Imágenes de páginas


which has been gratefully acknowledged, the teachers are yet only feeling their with the information that arrangements way, often through painful failures, into were in progress for beginning opera- their proper path of service, it is unwise to lay down precise plans of action. But there is a time, when the necessary experience having been acquired, it becomes an important duty to organise and consolidate all the various departments of the work, not in the chilling manner of official routine, but in that genial spirit of order, which is the necessary condition of success and happiness in our labours.

The most interesting feature of the First-day School movement in America, during the past year, has been the conference of teachers, which met at Cincinnati in the 10th month, 1861. Delegates were present from all the Yearly Meetings on the American continent. A report of the proceedings of the conference has been published, which will be found well worthy of an attentive perusal by teachers in this country, although the remarks of the various speakers were mainly directed to the management of schools for the children of Friends. Whilst the instruction of adults is claiming so large a share of attention amongst Friends in this country, it is interesting to find the Cincinnati conference devoting much time to the careful consideration of infant class teaching. On this subject some valuable hints will be found in the report. The importance of Biblical study was largely dwelt upon. In some cases the teachers' meetings appear to assume very much the character of Bible classes. Amongst the indirect benefits which have attended the extension of First-day Schools amongst Friends in America, is mentioned the marked improvement in the mode of spending the First-day, by Friends, both older and younger.

With some notable exceptions, it must be admitted that our schools, as a whole, are somewhat deficient in systematic organization. To a certain extent this is not a fault, but the necessary result of their present position. Yet the Committee would venture to call the attention of their friends to the importance of systematic arrangements. They are not speaking so much of the maintenance of quiet and order in the schools, though this is involved in the consideration, as of the general management of the whole business, and the strict supervision of all its details. Whilst a school is new, and

Where order and system are kept in view, not as an end but a means, not as a power but a contrivance for economising and distributing power, they are of incalculable benefit. The Committee are very anxious that the teachers and officers of our schools should be impressed with the need of doing their work with the utmost regularity and efficiency. "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might," is a word of heavenly wisdom which we cannot afford to forget. And how solemn is the reason added, "for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave whither thou goest." The shortness and uncertainty of life are an irresistible argument for a diligent and economical use of all the powers which are bestowed upon us. Man, who has little at most, and he knows not how little, is often negligent and wasteful. The great Creator and Disposer of all, suffers nothing, either of matter or force, to be lost or wasted, or to fall into disorder. The God of nature and of grace is ever saying in effect, "Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost." How well would it be for us to dwell more in the remembrance of this Divine economy as an example to us! How well for us to endeavour so to regulate the disposition of all with which we have been entrusted, naturally and spiritually, that nothing be lost!

It is apparent that the promotion of schools for adults has engrossed a large share of the interest and attention of


Friends during the last few years. The
great success which has attended the
adult schools in Birmingham, has had a
powerful influence in this direction. The
Committee believe that in many cases
the efforts of our members can be most
usefully directed towards scholars of
this class, yet they hope that the in-
struction of children will not be, by any
means, lost sight of. There are some
respects in which the adult school is
more attractive than the juvenile school.
In the former, the difficulty of keeping
order is hardly felt, the restlessness so
natural to children, and often so trying
to the teacher, is not known, and the
scholars are, for the most part, endea-
vouring to learn as much as they can,
instead of as little. But the difficulties
attending the instruction of children are
all capable of being overcome, or borne
with, and they have been found a most
valuable moral exercise for the Christian
teacher. Whilst, therefore, fully esti-
mating the important service of adult
teaching, the Committee are desirous
that their friends should not hastily con-
clude that they have no part to take in
the care of young scholars. This is a
work which has been abundantly blessed
and owned by the Great Teacher, the
Shepherd and Bishop of souls, who said,
"Suffer the little children to come unto
me, and forbid them not, for of such is the
kingdom of heaven."

Whether we look at our individual growth in grace, or our position as labourers in the Lord's vineyard, it is equally true that

our teachers. Whilst it is greatly to be desired that they may be preserved from formality and the unprofitable use of words, yet, on the other hand, the Committee regard it as a most precious evidence of Divine favour, that so much of the true spirit of prayer prevails amongst And they ask for the prayers them.

of the Church, that the Holy Spirit may be more largely poured out upon them. Can we doubt that, in answer to the prayer of faith in the name of our risen Lord, a yet more abundant shower of blessing will descend? For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.


