Divine service sunday april 14th


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Rolf Vonk

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Hello dear people,

In many Titanic books and stories, there are divine services mentioned on sunday april 14th. Also the Cameron movie shows this service.

I would like to know if this service in first class was only Anglican/Protestant or interdenominational (oeff what a difficult word).

I know there was an Anglican divine service for second class followed by a Catholic divine service as the same for third class.

Is it possible that there was a divine service for the Jewish passengers aboard?

BTW: in "Titanic triumph and tragedy" there is a sentence that says that during the divine service passengers from all the classes went to the first class diningroom. Isn't that a bit strange when all the classes had their own divine services??

I'm looking forward to your responses!

Regards,
Rolf
 
Jul 9, 2000
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I've read the same thing about all classes being welcome to the 1st Class for the devine services, but I find it a bit hard to swallow as there were those pesky immigration laws which required that steerage be kept seperate from the rest of the ship.

I suspect that the services were interdominational in order to avoid ruffling a few sectarian feathers. Rather easy to do in that day and age when everybody thought their own denomination was "most certainly true" and all others were false. Somebody correct me if I'm mistaken, but didn't White Star have it's own service book for devine services?

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Jan 31, 2001
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I also find the rumor about all classes being allowed into the services a bit hard to chew. In the movie "Titanic", Jack isn't allowed into the service to see Rose, and yet on numerous websites I've visited they say this is "film error." It just doesn't seem reasonable for all classes to be allowed into the first class service when they had their own, so I would say I agree with the movie and you guys. As for the White Star service book, I think the line did have one. I might've even saw a pic. of one once (I believe). Any thoughts or proof that one existed?

-Brandon
 
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Rolf Vonk

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Hi Guys,

I agree with the point that "class mixing" wasn't allowed in 1912. Maybe first and second class, but certainly not first and third class. Don't you both think that it is strange that Jack walked into first class upon the diningroom? I guess he even wasn't able to reach that area of first class. In my opinion they would have taken him "back to his place" much earlier.

As it is certain that the second class had her own divine services for different movements of Christianity it would be very strange when first class didn't. But as there was only one service for first class I guess it was interdominational.

I read that the second class divine services were followed by the divine services for third class. What does that mean? Does the third class passengers have to go up to second class where they could follow their divine service?

In third class the situation is more difficult as you see all kind of different Christians. At first sight a rather large group of Maronites and beside some Armenians and Greek-Orthodox. The Maronites (and maybe the Armenians) were connected to Rome. I guess they could only follow a protestant or catholic divine service.

Regards,
Rolf
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Personally, I consider the part where Jack pops in on 1st class on Sunday morning a bit of poetic license. A steerage passanger in First would have stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb. With all the staff and crew running around, I have no doubt that in real life, any steerage passanger sneaking into 1st would have been caught in seconds and just as quickly hustled back.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
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Minna Tiihonen

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Hey all!

Yes the 2nd and 3rd class passengers were allowed to attend the service, under some kind of supervision of the crew of course. This was the one and only time when they were allowed to be mixed with "the better" people.

On Sunday, actually two divine services were held. The first one in the morning was the one that Capt. Smith personally held, with the 2nd and steerage passengers there. There they sang the hymn "O God Our Help In Ages Past". In the afternoon someone else held another service when much more hymns were sung, the last being "Eternal Father, Strong To Save." If the service in the movie is supposed to be the one held in the morning, then there is a mistake - they sing "Eternal Father..." there, which they actually did not do.

Does anyone, by the way, have the lyrics for "God Our Help In Ages Past" ?

Minna
 
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Rolf Vonk

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Hi Minna,

What a strange divine service that must have been. I'm wondering why the second class passengers held there own different divine services for Protestants and Catholics on sunday?

There was also a catholic divine service for third class passengers. So would there have been many steerage and second class passengers during the service in first class? I'm not sure.

I'm sorry I can't give you information about "God Our Help In Ages Past".

