchill Julius: Will of George Charles Julius Jnr, 1885.
I bequeath the portrait of my late Father and the family Bible to my nephew the Venerable Churchill Julius Archdeacon of Ballarat in Australia to be held by him and his heirs as heirlooms
George Charles Julius Jnr

8. Churchill Julius to his Grandaughter Di Wilson: This letter summarises the warmth and humour of the man, 3 Jan 1937, Christchurch.
A year before he died Churchill Julius wrote this to his grandaughter, what remarkable handwriting at almost 90
My Dear Di
If I have weakness, it is for a good shaving soap, and of them all Yardleys is the best.
How did you discover my craving for a great treat in the New Year.
Churchill Julius

9. Churchill Julius: Burial, 3 Sep 1938, Linwood Cemetery Christchurch.
The two pall bearers closest to the camera, on left Edward (Ted) Elworthy, right John Elworthy RN.

10. Archbishop Churchill Julius: Sermon by Archdeacon Ian Bourne, 23 Sep 1990.
23rd September 1990
I wonder what you immediately think of when you hear the word "Church". Is it a building like this with a Cross on the top, or do you immediately think of Bibles, Prayer Books and Hymnals? Or do you associate Church with prayers and praise? Well, of course when we say "Church" we are likely to think of sacred buildings or holy books or solemn music or even God and Creator.
But the real Church is not the buildings or the books. The Church is people. People who love God and have been blessed by Him, and that is why down through the ages the Church has built up a calendar of Saints and Saints' days. In these days Churches in different regions have some names on the Calendar which are the same the world over, and some which are unique to our own region. In our New Zealand Prayer Book we find that the Christian Calendar, on pages 14 - 25, has nearly 200 commemorations of great lives and of those, 25 have some kind of link with New Zealand.
One of those was Archbishop Churchill Julius, Bishop of Christchurch 1890-1925. The day of his commemoration is today. Because this is the first year that the present NZ Calendar is being used it is the first time Archbishop Julius is being commemorated in this way, and because of the interest of some members of St. Margarets College, Christchurch which was founded by Archbishop Julius, we are having this commemoration of this remarkable early NZ Christian leader, here at All Saints today.
Only four bishops are named in our NZ Calendar, George Augustus Selwyn - 1st Bishop of N.Z., Octavias Hadfield 2nd Bishop of Wellington, Churchill Julius and Frederick Augustus Bennett 1st Maori Bishop in N.Z. So what is so special about Churchill Julius that he should be remembered alongside great Saints of the Christian Church - does he deserve such attention?
Well, let me tell you about him. His father and grandfather were both medical doctors and mixed freely with royalty and landed gentry. Churchill Julius was born at Richmond Palace, Surrey in 1847. He had a strict religious upbringing but that didn't prevent occasional acts of michief. He recalls he and his slightly older brother stealing cakes, at a great dinner by lowering a heavily weighted fork on a long string from upstairs to stab and secure the cakes on the butler's tray on a table at the foot of the stairs. He wrote many years later "I can remember to this day the face of the butler as he saw one of his tarts ascending to the heights above".
In Churchill Julius' teens he developed a severe illness and was sent to a village in Norfolk where he came under the influence of a fiercely evangelical and somewhat eccentric rector of Buckenham. This influence gave him a lasting concern for the Church's mission to win the world for God. His health improved and at 19 he went up to Oxford where he graduated MA in 1869 aged 22. During this time he was much influenced by some of the great leaders of the Anglican Church in the 1860s. He decided to be ordained but had to fill in a couple of years doing private tutoring before he was old enough to be ordained by the Bishop of Norwich in 1871.
At one stage he was ticked off by local clergy for disrespect for the sabbath day. He'd been seen riding his penny-farthing bicycle on a Sunday. Then as Curate of St. Giles Church, Norwich, he got ticked off again - this time by the Bishop for not preaching long enough sermons; in those days a little over ten minutes was far too brief.
It was at this time that he got engaged to Alice Rowlandson and a year later they were married. The young Curate at St. Giles was rather good at tinkering with mechanical things and because he had difficulty in early rising, he manufactued his own automatic tea making machine attached to his alarm clock. When the alarm mechanism operated at the chosen time, it turned on the gas and struck a match to light it, then, when the water boiled the steam operated a trip wire which allowed the kettle to tilt forward to fill the teapot with boiling water and at the same time the gas switched off and a bell rang and the Curate awoke ready to drink his morning tea and start the day. The contraption is still I understand in the possession of family members! You won't be surprised to know he earned quite a reputation for clock repairs and after he retired, 55 years later, he was still a deft hand at clock repairing.
