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The Church is dependent, to a great extent, on the Sunday-school for its own perpetuity. In this world all things decay. Look at that great sewer through which the ruined humanity of a city goes down to hell. It would not last long, but for its tributaries-the grogshops, and the other nurseries of sin. So with the great stream that flows towards heaven. It must have its tributaries, and the Sunday-school is one of them. We must look to the Sunday-school for missionaries. We have but just begun this great work. Lo! the world's harvest is ripe for the sickle. The reapers must come from the Sunday-schools. It is not merely the children that are saved by this instrumentality; but the parents through the children. Give me access to the child, and I will assure you access to the father. A physician was inquiring, The answer was, the other day, about the practice of another. 0, his practice is small; it is only among children." "Ah!" replied the other, the physician who practices among the children will soon have the mothers, and the fathers too." It is so with the Sunday.school. Saint Louis was once taken in that way. We have access to heaven
in that way.
Children are the weak point of the world. If angels were to come to the world to take it for the Lord Jesus Christ, I have sometimes thought that they would not go to capitals and cabinets, but would go first to the world's weak point-the children. So when the Church concentrates itself at the world's weak point, the world will be taken. If we could only collect into one body this half million of children-of young immortals committed to our charge-and the Church could see them thus collected, nothing more would be necessary to inspire the feeling that must result in the accomplishment of our object.
I had a friend who was very anxious to be rich. If ever anyone deserved to be rich, he did. He toiled early and late; he ate the bread of diligence. But he had more industry than judgment, and he became involved in hopeless bankruptcy. I went to him, and found him greatly depressed in spirits. I endeavored to console him. I told him that he had much left after the wreck of his fortune. "No," he said "he had nothing." I insisted that he had, and that, reduced as he was, he would not exchange his lot with that of any other man on earth. He replied that there was one man in the room with whom he would gladly exchange. As I was the only person in the room, he could mean no other; so I accepted the offer, and we agreed to make the transfer. "I will take your house" said he; "what will you have in return?" I had no children at the time, and putting my hand on the head of his beautiful little girl, said, "I will take her." "No, no!" he exclaimed," I would not part with her for the world." And he would not. How great sacrifices, then, ought a Church be ready to make, which has half a million of them!
ON THE WANT OF THE SPIRIT OF DEVOTION AMONG. SUNDAY SCHOLARS.
MR. EDITOR, I have had the privilege and pleasure to teach in Sunday schools for some years past. During the time so employed scarcely a Sunday has passed without my having been shocked and grieved at the (at least) apparent entire want of reverence or devotion manifested by the majority of scholars as well as, alas, by many teachers during the time of public devotion.
I would not however seek to intrude my feeble sentences into your well and ably filled columns, had I not become painfully conscious, from relation of others experience, as well as from my own, that the direful evil is wide spread, and that (subject of course to happy exceptions) the large majority of Sunday scholars do not join in the public prayers.
I shall only be too glad to leave to abler and more experienced pens than mine an explanation of, and remedy for, this heart ossifying disease, for
such it is.
Firstly. I have thought, that, bearing in mind the average age and attainments of our scholars, the public prayers are generally much too long, too diffused, too little personal, and often couched in stereotyped phrases, neither understood, nor coming home to them. Also I have sometimes thought that the vocal repetition occasionally by the children of the prayers would tend to shew them that they have an actual part in the service; and that it is a solemn act which all should join in, as well as to enforce on the spokesman greater conciseness and personalness in his efforts, always avoiding the use of frequent recurrent forms which children would soon learn by rote, and repeat, without attaching any meaning whatever to the act.
Secondly. I do not think it any part of a teacher's duties, nor wise on his side to interfere during prayer time with his scholars, unless the conduct of any one of them be such as to distract the attention, or disturb the quiet of those around.
A teacher should not only himself join in the petition, but also appear to do so to his scholars, and should set them a fit example of reverence and devotion. How can he do this if his eye is roving about from one to another on the watch for opportunities for remark or rebuke.
In class afterwards, or if needful, in private, is the time to rebuke for misbehaviour or inattention during previous prayer time, earnestly to point out the uses, privileges of the duty and commands to prayer, and affectionately and forcibly to point out the danger of neglecting or trifling with so great a blessing
In conclusion, I mention that the result of a trial of the above plan (which I by no means give as a panacea) in my own class has been sufficiently encouraging, both as to the outward behaviour, and I hope also the inward feeling of my scholars.
THE BISHOP OF LONDON'S CHARGE TO TEACHERS
A LARGE gathering of the teachers and parents of the children frequenting the Sunday and Day Schools situate in Endell street, Westminster, attended during the past month by invitation to partake of tea, &c., as well as to hear an address delivered to them by the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of London. The large room of the spacious new and commodious building above mentioned had been tastefully fitted up for the occasion, and profusely decorated with evergreens and flowers. company present numbered somewhere about six hundred.
The Bishop of LONDON, on rising, said it gave him great satisfaction at having been invited to be present that evening, and in beholding the manner in which they had received him. In speaking of the SUNDAY-SCHOOL TEACHER, the right reverend Prelate said he knew of no one who ought so much to bestir himself as that individual. In their way there were great and cruel evils to be found, but where those evils were contended with in a proper spirit they might in a great measure be overcome. It gave him great pleasure to think that hardly under any circumstances good works rendered any danger to those who took them up and used their best exertions to carry them through. Sunday-school teachers had the moulding of young souls, and to teach them the way through which they might receive God's blessing. To do good works like this ought to be their aim. It was interesting to mention that if they looked back to times past they might mark the contrast that now presented itself when they looked around. He wished God speed to the work of Sunday-schools, and to all works of religious instruction and civilisation tending to promote the education of the young, and which taught them to avoid and hate sin. Those engaged in the work of Sunday-school teaching must experience very great advantages to themselves whilst going on in their calling, for, as they were lending themselves to the work, they were doing good to their own souls. There was no occasion that led a man more to his Maker than speaking to and instructing the young children around him. He was led to think that no young man of any feeling could softly and kindly address those young children and infants about him without himself feeling the good effects of what he was saying to them. He might say, not only speaking softly, but respectfully, and in a becoming spirit, whilst telling of Jesus; and he that could in a low, mild, and persuasive strain tell a child to love God, must be If that teacher an hypocrite, if he did not find an echo in his own soul.
