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were gathered together, and a most their expectations. The choir sang happy and cheerful mood pervaded the several appropriate anthems during the assembly. After tea and social inter- evening. On the evening of New Year's course, the opportunity was taken by Day Mr. F. Duesbury, assistant-superthe congregation to present Mr. Clemson intendent of the Sunday school, prewith a testimonial expressive of their sented, in the name of the teachers, a hearty appreciation of the manner in large travelling portmanteau to Mr. which he had performed the duties of Clemson, as a token of their personal his office as organist, and also of their regard and appreciation of his labours sincere and warmest wishes for his as a Sunday-school teacher. future welfare and success. It consisted of a handsome desk and a well- LIVERPOOL.–For some time past the furnished portable writing-case. The members of this Society have been very meeting was presided over by the Rev. desirous of making a unanimous effort J. Ashby, by whom, in the name of the to rid their church of the debt remaincontributors and friends, the presenta- ing upon it, which amounted only to tion was made. The chairman had about £150. To this end a committee watched the growth and development composed of several of the ladies of the of their friend's mind during the seven church, with two indefatigable secreyears of his connection with the Society taries from the gentlemen, was formed with the deepest interest, and was per- to get up a bazaar and Christmas-tree. suaded that with his excellent moral After three months' hard work their and intellectual abilities he would not preparations were completed, and the fail in realizing a career of great and bazaar was held on Wednesday and permanent usefulness. Mr. Appelbee Thursday, December 17th and 18th, in said, that as their friend had been so the schoolroom. The Rev. Dr. Bayley thoroughly grounded in the grand and of London opened the proceedings in a soul-satisfying principles of the New most appropriate speech, expressing his Church theology, he could with entire very great delight and pleasure in the confidence believe that he would be able duties which were allotted to him. He to grapple with the difficulties and had visited them only a short time temptations which he might encounter, before, and he little thought he should and overcome them, and thus establish so soon meet them again; but now that he in himself a true and noble manhood, had come, he found that what he had beand be the means of contributing very fore predicted was being realized. They largely to the wellbeing and prosperity had got the right man as the captain, of others. Mr. Ward considered it à and the ship was well manned. After privilege to take part in the meeting, speaking of the origin and uses of and to recognise the fact that not only bazaars, he concluded by wishing them had the services of Mr. Clemson been of every success, and expressed his earnest a commercial value, but of a religious hope that the result would prove even and refining character, and he felt sure more than they expected. Mr. Pixton, that the proceedings of that evening the oldest living member of the Society would be long and lovingly cherished in and one of its warm and long-tried the memory of their friends. He heartily friends, then followed with earnest exwished him “God-speed.' Earnest ad- pressions of sympathy in the labour and dresses commendatory of Mr. Clenison's abundant desires for success. Mr. Til musical ability, and of his persevering son, on behalf of the Society, then efforts to benefit the choir, the Sunday asked those present to join with him in school, the Band of Hope, and the according to the Rev. Dr. Bayley a hearty church generally, were given by Messrs. vote of thanks for his great kindness in Duesbury, Cooke, Morley, Smithard, travelling so far in the depth of winter Turton, and others, to which Mr. Clem- to perform the opening ceremony of son, in accepting the testimonial, replied their bazaar. This was ably seconded in a feeling and graceful speech, thank- by Dr. Sheldon and supported by Mr. ing all for their good wishes and kind Parkes. After making a brief reply expression of good feeling in regard to the reverend gentleman declared the himself ;. hoping that he might become bazaar to be ily opened; but before more worthy of their love and esteem, the gentlemen had time to descend and be able to justify in some measure from the platform, Dr. Costine, who,
though not a receiver of the doctrines, dom of nature exercised a controlling loves to aid every good cause, came and power over the one below it, that is to said he would make the first start by say, that the mineral is subject to the presenting their minister with £5 vegetable, the vegetable to the animal, towards their funds. Earnest work was and the animal to man, not of course then begun by every attendant at the absolutely so, but to a very great exstalls, and a spirited sale was kept up tent; therefore, this being so, he saw each day. The treasurer's balance sheet no difficulty in assuming that nature's reveals the money obtained with all ex- laws are affected by prayer, inasmuch as penses paid at £200, so that the Society prayer is the lifting up of the soul in has now a church free of debt, and if earnest desire and intention, not for only the goodwill and active zeal now selfish but universal ends, and appealmanifested is sustained a good future ing to the highest of all the powers of awaits its efforts.
