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the truth. At half-past two o'clock, I proceeded to a lofty hill which overhangs A— , and I can never forget my feelings as I ascended. Crowd after crowd were seen journeying from different quarters toward the brow of the hill, and there seating themselves on the grass waiting till the service should commence. Never did I see so plainly the importance of my office. I breathed a prayer to heaven for help. A our hallelujahs rose from the hill, we saw the people, who, only a few months since, were accustomed to give up their Sabbaths to games and blasphemy, collected in little groups in the streets below us, and looking and listening, while all the windows of the nearest houses were thrown open, and crowded with persons evidently anxious to hear. While I preached to the hundreds assembled, not a word seemed to be uttered. There were present, as I have since learned, Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Seceders, Methodists, Baptists, Independents, and Catholics-yes ! blessed be God, the prejudiced, superstitious, but ill-used and often-belied Catholic, listened seriously to the simple doctrines of the Gospel.”
These extracts will suffice to indicate the manner in which the pastors connected with the Irish Evangelical Society contrive to become equally pastors and missionaries, and will also show the encouragement they find in prosecuting such labours. The Rev. James Godkin has been for some time wholly occupied as a missionary, His attention has been much given to the points of the Catholic controversy, and he has delivered a course of lectures on that subject in the principal towns of Ireland, north and south, with much greater effect than would ever have attended attempts of that kind on the part of any other man in Ireland. In these exercises, Mr. Godkin is careful to fix the attention of his auditories upon the strictly spiritual aspect of the controversy, and speaking the truth in love, he has not spoken in vain.
“ The circumstances narrated,” says Mr. Godkin, in one of his journals,“ convinced me that the time was come for a new plan of Irish Protestant missions. Protestants generally, and especially the Presbyterians of Ulster, are becoming favourable to it. The Catholic mind is awake, and all we want is men whose minds are in harmony with the advancing spirit of liberty and love. This I have proved. When I undertook the mission to which the committee appointed me, I felt persuaded that Roman Catholics were accessible, and that they would candidly listen to one whom they did not regard as a political enemy. But the result has surpassed my highest expectations. At first I encountered an impression almost every where, that the Roman Catholics would not attend, or would only come to disturb the meeting, and that bad feeling in the neighbourhood would arise from it. The first meeting dissipated all these fears. They did come out, and not only behaved with the utmost decorum, but listened with the deepest attention, and the consequence has been a more respectful and kindly feeling on both sides.
“ At A- , for example, for I cannot detain you to mention more than a few of the places I have visited-on the first meeting the Methodist chapel was crowded, as was also the market-house, on two succeeding evenings. Here there were many Roman Catholics, who stood the whole time, and did not offer the slightest interruption.
“The case was similar at , where some recent circumstances had served to create a peculiar prejudice against such efforts. I preached there twice on the Sabbath, and on the Monday evening, in the Presbyterian church, to very large congregations. All parties were delighted with the issue. Lord - and his family, the church clergy, and the most respectable Roman Catholic families in the town attended. The Methodist chapel was offered to me for a second visit. It was densely crowded, and notwithstanding a prohibition from the altar, a large number of Roman Catholics attended. The impression produced on all these occasions was the most gratifying that could be imagined. At my second visit, the weavers of one district, some miles distant, sat to work at their looms soon after twelve o'clock on Sunday night, that they might leave off in time to be at the lecture on the following evening. It was pleasing to our friends to hear these people exclaiming, as they poured from the chapel along the street, 'Oh! you were wonderful proofs !' I was amused and pleased, on passing through Dungannon on a market-day, to find an intelligent countrymen retailing to a crowd about him my arguments and illustrations on transubstantiation, delivered in that town not long before.
“I feel that the object of this mission is incalculably important. The Roman Catholics are exceedingly susceptible of religious impression. But if we merely preach the Gospel to them in general terms, we leave them as much in the power of the priest as ever. The great thing is, to confute their doctrines in the right spirit; not drily, nor harshly, but affectionately and earnestly; accompanying our arguments with a rich exhibition of saving grace, and with solemn appeals to the conscience."
COLONIAL MISSIONARY SOCIETY.
Tais branch of the British MISSIONS, connected with the Union, contemplates the spread of Evangelical religion among emigrants from Europe, in all the British Colonies, and their descendants.
The most recent and authentic statements represent these colonists as exceeding TWO MILLIONS in number; nor does the human race, under any circumstances, multiply more rapidly than in prosperous colonies, where natural increase is continually augmented by the stream of immigration.
But in estimating the importance of missions to the British colonies, the numbers and increase of the settlers, great as they are, constitute the least forcible of those circumstances on which a correct judgment must be grounded. In the character, position, and destinies of this interesting portion of our fellow-subjects, will be seen the peculiar claims and importance of missions to them.
