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Evangelical Society. I have been deputed to Auxiliary Societies in Scotland, and to the Free Church, which have sent many contributions; and my friends, Monod and Roussel, have been sent by the Paris Society for the same object. They are both friends of France; and I desire that this breakfast may not be a personal business, but a Christian business, having in view the honour of the Lord, and the progress of truth on the Continent. The state of the Continent is very important just now. What I have told you of the German Church shows there is a crisis, and then the state of the German Catholic Church is most interesting. In one town there is a congregation separated from Rome of 12,000 people; and in all the towns there are such congregations, and they are increasing. It is true they are not all sound in the faith; some are rather Rationalists, and others have a sound Christian faith, and I hope all may be brought to something better. They say, if we remain Rationalists, we cannot stand two years together we shall be Roman Catholics again. It is only by the power of faith, the true faith, that a Christian Society can stand.
Again, in France the state of things is very important. We founded two Evangelical Societies some years ago, for the diffusion of the truth of God everywhere, but especially in France and among the Roman Catholics. We strove not to diffuse Presbytery, Independency, or Episcopacy, but Christianity; to bring souls to God, that they might be saved. Our two Societies have been blessed by the Lord, and many, by the preaching of the word, have been converted in the villages and towns, and these gathered together form Evangelical Churches, where no Christian Protestants were to be found some years ago. And now for two years that is something quite new, it was only soul by soul before, but now for two years we see a whole population. For instance, quite lately in the town of Sens, colporteurs were sent with the Bible there, and they wrote to say, "There are people here desiring to hear the word of God.' A minister was sent them. First he preached to 100, and now he preaches to 1,500. A minister has been procured for that people, and the minister sent from Paris to aid him, could not return, for one was not able to do the work. It is not a single_circumstance, but every where the same in France, Something more must be done. But, alas! we have not ministers enough; that is the complaint in Scotland, many Free Churches have been built without ministers to fill them. It is the same complaint with us, but we have founded in Geneva an institution for training young ministers, as you have done here, and we have young people from every country, French, Swiss, Belgian, who were all Roman Catholics before, even from Canada, and the old Church of the Waldenses. But these people are very poor, they must be helped by us first, even to live, and I ask you, will you not come and give us your aid? I was lately among our congregational brethren, in the library after breakfast, and they have resolved to take up the work on the Continent. Now, will you co-operate with the Foreign-Aid Society, or will you make a special one of your own? I know not what will be the ultimate arrangement, but I apprehend there will be two Committees formed, one specially Episcopalian, and one specially Free; but both free from any connexion with the Establishment. These two might be united; but it would perhaps be better to have an Episcopalian Committee, and a Free Committee, because there are people in both bodies who will not like a mixture. I hope by and by it will be found better to have but one
Committee. Now there shall be union in a
FREE CHURCH ASSEMBLY AT IN
THE Assembly at Inverness forms a new era
The welcome, the cead mille failte of the
fellowship meetings, the sea-side sermons, and the lonely prayers of the Highlanders, we regard as among the strongest bulwarks of the Free Church.
But we have wandered from our object. The proceedings of the Inverness Assembly have been already read and canvassed by all our readers: nor will we repeat them. There is, however, one speech which we will repeat, and one subject to which we must make a special reference--we mean the speech of Mr. Nisbet, imploring that the Free Church would send us more labourers. We were the first to bring this subject under the notice of the Free Church Assemblies, and could easily perceive we met with less sympathy than we deemed the cause entitled to demand. We made then, and make now, every allowance for the peculiar difficulties of the Free Church. Her very success has entailed these difficulties upon her. She has a greater number of adherents than she can supply with ordinances. We grant all this, and make every allowance for the policy she pursued. But still we must claim the liberty of questioning the wisdom of that policy. She is anxious, and very naturally and properly, to provide a minister for each of her congregations. might it not occur to her sagacious leaders (and more profoundly sagacious leaders no Church ever possessed), that some of these ministers might be more usefully employed somewhere else than in the depopulated parishes in which they were placed. And mere fragmentary skeletons why should of congregations in other parishes detain men from Newcastle, Manchester, and Leeds, not to mention other places? Viewed in the light of the soundest policy, would not these men advantage the Free Church more in our populous cities, than they can ever accomplish in their present spheres? Were our voice to sound in the Free Church councils, we would say, whatever you neglect, overlook not the high places of England. In the coming conflict, England must be the battle-field, and on the positions previously secured, must the issue of the struggle hinge.
