« AnteriorContinuar »
had England and her Church really of their own souls, and the main understood their joint interests, such strength on which they must lean for appointments would have been made usefulness. and multiplied long ago, and the na- This is very manifest in Dr. Spentional reputation saved from much cer; at the same time it is a matter of discredit.
some regret to see the comparative The little book before us is a pleas- juvenility of his theology, and that he ing evidence of the professional dili- is only now arriving at the first pringence and respectability of our colo- ciples of the oracles of God. When nial prelates. It exhibits the Bishop we look back at the Protestant writers of Madras proceeding with great ur- of earlier days, it is surprising how banity and zeal through his diocese, very meagre is the theology which and gaining honour to the cause of serves in this day of practical activity. true religion by his serious deport- The Bishop is, however, on the right ment, his aptness to teach, and his course—the study of Scripture. He easy accessibility to all parties. And, says, “I always explain a portion of bating a little on account of his stiff- the Bible, morning and evening, to ness towards missionaries of the Pro- the family with whom I lodge at a testant Dissenting communities, and station, and to my own party on the a little also on account of a rather road. It is a plain, apostolic duty. amiable demonstrativeness, which St. Paul taught all the counsel of gives to his style a sort of conscious- God, not only publicly, but from ness that he wrote for the public, it is house to house." a very pretty book. We cannot but It is to be hoped that so salutary a feel at home with him in his tent and custom will be the means of ultimatehis palanquin, in his sojourn with the ly emancipating the Bishop's mind British residents, and in his visits to from the unscriptural notions which native princes. We know not that we he yet entertains. In one instance, should have followed the mitre so when speaking of a ruined place of readily into idolatrous and impure worship, he says: “The font wheretemples. Even the semblance of a in we are buried by baptism into serious curiosity towards that which death is still standing, and, placed is evil only, and of the worst kind, is among the tombs, preached most too apt to give support to the system, eloquently the necessity laid on those when a half-consciousness of the error who died in baptism into sin, of conalready exists; and the merest shred tinuing to die into sin daily.” Surely, of countenance is at once magnified there is manifest inconsistency in into a mighty encouragement. Wit- assuming an actual death into sin in ness the instance in which the Bishop baptism, if it has yet to be followed was shown an inscription recording by a continual dying. Either death the fact, that the pagoda had been supersedes a subsequent death; or repaired by the resident officer of the something of the previous life remains. East India Company. Will not the And is it not strange to hold this noBishop's visits be recorded also? tion of an actual death to sin in bap
There is something very pleasing tism, when so manifestly the great in the progress of the Bishop's evan- majority of the baptized live in sin, gelical views and feelings. We have gross and unchecked, as if no sacred been now sometime accustomed to rite had been performed. We are see that, whatever have been the satisfied that this notion of an univercloudy notions of former days, almost sal baptismal regeneration is unscripall our colonial, not to say missionary tural; and, however it may have been prelates, when brought into contact fostered by the superstitions of the with the gross ignorance of the hea- churches, it has no foundation in rethen, and the equally gross supersti- vealed truth; and it must ultimately tions of Popery in heathen countries, yield to the Bishop's healthier habit of appear to fly for refuge at once to the Scriptural investigation, or it will ashope set before them in the Gospel, similate and absorb all the other and to find it increasingly the comfort truths of the Bishop's creed. It is,
as the British Critic has said, the fundamental statement on which they erect all the rest of the Roman Catholic system; and if, in contrariety to the Articles, it shall retain a place in modern Anglican theology, more palpable and gross errors will gradually gather round it. We do heartily desire in this worthy prelate's mind, a clear eviction of Scriptural truth on this controverted but essentially important topic. It would infuse a healthy tone into all his theology, and impart a manly liberality yet wanting to his actings towards other Christian communities. It evidently, at present, influences his line of reading, and sends him to Cardinal Ganganelli for instruction in the fult nent of episcopal duties, rather than to the wholesome treatises on the pastoral care which have emanated from the school of Protestant theology. We would not have minded the little demonstration of his readiness in Italian literature, but it is very undesirable to see an Anglical Bishop seeking his directions in the Italian and Ultramontane schoolThey who know that school best, are well aware how vital error of the worst kind is artfully blended with a mock humility and spirituality; and that the mild morphine influence of the one is essentially intertwined with the deadly and coarse narcotic of the other. Let Paul speak to us through his instructions to Timothy and Titus. Let our reformers of the Elizabethan age have a fair position conceded to them: but let not our colonial Bishops give this prominency in
their dioceses to Francis Xavier and Pope Ganganelli. It is a bad school at the best; and can only foster in the bench the notion, which they are quite ready enough to entertain, of the mysterious, mighty, and irresponsible power of the prelacy. There are certain hankerings of this nature traceable in Dr. Spencer's mindtinctures of the Laudian school, which it would be happier for him if he could cordially discard. Eliminate this from his system, and he gives promise of being a very useful man.
