of Barbados
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09282006_20746_0.pngJOHN MITCHINSON
Dr Mitchinson was a scholar of the highest attainments, having obtained three first Classes at Oxford.   He ws also an accomplished musician. He was consecrated in Canterbury Cathedral on June 24, 1873; and was enthroned on Friday August 15.
During his episcopate, Codrington College was affiliated to Durham University.  This happened in 1875, when Rev W.T. Webb was Principal of the College.

From March 30, 1880 to the end of the year, he acted for Mr Deighton as headmaster of Harrison College with great satisfaction to everyone.

He once acted for five consecutive months, as Chaplain of the Westbury Cemetery, and he mentioned several abuses that he noticed – (1)  disregard of punctuality; (2) the heartlessness and indifference of surviving relatives, especially in the case of infants, the little coffin taken under the arm of some indifferent person; (3) pauper funerals consisting solely of the hearse containing the black wooden shell with never a single mourner.

A speech of Bishop Mitchinson, which perhaps more than any other, gave great offence was a speech delivered by him on the occasion of the Conferring of certain degrees on distinguished members of the community.  His Lordship animadverted upon “the lack amongst the upper classes in the community for that higher culture, which develops breadth of thought and largeness of view, and the absence of which exhibits itself in an odious self-complacency and narrow prejudice, the offspring of besotted ignorance”, and he went on to compare Barbadians generally to “the white snails of Hans Anderson, who living under burdock leaves, upon which the raindrops pattern, flattered themselves that the world consisted of white snails, and that they were the world”.  Some readers may see a resemblance to the strictures of one of his successors; Bishop William James Hughes, as he delivered his now famous “Smite” sermon from the Cathedral pulpit in January 1951.

Bishop Mitchinson resigned the bishopric on June 30, 1881.

 Last Modified: 30 June,2007