I don’t know what the equivalent of clericalism is for religious but the sight and sound of religious congratulating themselves on ‘community’ and on a habit to whose rule they are a stranger is probably even more irritating than ignorant and irregular clergy pulling rank on the faithful outraged by their heresies and abuses. I have no idea what the standards of observance are or were in Ramsgate but just as the liberal clergy of the sixties, seventies and eighties had no right to destroy the parish churches built by the pennies of the poor since emancipation, so religious communities, especially contemplative communities, are deceived if they think their benefactors poured their substance into constructing the Abbeys of the second spring so they could be abandoned for a more comfortable life elsewhere. It is a scandal that the shrine of the Apostle of the English should be abandoned as if it belonged to the monks who live there instead of the monks belonging to it.

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