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who know all my innermost designs from the first to the last
G. BERKELEY. . My respects where they are due. I have not room forparticulars, but you know them already. My wife joins with me in service to you. Adieu. .
LETTERS to a Young GENTLEMAN intended for HOLY
ORDERS. [These letters appeared originally in a Miscellany pub.
Jished above forty years since, and now become very scarce. In reviving them, we are of opinion that many of our readers will be highly gratified.] .
LETTÉR I. I TAD it pleased God, my dear brother, to preserve the
1 life of our affectionate father, as the care of your edu, cation would not then have fallen upon me, so there would have been less occasion for any advice of mine, and consequently I should have felt less solicitude on your account: but Providence early depriving you of so great a comfort and blessing as the parental guidance, and the whole direction of your affairs devolving upon me; I have not only felt all the anxiety of a father for you, but studied every
means in my power to promote your felicity. To ihis I was naturally led by a tender sense of the unspeakable obligations I owe to our dear parents; and whose solicitous affec. tion for me shall never be forgotten, while memory holds a seat in my boom; resolved, as I am, by: God's aflistance, to act towards you, and I hope towards all others, in such a manner, as I know would give them pleasure, were they still with us; as I truft will give them plealure, if peradventure the happy spirits of the deceased have any knowledge of what passes amongst us erring mortals below.
But let me add, with great truth, that though this due regard to our parents, as well as a compassionate feeling for your orphan ftate, endeared you to me with mor: than a brother's love; yet your own behaviour has been such, as would alone have been sufficient to have interested me grearly in your welfare: friendship is now engrafted upon affec. tion; and every winning inotive thus conspires to make me anxious for your success and felicity in life. You will bear me witness, ihat I have not been deficient, hitherio, in using all my best endeavours for your service : I have not onited, in our frequent conversations together, to give you such direations respeeting your studies, and that fate of life which you have chosen, as appeared to me moft necessary and ad. vantageous. You know also very well ny opinion respecting every branch of the clerical function. I have talked with you often and freely upon this head, and pointed out to you the path which will lead to the favour of God, your own peace, and to the respect of the world; at least, so far as it is desirable.
But as the time now draws nigh, when you are to enter into holy orders, and to assume the high and arduous cha. racter of a minister of Jesus Christ, and an instructor of men in the things which concern their salvation; I have thought, that a few letters from me on the subject might not be un. acceptable; in which though perhaps I may have nothing new to say to you, noihing more than what I have repeated many times in conversation ; yet since what is written is apt to remain longer with us, at least may be preseryed always before us, I have determined to write down my sentiments to you on all the branches of the pastoral office, and to give you my opinion of the manner in which you should discharge that office; after which I will speak of the general behaviour and deportment requisite for your function; and conclude with some advice respecting the course of Rudy
you should pursue, and the books you should read; a list of which I will give you, in compliance with a request you once made to me; when, you may remember, you were complaining of the want of some fuch information:---Now though these letters may have no great merit in them, and convey to you, as we before observed, no new stock of knowledge; yet I beg you to receive them, as a pledge of my fincere affection, and most tender friendship towards you: a friendthip, my dear brother, which I pray God to continue to ihe end; and which I flatter myself we shall endeavour to preserve by the most harmonious concurrence, in every action and opinion.
I remember, that a certain bishop * begins his letters of advice to his nephew, with remarking, that “ It was much a. gainst his judgment and inclination that his nephew had made choice of divinity for his profession.” A remark, which in itself favours iliongly of a discontented walpish spirit, but which comes surely with a peculiarly bad grace, from a man “ who had arrived at the highest rank in his profession." A profession, which relations seem desirous to discountenance their children from embracing; because it is not productive of the greatest temporal emoluments, or the readiest road to exorbitant riches! Men, who talk and reason thus, if they have any reflection, ought to blush: but when churchmen join in the assertion, we cannot but cbserve, how inuch like the foolih bird, they bewray their own nefts, and cause the discerning eye to see the object of their main attention. Believe me, my dear brother, you will find the clerical function a moft unpleasing one, if you enter into it with the views of such men :--if you propose it as the stalking horse to worldly and ambitious designs, I cannot tell where you could fix to meet with more chagrin, dissatisfaction, disappointment, and malevolence. But on the other hand, allow me to say, that if you take upon you this office, as a good man ought, and a wise man will take it; and as I do from my soul believe and hope is your sincere resolution; then let me be bold to say, you will find it the most happy, as unquestionably it is the most honourable profession upon earth.