From what has now been said, we wish it not to be supposed that we accuse the Free Church of any apathy, or anything approaching to indifference towards the prosperity of our Church. Very different, indeed, is our conviction. The Free Church, we are very fully persuaded, would, next to the promotion of her own interests, labour and, if need What we mean were, suffer to advance ours. is this, and we repeat it, that the Free Church is not aware of the actual state of matters in England. This ignorance we owe principally We have been sinfully to our own conduct. silent regarding our position. It may have arisen from a desire not to embarrass our Scottish brethren with our difficulties when they were overwhelmed with their own. But our reticence and delicacy have been carried too far, and we have suffered in consequence. We rejoice, however, to know, that our position is now getting better known, and the necessity of coming to our aid better appreciated in the north. All the ministers from Scotland that we have conversed with, and they are not a few, nor of little standing in their own Church, have with one voice declared, that the claims of England cannot longer be overlooked. This is a conviction that must gain ground, as our actual position becomes better kuown, and it is on this account that we so much rejoice that Mr. Nisbet had the manliness to declare what every man in England thinks, although they may not have the courage to avow it. We have only
one explanatory remark to premise. The allusion to Mr. Bonar's speech refers to the report he gave of the destitution of Canada, and the claims that our brethren there have upon the sympathy and support of the Church at home. The speech is as follows:
destitute of the means of grace, and where
The kind expressions of sympathy and re-
story mainly, as much of the interest of the work lies in the manner as well as the matter; and, we doubt not, occasional abruptness will be pardoned, for the sake of brevity.
The commencement is simple and characteristic.—“I was borne (near Prescott) in the month of September, 1623, about the middle of it, but upon what particular day of it I could never learne." The diary is divided into chapters, each recording the events of seven years. The first septennium contains a narrative of several hair-breadth escapes and accidents, his survival of which he records with suitable expressions of gratitude. An incident which gave a colour to his future destiny is thus graphically told :-"About this same time, when I was neere six years old, one Anne Simpkin, who was one of my sureties at the font, being grown low in the world, but not in goodness, out of a reall principle of conscience to perform her promises and engagements for me at my baptism (as I verily believe), bestowed an ABC upon me-a gift in itself exceedingly small and contemptible; but in respect of the designe and event, worth more than its weight in gold. For till that time I was all for childish play, and never thought of learning. But then I was frequently importunate with my mother, who had laid it up (thinking I would only pull it in pieces), to give it into mine own hands, which being so small a trifle, she accordingly did; and I, by the help of my brethren and sisters that could read, and a young man that came to court my sister, had quickly learned it, and the primmer also after it. Then, of my own accord, I fell to reading the Bible and any took in it, and the praises I got from my parents, that I thinke I could almost have read a day together without play or meat, if breath and strength would have held out; and thus it continued to the end of the first seven yeares of my life."
"Mr. NISBET shortly addressed the Assembly. Referring to the strong claims which the English Presbyterians have on the mother Church, he said he just begged the attention of this great and respectable Assembly to the speech of Mr. Bonar, on Thursday night, on the claims of Canada. To all the statements and appeals of that address he (Mr. N.) would a hundred times say ditto, if, instead of Mont-gard real, and such places, the name of London, or Liverpool, or Manchester, or Newcastle, were substituted. (Hear, hear.) He entreated all the members of Assembly just to read that speech, and apply it to England. Such an application of it he considered a hundred-fold more important. Why were they now met in Inverness? It was because they had neglected their countrymen in London-because they had neglected Scotsmen holding most influential situations there. He was for letting by-gones be by-gones, but he could not help telling them, that it was because they had not attended to their brothers and sisters, their sons and daughters in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, and similar places, where they were now filling important offices, some of them under the Government, and in fact the men who do the work of the Government, that they were now suffering so much from the conduct of the landlords in this and other parts of the country. (Hear, hear.) He rejoiced that a better feeling now appeared; LIFE AND TIMES OF ADAM MARTIN- other English books; and such great delight I in return for which, he could assure the Assembly, that if they found it necessary to send up another deputation to England, there was still wealth and good feeling there to do ten times more than had been done for the Free Church hitherto. At the same time, they must not be surprised should a deputation from the English Synod be sent down to perambulate the parishes of Scotland in behalf of the contemplated mission to China, or the existing mission to Corfu. (Hear, hear.) He rejoiced at the progress of the Free Church, which had so much exceeded all their expectations; and he knew that in England the disposition to support that Church never was better only, they wanted in England a few more men from the Free Church. A great deal had been said the other day about Inverary as a missionary station. Why, was such a place as Inverary worth naming in the same day with London as a missionary station? (Hear.) After urging the Assembly to send twelve or fourteen more men to England, Mr. N. concluded by expressing the sympathy which was felt amongst the English Presbyterians for the sufferings of their Highland brethren, and assuring the Assembly of their anxiety to do everything that was in their power on behalf of their brethren in the Highlands." (Hear, hear.)
