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and happiness to a people, is that machinery by which the Church of their fathers is well worked. The owners of those warehouses where are deposited the riches and treasures of the globe, should learn that the best riches and treasures are those which are laid up where “ neither moth nor rust can corrupt, nor thieves break through and steal."
Even in the strongholds of Mammon we would look for an effect being wrought, -within the shops and behind the counters of our tradespeople. Nor would it be quite a forlorn hope to subtract, for the services of the Most High, a portion at least of one day's profit of the till. Good God! to think, that while the gospel is melting the heart of the untutored slaves, and, even more, touching the hard task-master himself, our own countrymen, in our proud metropolis, wander our streets in shoals, surround our happy homes, and cross our very lintels, with souls that were given to be redeemed, but lost and perishing for lack of that knowledge which leadeth unto salvation! By this means such a note should be struck throughout the land, that the sound, vibrating on every heart, should melt it to humanity. Humanity! feeble and false name for that which ought to be excited. 'Humanity hath nothing to do with thousands of our own flesh and blood perishing through very spiritual inanition. Did the case relate to the body, see how our humanity would manifest itself! An appeal that referred to charitable institutions for food or raiment for the wayworn and the hungry, for the widow, the orphan, and the shipwrecked, would, forsooth, in all probability, elicit an answer from our humanity, and we would freely give from those accumulated stores heaped up by our own or fathers' industry.
And then we applaud ourselves; and our humanity, God þless the mark ! would encourage us to suppose that we have covered a multitude of sins. Blind and vain race of mortals that we are! And how we hug the flattering deception to our hearts ! Alas! humanity is a trivial thing indeed, if she do not reach from social to divine-if she do not heed the eternal welfare of the objects on which she rests.
What is mere humanity, in its ordinary sense, compared to that sublime emotion which impelled the widow's mite, which she threw in to the honour and glory of the Almighty! Strip ordinary humanity of the false colours of her excitement, and what is she? A naked impulse, --something little better than an instinct, and often without meaning, or having any wise and worthy object. But robe her in the apparel of Christianity, and she at once assumes a loftier and a holy aspect; in truth, she drops an appellation only known to this world, and acquires a title which is registered in heaven.
The more we reflect, the more we are confirmed in our opinion that an appeal such as we have glanced at, coming from authority,
and directed to the heart of every individual, would be the most advisable step to which to resort ; at all events, in the first instance. If that, (which, however, if it were well managed, we cannot apprehend,) if that should fail, it will be time enough to bring forward some more efficient measure, with the view of securing to future generations the inestimable blessings of a national Establishment.
In our humble opinion it would be advisable for the Clergy, in their respective parishes, to resound from the pulpit the appeal of the Bishop of London; to catch the wise spirit and chastened zeal in which that prelate hath opened the vital question to the sense and understanding of this christian land. They should impress upon those with whom they are connected, or who are consigned by Providence to their immediate superintendence ; they should inculcate upon them the necessity they are under (if they would do their duty) of extending “ the kingdom of heaven” to every benighted soul within the realm. · Thus, it is to be hoped, we shall be enabled to bring to the very doors of the weary and desolate the refreshment from above
- to build in the very midst and centre of iniquity the houses of God. The church-going bell shall be heard, and her spires and turrets arise amid the denseness of ignorance, to dispel the awful gloom in which we are living. Like the light of day, that will dissolve the hoarfrost, and take up the early dew, and divide the gathered clouds of darkness, will the religious spirit that will issue from the consecrated buildings enlighten the moral world, until “ the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth, as the waters cover the sea ;” and our brethren, united to us by all the ties of a common country, be saved, amid “ the wreck of matter and the crush of worlds."
THE CHURCH. WE hear much about the PRESENT Crisis of the Church ; we are warned of the black tempest which overhangs her, and the inevitable ruin which threatens her; and several such like ominous dangers whistle in the wind, voicing a hollow and responsive cadence to the wishes of the wicked. But we are bold to affirm, that never was there a time when her prospects from without wore a brighter aspect. Her members have nobly bestirred themselves, and, in the calm consciousness of strength, have (we must needs own at the eleventh hour) thrown off the lethargy in which, trusting to the dignity and righteousness of their cause, they had suffered themselves to be enwrapped; but at length have they
awoke from their slumber, like a giant in his strength. For long, as if struck by a spell, men gazed vacantly on the awful aspect of the future. From afar they beheld the cloud the size of a man's hand. Their attention became fixed upon it, when, just visible on the verge of the horizon, it rose like a dárov répas on the eye. Slowly it grew into a subject of painful meditation, frighting the under world. Gradually broadening more and more, and driven on by the whirlwind, it bore right against our ecclesiastical institutions; but when at length it gloomed over their steeples and towers, the zealous affection of the most sagacious conquered their confidence ; they almost dared to despair of the event, deeming the dark cloud at once the vehicle of the thunderbolt, and prognostic of the hurricane. For awhile they stood aghast ! and many felt disposed to succumb to a danger, which loomed the larger to the public eye, from the misty region through which it was contemplated. Presently a minatory din pealed on all sides. Then did our holy Church gloriously manifest herself; and the very spires, that, like points of attraction, rose into the red sulphureous skies, as if to lay bare her outworks to the elements, and compromise the safety of the sacred fabric,—those very indices to heaven approved themselves electrics per se, and by their inherent virtue intercepted the strokes that inferred their ruin. But to drop our flights, and take our stand on the firm earth. Is not our metaphor a true though weak type of the reality ? Our enemies, with their ninety-nine points of difference, and one common cement, namely, hatred of our Apostolic Church,-neither fierce Radical, malignant Sectarian, nor subtle Papist can deny the evidence of their senses.
