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Mr. Dare's Report of the Leicester some houses for two or three years Mission is not less interesting than Mr. before any visible effect has been proBishop's. The Mission has been effi- duced. Then some of the family would ciently conducted at a cost of about join one of the classes, or attend the £150. Connected with it is a Sewing Sunday-school, or come to the evening Society, with an average attendance of service. Visiting is the great means of 40 persons. About 500 articles made influencing the poor. They require by the society are yearly sold to the continual encouragement in their efforts poor at the price of the materials. An for improvement. They must not be adult male class was attended in the deserted even after repeated failures." winter by nearly 60 persons. Popular Mr. Dare's experience respecting party lectures on philosophical subjects were spirit has not been as happy as that delivered once a fortnight. The boys' of Mr. Bishop. The Report mentions instruction society has taught about 80 several instances of the attempts of the pupils. The female adult class num- clergy of Leicester to thwart his usebers 30. The girls' instruction society fulness. As specimens of the degradhas had an average attendance of 100. ing superstition and bigotry which he “Scarcely an evening passed without sometimes encounters, we close our some being denied admittance for want notice of his labours with another exof room." Notwithstanding the great tract:-"In a house where I had been depression of the times, £60 has been requested to call, I was informed that collected by the Provident Society. The two clergymen had just made a visit. attendants on the reading-room have One of them urged a sick inmate, the considerably increased. Let the com- father of the family, to confess to the posers of tracts for the people listen to other, as he would then banish all his Mr. Dare's suggestion as to what is sins from him, like sinking them into a most wanted: “We want healthful well. These words were used by the tracts on social and political economy; invalid's wife in giving me an account on the domestic affections and house of the circumstances. The sick man hold virtues; on sanitary and scientific refused to make confession, and very subjects, and tales of fancy and imagi- naturally inquired, how it was that nation. It is by the distribution of one of the reverend gentlemen couldn't these, with others of a liberal tone in give absolution as well as the other p' theology, that the bigot, the quack and "Oh, 'replied the negative divine, Mr. the demagogue, will be driven from is a priest; he has received the society, and the vicious taste rectified power from Almighty God; I have that hungers after downright deep not.' The following fact illustrates romances. Mr. Dare's description of what manner of spirit' is at work for the Sunday-school, which works most the extirpation of heresy and the resuccessfully, is interesting: “It has vival of the religious sentiment amongst rather a motley appearance. Wives the fallen masses of our poorer brethren. and widows in spectacles, nurse girls, One day a curate had just made a call factory hands, and poor little children, where I usually visit. Some statewhose appearance plainly tells of home ments had been put forth by him which wretchedness,' make up the weekly were controverted by the inmates of assemblage.” The Sunday evening ser- the house. Oh,' he answered, “I vice has been well attended during the come to give instruction, if you are winter, and Mr. Dare desires to gather willing to receive it, not to enter into out of the attendants communicants for controversy. Argumentation with you the Lord's Supper, in the hope of che- would only degrade my office and fatter rishing in their minds the religious your vanity.' * Why do you sentiment, strengthening the ties that attend chapel ?' asked a clergyman of attach them to the humble house of a poor woman; 'you won't hear the prayer, and refuting the slander that gospel there; you should come to church the supporters of the Mission do not to obtain the truth. She inquired how believe in Jesus Christ. The meetings she could be assured of that. “Oh,' of the ladies' Working Society are usu- he replied, the Bishop will see to that: ally attended by their indefatigable he makes us preach the truth.' • Well,' Missionary, who reads on these occa- said another to a poor old person who sions his monthly reports. During the has attended our Mission chapel from year he has paid 4000 visits. Of all its opening, you may live seven years, men, the Domestic Missionary must but, if you do, I won't read the Burial not weary in well-doing. Mr. Dare Service over you.'" says, “I have continued my calls at

OBITUARY.