We give below the deliverance of the Assembly after hearing the deputation from our Synod, consisting of Mr. Munro, of Manchester, and Mr. Nisbet, of London, and a deputation from the London Lay Union, consisting of Mr. Wm. Hamilton, and Dr. A. P. Stewart. After the usual preamble, it proceeds thus "The General Assembly heard with delight their brethren from England, whose appearance in the Assembly in this distant part of Scotland they take as an expression of their unabated interest in the proceedings of this Church, and more especially as showing how deeply they feel for those districts which are at present so peculiarly
WITHOUT staying to inquire into the cause,
Next comes a notice of Martindale's schoolboy life. "About the middle of January, 1630, when schooles began to be revived after Christmasse I was sent to the Free-school of St. Helens, about two miles from my father's house, a great way for a little fat short-legged lad (as I was) to travel twice a day; yet, I went it cheerfully. My first master was a young ingenious sparke, having a good full schoole, but so bad an husbande (i. e. manager) that he quickley spoilt all, and left us. A worse followed him, viz., an old humdrum curate, that had almost no scholars, nor deserved any, for he was both a simpleton and a tipler. The third I went to, was a woman, daughter to a famous schoolmaster, that had some smattering of Latine. . . . With her I did something better than quite lose my time, but not much. The fourth was brought up at the then famous schoole of Wenwick, (the great ecclesiastical foundation of Lancashire,) and was scholar sufficient for me then. The fifth was a learned and efficient teacher, and under him, young Martindale made rapid progress in the classics. He was diligent Such a biography has been incidentally fur- enough in looking to us, not only as to gramnished by the Chetham Society, which was mar learning, but as to our profiting in the recently established in Manchester for the catechetical grounds of religion. He also publication of historical and literary remains tooke notice by himselfe (and admonitors connected with the palatine counties of Lan-appointed for the purpose) who was absent caster and Chester; and as its issue, like that from the publick ordinances, or carried himself of the Roxburgh Club, Wodrow Society, &c., unsuitably there." is confined to subscribers, and will, therefore, be accessible to only a very few of the readers of the "English Presbyterian Messenger," some notice of the autobiography of Adam Martindale will, we think, find an appropriate place in its pages.
The memoirs of the more eminent of these worthies have long been in the hands of the public; but of the mass of the lesser stars, those who took no prominent part in public affairs, or whose names have not come down to us in connexion with the rich experimental theology of the period, there is almost nothing known. Yet to a large class of readers this is the very section, the narrative of whose trials and deliverances would probably prove most extensively useful and interesting.
We propose to let Martindale tell his own
Martindale had now reached his fourteenth year, and on his recovery from a severe attack of small-pox was put to some branch of trade. Having the offer frankly made by his father, whether he would continue at it or return to school, he promptly and gladly chose the latter. His previous teacher having fallen
Finding Rainford unendurable as a residence, he went to live, as his clerk, with Colonel Moore, who had just been sent from London to Liverpool to garrison the town, and recruit for the Parliament. The family, however, was so profane that he was glad to undertake a less honourable and profitable employment, "the chief clerk's place in the foot regiment, where he lived in peace, and enjoyed sweet communion with the religious officers of the company, which used to meet every night at one another's quarters by turns, to read Scriptures, to confer of good things, and to pray together."