did but address those little ones around him merely as if the work to be done was of a formal kind, it would be better that he left it undone, to be attended to by more fitting hands. A Sunday-school teacher could not constantly, Sunday after Sunday, meet his little pupils without deriving a benefit to himself. As the teacher came to the young, and gradually examined them, it was doubtless by God's means good to himself. advice to all young men who might come to this vast metropolis-who came from distant parts of the country, and who wished to keep in strictly moral ways-was, by God's help, to associate themselves with some Sunday
school, so that they might place themselves in a position of respectability, and secure the welfare of their own souls.
He would not speak to Sunday-school teachers only, but would address those who were engaged as daily teachers. The last few years had made great changes in this department of our educational system, and there was now growing up a great demand for pupil teachers of both sexes. There is at times some danger in choosing parties for this position, as they might not always be proven for the work which is expected of them; but it was hoped that this danger would be got over, as we had around us now normal schools, and other institutions for the purpose of training pupil teachers. The work of a pupil teacher ought not to be looked upon, as is often the case, merely in a secular light. It is not merely religious instruction that they are required to teach-they are required to give moral instruction as well; as it is not religion, or instruction in real religion, to teach children to repeat the catechism. It is not real religion to read from the Bible, or repeat passages by rote in the life of our Lord. For him to use such language might sound to those present as very sacrilegious. The pupil teachers, who are instructing the young entrusted to their care, ought to be taught to do so with a feeling of some deep impression attached to them. It is not teaching those under them to state the passages of scripture, or to point out on the map where Palestine is situated, and where is Jerusalem and other places in geography, and common facts in connection with our Lord. All these things are of no good-of no avail, if the pupil teacher have not the power of speaking so as to win the confidence and touch the feelings and sympathy of the child, and so impress upon the heart of the pupil all that it is being taught, so that, as it grows older, it how to fear and love the Lord. The pupil teachers ought to have impressed upon them the power they have in office as servants of Christ. An office to instruct to do well, to teach religious good to children. They were told by some people, that in spite of all the education going on, there was not less crime, not less drunkenness, and that murder was not prevented by it. He for one did not but believe that education had greatly sobered the mass and diminished a great number of evils. Education was not dear to all human nature, as human nature at times struck out its share for itself. Education was not, he thought, properly imparted, if an earnest and religious tone was not given to it. He could not help saying that this is the use to which pupil teachers should train their spirits, and he thought if such was the case they would find objections now standing in the way yearly disappear.
Besides our pupil and Sunday-school teachers, he would ask the parents to come and help them. He knew of no greater responsibility than a parent had-in fact it was a responsibility direct from his God. A mother and father who have a child given to them have a charge direct by God himself. No sophistry could shake his statement on this point. Each alike had their responsibility, whether of the upper, middle, or poorer class. The roughest man amongst them was possessed of an equal amount of love, and had as tender a heart for his children as could be found in the most refined classes, The duty of a parent was to see to the education of those children who had
been sent to their charge, to give them good advice, and see and watch them with every care. He was afraid that all parents did not stand true to their charge. He would impress upon them that, after all, good advice was not so beneficial as setting them a good example, and guarding themselves in their ways and habits whilst in the presence of their little ones. He considered that at times their example did not tend to lead their children in a way to live properly. Many thought that by merely sending their children to school they acted properly. Many have a difficulty in getting their living, and must be out earning it, and in so doing are forced to leave their children, and therefore they do not see much of them; but he thought they would agree with him that God had given them a time to be with their children for once in every week. A seventh portion of their time had been given to them to spend with their children and to give them advice. He should like to see a church in every household on that day. What a blessed thing it would be to them if their time was to be spent thus. well aware, had all their toils and troubles to contend with. lows the light, and so again in turn the light follows the dark, during which period we have been enabled to rest from our earthly toils. In like manner has God given you the seventh day on which to rest from earthly toil, and to refresh yourselves by religious exercises, to be able to go on for another week. The Right Rev. Prelate dwelt at some further length, exhorting parents to look after the eternal welfare of their children as well as their
THE WEAVER'S SHUTTLE.
AN ADDRESS TO THE YOUNG.
By the Rev, ADAM BTYYH, GIRVAN.
They, he was Darkness fol
WEAVING is a very ancient employment. It is said to have been invented by one of the Empresses of China, some three or four thousand years ago. But be this as it may, we know it was an art with which Eastern lands were familiar at a very early period in the world's history. It was a well-known trade in the days of the patriarch Job, for we hear him saying, "My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle." (Job, vii. 6.)
There are many views of the life of man in which the appropriateness and expressiveness of the figure here employed will appear abundantly evident. Let us name one or two.
Is the shuttle very rapid in its movements? As quick, yea, quicker still, my young friends, is the progress of human life. Our hours and moments flee away with the swiftness of an eagle towards heaven. With an almost inconceivable rapidity do the wheels of time perform their accustomed revolutions. Not a rising sun, not a passing hour, but beholds us with increasing haste posting onwards to our final destiny. How solemn the thought, that it is indeed with something like lightning speed that we are all, young and old, being borne away to the darkness of the tomb!
"Swiftly thus our fleeting days
Bear us down life's rapid stream;