The reason is eyident, why it is not commonly found the most happy;--men do not esteem it the most honourable ; and consequently, inattentive to the one thing necdful, they run out in pursuit of extraneous objects, and bring home
Bishop Clayton in his tract, entitled “ Advice from a Bishop.”
nothing but discomfort and discontent. But do not fo, my dear brother : consider the office in which you are engaged, and the duty to which you are called: make it your fixed
and steady resolution to be conscientious, active and unwea. " ried in the proper discharge of your duty: and I will venture
to assure you of an inward peace and real satisfaction, which no other method of proceeding will or can afford. • It does not follow from hence that you are to be uncon
cerned as to the things of this world, or wholly regardless of temporal advantages. The labourer is worthy of his hire. And it is certainly consistent with the highest elevation of piety, to take a wise and prudent precaution fo to live in this world, as not to be unhappily distracted by its pressing necesfities from a just and becoming attention to the other. And I must observe, (før methinks it is a matter of niuch comfort and encouragement to all pious and zealous clergymen) that
I have never known or seen an instance of any such clergy, man, in real want or distress; except where it might well be accounted for from his own imprudent and unwise conduct ;
for all good men are not wise and prudent men; they are .. often not careful enough to blend the sagacity of the serpent
with the fimplicity of the dove. · I hope you will always unite them: make it your motto, ,Wise and harmless ;' and then while free from the uneasy solicitudes of life, you will never come under the censure which they incur; who loving this world more than God, are perpetually hunting after its emoluments, to the disgrace of their functions, the prejudice of religion, and the total destruction of their own private felicity.
Excuse the rest till the next opportunity, and believe me , always,
ON THE BURIAL OF DISSENTERS.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHIMAN'S
MAGAZINE. SIR, UNTITHOUT gazing at the novelty, or wondering how VV the letter of the Basingstoke Dissenter got place in the Orthodox Churchman's Magazine, 'I will endeavour to
divili how I few po not having them, and 065od's
Balingstoke. Thuy certainly bich, can by no me unto e
shew your readers bow little is contained in it that can illurtrate his subje&t, or prove the point, which he is fo anxious to prove.
He is concerned, he says, for the peace of society. So am 1; but I fear, we differ in our mode of pursuing it: my rule is, “ to walk worthy of the vocation wherewith I am called in all lowliness and meekness,” &c. “ endeavouring to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.” Ep. iv. 1. for without unity of spirit, I never yet saw peace. I therefore follow the Apostle's injunction, and "mark them who cause divisous” contrary to primitive doctrine, and am very cautious how I few pillows under the arms of those who sepa. rate themselves, * not having the spirit,” Jude 14. by making no difference between them, and others who have not deserted the church. The peace of God's church, that peace which surpasseth all knowledge, and understanding, and learning, I am sure is better secured in this way, than by shewing the same respect, and professing the same hope for him who is within the ark of Chrill's church, and for others who throw themselves out of it. Your correspondent of Basingstoke may be really concerned for peace, as he pro. fesses he is : but certainly his brethren who insist upon the burial of their dead at church, can by no means pretend to the same Christian spirit; when we speak “ unto them of peace, they make themselves ready for battle.” And for what is it they contend? for that which they only some. times demand, when caprice or some other motive spurs them on to the contest, and which at the same time they vilify and despise. Why do they not oblige the clergyman to baptize them, or to give them the Eucharist? Then the question upon burial would be settled, and peace would be secured. I have many a time, Sir, been furprized at the conduct of those diflenters, who seem so anxious for church hurial; and can account for their proceedings only upon one or other of these suppositions : either that in spite of their separation, and their expressions of contempt for the ministrations of the church, they are sometimes unaccount. ably compelled to own the true church of Christ,-or that they do it out of love of contention, merely to try how far, for the sake of peace, the ministers of the church will indulge their unreasonable demands,-unreasonable I say, in the extreme : for what would the dissenters say to churchmen, were the latter to bring their dead to the meeting. house, and insist on the service of the dissenters ? and if re