In the second of our 'Did you know...?' articles from Dr Jonathan Mattison, curator of the Museum of Orange Heritage, we look at the contribution of two Church of Ireland ministers.
These bite-size posts look at two interesting facts as associated with the exhibition.
Rev. Dr. Thomas Drew, born in Limerick in 1800, would revive the fortunes of the Church of Ireland in Belfast.
After graduating from Trinity College, he was ordained and moved to Belfast in 1832. During his time in the city he would inject new energy into the Church of Ireland, quickly making Christ Church the largest congregation in the city by 1833 and supervising the creation of no fewer than 20 new churches. He believed deeply in providing a religious education for children across the city and much of his ministry was devoted to ensuring that young people were won for Christ. Drew believed the Church had a social responsibility to look after the spiritual needs of the city’s children.
Drew would also become a Grand Chaplain in the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland.
A future Orange Bishop served in Flanders!
Cyril Elliot was born in County Dublin and after attending Trinity College was ordained into the Church of Ireland. During the Great War he was appointed a Chaplain to the Forces and was twice mentioned in dispatches for carrying out his duties under enemy fire.
In 1938 he was appointed Dean of Dromore and then Dean of St. Anne’s Cathedral in 1945. In 1954 he was made Bishop of Connor and he quickly helped establish the Diocesan Ordination Bursaries Fund to ensure that no one “with qualifications and the vocation was debarred from the ministry for want of money".
He was a proud member of Botanic LOL No. 1119 and continued to take part in the annual Belfast Twelfth celebrations until 1977.