Emigration is now influenced by widely different causes from those which operated in the seventeenth century, and is of a totally opposite character. At that period, persecution drove from England, Scotland, Germany, Holland, Poland, and France, the deeply-religious men who first colonised the Atlantic coast of North America, and laid the first foundations of the new mighty states of that region. Conscience was the moving impulse of their expatriation. They therefore carried their religion and their ministers with them. They planted religious institutions as soon as they landed on the inhospitable shores they went to occupy, solely that there they might have liberty to profess religion according to their own convictions.
Other causes now compel even greater numbers to leave their homes. They need not be enumerated; but they are rarely connected with religion and conscience. Some such instances still occur, but they are the exceptions, not the rule. The pressure and vicissitudes of old communities, passing through a transition period in respect of their institutions--commercial and manufacturing embarrassments, inseparable from a most artificial, unnatural state of society, in which almost every movement is impeded by legal restrictions--the spirit of enterprise, seeking for a field of effort during an unusually-protracted continuance of general peace—the unfortunate, the criminal the friendless; the fragmentary portions, as it were, that will always be detached in great numbers from the masses of society; from these causes and sources, the stream of emigration is annually, and in all human probability will long be, supplied.
Now no people in the world either more need, or have been hitherto, for the most part, less provided with, religion, than the present race of emigrants. Recently, better movements have attended some enterprises of colonization, and religion in these projects has not been forgotten. But for a long period, emigrants were too poor to provide that ministers of religion should accompany their exile, or too unconcerned about religion to be at any effort or cost in relation to it.
But that no people are so circumstanced, as to render it, more than in this case, an object of deep benevolent solicitude, to send them in adequate numbers, faithful, energetic ministers, such considerations as the following will at once evince. They carry with them from their native shores, enough of Gospel light to make their responsibility great, their final ruin dreadful. They are going where the temptations to a lawless, ungodly life, are very strong. They go often from sorrows at home, to hardships abroad, and greatly need the consolations of piety. They are going to a state of society, where the restraints of law and public opinion are less close and binding than at home, and exceedingly need the restraints of religion. In scenes of distance, hardship, separation, the dormant religious principles and sensibilities are often moved, and the minister, the Sabbath, the sanctuary, are often, in exile, prized by those who despised them at home. Without the institutes and ministers of religion, the children of the settlers will grow up in heathen ignorance, coarseness, and vice. These emigrants have taken possession of vast and fertile regions. They are forming the rudiments of future nations. Early imbued with pure religion, they will grow to be empires with wise, free, Christian institutions. Their geographical position brings them into near contiguity with the great masses of the Pagan population of Asia and Polynesia. If the Gospel is to be spread among the heathen, as one means to that great end, it must be planted in the British colonies. From them, as from so many centres, will it then diffuse itself among mankind.
That the Independents of England might perform their appropriate part in the important work of evangelizing the British colonies, the Colonial Missionary Society was formed, in May, 1836. It is therefore now in the fifth year of its operations.
During this period, it has sent out to the colonies, fourteen ministers. It has also extended, and continues its assistance to six ministers labouring in important stations, which they occupied before the formation of the Society, and but for the aid thus afforded, must have been long since abandoned. Four brethren raised up for usefulness among the Canadian churches, it has cordially received into the number of its agents. It is contributing to sustain six young men in a course of study, preparatory to labours in Upper Canada-one in England, and five in an academy commenced with its aid in the city of Toronto.
Thus the Society is already sustaining thirty agents : twenty-four in actual labour, and six in preparatory studies.
About twenty chapels have been erected in the various colonies, by the instrumentality of these devoted brethren.
They have gathered into church-communion more than twelve hundred communicants.
They are indefatigable in itinerant labours, in Sabbath-school instruction, and in tract and Bible distribution.
The Society closed its accounts for the year ending on the 31st of March last, in arrears to the amount of £236 158. 3d. Since that date, its receipts have amounted to £1270 128. Ild. Its expenditure to £1509 138. 9d. The present deficit is, therefore, no less than £475 16s. ld. The further liabilities of the Society for the year that will end on the 31st of next March, are estimated at about €700. To leave the Society, therefore, free from debt at the close of the current year's operations, will require that there should be raised, within the next three months, not less than
£1200. And as the committee are not without hope that they may be prepared to send forth, as they have so long desired, four additional labourers this the ensuing spring, to the Canadas, not less than five hundred pounds additional will be needed to accomplish that most desirable object.