Meetings have been held in almost every town in Britain, where were advocated those principles of Church and King maintained and iterated centuries since by our forefathers, in whose spirit, and whereby, the English flag hath waved triumphant in every age, from the days of John of Gaunt to those of Drake, Blake, Rooke, and Hawke,-in every quarter of the globe, whether the heights of Abraham, the plains of Minden, the sands of Alexandria, or the walls of Seringapatam; those principles which have ensured to our country that taste of freedom which forbids her children ever being slaves, and by which alone we may expect God's blessing to rest on our endeavours, and prosperity, the issue of his will, to settle on our our institutions. CHURCHES have been built in almost every county in England during the last twelvemonth. Noble benefactors have stepped forward and endowed them; and the blessings of Christianity have been thereby extended to a vastly increasing population, who otherwise might have remained the children of wrath to the end of their lives. In Lancashire alone no less than eighty new churches have very lately been erected, and in Yorkshire fifty new churches
have been built; in Staffordshire twenty-eight, and in Cheshire above twenty ; and most of these sacred erections have been endowed chiefly by voluntary contributions. Look these things like the Church in ruins ? Moreover, parsonage houses have been raised to secure the residence of the Clergy; schools have been founded and established, and teachers appointed to impart that knowledge which is the beginning of wisdom, the only wisdom which will ever conduce to the prosperity of an empire ; which will make a people happy, which is better than being prosperous; which will make them daring and heroic, by not disburthening them of a higher fear; which will make them invincible for a brief while in this world, and blessed through all eternity in the next. We have turned upon the enemy his own weapons, and it will go hard if we do not better the instruction. PUBLICATIONS have issued from the press as fast as steam could send them, in defence of those doctrines which we hold so dear, and of the discipline to which we willingly submit, being according to that Word which cannot err, and on which our whole Establishment is founded. CIATions have been formed for the purpose of upholding the constitution of this country, and strengthening the mainspring by which alone society is regulated. There have of late been repeated instances of Dissenting ministers applying for episcopal ordination. This is a circumstance grateful to dwell upon, and which needs no other comment than a simple reference to the fact of several places of worship, formerly belonging to Dissenters, having been purchased, and fitted up as chapels of ease and churches for use of our catholic Establishment. There are other signs of the times which can be pointed out, no less significant. Prudent men, from being neutral and indolent, have turned zealous, even owing to their prudence. They were unwilling to be taken at disadvantage, so have gone out and met the enemy in the gate; they have proved before God and man that they were members of the church of Christ; that they held their Sovereign in honour, and were loyal even out of love of liberty,--out of regard for those matchless institutions of their country, which were no chance matter, or the product of a single generation, but, like her native oaks, the sure and gradual growth of centuries, deep-rooted in the rock of custom, flourishing in perennial vigour, and sound to the very core, because fanned by those genial airs from heaven,- Freedom and Religion.
These are the institutions which our countrymen, from John of Groat to the Land's End, are gathering to uphold and preserve from desecration. Look these things like the Church in ruins ? But more than this. Many who, but a short time since, vociferated amongst the loudest of the sons of darkness and disaffection,-who, knowing not what they did, sought the downfal of the Establishment, have halted in mid career; yea, they have seen their error, have turned back into the highway of heaven, have repented, have repudiated their designs, abandoned their machinations, and, like St. Paul of old, have avouched themselves staunch supporters of that Church which erst they persecuted, and zealous believers in the worth of those holy principles which they were wont, out of sheer ignorance, to despise. Look these things like the Church in ruins ? Facts will speak; and these are facts which carry their own moral emphasis, and which none dare gainsay.
CHURCH-RATES ABOLITION SOCIETY.
That persons who, for conscience sake, or, what is not an impossible supposition, for motives which they would blink acknowledging to their own hearts, see cause " to strain at a gnat," and dissent on divers grounds from our apostolic Establishment; that they should nevertheless find themselves constrained by law to contribute to the support of a religious system to which they cannot conform, appears at the first blush not a little startling; but the wonder will subside when the just and well-constituted minds of our countrymen are taught to look somewhat closer into the merits of the case, and come to sift out the truth for themselves from the midst of perversions, exaggerations, and falsities. Did not we Churchmen indeed find ourselves under the necessity of annually subscribing our quota for the preservation of holy wells, images of the saints, relics of miraculous efficacy, and other contemporary illustrations of certain texts thickly strewn in the Æneid and Metamorphoses, we should naturally recoil at the attempted impost, and do all that we legally might to get rid of so obnoxious a tax-to reform it altogether.
How then, it will be objected, can we affect surprise that people should cry out for the abolition of church-rates and why interpose obstacles in the way of the Dissenters throwing off the grievances with which they are saddled? Why not henceforward suffer them to withhold their contributions towards the necessary working and repairs of the Establishment ?
In the eyes of all true Englishmen, who take a common pride in the liberty of their country, and their own freedom of choice in matters of religion, the abuse is monstrous! It is harddistressing—it is a crying injustice, which is indeed but a feeble term with which to stigmatize the cruelty of such a proceeding. This compulsory law, which enforces its own fulfilment, is one of rigour, and unjust in principle. It is an intolerable burden on the consciences of Dissenters, who, in defiance of their religious scruples, are made to swell the arbitrary contribution. It is quite enough to justify the declaration of a celebrated Voluntary leader," that the overthrow of the English Church is a consum