Billeder på siden
[ocr errors]

with no distinct purpose in her former relations to each other, and mind, only a general idea of what you have allowed me to gain your it would be necessary to say. The sister's affections without attempt. path turned rather abruptly, and at ing to interfere until now. I the corner she met Rupert Lacy thought you wished to convey to face to face.

me that you desired to put an end He stopped and looked at her, to our engagement.” turning a little pale. She spoke The cunning mixture of truth almost without thought.

with glaring injustice silenced “I know! I saw Winifred and Laura. What could she say you in the wood, by the brook.” against it? Of what use would it

“ Well!” he said, defiantly. He be to show him that the change thonght she was going to reproach came first from him, that the first biin, and was far too clever to as- touch of his hand told her that he sume the defensive, always the was changed to her ? losing game.

“I will not bandy words with “Do you mean to marry her ?" you. I only think of my sister. she asked.

Tell me you will not treat her as "1 question your right to ask.” you have treated me.”

" I have a right to ask, and you The repetition of that same form will answer me," she said, quietly. of words seemed to irritate him. “Mr. Lacy, let is understand each "I will not tell you anything," other. If you really love Winifred, he answered. you shall have her, but I may be “ Then you shall not have Winiallowed to doubt your constancy.” fred.”

She spoke quite calmly, but he “How will you prevent it?" He turned paler with anger.

asked the question mockingly, with " You seem to bave forgotten a laugh that was not genuine. your relationship to Winifred," he “ I shall tell her that you were said. “ I don't see what you have engaged to me, and have, what is to say to any arrangement we may called, “jilted' me. Do you think bave made."

she will marry you then ?" He knew his power over her, he He bit his lips and looked angriknew the pride that had kept her ly at her. silent all these days, but he did not “I am quite in your power, Miss calculate upon the strength of her Gresham, I own. Do you intend love for her sister. He did not to bring an action for breach of know how the proud reserve of her promise of marriage ?" nature gave way before it.

She hardly noticed the insult. " You were engaged to be mar- All these days, even down to the ried to me.

I waive my right to moment when she met him on her you, but I wish to be told whether way home, the very fibres of her you mean to treat Winifred as you heart were so closely wound round have treated me."

him, that she still loved him. Now, She looked him full in the face, the ties that bound her to him had and he had to answer. To do him slowly snapped one by one, and justice, he was no coward, and he she had no feeling but for her sister. was quick to see his advantages. “I am in your power," she

“I really fail to understand your answered, sadly. “You hold my meaning. You have never ad- very heart in your hands." vanced any claim to my affection, His vanity misled him, pardonsyou greeted me as an ordinary ac- bly, perhaps. quaintance, you never informed " Laura,” he said, and half put your aunt or your sister of our out his hand to her.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]




She shrank back with so unmis. But the love had gone, and no takable a look of aversion that he look of Rupert Lacy's could conexclaimed bitterly : “ Laura, did jure it back. you ever love me !

“ I did love you once, but never She turned her face towards him again, Rupert, never again.” and looked at him. Through the Then, without another word, she trees, the rays of the setting sun passed him swiftly, and went home. fell softly on his handsome head, He looked after her until she was turning the fair curls into a ring of out of sight, then he drew a long glorious light, his eyes looked dark breath as if relieved, and whistled and soft, even beseeching, as in softly to himself. He was glad she days gone by.

had decided so; it wouldn't have Fickle, changeable, Rupert Lacy done to throw Winifred over, and hardly knew even now which sister he really did like the little one he wanted. He had come with the best. Laura would have been intention of marrying Laura, be rather difficult to manage, she was had met Winifred in the wood, and very much altered from what she bad been at once struck by her was when first he knew her. Poor winning grace. The changes in girl! And with this last charitaLaura that absence from hin and ble ejaculation, Rupert Lacy went years of waiting for him bad to his teniporary quarters, feeling worked, produced an unpleasant the Greshảins were best left alone effect on his æsthetic sense. Her for that evening. prompt interpretation of his feeling and consequent shrinking from him, bad given him the excuse he The pale rays of a winter sun needed. It was so pleasant to strayed into a cheerless room in a talk to Winifred, to watch the fair poor hotel of a small town. On a cheek flush as he came near, to see bed, clean but poor, lay a wasted shy love waken in the blue eyes, shrunken woman, in whose pallid once so frank and free. It was cheeks and sunken eyes only the very pleasant and very enticing, keen intuition of love could have and he did not stop to consider discovered any traces of the Winihis position until he found himself fred of this tale. virtually engaged to both sisters She had left her home three at once. He was one of those easy- months after her marriage, and going order of mortals, who pass had not been back there since. through this life pleasantly, to Perhaps her husband did not wish themselves at least, and rapidly, to continue any acquaintance with and find themselves in the other— his wife's relatives; all the reason perhaps rather to their surprise he gave was that he hated the place, sometimes.