1848. Oct. 30, at Dorchester, Mas- details were arranged by himself. He sachusetts, aged thirty, Rev. HIRAM attempted important changes in his WITHINGTON. Of this estimable Ame- church, resolving it into an association rican minister we derive the particulars for religious improvement and benevothat follow from an affectionate tribute lent action. In his habits, he was simto his memory, in the last number of ple almost to plainness. In his dress, his the Christian Examiner, from the pen domestic arrangements, his social inof his friend, Rev. Alonzo Hill. tercourse, his pastoral walks, his pulpit

Mr. Withington was born in Dor- exhibitions, he was the farthest possible chester, July 29, 1818. He was edu- removed from a finical elegance. Yet cated in the schools of his native vile he possessed a peculiar refinement of lage, and at the early age of seventeen taste and feeling. He was gentle in his became an instructor in the grammar manners, speech and thought, loving in and Sunday-schools which he had at- his affections, tender in his feelings and tended. In the latter, he was a favour- most tender of the feelings of others, ite with young and old. When it was true in his attachments, pliant in his his turn to give the general lesson to temper, and yielding in his disposition the children in the school, so attractive to a certain point, to any extent of inwas his little sermon, so simple and convenience, playful almost to hilarity beautiful, delivered in a tone so im- within the bounds of innocent freedom; pressive and sweet, that they would but beyond those bounds, when truth cluster around him and hang upon his and duty demanded it, he was fixed words. His thoughts turned from an and firm and unyielding as a rock. early period to the ministry. There His, too, was the true spirit of devowere many difficulties to be overcome tion; his piety was unaffected and in the preparatory studies. He picked childlike. In his parochial duties he up a little Latin here and there, and was most faithful, inviting his people laid aside the small income of his to his own house, visiting them in their school. By the mediation of Mr. Hall, scattered homes, taking the superinhis minister, he was introduced to Dr. tendence of their schools, addressing Allen, of Northboro', with whom he them in religious meetings, lecturing spent two years as a pupil - assistant. before their Lyceums. Considering He then entered the Divinity School at his broken health, the amount of work Cambridge, where he spent three years. he achieved was almost incredible; yet He left Cambridge in July, 1844; and he thought he had done nothing. He the dissertation which he read at the married, but in one short year his home annual visitation, “on the Mystical was desolate: he found himself a wi. Element in Religion," awakened high dower, the father of an orphaned babe, expectations. It was published in the whose mother, the object of his early Christian Examiner, November, 1844. attachment, was in her early grave. He settled at the close of that year at When the heats of summer came on, Leominster, as minister of the First his health gave way. He dragged his Congregational church. He better loved enfeebled frame about with the slow to think than to read and study. His martyrdom of the invalid. Notwithintellect was exceedingly active. He standing sickness and bereavement, he learned almost by intuition. His dis- met his friends with his accustomed courses were composed with great ra- smile, and to the outward eye went on pidity. Compositions which enchained his way as cheerfully as ever. After a the attention of his hearers were thrown time he married again, and gathered off at a sitting. He possessed great about him anew the comforts of a home. richness of fancy. He was an habitual His illnesses soon became frequent; he student and an ardent lover of Nature. had pressed the feeble frame too far. His early sermons were lavishly adorn- Finding himself utterly unequal to his ed, and possessed more poetry than weighty charge, he sought and received theology. This was a fault which he a dismission from his people, July 2, soon corrected. His views of life were, 1848. Their sorrow was expressed by notwithstanding his poetical tempera- their votes and by their continuance of ment, eminently practical. His plans the salary to the day of his death. It of usefulness were sober. He was the was his hope, after a few months' rest, life of his Sunday-school, and all its to resume his labours in a smaller field of duty. He retired to his native vil- rents were Presbyterians, and members lage. The summer passed and the au- of the Old Abbey chapel in that town. tumn advanced amidst alternate hopes When he was quite young, an interestand fears. With the autumn came sick- ing event occurred in connection with ness and prostration of mind and body: the chapel. Mr. Theophilus Edwards his fine powers were all unstrung. Af- had been the minister more than twenty ter weeks of almost unconsciousness, years. But in the year 1794, he was he sunk to rest, October 30, 1848. He called by the Mint congregation to rewas buried, in a spot chosen by him- move to Exeter, where he became the self, in his own parish at Leominster. successor of the Rev. Joseph Bretland. He was followed by a long procession A vacancy was thus created in the miof his people and friends to the place nisterial office, and the Rev. William of his rest. It was the noon of a beau- Evans, who was then temporarily suptiful autumnal day, and the sun with- plying the pulpit at Bridgewater, was out a cloud was looking down upon a invited to preach. The precise views congregation in tears, for he was now of Mr. Edwards on doctrinal subjects preaching to them his last and most had not been declared to his congregaimpressive discourse. The young pas- tion (having rarely, if ever, preached a tor who had come to them in the full doctrinal discourse), but it soon became tide of life and hope three years before, evident that the new candidate was who had walked among them so holily a decided Unitarian. This caused a and unblameably, and won their affec- schism in the congregation ; and it tions, now led them into the beautiful rose to such a height, that a secession grave, where he had so often followed of some of its members was the conseto soothe and sustain. There he sleeps quence. The parents of the subject of beneath the soil, while the spring flower this inemoir, and all his family, who above him in its early decay shall image formed a majority of the congregation, to the heart his brief life, and the pine took part with Mr. Evans, and he was trees that wave over him in their pe- consequently chosen minister. This inrennial verdure shall be the emblems cident shews the interest which the faof the influence which he has left be- mily of Mr. Lang took in liberal Chrishind.

