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cases of libel. According to the present system the same parties are at once prosecutors and judges, and in some instances witnesses as well, while they must pay the expenses of the prosecution out of their own pockets. Such a system must naturally tend to interfere with the due exercise of discipline, and it is here characterised by the learned Sheriff as “most scandalous,” and as utterly “ at variance with the ordinary principles of justice." The difficulty, however, is to get it changed without infringing upon our Presbyterianism. Various attempts at reform bave been made in the Assembly of the Established Church, but hitherto without success : and it is with the view of again directing attention to the matter, and of urging that something he forthwith done to remove existing anomalies, that this pamphlet has been published by Dr. Barclay, than whom there is no one better qualified to discuss the subject.
Oberrations on Professor W. R. Smith's article “ Bible,” in the Encyclopedia
Britannica. By James Kennedy, B.D. Edinburgh : James Gemmell. After referring to the confidence of assertion displayed in Professor Smith's article, and its scant recognition of the supernatural, Mr. Kennedy takes up, at some length, the views propounded on the composition and authorship of the Pentateuch, and on the subject of prophecy, for the purpose of showing their general unsatisfactory and dangerous character, and the weakness and untenableness of many of the positions assumed.
As we bave not yet had an opportunity of examining this now notorious article, we are hardly in a position to say whether Mr. Kennedy has done justice to Professor Smith, or with what success he has accomplished his task as critic. If we may judge, however, from what we have read elsewhere on the subject, the pamphlet appears to be a sober and candid examination of the questions involved, and we may add that it is marked by considerable ability. Whatever exception may be taken to the mode of treatment adopted, the object of the pamphlet is one with which all who love the Bible, and are jealous of its honour, must thoroughly sympathise-that object being to defnd the word of God from the insidious attacks of a rationalistic criticism which tends to cast doubt upon its divine inspiration and authority, and to reduce it to the level of a merely human production.
"The Fruit of our Lips ;" or Instrumental Music an unscriptural addition to
the Service of Praise. By the Rev. James Kerr, Greenock. Greenock : James W. Black.
In this the latest addition to our literature on " the organ question,” Mr. Kerr, in a very fresh and forcible manner, presents the usual arguments against the use of instrumental music in New Testament worship, and illustrates and applies the great Scriptural principle which ought to regulate the worship of the sanctuary, “that nothing is to be admitted into the worship of God that is not prescribed in His Word.” We trust the circulation of this pamphlet will be a means of helping to stem the flood of innovations that is coming so rapidly and strongly in upon our Presbyterian Churches, though of this being effected to any extent, there is apparently very little prospect.
It is somewhat significant that since the publication of a pamphlet in favour of instrumental music by Professor Wallace, of Belfast, some few years ago, and which at the time drew forth several conclusive replies, nothing more, so far as we remember, has appeared in such a form on that side of the question, while on the other side it has been far otherwise. The advocates of this and kindred innovations evidently do not care about meeting their opponents on thefield of written argument, but prefer confining themselves to off-hand presbytery or platform speches, in which principle is set at nought, appeals to the law and to the testimony” disregarded, and sound argument met by mere sentimental talk about beautifying divine worship, and pleasing men's tastes.
OUR FOREIGN MISSION.
We are sure that the young people connected with our Church will read with great pleasure the subjoined letter, which has just been received from Mrs. Anderson. When transmitting it Mr. Anderson states that the new School building was almost finished, and would soon be occupied. It may be mentioned that photographs of the Missionary, Catechists, and Orphans are about to be copied, and will be disposed of at a mere nominal price. They will be forwarded to the parties in the respective congregations who have charge of the Mission-Boxes and Cards, for disposal among the Collectors and Borholders. Any others desirous of procuring them should correspond with the convener, or make application direct to Mr. David Scott, photographer, 246 Union Street, Aberdeen.
TO THE CHILDREN OF THE ORIGINAL SECESSION CHURCH.
My dear young Friends--I have often thought that though I have not the pleasure of being personally acquainted with many of you, yet perhaps it might be well for me to write to you sometimes, if by so doing I might deepen the kind interest which you have already shown in us and our work. Moreover, I wish very much that I could help you to an acquaintance with the children in the mission compound, particularly with the orphans, about whom I shall now tell you a little. You may remember that the first boy that we got was so very unmanageable thai, after trying hard to subdue him by every means that we could think of, we had to let him go away, as he often threatened to do when reproved for his misbehaviour.
The next was a quiet little fellow called “Tulsi,” who came to Seoni with his father, who was on pilgrimage, and who died in the hospital here. The child was sick when we got him, and he became gradually worse till he died.
This was a rather discouraging beginning to our Orphanage, but, believing that God would prosper it in His own good time and way, we continued to persevere in our attempts to get orphans.