and Winifred acquiesced in his de. He had often been in such scrapes cisions inuch as she had always before and had got out of them done with Laura. Once freed from without much trouble to himself. her relations' presence, her husAnyhow, this was the most awk. band had soon shown himself in ward of any though, and he hardly his true colors. Petted at first, knew what he wanted.

then treated with little attention, Laura would not have been a then neglected and all but deserted, woman had she not been stirred Winifred had displayed all the by his look, for she understood it. simple faith and constancy of her After all, she might have this man, nature. She never wrote a word if she would, and she had loved in complaint of her husband, she him, although he questioned it. gave accounts of herself, and gladly filled her letters with descriptions Then she took Winifred's little of the baby girl that was born to girl home. her. Laura and Miss Gresham “ What's your name, my darling never dreamed how it was with pet ?" asked Miss Gresham. their darling, and the letter sum- 6. Auntie's Winsome Winny,” moning Laura to her sister came lisped the baby lips. like a thunderbolt.

Laura's rare tears fell on the “I am afraid I am really ill, golden head, and she silently redear,” Winifred wrote, “and Ru- newed the promise she had given pert is away on business. I should to the mother, that this second like to see you, if you can come.” darling should always have a home

All was told those two loving with her. hearts by those few words.

The winter passed and spring “ Bring her back with you," came. Again Laura sat by her said the old lady to Laura, when window. The trees were already she started, “ and Rupert can come covered with a soft green mist, and after her-on business."

the hill looked purple in the distant "The child loves him, aunt,". twilight. said Laura, gently, and she re- She expected no visitor, her peated the talisman to herself as thoughts, hopes, and fears were she knelt by her sister's side and concentrated in that room, in the saw the ravages neglect and illness little bed where the second Winihad made in that sunny face. fred lay asleep. Winifred had courage to suffer, A man came to the gate, passed constancy to suffer in silence, but —hesitated--then came in and no strength to endure. She sank walked up to the door. Before he under her husband's neglect, only could knock, Laura was downstairs kept alive by her love for her little and in the garden. He was girl and her anxiety for her. When startled, but spoke, hesitatingly : she saw her in the aunt's arms, the " Laura, is it you? Can I see my tiny hands gently stroking her little girl ?" cheeks, she felt at peace.

Her With a faint sick feeling at her only anxiety had been that she heart, Laura led the way upstairs. might die before Laura came, and She signed to him to walk softly, her little girl be left to the care of but never spoke to him nor looked strangers. No word of complaint at him. When they reached the passed her lips, she clung faithfully little bed, she shaded the lamp to her hero, and Laura again forgot from the eyes of the little sleeper, her own feelings in unwavering and he bent over the cot. When thought for her sister. She uttered he drew back his head, a large tear no reproach, not even when the was lying on the golden curls, and pale face was still in death, not Laura ventured to say: even when she stood by the simple “ You will leave her with me." grave. She paid the trilling debts, He grasped her hand and said and left with the landlady a few huskily, “God bless yon, Laura! lines for the husband: “I have The world would be a better place taken my sister's child home with if there were more like you in it." me. I did not know where to send Then he went down the stairs, for you. You know where to write and out of the gate, and Laura Greto me if you wish.”

sham saw him no more in this life.




He gave a

In the exposition of Catholic also to convey a knowledge of truth, and in every vindication of many important truths not includthe conduct of the Church, through- ed in the Scripture of the time. ont the work of the miitistry, we Always it was insisted, “ Ask thy feel ourselves obliged to reject the father, and he will declare to thee ; opinion which insists that the Bible thy elders, and they will tell thee." is the sole and exclusively suffici- Under the dispensation of redempent means for publishing and pre- tion no change occurred on this serving in original purity and in- score; on the contrary, Christ tegrity the saving doctrines and brought the law to perfection, and mandates of religion. We do so confirined this system of teaching, because this opinion is not sup- speaking amidst the evidence of ported by any manifest or presump- bis miracles “as one sent by the tive proof; also because it is con- Father, having all power in heaven demned by the clearest and most and on earth.He wrote nothing, positive evidence drawn from the because a bookful of prodigious teaching of the sacred volume. miracles and incomprehensible Opening the sacred record of the mysteries could not be a proof of wisdom and will of heaven, we find its own veracity. He did not give an order of religious instruction a command to write. appointed, quite different from and command to preach, to teach. He opposed to that invented by se- did not lav the foundation of faith ceders from the Catholic Church; and the security of truth upon the we find that Christ declared many examination, judgment, and decistruths to his ministry which are

