« PreviousContinue »
LEWES, SUSSEX, ENGLISH PRESBYTE- doctor's already popular works. Ip the RIAN CHURCH ANNIVERSARY.- In connec- evening a public soirée was held, when & tion with the above, services were held in large company was present, the several teathe church, on Sabbath, Sept. 30, when tables being presided over by Mrs. Prenthe Rev. John Prentice preached morning tice, Mrs. Smyth, Mrs. Rolfe, Mrs. Morris, and evening, from Isaiah xxii. 24, and Mrs. Towner, Mrs. Bristowe, and Mrs. interspersed his discourses with many Morrison, and Misses Haywood, Cbeale, practical remarks, specially adapted to in Towner, Thorpe, Colvin, and Jones. The spire gratitude and confidence at the close room was tastefully decorated and preof another year's labours. On the follow- sented a lively appearance. After the soirée, ing day (Monday) continuation services a public meeting was held, under the presiwere held in the County Hall, when the dency of the Rev. John Prentice, when inRev. Dr. James Hamilton, of London, teresting addresses were delivered by the preached a thrilling sermon to a numerous Revs. George Isaacs (Brighton), Edwin. and deeply interested audience. The vital Paxton Hood (Brighton), s. Oughten (late truths enunciated in the discourse, the of Jamaica), G. Pilgrim (Swindon), masterly eloquence by which it was charac- Brocklehurst (Steyning), Peter Maclaren terized, the beauty and force of the illustra- (Brighton), J. Webb and J. Bate (Lewes). tions, together with the earnestness and The chairman apologised for the Rev. M. geniality of the preacher, served to rivet Welland and Rev. A. Levie, who were un-the attention of the hearers in a very avoidably absent. The whole of the services marked manner. We understand that the were of the most agreeable and interesting sermon is part of a new work soon to be character, and produced unusually good published, entitled “The Prodigal Son,” collections.-East Sussex News. and will be a valuable addition to the
THE HOME MISSION AND Levi's communication on which I crave the SUPPLEMENTAL FUND. liberty of making one or two observations.
He says, “It might indeed be suggested To the Editor of the English Presbyterian Messenger. that the coinmittee have fallen much short
DEAR SIR,— I have read a communica- of their design even in this (that is, in protion by Professor Leone Levi in this month's viding ordinances wherever there is an opMessenger, admitting the propriety of di- portunity for so doing), by the conditions viding the work of the Home Mission Com- which they require ere they enter into a new mittee into two sections, and of having two place, namely, first, that there be a nucleus committees—the one charged with the plant- of Scotch Presbyterian residents ; and, ing of new churches, and the other with the second, that there be grounds to warrant the increase of ministerial stipend. It is grati- conclusion that the congregation shall, within fying to me, and I am sure must be gratify- a reasonable time, be able, without assisting to the other members of the Home ance, to maintain divine ordinances. To Mission Committee, to see Dr. Levi taking withdraw our hands from a place simply such a lively interest in the work in which because we do not find a certain number of we are engaged. With all deference, how- Scotch on the spot seems certainly a very ever, to his sense of propriety, I do think it questionable practice; and may we not fur. would not be seemly to discuss in the pages ther add that we seem scarcely to realize of the Messenger the question he has just the maxim, “To the poor the Gospel is. raised, especially at the present time. The preached.” Now, sir, I am not aware that Synod has instructed the Home Mission the first of these supposed conditions has Comunittee to consider that question and to any existence. Neither in any of the rereport. The committee has fixed its next ports, nor in any of the regulations of the meeting for that consideration. And in committee, has such a condition ever been these circumstances, the matter being offi- even suggested. In point of fact, it is a cially in the committee's hands, and being pure imagination on the part of Dr. Levi. on the eve of an official and thorough consi- I remember indeed stating at last Synod deration, I do think it would be unseemly that, as a matter of experience, we have · and inconvenient to discuss the question found that it is a difficult thing to succeed here. The time and place for that will come in planting a church in a new locality, un. hereafter.