into dissipated habits, he left him to attend | eventful epoch. He thus describes it, as a another at Rainford; a man made for a cordial helping to support his spirit:-"A schoolmaster, and who was most excellent to sermon that I heard at St. Helens, preached give the finishing stroke to a country scho- by Mr. Smith, the minister there. He was lar." He was a great favourite with "the under no great account for his abilities, but Popish gentry in the neighbourhood; be- pious and serious, and in that sermon he did cause, though a Protestant, he was a strong so lay forth the desperateness and damnableAnti-Puritan, which that place never had be- ness of a natural estate, without conversion, fore." From this incidental remark, it is evi- (which before that time I had little minded,) dent "in what direction the current of reli- that I was roused to purpose, and this proved gious opinion had long been steadily flowing like a sharp needle, drawing after a silken in this part of the country, at least." This thread of comfort in due season, so as if I teacher" was also very notable in making us may, without presumption, lay claime to a observe all allusions in profane authors to the worke of grace (as I humbly hope), he was the sacred Scriptures, insomuch, that any thing chiefe instrument, under God, and accordingly leaning that way should hardly passe his I honoured him as my spirituall father to his observation." Under this able master, Mar- death." tindale continued till his sixteenth year; when (1629), "being allowed to be ready, he left to go to the University. But the worst was, the University was not so ready for me; war being come on very soon after, turned Oxford (whither I was designed) into a garrison, and many scholars into soldiers. . . . . The Scots had invaded England, and entered Newcastle. Great animosities were set on foot regarding monopolies and ship-money, chief ministers of State, such as the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Lord Keeper Finch, and Secretary Windabanke, almost everywhere spoken against. Archbishop Laud and several bishops, and their chaplaines, taxed with innovations, licensing Popish and Socinian bookes, and persecuting many godly ministers to deprivation itself. The censures also and deep sufferings of Prynne, Bastarik, Burton, Layton, Lilbourne, and others, were much ventilated." Thus summarily are depicted the civil and religious discontents then fermenting, which were soon to break forth in civil war. Martindale, meantime, not choosing to join the student garrison at Oxford, became tutor in the family of Mr. Shevington, of the Boothes, in Eccles parish, near Manchester. Manchester was at that time held for the Parliament, and the Earl of Derby, being repulsed in an attack upon it, overran the adjoining country. At Shavington, after fortifying his residence, he broke up housekeeping, about Christmas, 1641, when Martindale was released from his multifarious and somewhat incongruous duties. Resolving not to be idle or burdensome to his father, who had suffered heavily from the marauders then rife in the neighbourhood, he became teacher in a school that was vacant at Holland, near Wigan. "But I was then subject," he narrates, "to so many great inconveniencies by the discouragement that many lay under to send their children in these dayes of constant alarms, by the uncomfortableness of my habitation, in a public-house, to which many Papists and drunkards did frequently resort, by the disturbance given us by the soldiers often quartering among us, to the depriving us of our beds and chambers; by the suspicion of being a Roundhead (that is, one for the Parliament), and I would not clear myself from it by swearing and debaucherie, but would have been quiet, and meddled on no side, that I left the place in a quarter of a yeare." He next moved to Rainford, where he was still exposed to great disturbance from "several Papists," and "a pragmatical constable," who would not take his excuse as "a price of a clergyman," but warned him to attend the military drill of the King's forces. There it was, however, that a change was wrought in him that determined his future fate-a change which moved him with a courage and endued him with a panoply which enabled him, by the grace of God, to sustain and overcome all the trials and anxieties of that perilous and
After various vicissitudes, he opens a school near Chester, without having seemingly any thought beyond it; a clerical friend persuaded him "From the necessity that poor souls lay under, and the excellency of the work," to prepare himself for the office of the Christian ministry. Though at first much "startled at a motion to a thing so far above him," he soon fell in with it. He was already a tolerable Grecian, and by his friend's advice commenced the study of Hebrew and Logic. The want of proper books, or a teacher, retarded his progress, but nothing could damp his ardour or slacken his perseverance, till, by mastering the compendiums and systems of the day, some of them crabbed enough, he attained a very considerable proficiency in "Hebrew, Metaphysickes, Physickes, and Ethicks." Lest the name of a mere country scholar, too, should be some prejudice to him, he procured himself to be entered of University College, Oxford, but what attendance he gave there does not appear. He was in truth a man of strong, though not of brilliant natural talent, and, though mainly self-taught, became a very ripe scholar.