ion of man. He ordered man to not contained in the Bible; we find hear the Church, under the penalty that those truths have been deliv- of reprobation. By the manifestaered from generation by the au

tion of divine wisdom and power thoritative teaching of the minis- in his words and actions, he rentry, and that the new Scriptures dered his religion a matter of fact. were designedly left incomplete. He organized his Church so as to

It is a notorious fact that from consist of teachers to transmit the the earliest date of religion, from knowledge of this fact, and of disthe days of Adam unto Moses, men ciples to believe it. Such was the learned the truths of faith not by evidence he gave when in Judea. their own searching, not by any He announced the sublime myssystem of free thinking, not by teries of religion, all of which proany optional reading of Scrip- voked doubt and opposition; yet ture, but by the positive revelation he would not dispel the one nor of heaven's will. communicated allay the other by entering on a through the voice of those whom disputation concerning those awful God chose as his witnesses, either truths; but always appeared as under the name of patriarchs or having the power to teach, and prophets. After Moses had writ- condemning those persons as an ten his five books, this authority evil generation who sought a sign and testimony was continued to for the gratification of their stubexplain the sense of those writings; born minds, and who pretended

that conviction should spring from there is no adımission of any time
themselves, and not from faith im- or circumstance which could ren-
parted to them by authorized teach- der it necessary or befitting for
ing. That Christ, whilst on earth, men to seek a guidance to faith by
was the supreme authority and ex- the sole and exclusive means of
pounder of his word, whose instruc- sacred Scripture. The consequence
tion no Christian could presume to of all that our Saviour said and
canvass, is a principle which can- performed in regard to his ministry
not be denied ; that he could have was, as we are informed in Mark
communicated to his apostles and 16, that the apostles " went forth
to their successors the same au- preaching everywhere, and such as
thority, is a truth which his omnip- believed and were baptized were
otence places beyond doubt; and saved, whilst such as believed not
that, if he did so communicate it, are to be condemned."
all Christians would be bound to That the Scriptures do not con-
receive its instruction, is a propo- tain all the revelations which Christ
sition which need not be estab- made to his ministry is a most un-
lished by argument. Now we find deniable fact. It is not just to
it stated in Seripture, in language suppose that our Divine Master
most clear and decisive, that this would have spent three years in
very authority was transmitted to the intimate society of his apostles,
the apostles and their successors. and during the whole time would
When Christ had collected this not have communicated to them
ministry around him, he said, “As anything except what is written so
the Father sent me, I also send you.concisely and abruptly in the New
Thus the ministry became so ex- Testament. In the first chapter of
cellent that the Saviour said of it: Acts it is recorded that for forty
" He that heareth you heareth me.days after his resurrection the
Being thus qualified, thus associat- Saviour remained with his apostles,
ed, thus identified with Christ, we “speaking to them of the kingdom
are next informed of the design of God.In what book, in what
and end of this extraordinary qual- chapter, in what verse, do we read
ification. It is that the ministry the important truths thus convey-
shall “ teach all nations, during all ed? The Saviour said of his min-
ages, all things whatsoever he com- istry: "To you it is given to know
manded.Next we are assured that the mystery of the kingdom of
there shall be no alteration, no in- God.Has that mystery died
terruption, no chasm, no lapse in with them? Certainly not, for it
this order of instruction, for the interested the whole kingdom which
Saviour continues to say to the is his Church. Did the apostles
ministry, “ I am with you all days, commit it to writing? If any one
even to the consummation of the can say yes, let bim tell us when
world.Had the Lord merely said, and where they did so. The Sav-
“I am with you forever," there iour declared that a time would ar-
might be room to imagine that he rive when he would not speak in
promised his ministry only a bless- proverbs to his ministry. Where
ed eternity after the toils of this are the things written which he
life; whereas by measuring the du- said so plainly and distinctly as to
ration of his promise by the con- be a contrast to proverbs? We
summation of the world, it is man- are told that when apart, alone,
ifest that be sets no other limits to with his apostles, he did not speak
the authority and duty of teaching to them in parables. Where is the
all ages and nations, than the ex- written memorial of what he thus
istence of the universe; therefore communicated ? He defined the

[ocr errors]
« ForrigeFortsæt »