Our third orphan was sent to us in March 1875. Her name was Sonia, which has been changed to Maggie Hobart. She is now about eleven years old, somewhat small of her age, and, though the darkest girl that we have, has a pleasant little
round face. She was subject to epileptic fits, which affected her right side so that it was often difficult for her to do anything with her right hand. On account of this, poor little Maggie's progress in learning to write, sew, knit, &c., has been much retarded ; yet I am glad to say that she can do all these things very neatly. She has not had a fit for a long time, and the doctor thinks that she will get quite strong by and hy. Our fourth orphan came the following May. She is a pretty girl, about Maggie's age, evidently of a naturally sweet disposition, though injured by hard treatment and evil example. She has been already very useful in helping to nurse the baby orphans, especially little Susan, of whom she was fond. She is getting on well with her learning, and can cook in the native style very nicely. Her name is now Amy Crawford. A young lady in India, who has undertaken to provide for her, gave her that name. Four months afterwards we got three brahmin children. Their father had taken ill near Seoni, and had been brought to the hospital, where he died. After this, the mother left with the children, but she took ill and was brought back to the hospital, where she died, leaving their eldest boy about ten years old, the second about eight years old, and their little insant sister who was in a very weak state. The eldest is a very bright, intelligent, goodnatured boy. He can read and write Hindi and Urdu in the Roman character, and has begun to learn English and Urdu in the Persian char
He knows the Multiplication table, and is learning Arithmetic, he knows his Catechism, a number of Psalms, &c., and has made good progress in Scripture knowledge. Besides this, I have taught him to sew, so as to be able to make and mend his own clothes. This is all that I desire the boys to be able to do in sewing. But I insist upon their doing this, because I think that they may find it very convenient in after life, to be able to sew a little for themselves. His name now is James Smellie. You will all recognise the name as being that of our dear departed friend the Rev. Mr. Smellie of Edinburgh. His brother, who was named Philip Gordon by a gentleman in India, who is to provide for him, is a quiet, soft. pleasant looking little fellow, who plods along and keeps in the same lessons, &c. with his brother. The little sister was called “ Susan Burnham”by a lady here, who undertook to pay for her; she continued more or less delicate. We did all that we could with a view to her recovery, but she seemed gradually to waste away. She never was able to stand alone from the time that we got her. She died on the 31st August last, being over eleven months from the time that she came to us. I feel that I cannot describe to you how sweet and pleasant little Susan was. Throughout all her months of suffering it was a very rare thing to hear her murmur, and she always seemed to try hard to smile when taken notice of. She passed quietly away, and when dead looked like one in a pleasant dream. On the 2nd October following, our eighth orphan, Karim Shah, who was then about nine years old, came to us. He was a very mischievous little fellow, and gave us trouble at first by running away with a mahout (that is, an elephant driver,) and by tearing his books, &c. However, I am glad to say that he is greatly changed for the better. He has given very little trouble for a long time past, and has been getting along nicely with his lessons. His name is now Thomas Curr, after a gentleman in Scotland who provides for him.
About six weeks after we got a little orphan girl about fifteen months old. She was brought from a village to the Seoni hospital. Her body was in an awful state of filth, and covered over with the most loathsome open sores that you could think of. Soon after this the Doctor told me that the only chance, humanly speaking, of her living was if I could take her at once so that she might get the tender careful treatment which she required. I at once agreed to do so, particularly as he said that the sores were not infectious, but simply the result of filth and neglect. Fortunately I had just got a native Christian woman to act as Matron, who helped me in the most kindly way to nurse the little sufferer, who was so full of sores that we had to nurse her in our laps for some time at first. God was pleased to bless the means used for her recovery, so that in the course of a few weeks she was a very fine healthy looking child, Her name is now Frances Smellie. Our tenth orphan, a Gond girl, was made over to us on the 18th January last. She was then about ten years old, big of her age, with short black curly hair, and a frank smile which shows her large fine white teeth. Like the other orphans, she was almost naked when we got her. She had only two little strips of dirty rag about her. My first thought was to have a large cloth put round her; but though this was gently done,
she seized it and threw it from her. Through time we got her tamed and clothed, but she was so very wild that it took some time to accomplish this. One day some time after we got her, I was setting the orphans slates when it occured to me that it might be nice amusement for her to scribble on a slate. Accordingly I put a slate into her hands, and directed her to draw the pencil along. She did so ; but on seeing that she was leaving marks she looked frightened, threw down the slate and pencil, and ran to the other side of the room. Like Gonds in general, she is. slow and dull; still I am glad to say that she is learning a little, and is on the whole a nice girl. Her name is now Jcanie Gardiner. The eight orphans last referred to were baptized on Sabbath the 27th February last.
We got our eleventh orphan on the ninth Oct. His name is Thomas Manson, in memory of our late revered minister in Perth. He seems to be about three and-a-half years old. He is darker than most of the others, and has a rather complaining little face, which I hope will brighten up through time. Indeed he already looks brighter than when he came to us. He looks as if he had been very hardly used before we got him. Our twelfth orphan was got from the hospital. She was about two years old, unable to stand alone, and had been brought to Seoni in such a state of neglect that there were a great many maggots in her head, and part of one of her ears had been eaten away. She is now a healthy interesting little girl, and can run about. Her name is Mariannie Milne, so called by a Christian lady and gentlemen who are to provide for her. Thomas and Mariannie were baptized on the roth of last month. Our thirteenth orphan was also got from the hospital. She had been brought to it in a fearful state of suffering and neglect. There were over 600 maggots taken out of her head. Her head is now nearly better. In other respects she is well, and joins with the other children in their play. She seems to be abont 5 or 6
of age, and though a Gond, is a particularly fine pleasant-looking child.