tianity. How largely he imbibed their

spirit, was evinced in the warm interest Feb. 20, at his residence, St. Mar- he took throughout his life in the promo. tin's, Leicester, Peter Colston, Esq., tion of Unitarian Christianity. When aged 68. Through a long series of first he entered upon the active busiyears he suffered at intervals from the ness of life, he was engaged with an attacks of a painful disorder, and for uncle at Plymouth, who was always a more than twelve months previous to kind friend to him. Here he took a his death he was afflicted with total great interest in the affairs of the Uni. blindness; but, like so many who have tarian chapel, and, having given some gone before him, he found his best attention to psalmody, became a memsupport under the trials of life in a ber of the choir. About the year 1806, firm belief of the enlightened and he removed to Bristol, where he enconsolatory views offered by Unita- tered vigorously into mercantile purrian Christianity. He possessed also suits, which he carried on with success another source of mental peace, even until his retirement from business, about more important-a good conscience. the middle of last year. He always In all private relations his conduct maintained a high character for prinwas exemplary, and as a master he ciple and integrity in his dealings, and secured the attachment and respect was held in great esteem by all who of his workmen in a very high degree. knew him. He spent a large portion This was the result of his uniform prac- of his time in travelling through South tice of justice and humanity-points not Wales, where he was universally bealways sufficiently attended to by em- loved. In fact, so highly was he apployers. It was his rule in every case preciated, and so kind and affectionate to do, not the thing that appeared in were his manners, that it has fresome respects desirable, but the thing quently happened, when a dispute octhat was right.

curred between neighbours in the in

terval of his journeys, it was left till Feb._20, at Devon House, Kings- he came to heal the breach, and to down, Bristol, SAMUEL LANG, aged 65. bring those who had been estranged Mr. Lang was born at Tavistock, in for awhile together again. He was geDevonshire, in the year 1785. His pa- nerous almost to a fault. He was an active member of the Lewin's Mead soci- only recently manifested itself. He was ety for upwards of forty years, during singularly patient and resigned during which time he filled the office of treasu- his decline and fatal sickness, and rer and deacon, was also secretary to the shewed the consoling power of the Western Unitarian Society, a feoffee of religion which had been his guide the Stokes Croft charity, and was a zeal- through life. ous supporter of the various schools con- Bristol, March 2, 1849. nected with the chapel. In his political opinions he was a reformer. He took

Feb. 7, at his residence, Hull, HERa warm interest in the late Sir Samuel

BERT Seaton, Esq., aged 66 years. He Romilly's cause, when he contested the had for many years retired from busirepresentation of the city; and had all

ness, and devoted his time and services professors of liberal opinions been as

to the improvement and well-being of consistent as himself, that great man the town. He was an earnest and would have been Member for the city. devoted attendant on Unitarian worHe was very diffident of his own pow. ship. In his private relations, he was ers, and always shunned display, pre- a kind master and an affectionate husferring rather to follow than to lead; band. His remains were attended to but a man more active and diligent in the cemetery by a long train of townsany thing he undertook, never lived.

men and fellow-worshipers, anxious to On his retirement from business, he pay the last token of respect to his was looking forward to pass the re

memory mainder of his days in the peace and quiet of his family. He was singularly fond of children. It was his custom, Feb. 28, MARY ANN VENNING, elder to the close of his life, to have many daughter of the late Ann and John Venof his children and grandchildren with ning, of Walthamstow and Milk Street. him on a Sunday. It was hoped and fondly believed by those who best March 3, Miss Watson, of Lansdown knew Mr. Lang's worth, that many Crescent, eldest surviving daughter of years of usefulness and tranquil hap- the late Rev. Thomas Watson. piness were yet in store for him; but it was otherwise ruled by the Great March 12, at Homerton, of consumpDisposer of events. He sank under the tion, aged 24, Louisa, youngest daugheffects of a malignant disease which had ter of Mr. E. I. FIELD.

