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Fox's Book Of Martyrs. Edited by the Rev. J. Camming, M.A. Part VII. Royal 8vo. pp. 99. G. Virtue.
A most beautiful and illustrated Edition, of a work of sterling value, which every person ought to possess.
The Local Preachers' Journal; 8vo. pp. 16. No. I. to IV, J. Ward & Co.
This is a useful Monthly publication, from which not only local preachers, but other ministers also may derive valuable assistance.
FINANCES OF THE CONNEXION.
At a meeting of the Connexional Committee, held at Leeds, April 20th, 1842, the Committee went into an examination of the state of the Connexional Funds, and found that there was owing to the general Treasurer upwards of £800. The subject of the best means of paying off this debt was very carefully considered, and it was,
Resolved,—" That a circular letter be directed to the officers and members of the Societies of our Connexion, most earnestly requesting that an immediate general effort be made to augment the amount of our Missionary Fund, and that they be informed, that unless the Missionary contributions are considerably increased it is feared that the next Annual Assembly will be under the painful necessity of withdrawing several of the Preachers from the stations where they are now labouring; an event which would be most deeply to be deplored."
A Circular Letter on the subject of the finances of the Connexion has also been directed to be prepared and forwarded to the respective Circuits.
UNION OF CHRISTIAN MINISTERS.
"What can be done towards a closer union of our Preachers with each other?
1. Let them be deeply convinced of the absolute necessity of it.
2. Let them pray for an earnest desire of union.
3. Let them speak freely to each other.
4. When they meet, let them never part without prayer.
5. Let them beware how they despise each others gifts.
6. Let them never speak slightingly of each other, in any kind.
7. Let them defend one another's character, in everything, to the utmost
of their power, and
8. Let them labour in honour to prefer each other before himself.
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard, that went down to the skirts of his garments; as the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore. Psalm cxxxiii.
204 BOARDING SCHOOLS.
To The Editor,—Sib,
Those who are interested in the welfare of the cause of God, "Walk about Zion, and go round about her: tell the towers thereof. Mark well her bulwarks, and consider her palaces." From such a survey of our Zion, we see she is gaining consistency and strength, and settling down on a broad and permanent foundation. The loose and shifting materials of which every new society is more or less composed, have passed away, nor shall we again be subjected to the fluctuations consequent upon the state of transition through which we have now happily passed.
Believing that our own society is better adapted than any other, in its doctrines and discipline to give full developement to the great principles of the Gospel, and to promote a vigorous and manly piety, we should be anxious to avail ourselves of every legitimate means, that our sons and daughters may be trained up in attachment to and admiration of the same principles.
Among those means are Day and Boarding Schools conducted by talented individuals, firm in their attachment to the principles of the Association; this would necessarily imply that the Boarders should be taken to our chapels, and sit under our ministers on the Sabbath day. As the case now stands, in many parts, our friends are compelled to send their children to Boarding Schools conducted by persons of other denominations; they attend their chapels, hear their ministers, who give them pastoral visits—which often result in their permanent union with those churches. We have persons amongst us with the requisite qualifications for such an undertaking. Let our friends, to whom they are known, bring them forward and give them their patronage and support; reference should also be given to well-known preachers and friends in the connexion, and advertisements inserted on the cover of our Magazine; thus they would be brought prominently before the Society, and, I have no doubt, would receive its support. A very important collateral advantage would arise from the establishment of such Schools; young preachers whose piety and talents pointed them out as designed for a larger field of usefulness, than their own locality, would have an opportunity of improving their minds in those branches of knowledge more immediately bearing on revealed truth, and of being made like A polios mighty in the Scriptures.
Leeds, April 11, 1842. Wm. Rinder.
ON GIVING PUBLICITY TO THE PRINCIPLES OF THE ASSOCIATION.
To The Editor,—Dear Sir, In contemplating, of late, the important position taken by the Wesleyan Methodist Association in the midst of the Protestant Churches of Christendom,—I perceive the ground on which it rests is so far satisfactory, as to beget much of congratulation; and also of thanksgiving to the Father of mercies. The Association having broken the chains and fetters by which its members had been held, that is, of anti-christian laws and usages, the " traditions and commandments of men," and that too, after a most severe struggle for their Christian freedom; and having thus attained a position professedly based on popular freedom and the independent practices of the primitive churches, together with a connexional union, which recognizes and holds— as the only and sufficient rule of faith and practice, and also of church government, the holy Scriptures, especially those of the New Testament; regarding as matters indifferent, so far as membership with a Christian church is concerned, whatever is not manifestly enjoined in those infallible records. Thus it stands forth as a land mark to other bodies of Christians, and to other geneOn giving Publicity to the Principles of the Association. 205
rations, as an analogism of vast and telling importance to the eternal interests of mankind—provided the Association prove faithful to the important trust committed to its conservation.