Her present name is “Teejee " but some one may take her who would wish to give her another name. You will understand that when we are informed that any person wishes to adopt a boy or girl, we give the first that comes who has not been already provided for. Teejee is the only one at present not taken.
You will see from the above that we have now ten orphans under our care. You must not think that they lead idle lives with us. Though their work is for the most part for themselves, yet their time is very fully taken up in preparing their lessons, being so many hours in school each day, keeping their apartments clean, and cooking and eating their food, &c. They have one hour at midday, and two in the evening for play. They are not allowed to do their work when and how they please. Every thing must be done in the proper time and way, and they take turns of doing different kinds of work, according to the rules which we have laid down. It is the duty of the matron to see that they all do as they ought to do, as well as to take care of the little ones. We are very anxious that their work should never become a hard task to them, but that they should be happy while at work, and I am glad to say that they are so.
Now, my dear young friends, we would beg of you to unite with us in earnest pleadings with God on behalf of our orphans. Let us remember that unless God is pleased to renew their souls, there is very much to stand in the way of their growing up as we would wish them to do. They have not been brought up in Christian homes as you have been ; on the the contrary they were brought up until we got them surrounded by idolatry and wickedness of every kind. Those of them who were at all big when we got them, were familiar with many kinds of sin which are too likely to cling to their memories, and which I do not suppose that children of their age at home would ever hear of. This is a very sad fact, which calls for our earnest prayers to God that He may create them anew in Christ Jesus, that they may all be lambs of His flock, and in due time be gathered into the fold above heirs of unending bliss.
Besides the orphans there are living in the orphanage here, the Matron and her husband, who is employed by our Church in going about this district selling books and tracts, and admonishing the people, and their three boys and one girl. Mr. Bose, our worthy assistant, also lives in the mission compound. He has three nice little girls who have just been taken to a large Christian school in Lucknow, where they are to finish their education, and three boys younger than the girls, who are at home.
Besides these we have our three children. The eldest boy is about four years old, the second is two years past, and our little daughter is just eight months old. There are also a few other Christian parents with their children in Seoni.
I hoped to have given you a brief account of my work amongst the village women around Seoni, but I find that I must conclude without doing so. However, I shall (1.V.) write to you a few months hence telling you about this, and anything besides that I think would be interesting to you. My husband joins in Christian love to you all.--I am, yours very sincerely,
AGNES ANDERSON, Seoni, 11th January, 1877.
Klotes on Public Events.
THE PROCLAMATION OF THE QUEEN AS EMPRESS OF INDIA.—This interesting event took place on the first day of the year, at Delhi, the ancient capital of the Great Mogul Emperors, “amid the utmost pomp and splendour of Oriental chivalry.” The spectacle must have been a magnificent one, and it is to be hoped that it has produced the good effects desired throughout the empire. It is well known that many in this country were strongly opposed to her Majesty assuming the imperial title, viewing the step as an impolitic one. 'Now, however, that the assumption of the title of Empress is an accomplished fact, all her loyal subjects will unite in the wish and prayer that she may be long spared to wear this additional honour, of which she is so worthy, and that under her imperial sway the vast dominion of India, with its 240 millions of people, may be thoroughly consolidated and speedily blessed, as it so urgently needs to be, with the light and liberty and purity of the gospel of peace, and thus made truly great and
prosperous. It is said that the imposing ceremony has entailed enormous expense, and that it will fall heavily upon the Indian Exchequer. Granting that the occasion was one that called for some befitting celebration, the greatest economy should have been exercised, especially in the present circumstances of the country, when a large portion of the population in the presidencies of Madras and Bombay are threatened with, and even beginning to experience, a serious famine, as the result of longcontinued drought. Moreover, one cannot but feel that, instead of expending so much money on mere outward display, it would have been a more worthy and becoming way of celebrating the occasion to have voted a liberal grant from the national treasury, for the purpose of aiding the work of evangelising the empire's benighted millions--a work which the British nation is surely under most solemn obligation to see accomplished as speedily as possible, and which, if effected, would make India, in the highest sense of the expression, “the brightest jewel” in the imperial crown.
THE EASTERN QUESTION.-The latest pacific attempt to deal with this ques. tion, in the interests of justice and outraged humanity, made by the concerted Great Powers of Europe has failed, to the grievous disappointment of many who, amid fears and forebodings, still clung to the hope that the diplomatists in conference at Constantinople would arrive at some satisfactory conclusion. This failure is chiefly, is not exclusively, due to the infatuated policy of the Sultan and his advisers, who, after every effort at conciliation in the way of altering the original proposals to meet their views, stubbornly rejected the scheme of reform proposed in the Conference, thus virtually setting all Europe at defiance. Now, the Turkish authorities are trying, it is said, to come to terms with Servia and her allies, and