In 1645, Manchester was visited by a most virulent pestilence. The burials, as appears from the register of the Collegiate Church, in August of that year, just 200 years ago, were 310,-which was the culminating point. After this visitation, and in consequence of the ab* of many clergymen at the famous Westminster Assembly then sitting, there was a great demand for ministers to supply pulpits. In this juncture the same minister who had advised Martindale to complete his studies for the Church "being of a very publicke spirit," and like some of our Presbyterian brethren in the same quarter at this day, "endeavouring to get supply for as many places as he could," urged him in the existing dearth of preachers to make trial of his gifts. This he refused, but by a little friendly artifice was got to comply, and preached with considerable acceptability. In 1646, he accepted a call from a congregation at Gorton, near Manchester. "This
Richard Heyricke, son of Sir Richard Heyricke, and Warden of the Collegiate Church, Manchester, was a member of the Assembly.
was that bustling yeare wherein the Presbyteriall and Congregationall governments were like Jacob and Esau struggling in the womb, and the latter not waiting for a civill sanction, being got into possession at Duckinfield, within two and a half miles, I found I was come into a wasp's nest." Presbyteriall government, however, with some limitation, was established throughout the county of Lancaster, which was divided into nine classes or presbyteries, with ministers and others nominated as fit to be of each classis. For the promoting of this public work, three very worthy ministers of great abilities, piety, and learning, living at the same distance of two and a half miles, besides diverse gentlemen and tradesmen in and about Manchester, were deeply engaged, Mr. Harrison, of Ashton-under-Line, Mr. Hollingsworth, of the Collegiate Church, Manchester, and Mr. Dean, of Dean, but then living in Manchester also. These were very zealous (commonly called Rigid) Presbyterians, that were for the setting up of the governance of the Church of Scotland among us (some few circumstances excepted) and the utter extirpation of Independence, root and branch, as schismatical and inconsistent with the Covenant. John Angier, of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, a man eminent for piety and learning, on his coming down from London, joined with his brethren in setting up the Presbyteriall government, but for all that was very moderate towards all that be judged godly of the Congregationall way, and spoke with very great reverence of Mr. Eaton and Mr. Taylor, his neighbours at Duckingfield, praising them for pious men, good scholars, and excellent preachers. Martindale, who had a very catholic spirit, would have been content to preach the Gospel, and hold friendly relations with both of the contending parties. He seems to have inquired carefully and conscientiously into the form of church government, most agreeable to the word of God. He brought his doubts, as will subsequently appear, for resolution, before the Manchester Presbytery. Finding, however, that his peace and usefulness were greatly hindered by the contentions of the Presbyterian and Independent parties in his congregation at Gorton, he wisely left it, and out of five or six places to which he was immediately called, he chose Postherne in Cheshire. About this time he was married to Elizabeth Hall, second daughter of John Hall, of the clockhouse in Droylsdon, a freeholder of good rank.
Finding delays interposed to his ordination by the Manchester classis on unimportant grounds, and great inconvenience resulting from the non-performance of sealing ordinances in so populous a parish, he went to London, and received his orders by the laying on of the hands of the Presbytery there, the well known Dr. Manton presiding on the occasion. The times, however, were still troublous. "The ministers of the classis also were become great sufferers. The Cromwellian army was become rampant, destroyed the King, put down kingly government, with the house of Lords, and secluded the most worthy members of the House of Commons, and acted many other villanies, Diverse of the ministers of the classis hurried about, and imprisoned at Liverpool, and Ormeskirke, till it came even to peaceable Mr. Angier. Those of Manchester, viz., Mr. Heyricke, and Mr. Hallingworth, put to pensions, (if they get them) the college lands being sold, and the college itself to Mr. Wigan, who now being turned Antipædobaptist, and I know not what more, made a barn there into a chapel, where he and many of his persuasion preached doctrine diametrically opposite to the minister's persuasion, under their very nose." Like the Presbyterian body of which he was a member,
Martindale was a Royalist. "Wee had been the utmost importance. From replies to some| Guthrie. After deducting these sums, which brought by severall removes into the power of queries that were issued by Mr. Handyside to must be considered as extraordinary, there a remnant of the House of Commons, influenced the Presbyteries of the Church, it appears that remains for the four and a-half months which and enslaved by Cromwell and his party, after there are no fewer than 263,000 persons have elapsed since the close of our last financalled the Rump. That these were grand connected with the Free Church, who con- cial year, 12,6701. belonging to the ordinary usurpers against the known laws of the king- tribute nothing to its funds. It may be said, revenue of the Missionary and Educational dom, I had not so much as the embryo of a in answer to this, that a large proportion of schemes of the Free Church, showing an indoubt, but supposing them such, how to carry that number are represented by the high crease for the present year, as compared with under them was the grand question, wherein contributions of other members of the Church. the corresponding period of last year, of many learned and good men were divided." Now, supposing this were the case, and sup- 3,8167." Keen and very ably conducted debates which posing this were a right state of matters, a point took place among the clergy upon "the engage- which the Committee are by no means wilment" of fidelity to the Commonwealth, imposed ling to concede, and that the proportion so reby Cromwell, which Martindale at last sub-presented were to be rated so high as 163,000, scribed, but not without misgivings at the time there would still remain 100,000 persons in and afterwards. the same position. It is believed the proportion is decreasing; but the Committee hope that Associations, and Presbyteries, and ministers will not cease their efforts till it be regarded as a thing quite anomalous to find a member of the Free Church who is not a contributor to its funds."