nature in favour of a suspension of a
lower law for the good of suffering LONDON (Dalston). The annual humanity, or for the benefit of some meeting of this Society was held on individual standing in great need of the January 7th in the Albion Hall, and assistance sought. He then went on to was very largely attended. The reports show that in order to secure success in presented by the various officers were the slightest degree our prayer ust be all of a very satisfactory character. true prayer, and true prayer was no Several new members have been added mere lifting up of the intellect and the during the past year ; a goodly number offering of petitions clothed in the most of books and New Church periodicals beautiful and expressive language ; nor have been sold; the treasurer has a was it even the will and the understandgood balance in hand, and the Sunday ing conjoined, but that in addition to school is flourishing, The Building both these there must be an over powerFund received especial attention, and it ing sense of our desire to become, in was resolved to hold a bazaar during God's hands, instruments for the doing the current year, to dispose of the of good to our fellow-creatures from the goods left over from the former effort, most unselfish of motives. A very spirited and such other articles as might here- discussion followed, several gentlemen after be contributed. The old officers contending that our prayer was of no were with a few exceptions re-elected, avail to the rest of mankind only in so the principal alteration being the elec- far as it affected them, through ourtion of Mr. R. R. de Relton of 5 Bar- selves, because prayer, they considered, trip Street, Homerton, E., as secretary was of no immediate value to any one in the place of the late esteemed Mr. but the petitioner, and that any good R. Castle. A very pleasant and en- that might ensue to outsiders was due couraging evening was spent, and the to the changed state of the man himSociety is to be congratulated upon the self; they, however, couldn't see how satisfactory progress it has made since any direct phenomenal results could be the removal to Dalston.
expected. The minister closed the
debate by an eloquent appeal in favour MANCHESTER (Peter Street). — The of prayer, declaring his conviction that first meeting of the Essay and Discussion before many generations have passed Society was held on January 7th, the sub- there will be men able to offer
such ject being, "Can Prayer affect in any way prayer as he had indicated, and that the the Operation of Nature's Laws ?" The effect upon the laws of nature would be Rev. Č. H. Wilkins opened the subject such as would bring about a more rapid in his usual expansive style, contending amelioration of our condition here than that the whole of nature's laws were could possibly ensue if prayer were under the control of the laws of the abandoned. spiritual world, and that it was pos- Our second meeting was held on Wedsible to bring about a suspension of a nesday the 14th, the subject being, “Is law of nature in answer to real and Phrenology a True Science?” The earnest prayer.
He also contended that debate was very ably opened in favour of not only were the laws of nature subject the truth of it, and some very energetic as a whole to the laws of the spiritual arguments were offered in opposition; the world, but also that each separate king- conclusion, however, to which the meeting almost unanimously agreed was, which is right through all their future that while many imperfections existed, life. He called upon the parents present there seemed to be undeniable proof to co-operate with the teachers in a in favour of the truth claimed for it. work of such importance. Mr. Thomas
Peake also addressed the meeting in a RAMSBOTTOM.— The annual tea party brief and interesting speech. A large and recital of the Sunday school at number of recitations and dialogues this place were held on Christmas Day. interspersed with select pieces of music A substantial repast was provided in followed, and the whole proceedings the school, to which about four hun- appeared to give the utmost satisfaction dred and thirty persons sat down. As to the audience. the school is too small to accommodate the numbers who usually attend the re
Birth cital the Co-operative Hall was hired for the occasion, where there was a Gloucester Gate, Regent's Park, the wife
On January 18th, at 6 Oval Road, much larger gathering. The Rev. S. of Henry Higham of a son. Pilkington presided, and in the course of a brief address remarked that when he remembered that he
Marriage. dresiding at that annual festivity for At the New Church, Nottingham, the fourteenth time, he was reminded September 20th, 1879, by Rev. C. H. how swiftly time was gliding on, and Wilkins of Manchester, Mr. John how important it was that they all Johnson, jun., to Ellen Angeline, only should make timely preparation for the daughter of Mr. J. D. Beilby. great event when time with them would be no more. Every Christmas Day ought to find them growing in love and grati