less there be a nucleus of Presbyterian resiThere is one passage, however, in Dr. dents there, who know and love our system,
feel an interest in our cause, and will devote such principle in our Church-Extension themselves heartily to secure its success. work. It is to be remembered that our reThat has been our experience. It is just what sources are very limited. It is to be remembeforehand one would anticipate. But our bered that there are many large towns in committee have never dreamt of making it England where there is a good prospect of a condition “ that there be a nucleus of our being able to raise self-sustaining Scotch Presbyterian residents” before we churches, on which we have not yet been enter on a place. Wherever we have reason able to enter. And, surely, if two competto think that there is a propitious opening, ing places present themselves to us, one in there we are delighted to enter, without which there is a prospect of success, and the asking any question as to the nationality other in which there is none, surely there of the friends to whom we look for support. can be no question that it is our duty to
A3 to the second of Dr. Levi's supposed prefer the former. And, surely, by taking conditions, namely, “That there be grounds up in the meantirae only such places as may to warrant the conclusion that its congrega- hold out the likelihood of self-sustaining tion shall, within a reasonable time, be able, congregations, we shall be doing far more without assistance, to maintain divine ordi- in the end toward "preaching the Gospel to nances," you will allow me to state that, the poor” than if we were to squander the although we have nowhere laid down such resources of the Church on small towns and a condition formally, yet I believe the unpromising localities, whence no return Christian wisdom and common sense of any could be looked for. man who thinks on the subject will show
Believe me, yours truly, him that, in the present circumstances of
WILLIAM McCaw. our church, we should be guided by some Manchester, Oct. 22, 1866.
ROMANISM IN THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND.
The following letter has been addressed true that the prayers were not read in to the Bishop of London, it is understood, Latin, but the greater portion of them were by Miss Marsh :
gabbled over with such rapidity and in
distinctness that a foreign or dead language TO THE BISHOP OF LONDON.
could scarcely have rendered them more “ My Lord,-I know not whether you unintelligible. The sermon was preached, are aware of the precise extent to which the I was informed, by Mr. Maconochie, his ritualistic element of the Church of Eng: subject being, "Quench not the Spirit.' land is being developed in the Church of Many of his remarks were wise, pointed, St. Alban's, Brook Street, Holborn. As, earnest, and searching, especially when he however, this church is within your diocese, was urging the necessity of respecting the and the doctrines preached and the cere- admonitions of conscience, and of not monies practised in it come of necessity stifling them by misinterpretation, or within the compass of your jurisdiction, I neglect, or wilful sin. Occasionally he have presumed on the liberty of detailing seemed embarrassed and bewildered, as if with as much succinctness as possible the depending too largely on the casual things which I saw and heard last Sunday sug gestions of the moment, and left to morning, October 7. A very general flounder in consequence of inadequate prerumour is abroad that ritualism in its paration. His abundant repetitions seemed highest form and in its nearest approxima- traceable to the same source, or else to a tion to that of the Church of Rome may be mind which has concerned itself too much found at St. Alban's. Indeed, I had heard with ecclesiastical millinery, and too little accounts of doings there that seemed with mental discipline and the accumulawanton and passionate exaggerations, and, tion of those stores of knowledge which are in company with other friends, I went for indispensable to a wise master-builder. the
