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Roman Catholic Charities Acts, 1832 and 1860, Roman Catholics have been placed on the same footing as Protestant dissenters, in the matter of property held for religious or charitable purposes.
The Jews, although they also were formerly, even in England, subject to many hardships and degradations (0), and long remained under peculiar disqualifications, have, for some time, been relieved of their hardships and degradations, and their disqualifications have mostly been now removed (P). But a Jew (although an Euglishman born) is still incompetent to fill certain high offices in the state, from which (as we have seen) Roman Catholics also are excluded ; and is also (like Roman Catholics) unable to present to any ecclesiastical benefice, the right of appointment to which may belong to any office in her Majesty's gift, which he may happen to fill (9).
Thus amply has the law at length provided for the freedom of religious opinions ; but, with all this toleration, the rights and pre-eminence of the Established Church are maintained inviolate, and the Church retains, in full possession, all those dignities and endowments, which, at the period of the Reformation, were allotted to her.
(0) 2 Inst. 507.
(p) Religious Disabilities Act, 1846 ; Liberty of Religious Worship Act, 1855, s. 2; Jews Relief
Act, 1858 ; 29 & 30 Vict. (1866), c. 22.
(9) Jews Relief Act, 1858, S. 4.
OF THE ENDOWMENTS AND PROVISIONS OF THE CHURCH.
We will now consider the endowments and provisions of the Church. And we shall discuss, first, the property itself of the church ; secondly, the estates which ecclesiastical persons may hold therein ; and thirdly, the alienation of church property.
I. The Property of the Church.—This property consists of lands, advowsons, and tithes (or tithe rentcharge).And, First, as to CHURCH LANDS :—The boundaries of church lands having been often subject to great uncertainty, the Ecclesiastical Corporations Act, 1832, after reciting that the dignitaries of the different cathedral and collegiate churches and chapels of England and Wales, and the societies of the colleges and halls of Oxford and Cambridge and Winchester and Eton, are proprietors of divers lands, etc., the boundaries or quantities and identity of which are disputed, provides, that it shall be lawful for any of the said dignitaries and societies (with the consents in the Act mentioned), to agree with their tenants or undertenants, or the owners of adjoining hereditaments, that any such disputed matters shall be referred to arbitration ; and by this means, the boundaries and identity may be ascertained.
In almost every benefice, there is a parsonage house, which the incumbent is entitled to occupy ; and he is bound to keep it in repair, and is liable for the dilapidations thereof, the extent of his liability and the mode of recovering compensation for the dilapidations being now
regulated by the Ecclesiastical Dilapidations Acts, 1871 and 1872 (a). But the law has made provision for aiding a beneficed clergyman in repairing or rebuilding his house of residence, or in providing a new one ; for the incumbent may (as we shall presently see) raise money to a limited amount, according to the value of the benefice, by mortgage of its profits, or by sale or exchange of the existing house, for another which is more convenient. And, by the Sale of Advowsons Act, 1856, it is provided, as to advowsons vested in (or in trustees for) inhabitants, or other persons forming a numerous class, and deriving no pecuniary advantage therefrom, that the same may be sold by order of such persons, and the proceeds applied to the beneficial purposes therein specified, which include the erection of a parsonage house if there be none, or the rebuilding, repair, or improvement of any parsonage house already existing.
The incumbent of a living is in general seised also of the glebe, i.e., of a portion of land attached to his benefice, and forming part of its endowment ; and by the Tithe Act, 1812, the tithe commissioners have power to ascertain and define the boundaries of the glebe lands of any benefice, and (with the consent of the ordinary and patron) to exchange such glebe lands for other lands within the same or any adjoining parish, or otherwise conveniently situated.
The parson is seised also of the fabric or edifice of the church itself; and in rectories, the chancel, and the churchyard also, are the freehold of the rector (b), while in vicarages, the churchyard is the vicar's freehold, and
(a) Jones v. Dangerfield (1875), i Ch. D. 438 ; Gleares v. Marriner (1876), 1 Ex. D. 107; Caldow v. Pirell (1877), 2 C. P. D. 562; Re Monk (1887), 35 Ch. D. 583.
(6) Clifford v. Wichs (1818), 1 B. & Ald. 498 ; Churton v.
