« ForrigeFortsæt »
Esq., Dublin; Miss Jackson, Kingstown; Rev. William Lumby, Dublin; Richard
The Secretary reported that the address to the Christian people of Ireland, which it had been decided should be issued immediately after the Conference, was published, signed by the president, vice-presidents, and secretary. It set forth the great principles held in common by all the Evangelical Churches, urged the importance of closer unity among the people of God, and commended the great cause in which they were engaged to their interest and support. The address was favourably received, and was published in most of the religious and in many of the secular papers throughout Ireland.
A series of short Conferences had been held during the previous month in several of the principal towns in the south of Ireland. The object of these Conferences was the promotion of Christian union and the deepening of spiritual life. It had been arranged that special addresses should be delivered at these Conferences by the Rev. W. E. Burroughs, B.D., Incumbent of the Mariners' Church, Kingstown, and the Rev. F. Stuart Gardiner, M.A., Presbyterian Minister, Kingstown; but Mr. Gardiner was suddenly laid aside by illness at the last moment, so that the whole responsibility was laid upon Mr. Burroughs, with such local help as he should receive, which was most cordially and efficiently given.
His first meeting was held at Cahir, in the county Tipperary, on Monday evening, November 14, where a crowded meeting assembled in the parochial hall. The Archdeacon of Waterford presided. The address delivered by Mr. Burroughs was greatly appreciated.
Two meetings were held in the City of Cork on the following day, where very effective arrangements had been made by the secretary, Rev. J. Howard Murphy, The meetings were held in the Assembly Rooms. Canon Harley presided in the afternoon, and Lieut.-Colonel Hull in the evening. The attendance at both meetings was good, and the addresses of Mr. Burroughs on the spiritual life were greatly enjoyed.
Similar meetings were held next day in Limerick. Canon Gregg had kindly put the fine Havergal Hall at the disposal of the Committee for the meetings, and excellent arrangements had been made by the Rev. Thomas Moran, secretary of the local branch of the Alliance. The Rev. Dr. Wilson, Presbyterian Minister, presided at the afternoon meeting, at which nearly four hundred persons were present. Canon Gregg presided in the evening, when there was a still larger attendance. The addresses of Mr. Burroughs were deeply impressive. He had formerly been curate here under the late Venerated Archdeacon Jacob, and this fact added no doubt to the interest of the meetings both for speaker and hearers. Many people were helped and stimulated by the addresses.
The Mission was brought to a close in Waterford on Thursday, when two meetings were held in the Protestant Hall. In spite of the wet and tempestuous weather the attendance at both meetings was good, and the services greatly appreciated. The Rev. S. A. Robertson, Methodist Minister, presided in the afternoon, and the Rev. Henry Line, rector of St. Patrick's, in the evening. The Rev. David Wark, Presbyterian Minister, is secretary of the local committee.
A cordial vote of thanks was passed by the Council to the Rev. W. E. Burroughs for the kind and valued services he had rendered, and regret was expressed that Mr. Gardiner had been unable to accompany him.
AMALGAMATION WITH THE UNITED SERVICES COMMITTEE.
The following resolution which had been unanimously adopted at a joint conference of the Irish Council of the Alliance and the Committee of the Dublin United Services, of which notice had been duly given, was then considered :
66 In view of the need which exists of closer union and consolidation in connexion with united Christian work in Ireland, and in order to further the spread of the Gospel in this country, it is hereby pro
posed that immediate steps be taken to amalgamate the work of the United Services Committee with that of the Evangelical Alliance, on the basis of the latter organisation, and that a joint committee, composed of members of both associations, be formed to frame a scheme for the
The scheme as framed by the Joint Committee, the principal features of which were the transfer of the work hitherto carried on by the United Services Committee to the Irish Council of the Alliance, the inclusion of those members of the United Services Committee in the Alliance who were not already members, on the acceptance of the Basis, and the appointment of the secretary of the United Services Committee and the present secretary, Rev. D. Mullan, as joint secretaries of the Irish Council, had been already submitted to the United Services Committee and, with a slight verbal alteration, unanimously adopted.
After careful consideration it was unanimously adopted, with the verbal alteration suggested by the United Services Committee. The new scheme will come into operation on January 1, 1894.
Some arrangements having been made for the observance of the Week of Prayer, the proceedings terminated.
THE following is a report of the meetings of the Lyons branch of the Evangelical Alliance, summarised from L'Eglise Libre :
The meetings this year were held in the Lutheran Church, and concluded with the celebration of the Holy Communion, as is usual on these occasions. Mons. Choisy, from Geneva, presided. There was a good attendance.
The principal subject was "The Relgious Instruction of Youth, whether in the Church or in the Family." The able address given by Mons. Choisy will, it is hoped, be published in extenso. One of the speakers said that he looked for little from the parents. So much more the need for bringing the subject before the public, and pressing home the duty. At the very least they should read a verse of the Bible daily to their children, and see that they pray before going to rest. No matter how feeble it may be, let a religious life be aroused in the family. The sittings were addressed by MM. Morel, pasteur and professor from Neuchâtel; and Rimond, Secretary of the Societé Evangelique of Geneva, and others.
One of the subjects much dwelt upon was the necessity of adapting all efforts made to the capacity of the young. Spurgeon remarked: "Our Lord said, 'Feed my lambs,' not feed my giraffes." The Lord's Prayer should be taught to every child, and certain passages of Scripture impressed upon the mind, and where they are to be found. Young people should be induced to search the Scriptures. It would be well also to question them, so that their thoughts and ideas might be brought out. The catechumens should be encouraged to pray aloud with their pastor. It was strongly urged that the daily life should be in keeping with the religious teaching. This matter was very forcibly treated in the sermon preached by Mons. Babut in the Eglise Reformée on the evening of November 1; his text was from John xvii.,“ And for their sakes I sanctify myself." It would be impossible here to give an idea of the happy and wise manner in which the subject was applied.