SIXTY-FIVE of the head men of Coorg, India, have presented a petition to the Government, in which they confess that, six years ago, they were so ignorant as to dislike a school established among them; but it has done so much good, been so well conducted, and "the great influx of European settlers makes the education of their children appear so necessary," that they have raised £600. to endow the school and build a boarding-house, while they ask the State for £1,100. more, which Lord Elgin has gladly promised. A gymnastic apparatus is to be erected, and a garden laid out for the boys. Mr. Bowring, the commissioner, observes, that such an instance as this, of a whole race putting aside traditional prejudices, and meeting half way the earnest wish of their rulers to educate themselves, has, probably, never before occurred in

"We perish if we cease from prayer." It is a cause for deep thankfulness that the indispensable importance of this Christian duty is so largely acknowledged by our history.

Passing Events.

THE wonderful patience under suffer-outbreak at Staleybridge. This is not ing, which the COTTON MANUFACTURING at all surprising. It was foreseen that DISTRICTS have exhibited for so many much difficulty would be found in remonths has been

broken by an storing the people to their ordinary oc

cupations, and the more especially when in age, but youthful in energy, after there was only a very partial supply of taking an active part in the debates of work for them to do, so that their earn- the House of Commons on Friday night, ings would not much exceed what they went to Glasgow, and on Monday had been receiving from the Relief Com- was installed into this new office, to mittee. It was also suspected at Staley- which it is customary for the students bridge that some of the money given to elect men, who, from their literary or was not properly expended. These con- political eminence, are thought worthy siderations led to a resolution, that the of the honour. On Monday his lordpay in the schools should be reduced, ship was installed, and delivered the and that they should be paid by tickets customary address to the students. After on tradesmen, instead of by money. In some general observations on the imconsequence of this, on Friday, March portance of their improving their present 20th, the operatives broke into the relief opportunities, and cultivating an acstores, and threw out the clothing,quaintance with the writings of antismashed windows, and did other damage. quity, he said— The Riot Act was read. Cavalry was called in from Ashton, which cleared the streets, and was patrolling the town late at night. On Saturday great excitement prevailed. Sixty persons were taken into custody; and twenty-nine, with one exception, Irishmen, were sent to prison. The police were stoned, and in the evening the provision shops were sacked. The cavalry finally charged the mob and dispersed them. On Monday morning the Staleybridge mob marched to Ashton, which it closely adjoins, and commenced an attack on the bread shops. After very riotous conduct there, they proceeded to Dukinfield, where a body of the county constabulary, under Capt. Elgee, with the assistance of the military, dispersed and drove them back to Staleybridge. None of the people of Ashton took any part so far as is known in the disgraceful proceedings of the mob. When we learn who the prisoners taken into custody were, the causes of this outbreak, painful as it is, are but too apparent, and our sympathy for our opportunities may present themselves Lancashire fellow countrymen should to you for doing so. Whatever may be not be in any respect diminished in the profession which man enters, he consequence of it. will perform the duties of that profession better by having general knowledge, and that generality of knowledge will not interfere with the successful study of what is necessary for that particular line which he determines to enter. Learn THE NEW LORD RECTOR OF GLASGOW a little of every thing of which you can UNIVERSITY, Lord Palmerston, veteran 'learn anything. It will be useful here

The contributions received by the Sunday School Union to the relief fund, originated by them, have now reached the sum of £3,419. 14s. 2d.

"In recommending you to make yourselves acquainted with the poets and historians of ancient times, I should be wanting towards you if I did not charge you also to become familiar with the great masters of English literaturewith Milton, with Shakespeare, with Pope, and with other distinguished writers, whose works form the standard of our language, and whose works also teach you how to condense your thoughts, and how to express them in appropriate and adequate language. Gentlemen, don't think that I am pointing out to you exertions beyond the strength of any individual, or advising you to studies for which the brief period devoted to your education would be insufficient. You are all of you probably destined to some particular profession. Make everything belonging to that profession the subject of your intense and preferential study, but do not on that account omit acquiring general information upon other matters whenever