[The concluding portion of this paper, which is still more interesting than the part now given, will be inserted in our next number.-ED.]
FREE CHURCH FINANCES.
In order to stimulate our own people to in-
same source for the corresponding quarter
tions from 15th of May to
"Do. do. for last year
This Report is certainly most gratifying. But there was one fact elicited in connexion with the contributions to the Free Church funds worthy of consideration. It appears (we quote the "Northern Warder," of September4) "that about 80,000 persons contributed the 80,000 of the Sustentation Fund of last year," and consequently that the other members of the Free Church contributed nothing, no, not one farthing to that fund. Matters have, it appears, improved in this respect during the present year; but still, from Mr. Handyside's statistics, founded upon returns by Presbyteries, it yet appears that the astounding mass of 263,000 seatholders of the Free Church even now contribute nothing!
We allude to this subject at all, only to show our own members, who manage the financial affairs of our Church, that they are not to despond, although they should not get so many to subscribe to our schemes as they desire. If even in the Free Church this happens, we need not yet despair. But neither let us relax. In all Churches every member ought to make it a matter of conscience to contribute to all her financial schemes. The man who neglects is guilty of a clear dereliction of duty before God and
Having thus communicated an abstract of the Sustenation Fund of the Free Church, let us now submit the budget of the Treasurer of the MISSIONARY AND EDUCATIONAL FUNDS; and we wish our own various Treasurers might be able to lay before our Synod a Report equally gratifying.
"In regard to pecuniary contributions to the schemes, I have to report that they are in a most prosperous state, there being a continued and very considerable increase in their amount. Comparing the four and a-half months which have elapsed since the completion of the last financial year, at the end of March last, with the corresponding period of the preceding year, there has been an increase that is calculated to delight the hearts of all who are interested in the prosperity of our Missionary and Educational schemes. In the corresponding period of last year, the contributions amounted to 8,8331. 3s. 6d. ; that is to say, during the four and a-half months from the end of March. Now the contributions for the same period of the present year amount to 16,470. 4s. 5d. In this sum, however, is included 2,000l. received from the Sustenation Fund, owing to an arrangement which it is not necessary here to explain, along with 1,300%. for the building of the college, and 5007., which has been given as a special donation by a Wesleyan friend, through his friendship with Mr.
In this latter Report, viz., on Missionary and Educational Funds, there is one class of contributors to which we wish to draw special attention; it is the contributions of the young; Sabbath-school and weekday-school contributors. In last number we inserted a letter
from a "Sunday-school Teacher," stating that the Juvenile Association, in connexion with St. Peter's-square Church, Manchester, contributed last year 10l. towards the Home Mission Fund. This, however, we believe, is only a fourth of the funds contributed—an equal sum having been given to the Jewish and to the India Missions of the Free Church; and similar donations appear in this number, from the Church at Woolwich. Our correspondent (of whom we may add, we know no more than that his letter bore the London post mark) recommended that similar Associations for similar purposes, should be formed in all our congregations and schools. This recommendation we followed up with some remarks of our own, intended to second our correspondent's suggestions. We now show what the Free Church is doing in this respect. And any man who remembers the number of pence and sixpences that passed through our hands when we were schoolboys, and the purposes to which they were commonly devoted, must surely desire that our children should be wiser than their father's, and from earliest youth have an opportunity of becoming contributors to mission funds. The following is the extract we alluded to:
"The Rev. Doctor then referred, in terms of the warmest satisfaction, to the progressive increase of the contributions from the children of the Church. The contributions derived last year from this source amounted to 3947.; he had now to report that at the present time, and at the stage to which they had advanced in the present year, the contributions from the children of the Church amount to 2657. 6s. 10d.
a sum for this brief period being not very far from the amount of contributions during the whole preceding year. Should these contributions go on increasing at the same rate, they will soon form an important item in the contributions to the schemes of the Church; but they are to be regarded not merely as a growing amount of money, but as indicating a degree of self-denial and strength of principle on the part of these young ones which ought to be considered as of a very precious kind. The contributions, whether of old or young, are only valuable when they proceed from a desire for the glory of God-when the Spirit of God is stirring up the heart to desire to be permitted to be a fellow-worker with him in his own cause."