The meeting for children must not be forgotten, nor the Annual Assembly of the Protestant Evangelical Infirmary. This enterprise is in a very prosperous condition. The visit of the members of the Alliance, and the remarks of Mons. Choisy made on that occasion were highly appreciated.
RELIGIOUS PERSECUTION IN
THE persecution of the Stundists and other Christians in the Russian Empire continues to engage the earnest attention of the Council. Much valuable information has been obtained from trustworthy authorities, and especially from those who have been brought personally into contact with the Stundists.
Many friends of the Alliance throughout the country have inquired from time
to time as to the apparent inaction of the Council with reference to the Russian persecutions, but wherever the reasons for this reticence have been given our friends have been satisfied.
During the past two or three years special efforts have also been made by the Evangelical Alliance, to bring influence to bear in the highest quarters, with the view of mitigating the terrible persecutions from which the Stundists and other Christians dissenting from the Orthodox Church of Russia are suffering.
But it is felt by the Stundists themselves that their only hope is in God, and therefore. the Council are seeking in every way to urge upon Christians throughout our country the need for earnest prayer to God on behalf of the persecuted Christians in Russia.
The Evangelical Alliance has, during the past year, raised privately among its own members a sum of nearly £900, specially for the relief of the physical sufferings of the families of the Stundists who have been banished from their homes in Russia; and nearly the whole of this amount has been already distributed by trustworthy agents, some resident in Russia, and others visiting the country for the purpose. It is well that these facts should be widely published, as it is believed that there are unaccredited individuals seeking to obtain money without any satisfactory guarantee of its proper distribution.
The Council of the Evangelical Alliance hope shortly to publish a statement with reference to the steps they have taken regarding this whole subject, and in the meantime they will gladly receive any contributions towards their fund for the relief of the physical sufferings of the Stundist families.
Alliance House, 7 Adam Street, Strand, London, W.C.
**Remittances may be made payable to the order of the secretary (Mr. A. J.
Arnold), or to the Treasurer.
In spite of weather which has been very unfavourable, the meetings for the Week of Prayer, held in Portman Rooms, have been fairly well attended, and the spirit of the meetings has been most encouraging. The addresses have been all that could be desired, and our readers will be able to judge for themselves as to their suitability for the purpose for which they were delivered, as we are enabled to publish them in extenso in the present issue. Similar good reports come in from the other parts of London, where meetings have been held, testifying to the spirit of prayer manifested, as well as to the good attendance and profitable character of the addresses delivered.
So far as reports have been hitherto received from the country and the Continent of Europe they are most gratifying as to the success of the meetings for prayer, and in some cases the accounts received present very special features of interest. It is, however, thought best to await the reports which are expected during the remainder of the month from more distant places, before calling attention to any of these special cases of interest. The observance of the Week of Prayer grows every year, and there is every reason to believe that when all the reports are received that this year's meetings will be found to exceed in number those that have gone before. We believe, too, that in spirituality of tone and brotherly harmony of action they will be found to be in nowise behind the meetings of former years.
The subject suggested for sermons on the Sunday following the Week of Prayer was "The second coming of our Lord," and the text connected with
it was Rev. xxii. 12: " Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me to give every man according as His work shall be." Those who drew up the programme for the Week of Prayer showed their wisdom in putting forward this practical aspect of a subject which often suffers from being treated too much in a speculative manner. It was also wise to treat it in its main features, apart from those differences of detail on which Christians are so often found to be sharply divided. The Evangelical Alliance might possibly endanger the great object it seeks to promote, that of Christian anion, if it suggested more than this general aspect of our Lord's Second Coming, and that viewed in the most practical way, as a subject with which to close the Week of Prayer.
It is a well-known fact that one of the most bitter divisions that has separated a very earnest and devoted body of Christians within the last half-century, had its origin in a difference of opinion between two prominent leaders, as to whether the Church should or should not pass through "the great tribulation." Instead of treating such a question as an open one, it was made a war-cry," and the results have been most lamentable. One, perhaps, of the most disastrous consequences has been the reaction it has caused in terrifying many Christian teachers from having anything to say on the subject of unfulfilled prophecy, although a most practical one, to the study of which a special blessing is attached in Scripture. Some years ago, special Prophetical Conferences were held for two or three years running at the Mildmay Conference Hall, but were discontinued from the fear of their accentuating differences of opinion rather than removing them. On this point, as on many others, the watchmen must wait to "see eye to eye" till "the Lord returneth to Zion" (R.V.).
Nevertheless, the subject is too important and too practical in its bearing on Christian life and walk to be set aside because Christians differ as to its details. Rather should the leading features of the great subject itself be treated apart from the minor questions of difference, with the assured conviction that the day is drawing nigh which will clear up all the difficulties which now are felt as to these details. The earliest writings of St. Paulthe Epistles to the Thessalonians-contain many intimations that it was then considered an essential part of conversion to God "to wait for His Son from Heaven." It is also well to observe how constantly in these two Epistles the Lord's Second Coming is treated as the background, in relation to which the most practical subjects, such as Christian holiness and work and service, should be viewed.
There is another reason why the subject of the Lord's Second Coming should specially draw forth the sympathy of members of the Evangelical Alliance. It is, when wisely handled, and considered in its great leading features apart from points of detail, a most potent means of drawing together the hearts of Christians by presenting to them the happy prospect of what Scripture calls "our gathering together unto Him." In the prospect of this "blessed hope," we may well anticipate the day of the "manifestation of the sons of God," by walking in a spirit of love and forbearance towards "all who in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ their Lordboth theirs and ours." It used to be said of Napoleon's marshals that when