purpose of ascertaining the extent to His observations on holy things, holy which such accounts are worthy of trust. places, and holy persons, were infantile in And the result was a conviction that the last degree, worthy, indeed, of a Jew nothing short of a visit to the church, and under the ancient dispensation, but utterly an ocular and auricular and olfactory unworthy of a Christian who has read and witness of its sights, sounds, and odours, who believes the words of the Saviour, will avail to convey a competent notion of 'The hour cometh when ye shall neither in the all but absolute identity that exists this mountain nor in Jerusalem worship between the service of St. Alban's and that the Father,' or who has read the Epistle to of any Popish church in the land. It is the Galatians, and learned that all things
and all times are consecrated by a devout the Romish Church. The censer and faithful heart. In the course of his lustily and incessantly swung. The altar Berinon he preached the doctrine of tran- was incensed, the priests were incensed, the substantiation in terms the most unmis- book was incensed, the people were incensed, takable. With an emphasis which showed until the whole church was filled with the the strength of his conviction, and his de- rolling clouds. Then came in due time the termination not to be misunderstood, elevation of the host, at which many of the pointing to the altar in a manner not un accustomed worshippers prostrated themcommon with the priests of the Romish selves. There was a considerable number Church, he exclaimed, 'In a few moments of communicants, and I noticed that the you will be brought into the presence of priest who administered the bread made the Lord in the Holy Sacrament of the with it the sign of the cross before putting Eucharist. You will see him in his own into the mouth of the receiver, and his flesh and blood; I repeat it, you will see example was followed by the priest who him in his own flesh and blood. And that had charge of the chalice. As the service this was with him no mere tropical language, proceeded, and its Romish character bebut a calm uncoloured utterance, expressing came more and more apparent, many rose his faith in the real local presence of the body and left the church in indignation and disof Christ, is put beyond question by the gust; some of whom told me afterwards hymns which are sung in the church, in which that it was a matter of sore lamentation to the doctrine of transubstantiation is taught them that the Church in which they were with as much of philosophical precision as baptized should be so rapidly drifting back is compatible with rhythm and rhyme. to the errors from which it had escaped. Let your lordship. ponder the following I have no conception of the exact number verses, and see in what manner they can be of regular worshippers at St. Alban's, but reconciled with the reformed doctrine of from the volume of sound which came the Church of England :
forth during some portions of the service, “Taste, and touch, and vision in thee are de. in which the musical cadences were both, unceived,
usual and difficult, it is but a moderate esti. But the hearing only well may be believed; mate to suppose that not less than 300 form I believe whate'er the Son of God hath told, What the Truth hath spoken that for truth I a permanent element in the congregation. hold.
“I have given to your lordship a faithfuł “ His own act at supper seated
and unvarnished account of what I saw Christ ordained to be repeated
and heard, and of what in substance may In his memory divine; Wherefore now with adoration
be seen and heard in your diocese from
week to week. The priests who minister Consecrate from bread and wine.
in St. Alban's loathe the names of Protes«This the truth each Christian learneth, tantism and Reformation, and this because Bread into his flesh he turneth, Wine to bis most holy blood ;
they hate the things wbich they represent, Doth it pass thy comprehending ?
and alike by explicit teaching and symbol Faith the law of sight transcending, they are assiduously endeavouring to lead Leaps to things not understood.