One extract more and we have done. It relates to the poor Highland parish of North Knapdale, a parish we know well. Often, oh, how very often, in boyhood's joyous days, have we traversed its heath-covered mountains, lovelier far in our eyes, and still dearer to our heart than vine-clad hills or flowery meads! It is poor in this world's goods, but rich in faith, and in the works that faith performs. Its only commerce is with heaven ; but of their abundant poverty have the people contributed to the Church they love. Could prayers be estimated by any financial standard,
illustrations of the two last propositions.
In the "Dedication" of the volume for
we verily believe the Free Church has derived | the observations we allude to, reserving | but for the advancement of a nation's real more advantage from the intercession of Knapdale, and Skye, and Ross, than from the princely contributions of her merchant princes. But the Free Church, like Israel, has men for every sphere. She has Joshua battling in the plain, and Moses praying on the mountain. But we give the extract, remarking only that on the principle applied by our Lord to the widow's contribution, we believe the largest collection ever made for the Free Church was by the Christian people of North Knapdale. When will our congregations act thus?
"Dr Makellar next referred to a gratifying contribution which had been received by Mr. Jaffray from North Knapdale-the name of which, he observed, would be familiar to the house and to the Church, from the interesting account given by Mr. Macbride in the Assembly, in May, of the degree in which the Lord has been pleased to bless his labours amongst the people there. The communication to Mr. Jaffray set forth, that on the day appointed by the Assembly for making a collection for the Continental Churches, the people belong ing to that section of our Church assembled together, and although there was no minister to conduct their public services, they did not fail to desire to draw near to God in a right spirit at his throne of grace; nor were they unmindful of the appointment of the Assembly to make a collection on that day. The writer of the letter conveying the collection, states that he did not expect more than £1. from people in such humble circumstances; but to his surprise and delight he found that, through the money which they subscribed on the spot, and what they brought with them, there was a total sum of £11. 10s. This, added the Reverend Doctor, was truly an illustration of the power of the principle of faith and love in the souls, when the Spirit of God operates in the hearts of his people."
PERIODICAL PRESS; ITS IMPORTANCE
SHORT as has been our connexion with the periodical press, and little comparatively as we can be supposed to know of the deep mysteries (if any such there be) of the editorial craft, we have yet acquired three lessons, yea four, of which we very strongly suspect our readers are still in very profound ignorance. These still in very profound ignorance. These lessons are, 1st, That the vast importance of a monthly periodical is not properly appreciated. 2nd, That nine-teuths of the original composition, and the sum total of the drudgery of conducting such a periodical must be performed by the editor. 3d, That no periodical can possibly prosper without a staff of well paid contributors. And 4th, That as these contributors, the editor especially, are labouring for the good of the Church, so the Church ought handsomely to remunerate them, not as an act of grace, but as payment of a debt.
So convinced are we of the truth and importance of these propositions, that we had resolved to write an article to confirm and illustrate them, when we discovered that the two first of them had been treated with his usual power by one of the very ablest of our contemporaries. We shall therefore transfer to our columns
One of the most eminent Transatlantic
prelates now living, truly says, "The bishops,
good we would not give 10,000 well-disciplined British-School Teachers for all the Nobles in the world; and for training, purifying, elevating, animating, and impelling on to vir1844, thus wrote (not less truly than clo-tuous deeds the souls of the Christian portion quently) the editor of the "Christian of the British people, we would not give a Witness"-the political allusions we shall well-conducted Weekly Religious Paper, with not be regarded as sanctioning. a circulation of 100,000 copies, and so cheap as to bring it within the reach of the poorest, for all the Quarterlies that British talent could produce, and British wealth support. We say, therefore, whatever else you do, attend to the organs of the Millions! Would that the minds of our gifted ministers, and of our opulent, liberal, and public-spirited laymen, were fully alive to this subject, and that they would direct their energies into this channel! Neglect what you may, remember the Millions! Let your first object and your last be to advance, in all possible ways, your own cheap periodical literature. This is your life! Even the opulent, instead of overlooking, should most prize the excellence which is cheapest. The cheaper it is, the more it approximates to all God's chief blessings. That which only few can purchase, only few can read. numbers circulated of half-crown Monthlies, and six-shilling Quarterlies, whatever their respective merits, must always be limited to comparatively a few hands, and therefore utterly and every way impotent for popular objects.
