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instituted solely for imparting religious instruction to the children attending them, most of whom have, in the common course of education in this country, been previously taught the rudiments of human knowledge.
The advantages which result from the establishment of Sabbath Schools are so universally acknowledged and felt, that to enlarge upon these would now be altogether unnecessary: but while we have cause to rejoice in being permitted to witness, and somewhat to share in, the exertions which have already been made, and still are making, by societies and individuals of various denominations throughout the country, in a work of such magnitude and importance, as the religious education of the young, yet we cannot but be sensible that there is yet room afforded, and a necessity still existing, for the more vigorous, extended, and united efforts of Christians in the cause. And it has been a conviction of the truth of this, and a desire to afford every facility and encouragement to all who may be willing to engage in the work, which has led to the formation of the Sabbath School Union for Scotland.
May those of us, who have the religious instruction of youth entrusted to our care, ever have our hearts encouraged and our hands strengthened, and resting on the high assurance which has been given us, that “ our labour shall not be in vain in the Lord." May we all be enabled, with united efforts, and increased zeal, to go forward in the prosecution of a work, which has for its object, the glory of God, and the best interests of the rising generation of our country.
I am, Sir,
HENRY PAUL, Sec.
Ar a numerous and respectable meeting of gentlemen, residing in Edinburgh and its vicinity, assembled in the Merchants' Hall, this 31st day of January, 1816, to consider the propriety of forming a Society, having for its object the encouragement, union, and increase of Sabbath Schools and Societies in every part of ScotlandJOHN WAUGH, Esq. in the Chair. The meeting was addressed by John Campbell, Esq. of Carbrook, who gave a general outline of the objects and plan of the proposed Society, and explained the important benefits which might be expected to result from its formation. Mr. Henry Paul then comnunicated to the meeting letters of approbation from Societies in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Perth, Greenock, &c. after which Mr. George Yule and Mr. Andrew Scott, deputed from the Edinburgh Gratis Sabbath School Society, Mr. Jamieson from Aberdeen, and Rev. James Thomson, president of the society formed at Dundee, expressed the satisfaction with which their constituents looked to the institution of such a central Society, and the cordial co-operation they were desirous to afford.
The resolutions, which our limits must exclude, were moved by the Rev. David Dickson of St. Cuthbert's, seconded by John Abercrombie, Esq. and then agreed to unanimously.
SUNDAY SCHOOLS in the SCILLY ISLES.
THE inhabitants of the above islands are about 3500 in number, and being about half a days sail from Penzance, the scene of the indefatigable labours of the Rev. Mr. Smith, were first visited by him in June 1814. Their ignorance of divine things, the scarcity of the means of instruction, and the dreadful state of their morals, all contributed to increase his anxiety to diffuse among them the blessings of the gospel of peace, and to aim at converting them from habits of intoxication, smuggling, and the plunder of shipwrecks, to which they had been accustomed from their earliest hours, to the love of holiness, and providing things honest in the sight of all men.
Encouraged by the Baptist Itinerant Society, a few other friends, and by the donation of the committee of the Sunday School Union of 51. he sent to their aid the Rev. Mr. Jeffery, in April last, whose labours the Lord has been pleased to bless, to the turning of several from the error of their ways, and by raising up teachers. Sunday Schools have been established, and a great moral change effected in most of the islands.
At Tresco, where scarce any could read, and the Sacred Volume was nearly unknown, sixty children and adults are now taught every Sabbath.
St. Martin's, where they had often been five or six weeks without seeing the minister, appointed by a society in London, for their moral instruction, eighty children and adults are in a course of tuition.
St. Agnes, where they had been subject to the same neglect, frequently for as many months, sixty scholars regularly attend, and a prayer meeting has been established, which the inhabitants attend with great eagerness, and sometimes as early as 3 o'clock in the morning.
Sampson. The inhabitants say they have been visited but once in seven or eight years. Thirty-one children attend with apparent pleasure to receive instruction; a poor woman on the island grants the use of her room, and assists in instructing the children for the trifling remuneration of 6d. per week.
Brehar. Fifty children and aduits attend, and several appear to have been brought to a saving acquaintance with, and love to the Redeemer.
St. Mary's. Seventy are receiving the blessings of Sabbath instruction. Thus, during the short period of one year,
means have been abundantly blessed; drunkenness and profaneness are beginning to disappear, and the day I trust is not far distant, when the terrified mariner may hope to find in the Scilly Isles, friends in the hour of distress, and the voice of prayer and praise shall be heard in all their dwellings.
At Tresco, where the truth has been remarkably blessed, the inhabitants no longer daring to pursue their former plundering life, are much exercised with poverty, Smuggling and shipwrecks having been hitherto their chief support. May I be allowed, through the medium of the Repository, to recommend their situation to the attention of your readers. Donations for the purchase of provision or clothing would be gratefully received and appropriated to their use, if sent to Mr. Collins, 60, Paternoster Row, London. Common writing paper for their improvement in writing; Testaments, Spelling Books, &c. would be particularly useful in enabling Mr. J. to carry on, with more efficiency, his benevolent labours. Anticipating the above particulars of the past and present situation of these hitherto much neglected islanders, would deeply interest your readers, as wel. as justify the donation granted by the committee of the London Sunday School Union for their use. I feel a pleasure in furnishing you therewith for insertion in your valuable work. I am, &c.