We would just glance also at a minor error which is generally found in association with the former. It is the ever presenting the notion of the church to the mind under the figure of a female. This is specially a Romish error, and it tends always to screw up the Christian community towards mariolatry. It is easy to jump from the imaginary mother to Mary the Mother of God. The more healthy state of mind is to regard the Church as a company of faithful men, and the authority in the Church as that of a Saviour present by his Spirit, and speaking through his word. “Our dear mother, the Church,” of which Dr. Spencer speaks, is a delusion, which, in the strictness of notion essentially important in matters of eternal moment, should never be allowed. We have thought it our duty to notice these spots on the pages of a book, in other respects interesting and praiseworthy, and likely to be useful to the colonial Church and its several missions.
THE FALLEN CROWN.
The Queen has ris'n from her crim
son throne, And her peers are bending round, Where high estates their sov'reignown
From Britain's utmost bound.
“Right well, my lieges, have ye sped
The duty ye have done: The mighty struggle's o’er,” she
said, “The victory is won! “And trust me, lieges, every power
A British Queen can own Shall aid ye—and this very
hour I pledge my ancient crown!"
All eyes are on her jewelld brow,
And her cheek of youthful bloom; All ears intensely listen now
To hear a nation's doom.
A LETTER has lately been addressed become inhabited by, certainly not to the Dean and Chapter of St. Paul's, less, probably more than 10,000 inas Patrons of St. Pancras, by the Rev. dividuals, so that at this moment the H. Hughes, on the deplorable state population is very nearly, if not exof this parish as to church and school ceeding, 140,000. accommodation. We fear that other * This, the population of one soparishes in the metropolis could make called parish, is more than that of similar appalling statements. There many counties in England. In 1841 is no point of deeper interest to the the county of Rutland had 21,340, the nation generally, than the moral and county of Westmoreland 56,469; the religious improvement of the metro- county of Huntingdon 58,699: the polis; and we do trust that affluent county of Bedford 109,937; the county Christians will have their sympathies of Hereford 114,438 inhabitants. The more and more drawn out to all those largest and most populous of five institutions and projects which have English counties had in 1841, 114,438 for their object its amelioration. We inhabitants; the parish, not county, give some of Mr. Hughes' fearful of St. Pancras, has, in 1845, 140,000. statistics.
And there is every probability that " The population, according to the this number will go on increasing till last census (1841) was 129,598. It is the whole 2,600 acres, of which the still rapidly increasing. I am inform- parish consists, is covered with builded that since 1841, fifteen hundred ings, and teeming with human life. additional houses have been built, and ** According to this computation,
there ought to be found in the parish education of the children of the poor, of St. Pancras church-accommodation in some degree proportioned to their for 47,000 persons. That is, FORTY wants. CHURCHES, accommodating eleven to “In a population of 140,000 we twelve hundred each, would not be at have all too many for such a population; Attending Day, or Day and not more than enough to allow the Sunday Schools........ 4,000 church to fulfil towards the people the Attending Sunday Schools 1,000 duties she owes them as souls com- And what a lamentable and unheard mitted to her charge. But what is of state of things this is. One thirtythe real state of the case? In FOUR- fifth part of the population, boys, girls TEEN
and infants, all included, receiving there is accommodation for about daily education at our hands! That 17,000 persons. A provision not all is, the same proportion as 20 would more than sufficient for a population be out of a population of 700 or 10 of 51,000, has thus been made to suf- out of a population of 350. For the fice for a parish 140,000. And hence, other one hundred and fortieth part it necessarily results that either the rescued from the streets on the Sabsurplus 89,000 must be held as treat- bath day we may be thankful, but it ed by the Church as if they had no would only give 10 Sunday scholars existence whatever, for them she has out of a population of 1,400, or 5 out no care, and exercises no guardian- of a population of 700. ship, or else the Church, by the “The evils consequent on this state paucity of her arrangements, and the of things are just such as might natunarrowness of her accommodation, rally be looked for. compels those who frequent her tem- “1. There is no bond of union beples to come so seldom, that 47,000 tween the clergy and the people. persons worship God in the places in- “2. The great mass of the labouring tended for 17,000.
population has altogether abandoned “ To two of the more recently attendance on public worship. erected churches, Christ Church and “ 3. The ordinances of the Church All Saints, districts have been legally have, to a great extent, fallen into assigned, containing together about desuetude. 20,000 inhabitants. These churches “4. Parents feel little or no interest have six clergy, viz. Christ Church in the moral and religious improvefour, and All Saints two ; leaving ment of their children. only twelve clergy for the remaining
“5. There is little family or personal 120,000 of the population, or ONE religion.