Frewen (1866), L. R. 1 Eq. 634. This is equally true in the case of churches built under the Church Building and New Parishes Acts. See 19 & 20 Vict. (1856), c. 104, s. 10.
the chancel is the freehold of the impropriator (C), who is liable for its repair (il). But the disposal of the pews and seats in the church appertains, by law, to the ordinary, that is to say, practically, to the churchwardens, to whom the authority of the ordinary, in this particular, is delegated; the chief pew in the church belonging, however, as of right, to the rector, or (in the case of a vicarage) to the impropriator (e). But the consent of the ordinary is still required for the erection of any monument (f ), although (under the Consecration of Churchyards Acts, 1867 and 1868) the donor of land to be added to any consecrated churchyard may reserve the right of burial therein, and of erecting monuments and grave-stones therein, for himself, his heirs and assigns, for ever. Moreover, an aisle or side chapel in the church, or a pew in its nave, may be granted, by faculty of the ordinary, to an individual and his heirs as appurtenant to a particular messuage in the parish ; and a man may also prescribe for these, as so appurtenant, without being required to show a faculty (9).
Secondly, as to ADVOWSONS.--Advowsons are of the class of hereditaments incorporeal (1), an advowson (advocatio) being the right of presentation to a rectory, vicarage, or other ecclesiastical benefice ; and he who has the right of advowson is called the patron (advocatus) of the church (i). For, in antient times, lords of manors built
(c). Wats. Clery. Law, 391 ; Duke of Norfolk v. Arbuthnot (1879), 4 C. P. D. 290 ; 5 C. P. D. 390; Hansard v. St. Matthew's, Bethnal Green (1878), 4 P. D. 46.
(d) Neville v. Kirby,  P. 160.
(e) Clifford v. Wicks, supra; Stileman-Gibbard v. Wilkinson, (1897] 1 Q.B. 749.
(f) Beckwith v. Harding (1818),
1 B. & Ald. 508 ; Rich v. Bushnell (1827), 4 Hagg. 164.
(g) Wats. Clerg. Lau, 643, 644 ; Crisp v. Martin (1876), 2 P. D. 15; Halliday v. Phillips (1889), 23 Q. B. D. 48.
(h) Vide sup. bk. ii. pt. i. ch. xxiii.
(i) Mirehouse v. Rennell (1832), 8 Bing. 490.
churches on their own demesnes, endowed them with glebe, and appointed to be paid to the ministers thereof those tithes which before were given to the clergy in common; and he who thus built and endowed a church had of common right a power annexed of nominating any person, canonically qualified, to officiate in that church, of which he was the founder and patron (k). And this power is, by derivation of title from the lords of manors, now vested in many cases in other private persons, and in corporations, both lay and ecclesiastical (I). But neither an alien nor a Roman Catholic may exercise the rights of a patron, or present to a living ; for if an alien purchase an advowson and a vacancy occurs, the Crown presents (m), and if a Roman Catholic, the University of Oxford or of Cambridge (n). Apparently, a Jew (although unconverted), provided he be the owner of an advowson in his own right, may present to it (o); but should such a person hold any office in the gift of the Crown, to which the right of presentation or of appointment to any ecclesiastical benefice is annexed, he may not in such a case present, the right of presentation devolving upon the Archbishop of Canterbury for the time being (p).
[Advowsons are either appendant or in gross. So long as the right of patronage continued annexed to the manor, as some have done from the foundation of the church to
(k) Co. Litt. 119b; Gibs. Cod. 7, 57 (2nd ed.).
(1) Keen v. Denny,  3 Ch. 169. Municipal corporations may not exercise any right of presentation (see Hine v. Reynolds (1840), 2 Scott, N. R. 394); but, by the Municipal Corporations Act, 1882 (45 & 46 Vict. c. 50), ss. 121, 122, they are to sell any advowsons vested in them.
(m) Wats. Clerg. Luw, 105;
Naturalization Act, 1870, s. 2, sub-s. (2).
(n) Rogers, Ecc. Law, 17; 3Jac. 1 (1605), c. 5; 1 W. & M. (1689), c. 26; Presentation of Benefices Act, 1713, s. 1; Edwards v. Bishop of Exeter (1839), 5 Bing. N. C. 652 ; Benefices Act, 1898.
(o) Mirehouse v. Rennell, ubi sup.
(p) Jews Relief Act, 1857, S. 4.