The secession of the Association has been one of the most important, both as it regards members and influence, which future historians will have to record; and its position towards and influence on the Methodistic, and other churches, for good or evil, are of vast importance in the view of every Christian philanthropist. In after time, the question will naturally and generally be mooted, has the Association abided by, and does it continue to carry out its original principles; and are its usages, and practices, as well as its doctrines, nearer in assimilation to those of the primitive church, than those of other churches? or has it at all diverged from its first professed principles, oris there an incipient tendency toward seeking "that honour which cometh of men?" Are its ministers and people more than any other closely united, and faithfully endeavouring to obey Christ's command, going every where preaching his Word?
In the short period in which the liberal principles of church government and church representation, adopted by the Association have been in operation, making due allowances for the retarding influences that have been in operation against its progression, and the enlargement of its coast,—its successful efforts, under God, have been great, very great. The immense sums which have been expended in various parts of the kingdom, in the course of about five years, in raising temples, wherein its members now can take refuge, bear ample testimony to the fact. Yet the question still arises, has its progression been equal to the rational anticipation of its zealous—its best friends? I for one, cannot reply in the affirmative, and I may add, that I know there are others who unite in this opinion, who are second to none in their strong attachment to our body, and to our starting principles; who yet have their doubts as to the subsequent extension of Association principles. The fact I believe to be this, that through the fears of many of our excellent friends, we have neglected as a body, continually and extensively to make known our case, our principles, and our soul-seeking objects, as we should do. We have shunned to declare them broadly and openly,—orally and by the pen and press, to the world at large; through a foolish, squeamish fear of offending the parties or their partizans, who have been the unhappy instruments or agents in driving numbers of us so unrighteously from our father's house. This is not as it should be. If we were ashamed to declare our principles, that would be something in the shape of a right course—but we, on the contrary, should glory in them, and make them as extensively known as they are deserving of being made known, and repudiate the idea of setting them down as of little value. They are all important and should be faithfully and fully exhibited in the face of our enemies. We have as individuals, either been driven or seceded from the Conference body for conscience' sake, or we have not—why then hesitate as individuals, or as an associated body to declare truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? As soon as we as a body cease to be Methodistic Protestants, the glory of the Association is gone, and its tendencies will be to settle down into a criminal quietism, similar to some who may have started well—but * * * Such a course was not that of the great Protestant Reformer; no, on the contrary, as soon as his eyes were opened on the real anti-christian pretensions,—assumptions, pretensions, practices, and power of the Vatican church—it was in vain that the head and chiefs thereof, the Pope and his Cardinals,—combined to threaten and proscribe. He braved with equal courage their vengeance—their united power—resting on the truths of the Divine Book—he denounced, and continued " to denounce, with an unsparing hand, the prevalence of corruption." He was too resolute to be deterred from his purpose by a pusillanimous yielding to neutralizing influences. The improvement, the salvation, of his fellow men, was the object which with him superseded every other consideration. And I would now ask, has the Association followed out a similar course? Has there not been too much of a settling down on our Frincifles without a due exhibition of them, and of the practices, which occasioned the secession of so many thousand members from the Methodist conference? As yet, after a lapse of several years, it has not put forth any authoritative document in justification of its proceedings, since the publication of its able protest agreed to by the Assembly of Delegates at Sheffield in 1835,—save, that my mind has this day been cheered into a hope of a change for the better, in connexion with the points to which I have referred. I have just now put my hand on a copy of "Connexional Regulations of the Wesleyan Methodist Association," which affords at least an instalment of "good to come," and which I doubt not will be hailed by every genuine Wesleyan Reformer, as calculated to encourage our people to rest on that pedestal on which they at first rested their Protest. The preamble is suitable, and goes on to describe the circumstances which led to the formation of the Wesleyan Methodist Association, stating, that "its rise was occasioned by the assumption and exercise of undue authority on the part of the Methodist Conference, composed exclusively of itinerant preachers. The Conference claiming and exercising sole legislative authority in the connexion; from time to time, enacting laws, which are made obligatory upon all the local officers and other members of the societies composing the body, without allowing them, by any system of representation, to participate in making the laws by which they have to be governed." The succeeding sentence, I hail with an especial feeling of gratification.
"In addition to this, the Conference, in the year 1835, made such alterations in the laws of the connexion, as gave the itinerant preachers ultimate sole-power, to exercise alt judicial and executive authority,—so that they may in such cases as they think proper, Exfel members from the society, against whom no charge has been proved to the satisfaction of any leaders' meeting; and even after the leaders' meeting has acquitted the accused from the alleged offence."
