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Hidden Side of Christian Festivals
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About the Author

Charles Webster Leadbeater was born in February 1854, in Cheshire, England. During his life, he claimed to have been born in 1847, but there is a fairly good body of evidence to say the correct year was 1854. His father - Charles - moved the family to London in 1861 because of a job with the railroad. An uncle - W. W. Capes - got young Charles interested in the priesthood. He was ordained to the Church of England clergy by the Bishop of Winchester in 1979. He met Helena P. Blavatsky in 1884. The well-known mystic got him interest in the occult side of religion. Father Leadbeater was so enamored by Madam Blavatsky that he became her disciple, mov-ing to Adyar, India shortly after meeting her. He renounced his priesthood and took up studies under Blavatsky. Leadbeater moved to Sydney, Australia in 1915, and estab-lished a Theosophical Society center that was second only to the main house in India in size. In the early part of the twentieth century, he and James I. Wedgwood founded the Liberal Catholic Church. Their intent was to nourish esoteric liturgies, separate from the Anglican and Roman Rites of the church catholic. His philosophy of religion can be summed up in the words he wrote for the Liberal Catholic liturgy: "We believe that God is Love and Power and Truth and Light; that perfect justice rules the world; that all His sons shall one day reach His Feet, however far they stray. We hold the Fatherhood of God, the Brotherhood of man; we know that we do serve Him best when best we serve our brother man. So shall His blessing rest upon us and peace for evermore."

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