« Such are some of the evils conseSOULS. Surely there quent on the defect of Ecclesiastical cannot be a greater mockery than to Institutions in this parish. Let it speak of this as a provision made by not for a moment be thought that in the National Church for the spiritual enumerating them I intend to cast a necessities of the people.
reproach on the poor. No! The “Here, in the parish of St. Pancras, evils are theirs, but the reproach is on we have but twelve clergymen to ourselves. So far from intending to 120,000 of the inhabitants, and that reproach the poor, I willingly affirm appalling fact not presenting the worst that I grieve more bitterly than ever feature of the case, for so unequally over the evils which exist among us, is even that number divided, that the when I think of the native worth of two acting clergymen of the parish the poor, who have been so cruelly church actually have under their no- abandoned to ungodliness and sin. minal charge a population of 40,000
What heroism have I not witnessed souls.
among them! What patience in suf“ The picture grows darker as we fering, what perseverance amidst triproceed. It is generally admitted als, what uncomplaining endurance that it is the duty of the Church to of want, what quiet resignation in make a provision for the religious disease and pain! And then, what
tender affections, what sympathy minister of each district to an amount with one another's sorrows, what of not less than £100 per annum. watchfulness in sickness, unwearied To do this will require a sum of watchfulness, unbought by gold, and £36,000: but, surely, when we conunbidden even by the claims of affi- sider the value of the interests at nity, or the obligations of friendship. stake, we need not despair of raising To keep that Gospel from the poor, such a sum, if only our exertions in which God intended for the poor, the cause are commensurate with its must always, in all circumstances, importance. ages, climes, be a grievous sin against * I am well aware that many objecHim who intended it for their especial tions will be advanced against the benefit. But if ever the sin does course I would earnestly, yet, believe seem to stand before us in its deepest me, most respectfully, urge you to colouring of guilt, in our eyes most adopt. Among others there is one to inexcusable, in our judgment most which I would not allude were I not wrongful, it is when it is withheld sure that it will be both felt and from our English poor.".
urged, and that is that the subdivision To meet the difficulty, Mr. Hughes of the parish will very much diminish wisely proposes a scheme which is the emoluments of any future Vicar the least impracticable, and the most of St. Pancras, and consequently renspeedily available: viz. to form dis- der the patronage less valuable. It tricts, locate clergymen, license rooms will be added to this that it is highly for public worship, and thus localize conducive to the interests of the a religious interest which shall lead Church that those who fill influential eventually to the building of churches. positions in her ministry should be
“I am not of opinion that our amply remunerated. I admit that a efforts should be directed, in the first subdivision of the parish such as I instance, to raising a fund for the propose, would have a tendency to erection of additional churches, and diminish the value of the Living. But that for the following reason:- The suppose that it should even be reduced clear and intelligible object placed to £800 or £900 per annum, is that before us should be nothing less than a consideration to be set against the the providing an adequate remedy for eternal welfare of the 89,000 immortal the evils we deplore, and are anxious beings whom the Church now utterly to abolish. This I am thoroughly neglects, and leaves without the Gosconvinced can never be effected except pel and without hope? Or is it more by a division of the parish into a num- for the interests of the Church that ber of districts, or district parishes, future Vicars of St. Pancras should of moderate extent, for all ecclesiasti- have £2000 a year, than that she cal and spiritual purposes independent should do her duty, and feed the perof one another, each with its own ishing multitudes who now ask in church and schools, and each placed yain be supplied with the bread of under the charge of its own proper
One would wish to think it impos“The expense of accomplishing sible that any rector could contentedly this will be very great, yet not so pocket his £2000 a year, while such great as to place success beyond the multitudes entrusted to his care are reach of hope. The funds placed at thus left to perish from lack of knowthe disposal of the Ecclesiastical Com- ledge. We do trust that the Dean missioners being exhausted, it will be and Chapter of St. Paul's will not be absolutely necessary to endow the appealed to in vain.