our country back to Rome. I know not “ Anything more explicit or more unam- whether your lordship will attach much biguously declarative of the doctrine of value to the elaborate and complex ritualtransubstantiation will be sought for in ism to which we have referred, and for vain in the whole hymnology of the Romish which, if not in express violation of Churcle Church, and yet the verses cited are but a aw, no provision is made in the Rubric. sample of much more of the same kind You may regard it as external and secondwhich may be seen in the 'Hymnal noted,' ary, if not unimportant. You may suppose this being the book used in the Church of that there are subjective tendencies in some St. Alban’s, for whose services your lord- which may seem to demand a more florid sbip is responsible up to the extent of com- and elaborate symbolism in the worship of pelling its celebrants to conform to the God, though it is a question not unworthy ritual of the Church whose bread they eat, of your lordship's attention whether the and whose fair fame they are now smearing strongly-developed æstheticism of our times with their Popish dogmas and practices. has in it much that is akin to the religious The administration of the Communion was nature, or even to the moral sense, and in keeping with the doctrine of transub- whether it is not fatally substituting for stantiation as propounded in the sermon. real devoutness a deceitful and lulling The priests who took the most prominent counterfeit. A sense of solemnity and part in the Mass wore green robes, one of even of ecstasy may be easily generated by them having a black cross in wrought in the forms and sounds, and yet no deeper region back. The genuflexions and movements of the man be reached than the senses, or to und fro, and the foldings of the hands, those sensibilities of which the highest posseem to have been most exactly copied from 1sible culture is perfectly compatible with
We the victim of salvation
the most abandoned life. There is no timidity, connivance, or supineness in reessential antagonism between taste and gard to the ritualistic practices which are religion, but it would betray utter ignor- so notoriously rife in London and its neighance of the teaching of history, and that bourhood. They are beginning to suspect too on a wide scale, to deny that they are that Nonconformity may be something frequently found in the inverse ratio of better than an evil, and may become with each other, and that the most exquisite ap- them a painful necessity. They are talking preciation of art and beauty is often seen about a free Episcopal Church in which allied with the most shameless disregard of they can use the Liturgy, and from which the moral laws. But the point which is they can exclude Romish dogmas and ceresuggested by the ritualism of St. Alban's, monies, and the heresies that spring from a and of other churches in your lordship’s licentious rationalism. They can accord diocese, is, that it arises most unmistak- with your lordship in your often expressed ably out of the doctrine of transub- opinion, that a National Church should be stantiation, and is as clearly designed marked by its comprehensiveness, and to lead back the mind to that B0- should include superficial varieties of faith called mystery of the Christian faith. and practice, with an underlying unity; This is the culminating point to which the but they are strongly convinced that as whole service in these churches manifestly contradictories cannot both be true, tranprogresses. It is the fact which gives to substantiation and its opposite,' bapevery other thing its significance. The tismal regeneration and its opposite, worshipper feels that he is being led and the doctrines of rationalism and their step by step to some sacred wonder, and he opposites, cannot have place in such a is conscious of having reached it when the generously inclusive plan without first propriest has transmuted the bread and wine claiming the absolute indifference of the into the very body and blood of Christ. true and the false, the right and the wrong, It would require a mind of very slow ap- and without teaching the people, under the prehension not to perceive that this is the sanction of religion, that it matters not object both contemplated and obtrusively what is the religion they hold and profess. pursued in the whole service at St. Alban's. At present, my lord, he would be a reckless And this ritualism is on the increase. It man who should venture to assert that the is spreading like a plague. It is appearing Church of England is in any intelligible in different parts of our country, and sense of the term the bulwark of Proseizing upon the young of both sexes. testantism. It is the nursery of RomanUnder its influences in a great degree the ism, and it has supplied that apostate sysevangelical element in the Church of Eng. tem with some of its noblest sons, both land has, within the last few years, most clerical and lay. Of no other Church in sensibly declined. It is declining still, and Britain can this be said. I have written becoming in some places crushed between this letter in sorrow, not in anger, knowing rationalism and ritualism as between the well that I am but giving utterance to the upper and nether millstones. It would be convictions of thousands who have loved matter for unfeigned regret if your lord- the services of the Church of England, ship were unconscious of these facts ; but who received its baptism and confirmation, it would be matter for still deeper regret, who were married within its pale, and had if, while conscious of them, you should feel hoped to die its steadfast and loving adyourself unwilling or unable to meet the berents. And I claim your forbearance if, present exigency. The suspicion is rapidly in closing this letter, I'venture humbly tó gaining ground that the episcopal bench is warn your lordship that you cannot fail in paralysed by the aspect of affairs in the your duty in this perilous crisis of the hisChurch, and that they shrink from any step tory of our National Church, and of the which might bring the various ecclesiastical Christianity which it professes to represent, parties into more overt collision. Many without incurring the responsibility inare asking whether the doctrine of transub- volved in your high position, of having stantiation be indeed the doctrine of the suffered the spread of Popish dogmas and Church ; and if it be not, whether there is ceremonies when, by a vigorous and prompt no legal machinery by which its main action, you might have driven them from tainers can be excluded from positions your diocese. which their heresy dishonours. Many of
I remain, the laity in London are expressing them- " Your lordship's faithful servant, selves with a not unnatural freedom and
“ E. M. warmth upon your lordship's supposed “ October 11, 1866."