Another interest was phgotography - he not only took his own photographs, but did his own developing and printing - no mean skill 120 years ago when photography was in its infancy. Julius' second curacy was in an insanitary little village called South Brent, in Somerset, where the local drain was also the water supply and his vicar was in an advanced stage of senility after being there over 30 years (just note I have ten years to go!). The young curate got such a reputation as a clock mender, that on one occasion when he made necessary adjustments to a broken down clock, while the owner had glanced away, when she found it was repaired she told everyone the new curate had bewitched her clock, just by looking at it and next time he came to take a Sunday service in the area they all stayed away, for fear of his apparently demonic powers. His spiritual work was pretty good too, and he built up a hugh boys' fellowship from among the village toughs. A couple of years later he was appointed Vicar of his first parish - two small Somerset villages. Two notable things about his ministry there was the constant challenge of trying to reconcile the two local squires who hated each other and his sinking a pipe to provide pure artesian water for a very primitive settlement in the Parish. The simple inhabitants were reluctant to use the water the vicar had provided for them. They thought he had done it all by magic.
In 1878 Julius was appointed Vicar of a major London Parish, Holy Trinity, Islington. It was a church which had seating for 2000 but when he went there the congregation was very small. Soon there was a regular congregation of 1200 and six Sunday Schools around the parish with 4000 children. The Parish had a Beadle - a kind of verger, sidesman and floor sweeper who wore magnificent yellow and crimson robes, but the Beadle was inclined to be rather uncivil to the poorer people of the parish so, in punishment, every time he was rude to someone the Vicar confiscated some piece of his finery until, Julius reports "he soon lost everything but a red collar." Those were the days of the great Moody and Sanky missions and when the two evangelists came to Islington, Churchill Julius was given the job of preaching to one of the overflow meetings, which he did with great success.
When he first went to Islington, discouraged by poor attendance at evening services he got a bell and walked round the streets ringing the bell and inviting the inhabitants, when they came out of their houses to see what the noise was about, to church for the evening service - (I might try that myself tonight!). They came and they
stayed. Julius smoked a pipe and was once asked if he liked incense. His answer was "I prefer baccy!!"
By now the Julius's had seven young children and Alice was in poor health.
It was suggested that the climate of Australia might be beneficial, and when an invitation came from the Bishop of Bathhurst inviting him to be the Archdeacon of Ballarat and Vicar of the Cathedral - in effect Dean of Ballarat, the decision was made to begin a new life in Australia. Warm tributes were paid to his work both as priest of the parish and Chairman of the Board of a group of schools with 11,000 children.
The voyage took twelve weeks and Julius became both pastor to the passengers and the organiser of entertainment as well as chief musician and photographer. From records it seems it was a wonderfully pleasant journey for everyone. Sadly though, soon after their arrival in Ballarat their infant child died.
In those days the Diocese of Ballarat which is about 70 miles from Melbourne, was poor and sparsely populated, and the Cathedral parish badly run down. One of the few Sunday School teachers, an ancient maiden lady invited the new Vicar to dine with them. "After dinner out came the whist table. I, a shocking player, was selected to partner her. She left the room in a flood of tears before the conclusion of the second rubber and resigned her position as a teacher in the Sunday School."
Church life was so bleak that on Easter Day there were only 38 communicants but after a few months of the new Vicar's work at a special celebration there were over 400.
After five years in Ballarat Julius received a letter from the Dean of Christchurch asking him if he would allow his name to be put forward for the office of Bishop of Christchurch. Julius wrote back thanking the Dean for the kind suggestion and saying that on no account would he consider being a candidate for that or any other preferment and thought no more about it. Some months later however another letter came to tell him he had been elected almost unanimously as Bishop of Christchurch. He went to the Bishop of Ballarat for advice. "Well", said Bishop Thornton "a N.Z. Bishopric is a very one horse affair" and terminated the conversation. An hour or so later the Bishop found him and said "carry on here I leave for London at once" why? To find your successor". So three days later the Bishop had started off on his quest for a replacement and five months later, Churchill Julius was taking leave of his friends in Ballarat, before sailing for N.Z. from Melbourne on Tuesday, 15 March 1890, Six days later the family disembarked at Bluff and took a month's enforced holiday at Lake Wakatipu because of a squabble between the Bishops of Wellington and Nelson as to who should succeed Bishop Harper, the retiring Bishop of Christchurch and Primate of N.Z. However, an emergency meeting of General Synod was called and the Bishop of Wellington was elected as Primate so the way was now clear for the new Bishop of Christchurch to arrive in his See, which he did, arriving at Christchurch Railway Station on Tuesday evening, 28th April, to a crowd of 1000 people waiting to welcome him.