Obituary. tude to that great and holy God who out On the 8th December last, Alice, wife of love and compassion to fallen man of James Riley of Accrington, passed took upon Him our human nature that into the spiritual world in the fiftyHe might conquer sin and death and third year of her age. Mrs. Riley's hell, and bring life and immortality to health became impaired in early womanlight by the Gospel. He exhorted those hood; and succeeding years found her who had begun to live for God and less and less able to fulfil those active heaven to think over the great event duties of life in which all truly Christian which then being celebrated minds find their delight and reward. throughout Christendom, and draw Indeed, for some years before her departfrom it fresh zeal for continued perse- ure, our sister was a hopeless invalid, verance in a righteous life. Those who needing the constant care and watchhad not yet made a profession of reli- fulness of her family, which however gion he entreated to make that day a were rendered with a patience and tenturning-point in their career, and, per- derness that never failed. In such cirsisting in the right course, they would cumstances life could have but little not only have a comforting hope of a attraction for one so severely afflicted. better life beyond the grave, but they Nevertheless Mrs. Riley was able in would also derive greater pleasure even patience to possess her soul, while she from such innocent amusement as was thankfully anticipated the rest towards promised in the programme before him, which she felt she was slowly but Mr. John Ashworth subsequently ad- surely tending. Her end was peace. dressed the meeting on the work of the Sunday school. The Sunday-school Miss Agnes Ann Hall, of Melbourne, teacher, he said, endeavoured to incul- Derbyshire, was called suddenly from cate in the minds of the children a sense this life on January 2nd. She had en. of the duty of obedience, of regarding tered upon her twenty-first year. She the comfort of others in all their con- delighted in the clear doctrines of the duct, and of gaining a knowledge of the New Church. The Lord had highly Sacred Scriptures, so that they might gifted her with musical talents. Sin. be well supplied with instructions as to cerely beloved, her loss is deeply how they should act so as to do that both in the Church and in the town.
The general purpose of this psalm is to inspire confidence in the Providence of God, by showing that, however its course may be clouded by a seeming imperfection, its justice and goodness will be ultimately displayed. A seeming imperfection in the ways of Providence the Psalmist finds in the circumstance that the wicked are sometimes seen in the enjoyment of prosperity and great power, while the righteous are, on the other hand, occasionally the subjects of adversity and oppression. This apparent inversion of order in the operations of Him who is the Disposer of events is however only temporary; for “the end of the wicked shall be cut off, but the inheritance of the upright shall be for ever.” From this the sacred writer takes occasion to inculcate contentment, meekness, and patience. “Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the
herb. Trust in the Lord, and do good. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way. For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.” But the prospect of future prosperity is not the only consolation of the good who suffer. Their present condition, however humble, is better than that of the evil, however exalted. “ A little that a righteous man hath, is better than the riches of many wicked.” And
a little will always be provided for those who commit their way
unto the Lord. “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.” Even the present state of the righteous is less prostrate than the future state of the wicked. “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord : and he delighteth in His way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down : for the Lord upholdeth him with His hand.”
The states and changes described in this psalm, and its consolations and promises also, are, in their natural sense, to be understood in relation to the Israelites and Jews, who looked only to worldly prosperity and an earthly inheritance. So far, however, as Christians partake of the worldly-mindedness of that people, they will entertain doubts respecting the goodness of Providence in the unequal distribution of temporal things, and especially in the bestowal of wealth and honours on the evil and withholding them from the good. If God is equally in the least and in the greatest things of Providence as well as of creation, our fortunes in this life cannot be beyond the limits of His care and control. And however unequally His bounty may be distributed, it is equal in the end or purpose which its distribution is intended to effect : it may be unequal when viewed in relation to the body and to time, but it is without doubt perfectly equal in its relation to the soul and to eternity.
Amongst the Israelites prosperity was to a certain extent the immediate effect, and therefore the sign, of obedience to the Divine commands; and their rewards and punishments were received in the life of the body. The wicked who spread himself like a green baytree, literally passed away; and the peaceful end of the perfect man was the tranquil life of a prosperous old age. All this was consistent with the legal obedience which the Israelitish people were required to render to God, and the temporal recompense which their obedience secured. But it would be injurious and perhaps destructive of the spiritual life of the Christian to have a necessary connection established between his spiritual state and his temporal condition. Little of the state of the inward life of the Christian comes to his manifest perception; and much of his trust and vigilance and perseverance depends on the general, and therefore obscure, knowledge he is able to have of his own state while he remains in the present probationary world. Every one is able to know, and to know with certainty, whether his inward and essential state is good or evil, and this every one is able to know by attending to his motives and delights. Beyond this it is