Collections and Donations.
SYNOD SCHOOL FUND.
COLLECTIONSNorth Shields £5 00 Norham
.£1 00 Branton
2 94 St. James's, Alnwick
0 0 DONATIONSCanning Street, Liverpool
18 3 10
5 0 0 Wark.
0 10 2
10 0 0 North Bridge Street, Sunderland 2 0 0
Ditto, Belgrave, Mr. David Fraser 5 0 0 Newbiggin-by-Sea
1 0 0
0 2 6 River Terrace, London
8 16 7
JAMES E. MATHIESON, Wooler 1 15 6
Joint Treasurer. John Knox, Newcastle
3 0 0
77, Lombard Street, London, E.C. Trinity, Newcastle
5 00 Regent Square, London, per Association
HOME MISSION. (9 months, to Michaelmas)
6 4 6 Regent Square, London, Association, per Grosvenor Square, Manchester 19 7 1 Mr. John Laing,
21 14 6 Chester
o 9 6 North Shields, Collection, per Mr. John Birdhopecraig 1 19 6 Mavor
10 0 0 Wharton
i o O “M. 8. c.;" Donation, per 'Mr. John
Treasurer. 67, New Bond Street, W.
Oriel Chambers, Water Street, Liverpool.
Atonement, the only efficient Exponent of The Year of Prayer; being Family Prayers
God's Love to Man, and the Source and .for the Christian Year, suited to the Motive of Man's Love to God. By the Services and Commemorations of the Hon. SOMERSET R. MAXWELL.
Church. By HENRY ALFORD, D.D., This handsome little book deals with the
Dean of Canterbury. London : Alexan
der Strahan. greatest of subjects in a fresh, thoughtful and reverent way. It is the production of By the Church, the dean means the a man to whom the things of Christ are Church of England, and to those who berealities, and it shows how the truth and long to that communion bis “ Year of the spirit of the Gospel are naturally asso- Prayer" is likely to be of great service. ciated. In the introduction we have a We like the brevity, the simplicity, and the lengthy poem in blank verse on "The Love directness of the prayers. We quote the of God, which shows the author to have last paragraph of the Preface, as bearing not only a firm grasp and appreciation of upon a recent controversy, in which Colenso divine truth, but a cultivated taste and no figured with little credit to himself:—"A mean share of the poetic gift. We cordially large proportion of the prayers will be found recommend the book.
to be addressed to our blessed Lord. It
seems to me that there is no remedy likely Prayers and Hymns for Morning and to be so efficacious for the coldheartedness
Evening, etc. By the Rev. GEORGE and decline of faith in our time as more WALKER KINNELL. Edinburgh: Wm. humble devotion, and more ardent personal P. Nimmo.
love towards our great and merciful High This is an excellent collection of prayers Priest, the Divine hearer and answerer of and hymns, and is fitted to be very useful prayer.” as a help or guide in the devotions of the The Imperial Bible-Dictionary. Edited family. The prayers are simply expressed, and lay hold of the many and various wants
by the Rev. PATRICK FAIRBAIRN, D.D. of the The hymns do not exhibit a
Glasgow and London : Blackie & Son. high poetic faculty, but they are smooth We have received the last four parts of in expression and devout in spirit, and this very superior Bible-Dictionary. As worthily accompany the prayers. Many of the work is now completed we purpose them are paraphrases of portions of Scrip- next month to give a notice of it as a ture. To many families the volume would whole. Meanwhile we recommend it to all be a real boon.