Regards,
Rolf
 

Pat Cook

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Apr 26, 2000
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I hope I haven't missed something here but I was rereading Lawrence Beesley recently and he mentions the Sunday service being held in the saloon. Leading up to this passage, whenever he mentions the 'saloon' he is referring to the 2nd Class Dining Saloon. He further states that the purser (in this case, Reginald Barker) held the service, contrary to Capt. Smith who held the one in First Class, I believe.

So were there two sevices for 2nd Class going on at the same time?

Best regards,
Cook
 
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Rolf Vonk

Guest
Hi Pat,

You're right about the service held in the saloon as mentioned by Beesley. Don Lynch mentioned in his book "Titanic an illustrated history" that at the same time there was a catholic divine service held in the lounge by some priests from second class if I'm correct. I shall look it up for you.

BTW, does this mean that the divine service in the saloon was for the protestants?

Regards,
Rolf
 
Jan 31, 2001
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Hello all,

According to my great-uncle, he attended a service in the second-class lounge conducted by Father Byles.

-Brandon
 

Ben Holme

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Feb 11, 2001
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In actual fact it appears that three services in 2nd class were conducted on April 14th, although the third was more of a sing-song. Assistant purser Reginald Barker conducted an early morning service in the dining saloon, while Fr. Byles (possibly with the help of Revd. Montvila and Revd. Peruschitz conducted a catholic service in the lounge/library. Byles then went below deck for the 3rd class service.
Finally, Rev. Ernest Carter assembled at least a hundred 2nd class passengers for an evening sing-song. Marion Wright and Mathilde Weizs sang solos with R. Douglas Norman providing accompaniment on the panio and Dr. Alfred Pain on the flute

Hope this helps

Regards
Ben
 
Jun 4, 2003
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Hi! I do not know if this fits in this section but here it goes: in the film "Titanic", Rose,her mother and her fiance are seen in the divine service of April 14th. She is seen without a hat! Was this possible in those days and especially in a religious service or was it due to her young age? Thanks!
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Once again hallo, George! The old tradition of women wearing some form of headgear to church came from the Biblical reference: "Judge in yourselves: Is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered". By 1912 this was probably more a matter of etiquette, and perhaps Cameron saw it as another opportunity for Rose to demonstrate her independent thinking. Whilst on the subject of hats, Violet Jessop observed that the wearing of elaborate 'street hats' adorned with flowers and feathers was 'not done' on board ship, but of course the costume designers can't resist including them in all the Titanic films.
 
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Bob DiGiulio

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I have always wondered if it is true that "all classes" were allowed to worship at the 10:30 a.m. service led by Captain Smith in the First Class dining room. Eaton and Haas (Titanic: Destination Disaster) claim that was the case: "At 10:30 am passengers from all classes convened in the first class dining saloon." Where/from whom might the authors have gotten this evidence? Would Titanic have allowed Protestants from 3rd class into the 1st class areasfor Sunday services? I'm curious!
 

Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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White Star's policy, dictated by US immigration controls, was clearly stated in their handbook for passengers: 'First Class passengers are not allowed to enter Second or Third Class compartments, nor vice versa, as complications might arise under the quarantine regulations'. Since there would clearly have been neither justification nor need for an intermingling for Sunday Services, I think it's safe to say it didn't happen. The only exception, it seems, was that of the Catholic priest(s) allowed into 3rd Class to conduct Services.

I believe Margaret ('Molly') Brown mentioned seeing what she thought to be 3rd Class passengers in their rather homely Sunday best at the back of the room during the Service in 1st Class. It's possible those people were actually servants, who were travelling with their employers on 1st Class tickets but did not normally have access to the public rooms and facilities at that level.
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Bob Godfrey

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Nov 22, 2002
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Sunday was just another working day for the crew. The services were held for the benefit of passengers, and it's unlikely there were any crew present other than the Captain, Chief Purser probably and a few stewards who were there in the normal course of their duties. Not all of the First Class passengers attended either - Margaret ('Molly') Brown reckoned about half.
 

Dave Gittins

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Mar 16, 2000
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According to Sir James Bisset, as of 1907, all classes on Caronia attended the Sunday morning Anglican service. (Tramps and Ladies, page 155)

I give this for what it's worth. As the third class passengers were medically checked before boarding, perhaps it was thought reasonable for them to briefly mix with other classes.
 
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