The committee have, in great measure, forborne to press the claims of the Society, till they might ascertain the amount realized by the proposed simultaneous collections on the closing Sabbath of October last. From this source £183. 98. 6d. have been received, and some additions to this amount are expected. Effectual assistance is also hoped for from the organized, regular contributions for British Missions that have already commenced, or will soon be adopted in many churches. These are admirable plans. They will, it is hoped, soon become the firm basis on which the societies prosecuting British Missions may safely rely for the resources required in their great work. This committee will do all in their power to recommend and sustain these excellent proposals.
But they were never intended entirely to supersede other appeals. In the first instance especially, it could not be supposed that they would be very largely productive. For the present, as the foregoing statement has shown, they have proved quite inadequate to meet the exigencies of the Colonial Society. While, therefore, urging the general adoption of these plans, and hoping that their future results will be most important, the committee must earnestly appeal for immediate aid to those brethren and churches, who have found it impracticable as yet to adopt them—and most of all to the churches, still not few, from which the Society, though now encountering the labours and difficulties of its FIFTH YEAR, has hitherto obtained no support.
CONGREGATIONAL AND COUNTY ASSOCIATIONS IN AID OF
The committee of the Leicestershire Association of Independent Churches and Ministers, at their annual meeting, holden at Leicester, October 20th, 1840, resolved unanimously to submit to the members of the various churches the following plan for raising a fund for British Missions ; viz. for the objects of the Leicestershire County Association, the Home Missionary Society, the Colonial Missionary Society, the Irish Evangelical Society, and the general purposes of the Congregational Union.
I. A monthly contribution from each and every member of the respective churches, according to their various abilities and inclinations. The total amount collected, to be divided, in such proportions, amongst these various objects, as each separate church shall determine, during the first week in October.
II. In order to insure uniformity of purpose and design, the committee recommend, that at the church meeting previous to the first Lord's day in December, (if the plan and object be approved,) two, four, six, or more of the members be requested to take the office of soliciting subscriptions, and of collecting the same, previously to the church meeting in each succeeding month, for one year, or until October next.
III. The following scale of contribution is submitted by the committee, to show how considerable an amount will be raised, if this plan should be adopted by all the churches, the number of members being about 1030 :
£. 8. d.
180 0 0
Brought forward .. £495 00 If 200 members subscribe 1s. per month, it will realise in a year 120 00 If 200 ditto 6d. ditto
60 0 0 If 100 ditto 4d. ditto
20 00 If 100 ditto 2d. ditto
10 0 0 If 100 ditto id ditto
500 If 55 ditto 1d. per year
0 4 7
IV. The minister of each church is respectfully requested to communicate to the secretary of the Association, on or before the 21st of January, 1841, the adoption or rejection of the plan by the church with which he is connected.
V. The committee recommend that a treasurer be appointed by each church, who shall pay into the hands of the treasurer of the Association the amount he may have received, prior to each regular meeting of the Association, although the division is to take place at the annual meeting in October.
We are happy to find that similar plans have been also adopted by several churches in the metropolis. That at the Poultry Chapel, at Stepney Meeting, at Claremont Chapel, and at Upper Clapton, we have heard, are proceeding upon the same prin. ciple. Let this method only become general, and vast trouble will be avoided, and funds sufficient for the objects contemplated by our British Missions will be speedily
TRANSACTIONS OF THE CONGREGATIONAL CHURCHES.
THE SECOND ANNIVERSARY OF THE CONGREGATIONAL UNION OF
The annual services of the above institution commenced on Tuesday evening, September 8th, 1840, by a meeting for special prayer, held in the basement story of the Congregational Chapel, Newgate-Street, Toronto.
On Wednesday morning, at nine o'clock, the committee of the Union, composed of ministers and delegates, met for business. Having continued their sittings till six o'clock in the evening, they adjourned till nine o'clock on the following morning.
On Wednesday evening, the annual sermon of the Union was preached by the Rev. H. Wilks, A.M., of Montreal, delegate of the Congregational Union of the Lower Province. The text chosen by the rev. gentleman was Acts xix. 20. The powerful appeals of the preacher, and the serious attention of the auditory, afford the pleasing hope that the impressions produced will be practical and lasting.
On Thursday morning, according to adjournment, the committee of the Union resumed their sittings for business. At one o'clock, in consequence of the arrival of his excellency the governor general, the committee adjourned till four o'clock on Friday afternoon.
On Thursday evening at seven o'clock, the public meeting was held in the Congregational Chapel, Newgate-Street, on which occasion J. H. Price, Esq. presided.
The Report having been read by the Rev. A. Lillie, Secretary, the following Resolutions were proposed and unanimously adopted.
Moved by the Rev. H. Denney, of Esquesing, and seconded by the Rev. W. Hayden, of Cobourg.
Resolved, 1.-That the Report now read be received and adopted, as exhibiting to us an encouraging measure of success-demanding our devoutest gratitude-exciting