MARRIAGES.

1848. Feb. 18, at George's meeting, March 5, at the General Baptist chaExeter, by Rev. Thomas Hincks, Mr. pel, Worship Street, by Rev. J. C. Pinson to Miss MARGARET FREDRAY. Means, Mr. R. GREEN, of Woolwich, to

HENRIETTA Matilda, youngest daughFeb. 20, at Mansfield,

Rev. W. Lin, ter of the late Mr. George BRACE, of wood, of London, to Fanny, second Crown Street, Finsbury. daughter of B. NEWMAN, Esq., of the former place.

March 6, at St. Michael's, Toxteth, Feb. 21, at Wareham, Dorset, by Liverpool, William Henry, eldest son Rev. W. Smith, F.L.S., Rev. Thomas of PETER MARTINEAU, Esq., to LUCY, Hunter, of Chesterfield, to Miss Fil- daughter of Thomas Martin, Esq. LITER, of Trigon Hill, near Wareham.

Feb. 23, at the Old meeting, Ipswich, March 7, at Upper Brook - Street by Rev. T. F. Thomas, Mr. ROBERT chapel, Manchester, by Rev. J. G. Payne to Miss REBECCA KING.

Robberds, HENRY TURNER ROBBERDS,

youngest son of the above, to MARIA March 4, at Bank-Street chapel, Bol- Letitia Matthews, professor of music, ton, Mr. SQUIRE TAYLOR to Miss ELLEN daughter of Mr. Samuel Matthews, surDean.

geon, of Manchester.

THE

CHRISTIAN REFORMER.

No. LIII.]

MAY, 1849.

[Vol. V.

MORELL'S PHILOSOPHY OF RELIGION.* THERE is no subject more interesting and important than that of the Philosophy of Religion. The views entertained on that subject must have a powerful influence both upon the formation of a religious faith and the cultivation of a religious life. As is the character of men's philosophy of religion, so will, in a eat measure at least, be the relation in which they stand toward Christianity. It is not necessary, in order to this, that a man should have professedly directed his attention to such philosophy; for the very crudity and scantiness of his notions with regard to it, will have as distinct an influence upon him as the most profound investigation could.

Important as this subject must at all times be, it seems to us especially important at the present time. In our age and country, religion is evidently in a state of transition; and the safety of that agitation by which its changes are accompanied, mainly depends upon the nature of those philosophical principles in consistency with which the transition may

be effected. It was under the impression of these sentiments that we opened the book whose title we have given below. We rejoiced that a book with this title had been published by so respectable a writer as Mr. Morell, hoping that it would tend to settle, on a satisfactory basis, some of the religious questions which just now imperatively require to be settled. We have been disappointed. Though displaying considerable talent, the work is wanting in the depth and grasp of thought which the subject demands. Its great merit is its clearness; but it owes this quality rather to the limitation of its views than to the mastery attained by its author over the topics he discusses. We doubt whether the character of Mr. Morell's mind would fit him, under any circumstances, for the adequate fulfilment of the task he has undertaken; but the position he has chosen to occupy renders what fitness he might possess almost entirely abortive. It is his constant attempt to patch up a reconciliation between opposite theological opinions; and he thus deprives himself of the force appropriate to either side of his case. Instead of the inde. pendent and vigorous effort we could desire, we meet with untenable compromises, by which heterodox doctrines are clothed in orthodox forms; and hesitating inquiries which halt between the premises and their legitimate conclusions. It is true that the theory of religion advocated by Mr. Morell does not, in the same sense, possess the

The Philosophy of Religion. By J. D. Morell, A. M. London-Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans. 8vo. Pp. 427. 1849.

VOL. y.

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