after in your own line. It may be the wonderful progression of late years, and foundation upon which you will build by the labours of others it is easier for up as you go along through life. It you to acquire a share in that knowledge. cannot be supposed that in the coun- There is this remarkable difference betry of Reid and Stewart-the phi- tween the present and former ages. In losophy of mind should not form an former times there were men of genius object of attractive study, and of and of research, who made great progress investigations which will tend to open in the study of the laws and phenomena the mind, to enlarge the faculties, and of nature. In those days men of science to improve that understanding of which contrived to give the results of laborious you are studying the theory and the phi-years in so short, compendious, and inlosophy. The Scotch mind, also, which is telligent a manner as that you are able a very reasoning one-a mind that loves to profit by the labours of others, investigation and the pursuit of truth- and by those pursuits which other men is well known to be peculiarly adapted have worked out by a long and to mathematical science. In a country laborious study. The first object of that gave birth to the man who invented study ought to be comprised in chemistry, logarithms it is useless to inculcate any- including the operations of nature in all thing upon that subject-but, depend those elements in which we live and with upon it, there is nothing which which we deal-a knowledge of which is gives greater accuracy to the op- useful to every man in his individual erations of the human mind than condition, and on the study of which dethe study of mathematics. Gentle-pend the industry, wealth, and prosperity men, we should have lived in vain, of nations. It is not, of course, expected or at least the purposes of existence that those who are destined for the Church would only be partially accomplished, if or the bar, that they should become skil we were to stint our minds to the pre-ful chemists; but even they should be sent, regardless of what has passed before acquainted with the general methods in our time, and the study of history is which substances act upon each other, therefore a most useful and necessary for this knowledge will be found useful part of the accomplishments which youth in every position in life. Gentlemen, ought to acquire. History will not, in- it is only comparatively of late years deed, give you materials which by a that men have turned their attention geometrical proposition you can apply to acquiring scientific knowledge with with accuracy; but it is of great service regard to the crust of the globe on for those who have to act, to know what which we live, and certainly Scotland have been the failures and successes, has contributed its full share towards what have been the errors and achieve- the knowledge and information thus ments either of men or nations in times gained. It is only after the great past, and these examples may serve so knowledge which we have obtained that far as to exemplify principles of action- all your mineral experiments have been may serve as guides to every man, either conducted with the success which has in private or in public. Gentlemen, attended them. Well, then, rising from we have talked here of the works of man, the crust of the earth, and all those and they are well deserving of your numerous phenomena and arrangements investigation; but you would fall short of connected with the atmosphere, the that which I recommend to you if you ocean, and the various circumstances did not devote a portion of that period of belonging to the surface of our globe, study and leisure to the contemplation we naturally turn our thoughts to the of the works of God. That branch of position and action of our globe, and knowledge has in many respects made that system of which our sun is the

centre; and that knowledge of astronomy there is a man who, in the consciousness

connected, at all events, with the solar system, is so easily acquired, and so interesting when known, that no man who has an opportunity of investigating could for a moment neglect these opportunities and remain in ignorance. It is admirable to think that all the varied arrangements upon which day and night and the succession of the seasons depend have been so beautifully adapted to the purpose of those who inhabit this globe; and a knowledge of these things, I trust, no man who hears me will fail to acquire, so far as opportunity offers. But there is a wider range with regard to that great and extensive study. Our solar system, as is well known, forms but a comparatively insignificant part in that great universe of which, on a starlight night, we see some portion exposed to our view; and the study of the mechanism of the universe is one which leads the mind to the most exalted thoughts

hich expands our considerations more than any other - and although it has not arrived at certain results, such as have been attained in the study of our own solar system, yet I believe enough is known to excite the wonder and admiration of those who are acquainted with it. Let it not be said that those studies divert the mind from the practical precepts of religion. On the contrary, I maintain they tend to strengthen and confirm that faith which is inculcated by our revealed religion. If when, on the one hand, we contemplate those marvellous arrangements, extending over space indefinite, and comprising worlds innumerable, with order and arrangement that nothing but the most supreme wisdom could have established-when we contemplate, in the first place, the arrangement for one system-when we consider the multitudes of suns and worlds even beyond the range of the telescopic power of man, and are made sensible of the comparative insignificance of everything that belongs to this earth, this species of creation,-then if

[ocr errors]

of genius, in the enjoyment of wealth, in the possession of station, is inspired by feelings of vanity and pride, when he reflects that the world which he treads upon is a mere speck in creation, and that he himself is an immeasurable atom in that speck, these thoughts must tend to lower that pride, to divest him of that vanity, and to teach him veneration and humility in his position. But, gentlemen, when he turns his thoughts to the other scale-when he thinks and considers the infinite variety, the inconceivable ingenuity and wisdom with which everything in this earth has been adapted to specific purposes and to the enjoyment of created beings-when he sees that even in those smallest and most minute animals of creation, which are hardly perceptible, and some not perceptible, to the naked eye, there is most admirable adaption of every detail for the purpose of the enjoyment of that creature so long as it is to live-when he reflects on the constitution of his own frame, when he considers the powers which have been given to man to extend his ken far away from the globe which he inhabits, and to acquire a certain amount of knowledge of things so distant that even, it is said, millions of years are required to bring to us the light which flows from their centre-he must be persuaded that those arrangements were not intended in vain. He must be convinced that those powers which have been given to his mind, those moral and intellectual powers with which he has been endowed, have not been given simply for the purpose of a day, and that day the life of man. He must be convinced that they are designed to fit him for some better and future state, and therefore I assert that these great, exalted and sublime contemplations are calculated to strengthen and encourage that faith of which it is said that parting for a happier state, it deems death but nature's signal for retreat.

« AnteriorContinuar »