A friend to Sunday Schools,
FORMATION OF THE
SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION for BERKSHIRE and its VICINITY.
PREVIOUS to the establishment of this Union a meeting was held on the 26th of January last, at the Rev. Mr, Douglas's place of worship, Reading, when the gentlemen present, including the Rev. Messrs. Douglas, Dyer, Parrott, and Watkins, of Reading; Welch of Newbury, Jefferies of Thatcham, and Gouity of Henley, formed themselves into a provisional committee to carry into effect the object for which they were assembled. After the plan proposed for a County Union was fully discussed, and unanimously approved of, it was determined to call a general meeting at Read, ing, of the friends to sabbath-school education, to establish such an Union, and suitable resolutions were adopted for that purpose. Application being made to John Blandy, Esq. mayor, for the use of the Town Hall for the public meeting, it was very readily granted. In consequence of the foregoing determination, Messrs. Douglas and Dyer, acting on behalf of the provisional committee, circulated throughout the county and its vicinity the printed address to clergymen and ministers issued by the Parent Union, to which a note of invitation was annexed,
On the evening of the 12th of February the provisional com
mittee met again at Mr. Douglas's meeting to arrange the plan for the business of the ensuing day; when, on its being found that the mayor could not conveniently take the chair, Martin Aunesley, Esq. the deputy mayor, was requested to do so, to which he very politely assented.
The next morning a numerous and respectable company, from Reading and the neighbouring towns, assembled at the Town Hall. After the chair had been taken by Mr. Annesley, the business of the morning was introduced by a few appropriate observations from the Rev. Arch. Douglas, after which the resolutions were moved and seconded by the Rev. John Dyer, S. Parrott, J. Watkins, and P. Davies of Reading; J. N. Goulty of Henley, Har. rison of Woburn, and Jeffery of Thatcham; Messrs. Cannon, Fenton, Darvall, Letchworth, Williams, and Cooper, of Reading; Hemming of Thatcham; Bicheno and Peck of Newbury; Fletcher and Byles of Henley. After the business of the Society was gone through, thanks were unanimously voted to the mayor of Reading for the use of the Town Hall, and to Mr. Annesley for his polite attention in the chair; and at the close of the meeting several handsome donations and subscriptions were received by the Treasurer.
EXTRACT from the REPORT of the THIRD HALF-YEARLY MEETING of the SOUTH LINCOLNSHIRE and ISLE of ELY SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION.
THE Secretaries contemplate with pleasure, and are convinced that the same feeling is experienced by all the members of the Society, that the South Lincolnshire and Isle of Ely Sunday School Union is nothing less than the friendly association and cordial co-operation of teachers, committees, and managers of various Sunday Schools, belonging to different denominations of christians, for the purpose of organizing and maintaining Sunday Schools, and opening new ones in the surrounding villages, where the children are generally very numerous, and have no means whatever of becoming ac quainted with the useful art of reading, the key to unlock the valuable treasures contained in that blessed gift of God to man, the Bible, and which is able to make him wise unto to salvation.
Your Secretaries have during the last half-year been endeavouring to establish a Sunday School in the populous village of Parson Drove, near Wisbech, feeling convinced that there, there is a greater lack of knowledge than in most other places. Their ap plications to a gentleman or two in the village have been received with respect and encouragement, but the greatest difficulty that presents itself is the obtaining a proper place to teach in. Your Secretaries feel couscious that the co-operation of the teachers and managers of the two schools in Wisbech may effect this purpose, they therefore respectfully solicit the immediate attention of those two schools to this important object.
With respect to adult schools, your Secretaries have not been unmindful; but think that there is a prospect of one being established in Wisbech within the next six months. They record with pleasure the active exertions of a respectable lady, advanced in years, in that town for this purpose, and who has always been the principal supporter of one or two schools which she established. The Secretaries in commencing their report of the state of the schools, feel exceedingly sorry to state to you that the Boston school, which was the most flourishing in the Union, is discontinued, on account of two large schools being established; one on the plan of the British and Foreign Bible Society, whose object is to instruct all the rising generation, without any particular articles or creeds being included; the other on the principles on which the National Schools (as they are unjustly called) are formed.
From a review of the reports of the schools, the following ap
pears to be the state of the Union :
SECOND ANNUAL REPORT OF THE
FROME SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION,
As read at the Public Meeting of the Society, September 27, 1815.
SINCE the last annual meeting of the Frome Sunday School Union, four more schools have been established or assisted; viz. two established at Gare Hill and Frickle Street, and two assisted at Lullington and West Camel. A set of rules, containing the most approved plans of instruction, for the schools connected with this Union, has been drawn up and printed at the Society's expence; copies of these rules have been distributed to the different teachers, and those remaining in the hands of the committee are open for sale to those who may wish to purchase. In consequence of the advantages which have elsewhere been found to arise from the connection of writing with reading, the com