Christchurch was immediately fascinated by the magnificent preaching of the new Bishop. It was typical of the graciousness of the man that he insisted that the retired Bishop Harper should remain at Bishops Court while he and his family rented three different houses before finally moving into the official home of the Bishop of Christchurch. Travelling by train and coach and gig and horseback and on foot, the new Bishop got to know his diocese. This was nearly 100 years ago and the stories of arduous journies, near disasters and primitive accommodation make fascinating reading today. Can you imagine crossing the Haast Pass on horseback in September 1885. It is adventurous enough today by motor car. About this time some earlier earthquake damage to the Cathedral tower was repaired so the Bishop got himself in the news both in NZ and England for being winched to the top to lay the coping stone. Afterwards, the contractors made some money by charging 1/-per head for people to take the same journey in the Bishop's chair.
Soon after his arrival in Christchurch, Julius began to see the need for effective Christian work amongst women and when he went to England in 1893 for the Lambeth Conference, he arranged for Sister Edith a deaconess from St. Andrews Deaconess Community, London, to come to NZ to set up a community of Anglican Nuns in Christchurch. It is still flourishing as the Community of the Sacred Name and just this year a branch house of the community has been set up in Wellington. Bishop Julius loved children and conducted great childrens services in Christchurch Cathedral, which was so crowded that they had to employ sidesmen to keep adults out. He gave tremendous support to education and saw the need for a college for girls that would match Christs College which was for boys. He persuaded Christchurch Synod in 1908 to resolve to open a girls' school in Cranmer Square. Three Kilburn sisters from England arrived in time to open St. Margarets College on Tuesday, 8th February 1910. The school began in the old deanery and another old house but within four years the Bishop laid the foundation stone for new buildings in Cranmer Square. He continued to take a great interest in St. Margarets College throughout his life. Some other institutions Bishop Julius founded or helped to found, were St. Saviours Orphanage and Boys Home in Timaru, a Babies Home in Sumner, and St. Georges Hospital in Christchurch. At the turn of the century he challenged the community to complete the Cathedral. He himself worked hard in raising the fifteen thousand pounds needed, roughly $2,000,000 in today's money. The Cathedral was completed at the end of 1904. The Bishop never lost his engineering skills and his delight in fixing things. He was often found in the workshop at the back of his home; he was the proud possessor of one of the earliest model T Fords and made his own modifications to it, including what may have been the first dip stick ever invented to check the oil level in the engine. He fitted a stop mechanism for switching off the family gramophone when the record was finished. His son George must have inherited his father's skill, because, although he was quite disinterested in racing he invented the race track totalisator. His father was not impressed, and preaching in the Cathedral declared "Regarding the totalisator - it is an education in bad habits and I must believe its suppression is necessary for the welfare of the people". Well, after 35 years as Bishop of Christchurch and 3 as Primate and Archbishop, Churchill Julius retired from both offices in 1928 at the age of 73. He continued to live a full and busy life until his death in 1938 in his 92nd year. I admit that as I prepared this study of Bishop Julius I became fascinated by his true greatness. And I believe he can teach us some great lessons about life in general and Christian life in particular. A man with a living faith in God which was both simple and yet profound. He believed and practised a simple faith in Christ's gift of salvation and hope of heaven, and at the same time he was a profound scholar in his own right. He was one who was full of the joy of the Christian Life whether it was conducting a mission, helping a vicar's wife, conducting hilarious tutorials with theological students, enthralling a Cathedral packed with children or being hoisted to the top of the Cathedral tower with the final brick. Life was exhilarating and joyful. His life was one of balance: - a scholar - a pastoral priest and bishop
- concerned with social issues yet able to enjoy his own hobbies and pleasures -
A humble man - he never sought high office and when they made him archbishop he reluctantly accepted the title but resolutely forbade them to call him "your grace"
A compassionate man.
- His care and concern for children and young people
- His championing of the worker
- his desire for welfare of his clergy and families
- and his love for his own family.
His was a greatness and yet a kind of simple goodness and delight in life which could only have come from an intimate and close relationship with his Lord and Master. Lets give thanks to the Lord for this great Christian pioneer of one hundred years ago. Let us follow his example of wholehearted service for our God and our fellow human beings. Let us pray that in our own day and age God will again grant us such mighty leaders who will inspire today's church in a similar fashion and lead us into another century of our nation's history.


Churchill married Alice Frances ROWLANDSON [576] [MRIN: 155], daughter of Col Michael John ROWLANDSON [1495] and Mary Catherine AWDRY [1496], on 18 Jun 1872 in Holy Trinity Church, Bournemouth, UK. (Alice Frances ROWLANDSON [576] was born on 15 Feb 1845 in Old Fort Madras India, baptised on 7 May 1845 in Old Fort Madras India, died on 30 Sep 1918 and was buried in Linwood Cemetery Christchurch.)

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