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drove him from his mother's grave. Shut the window, Richard ; the pale light of the setting sun is too pure to shine upon my expiring rays. Shut it out; let me go out of the world in gloom and darkness. Richard—did I not treat that boy, my noble boy, bad? Nay, speak-you know it! let me hear one candid voice tell me that I have committed a base wrong!"
“Be calm, sir; he will come and forgive."
“ Yes, sir ; fearful that some accident would occur, I took horse and started off to town with the letter myself ; I rode day and night, reached his place of abode, and delivered
“Richard, give me your hand; that accounts for your long absence ; but go on-you saw him ?"!
" Yes, sir ; and told him how sick you were."
Ha, Richard-wife ?"
“ Well, he would not come-right! The smile of a fond wife is better than the curse of a father to youth and virtue ! He is right-what claim have I to his affection ?"
“ You wrong him, sir ; he will come.” “ Will come ? my much wronged boy; come, did you
“Sir, be calm; he is—'
“ Father,” exclaimed Henry, rushing in, " pardonpardon !"
“Pardon !-you ask that from me ? No, Henry, it is for the son to pardon the father. Oh! my child, I have suffered for my cruel and unnatural conduct years of bitter remorse; the pale image of your poor mother, and the stern looks of her brother, have haunted me nightly ; and though no voice uttered the bitter words of the past, yet were those looks daggers to my soul; and then have I seen you, in frightful dreams, struggling with poverty, an outcast! Heavenly Father, how have I offended Thee !"
"Oh, father! do not talk so; all is forgotten--all forgiven ! Let us pray, father! and ask forgiveness of Him who alone has the power to grant it!"
The son knelt down by the side of his father's bed, and in a prayer, which came up from the silent though pure sources of the heart, he called up that Being, whose outstretched arms reach the furthermost corners of the earth, for aid and comfort to a repentant sinner! The eyes
of the dying man brightened up! A son, an ill-used, discarded son, was praying for him! That son he had so wronged was now interceding between him and his offended God! Oh! prayer! prayer ! who is there, in this cold, cheerless world, would live without thee? Like hope, thou art the watchword at the gates of Heaven, to bid the truant soul a welcome home.
That appeal to the Throne of Mercy, offered up in the lone chamber, had its effect; the eyes of the dying parent became still; they wandered and rolled no more in a sea of guilt ; a smile passed over his pallid features; he grasped the hand of his boy and uttered, feebly, the words, “ bless you ! bless you !” Thus, a good man's prayer will, from the deepest dungeons of our woes, climb Heaven's height, and bring a blessing down.
“ Yes, Henry, I feel more happy, far more contented; forgiveness has soothed the tumult of this heart ; take this
key; open yon secretary ; there, on the right, in the small drawer, you will find my will ; you are my heir ; bless you ! bless you—my child! I leave you rich! aye! even beyond your most sanguine wishes! You are married ! Heaven bless your bride! You will be happy, for you have your mother's temper, mild and amiable. No more of this ; let me hold that hand. Thanks ! thanks! Richard, open that window ; let the light of the setting sun shine on me; I could not bear it before ; it was too pure, too holy. Ah ! how refreshing is that breeze! See the long streaks of light pouring down yon mountain ;-my life will fade away with them, and with the sun I'll sink into the grave—for death is the grave--and, oh! that I may rise again like that sun, and taste that immortality with Jehovah in the skies ; this this,”—his breath grew short ;—"farewell, Henry! I14"
" Father ! dear father!”
“ Your father, boy! it is too late ; raise me up; let me look at thee-"
He essayed again to speak, but the words died with him -life had fled-all was over.
“ Crimes will speak though tongues were out of use."
Having given an account of the origin of the Home Missionary Society, and the extensive influence it now possesses over a large portion of the human family, it is a pleasing task to look back over the field of the labors of the Missionary, and contrast the localities he now “holds with religious sway," with what they were previously. That beautiful shade which christian truth throws over the “ blazonry of vice," and which the mellowed light of heaven gilds with a radiant glory, rests calmly on the waters of life, and ripples along to the pleasing accompaniment of happy and tuneful voices.-All nature looks more joyous—more happy, the smile of virtue dims the frown of sin, and gladsome hearts, now beat beneath the laborer's breast.
This is a pleasing picture, but alas ! it is in part confined to the few, for there are those whose acts and conduct are of such a character, that their doors and their hearts are shut against the good man, whose zeal for their present and future happiness, not unfrequently carries him to their thresholds, from which he is driven with contumely and insult. The many inducements held out to petty thieves, by a class of men, called Receivers of stolen goods, have materially increased the number of juvenile offenders, and made the House of Refuge the stepping stone to the Penetentiary. This alarming increase, in despite of the philanthropic exertions of many good citizens to prevent it, has become a fearful subject for the contemplation of our readers, as it should be for the municipal authorities.
The gradual, progressive, and alarming arena made by crime, and which widens, and spreads like the Banyan tree, taking root wherever its branches fall, calls loudly at this time for a check. Much of the increase has been attributed to that of population; this is an error, for if the morals of that population were properly attended to, that very increase which has been urged as a cause, would become a preventive.
In the first place let us trace some of the causes which have tended to strengthen vice with the growth of our population. There must be a cause, or causes, which tend to overbalance the good lessons, which are taught and disseminated from the pulpit.
It is with much and sincere regret, that the writer of this should allude here to our Theatres ; his reluctance to speak of the stage, will be readily appreciated by those who know him, but a sense of truth and justice, compel him to state distinctly, that to the abuse of the drama, may be attributed very many of the juvenile vices, which are now, Upas like, poisoning the whole moral atmosphere.
The stage at Athens, at one time subsisted in a pure state, so far as their notions of religion and morality extended; how is it then that in an age so purely christian as ours is, it should be looked upon, not as a “ School of Reform,” but rather as the " Road to Ruin."
The moment an institution, no matter for what purpose established, opens its doors to the degraded of both sexes, and erects a bar, in any one portion of the building for the sale of liquor, that very moment it becomes the Temple of Cyprian, instead of the Temple of the Muses.
Our Theatres are under no municipal regulations, beyond the mere keeping of the peace; were they subject to the censorship of a "moral committee," and managers' characters were to be duly examined into, as well as those of the mem