§ 45. Mr. JAMES HOGGE
asked the Prime Minister whether he has received further information regarding the administration of the property allocated to the Free Church of Scotland by the Royal Commission under the Churches (Scotland) Act; whether that information discloses the fact that the Free Church are unable adequately to carry out all the trusts of the property; and, if so, whether he will consider the advisability of introducing legislation to provide for a new allocation of property?
§ The PRIME MINISTER (Mr. Asquith)
My hon. Friend has sent me certain information which appears to support his contention. I have received no representations from the authorities of the United Free Church on the subject, and I think it premature to add anything to my previous answers.
§ Mr. HOGGE
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that in the "Monthly Record" of the Free Church of Scotland for January of this year the Church authorities state that there is only one minister available for every two congregations and stations, and will he not take facts like that into account in insisting that this Church should live up to its trusts?
§ The PRIME MINISTER
I will take all relevant facts into account, and one of the most relevant of all, the United Free Church.
§ Sir HENRY CRAIK
May I ask whether, in the event of a new allocation of these religious endowments being necessary, it is proposed to allot them to the county councils and the museums in Scotland?
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
Is the Prime Minister aware that the limitation in the Church of Scotland Act, 1906, has been recognised in Scotland as a permanent limitation; and may I ask whether, though under the Act of 1906, it is quite true that the vacant charges in the Free Church of Scotland number 146, and that number has been gradually decreasing since that time—