Our counsel, therefore, to our people is, to seize the Printing Press, and to bring its utmost power to bear upon the millions of the British Empire. As truly as beautifully did the Right Hon. George Canning describe its general power when he said, "By means of printing, man may speak to all kindreds, and tribes, and people, and tongues, and make his voice be heard, with simultaneous power, beyond the Atlantic waves, and upon the shores of the Caspian Sea, and amid the population of Europe. Nay, he may speak to accumulating generations after his death with all the freshness and force of personal eloquence. Printing gives to man a sort of ubiquity and eternity of being; it enables him to outwit death, and enshrine himself amid a kind of earthly immortality. It enables him to speak while yet dead. His words that breathe, and thoughts that burn, are embodied and embalmed; and with him thousands hold profitable or hurtful communion till time is no more. If, then, we are loudly called upon to be careful what we speak, and what we do, we are doubly warned to beware what we throw into the press, and invest with a power to endure, and a strength to pass every sea, and to visit every people." All this applies with force a hundred-fold increased, to the Periodical Press. Other things being equal, circulation is everything. The influence of a book is just in proportion to the number of its readers. Beyond all question, therefore, the highest application of the power of the Printing Press lies in the issue of popular periodicals. Compared with this, all ordinary authorship, how splendid soever, is work in a corner, labour in a cave: it may benefit the few, and conduct its authors to fame, but it will leave the masses unblessed. What is at this moment, whether for evil or for good, feeding, forming, and moulding the minds of the British people? Is it the folio, the quarto, the goodly octavo, or the royal twelves? Nay, verily; but small and unpretending manuals of divers forms and diminutive appearance. But in the more athletic efforts of the Periodical field itself, where lies the chief power? Assuredly there, too, not in the larger, but in the smaller publications; not in those of the least frequent, but in those of the most frequent recurrence. On this subject, we think, some wise and good men are mis
With a body of readers so great, an attempt to please all would be as preposterous as its attainment would be impossible. All that we can expect to realize is, sometimes to please, and sometimes to offend; to please all by turns, and occasionally to please one class and offend another by the selfsame articles; and often to confer most benefit when we yield least pleasure.
To be felt, a public writer must be strong and gentle spirits, in his strength, will sometimes see violence; to be understood, he must be plain-and plainness will offend pride. Nor is this all; to public men in our present state, the condition of doing much that is wise and good is, the doing, sometimes, a little that is neither. But the public should remember that error is not confined to editors and action; they too may err in judgment and conduct may err through ignorance, through precipitance, through prejudice, through misrepresentation, and inculpate deeds which merit the highest praise. An editor, too, has frequently occasion to say and do things of strange aspect and apparently questionable prudence to those who look on from a distance. Duty will often prompt a deed of which propriety conceals the reason. The function, therefore, demands confidence strong, full, general confidence. He who fills the office must deserve this; and deserving, he must possess it. The public creed concerning him should comprise but one tenet, and that tenet, INFALLIBILITY!
The editor of
Such being the importance of the taken; they seem to us to attach a most periodical press, the difficulty of conductinordinate importance to costly periodicaling a Monthly Magazine is, as might be literature. According to them, no religious community was ever respectable and strong anticipated, enormous. without a high-priced and large-typed Quar- the "Christian Witness" thus describes terly Periodical; just as, according to others, it, from personal experience, and, if a no nation was ever respectable and strong man of such resources and power feels without a rich and privileged Nobility. What the task so onerous, what must it be to Nobles have done for nations may be ascerless gifted men? tained from history; but what Quarterlies have done for religious bodies we have yet to learn. A good Nobility, if it can be created, may, for aught we know, be a good institution; and a good Quarterly, if it can be established, in its own little sphere, may be a useful organ;
Oppressed with these emotions, and remembering how entirely unacquainted the bulk of our readers necessarily are with the duties of an editor, we shall aid them in obtaining a glimpse at his operations, that