These unrighteous laws and proceedings I conceive cannot be too extensively made known throughout our reformed, and other non-reformed Methodist churches. The pamphlet to which I have been referring ought to be extensively circulated—the cost is so trifling, that I hope all our circuits will supply every member of their societies with a copy. I may have to trouble you further on the important subject matter of this letter.
April 7th, 1842. T. P. Rosevbar.
LONDON CIRCUIT. On the 18th of March was opened a new chapel, situate near the Caledonian Road, Pentonville, between Islington and King's Cross, formerly called Battle Bridge. The Rev. Dr. Campbell, author of "Jethro; Martyr of Erromanga," &c, preached in the afternoon; and the Rev. A, Fletcher, A.M., in the evening. The introductory services were conducted by Mr. R. Eckett. On the following Sabbath, sermons were preached by the Rev. J. Burns, the Rev. Dr. Henderson, and the Rev. Dr. Cox. The attendances
at all the services, and the collections, were quite equal to our expectations.
This chapel is forty-eight feet long, by forty-three feet wide, and is of sufficient height for galleries: underneath the chapel there are most excellent, light, lofty, dry and airy school-rooms, and visitors' and other rooms; surrounded with a spacious paved area.
On Whit-Tuesday we expect to open a new chapel at Bromley, in Kent. We are also rebuilding and enlarging our chapel at Willow Walk, near Shoreditch; which will make seven chapels erected in our Circuit
for the use of the Wesleyan Methodist Association. We have had, and still have difficulties of no ordinary character to contend with — our faith and patience have often been most severely tried, yet, upon the whole, we have much reason to be thankful for the measure of stability to which our Societies here have now attained. The difficulties with which the Association has to contend in London are, perhaps, more formidable than in any other place. Our expenses for places of worship and school-rooms, have been very heavy. To obtain the position in the metropolis, which it is most desirable the Association should possess, will require much labour, prudence and perseverance. We are, however, encouraged by our past success, and by our present prospects. R. E.
Through some misunderstanding the following account, which should have reached you in time for insertion in the last Magazine, has been delayed; we shall be obliged by its appearing next month.
Our Missionary Anniversary services commenced on Friday, February 18th, when an interesting sermon was delivered by the Rev. A. Keene, of Glasgow. On Sunday the 20th, Mr. D. Rowland, of Liverpool, preached in the morning and evening, and the Kev. A. Keene in the afternoon; the congregations were good, the sermons interesting and impressive, and a very gracious influence prevailed, especially in the evening, when the feeling was peculiarly deep and solemn.
The Public Meeting was held on Monday (the 21st): the chapel'was comfortably filled. After a hymn had been sung and prayer offered; Adam Black, Esq. one of the town counsellors was unanimously called to the chair, and opened the Meeting by a speech replete with kind and Christian sentiment. After the Report and Treasurer's account (from which it appears that the sum collected this year is about double that of any former one) was
read, the Meeting was addressed by the Rev. Andrew Thomson, (United Associate Synod) with great beauty of imagery, felicity of illustration, and truly touching pathos; also by Mr. G. Greig, of London, who gave many statistical accounts shewing the necessity of Home Missions; and by the Bev. W. L. Alexander, (Independent,) in a speech characterized by chastity of language, clearness and force of argument, and grace of delivery.
Mr. David Rowland then gave a rapid sketch of the rise and spread of the Associaton, and of the state of its Missions, together with the statistics of the body; this speech which was delivered with his usual animation, and interspersed with remarks which were by turns cheerful, without levity; and solemn without gloom; was listened to with the most fixed attention by all who heard him. The Meeting was then addressed on the importance of cultivating native agency abroad, and lay agency at home, by the Rev. H. Wight, (Independent), and on the necessity of exertion, by the Rev. A. Keene; the meeting was then concluded with prayer.
On Tuesday the 22nd, a Soiree was held in the Calton Convening Room, which was filled with an interesting and respectable company. According to previous announcement the chair was, after tea, taken by the Rev. T. A. Bayley; excellent addresses were delivered by the Rev. Messrs. A. Keene, and A. Mackay, and by Messrs. Rowland, Greig, Cochran, and Bladworth, interspersed with pieces sung by a good vocal band, under the direction of Mr. J. Hawks. This Meeting was, in many respects, a most delightful one, and it was closed under circumstances of peculiar solemnity which will not soon be forgotten. Mr. Rowland when concluding his address, which had been very impressive throughout, requested all who were determined to meet him in heaven to stand up, (it was an attempt which most persons acquainted with Scottish habits would have predicted would be a failure) when almost all present rose from their seats,—it was an impressive sight,—many were deeply affected :— after a few valedictory remarks, by