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The swearing Father reformed by his Child a SUNDAY
SCHOLAR. A DECENT, well-behaved woman came with her daughter, who was leaving the Sunday School in Drury-Lane and going to service, to return thanks for her daughter's instruction m that school. On the visitors of the school enquiring of the mother whether her daughter had derived any benefit from the instruction she had received in the School, she replied “ O yes, not only my daughter, but I trust all my family will have to bless God for this School to all eternity. Before Mary came to the School,” said she,“ my husband was a drinking, swearing man, and the whole of my family were very miserable. He spent most of his time and money at the public-house, and 1 and my children were almost famished for want of food and the necessaries of life. He was also so violent in his temper, that I scarcely ever dare ask him for any money, as he would only swear at me, and break out into a violent passion. He generally spent the early part of the week in drinking, and he would seldom give me more money on a Saturday night than would just serve to buy a little food for Sunday. I and my children," continued the mother, with tears in her eyes, “ had often nothing to eat and no money left even on a Monday morning: but some time after my daughter Mary came to this Sunday School, and had been instructed in the principles of religion, she began to reprove her father for swearing, which he would bear from her, but not from me, or any one else. One Sunday afternoon, he had been swearing very much, Mary said to him, 6 O father! if you did but know what a wicked thing it is to say such bad words, I am sure you would never say them. These words from the child (as he has since told me) cut him to the heart. He could scarcely bear himself. He went out into the yard, and wept very much to think that his child shoald be his reprover. He seemed to be very sedate afterwards, and said he should go in the evening to the place of Worship whiere the Sunday School children went. This rather surprized me,” said the mother, “ but I was much more astobished on Monday morning to see him go out before breakfast, and bring home a loaf and butter, with some tea and sugar; We sat down together to a most comfortable breakfast. After which he went to work, and came home regularly to his meals all the week. I did not know what was come to him, his beha- , viour was so very different he was quite like another man. He has ever since brought me home all his earnings on the Saturday night, and we soon became very comfortable. I at
length asked him how it was he was so much altered for the better, when he told me,' that it was Mary's words that first struck him, and led him to think of his foolish and wicked character. That by going to public worship he was still more deeply convinced of his sins, and that he had determined by the grace of God to forsake his iniquities, and lead a new life.”The good woman added, that her husband being of a good trade, could earn considerable wages, and they now lived most happily together. Her husband was now quite a reformed man, and she had no doubt of the stability of his mind, as the change had taken place more than twelve months. He now reads his bible, and is become a truly religious character.
Questions proposed by the GenERAL COMMITTEE of the SUNDERLAND SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION to each DisTRICT COMMITTEE on the formation of this Union.
Relative to the General State of the School. ist. When did your School first begin? 2d. What has been its general state with respect to numbers
and attendance ? 3d. What is your present number of Scholars, distinguishing
males and females ?. 4th. What is your present number of teachers, distinguishing
males and females? 5th. What is the general attendance of teachers ? 6th. Have you any hired teachers ? 7th. Have you a convenient place for teaching in? sth. Is a regular account kept of the attendance of teachers
and children? 9th. Do you regularly enquire after absentees? 10th, Do you visit the children when sick? 11th. By what means do you raise funds to defray the expence
of books and rent? 12th. What means do you use to obtain suitable teachers?
On Instruction. Ist. Do you class the children of equal attainments as near
as you can together? 2d. Do you use only one kind of book in a class at the same
time? 3d. Do the whole of the classes in the School stand up (to
repeat their lessons) and sit down together?
41h. Do they advance above each other in the class according
to merit? 5th. How frequently are the children exercised in spelling?
Religious Instruction. 1st. What means do you use for the religious instruction of
your children? 2d. Do you teach them by Catechisms? 3d. How frequently are they catechised? 4th. Do you pay any attention to procure their regular attend
ance under the care of their parents at public worship? 5th. Do you speak seriously to the children on religious sub
jects, and particularly when they read the scriptures ? 6th. Do you afford them any help (by form) for praying in
secret? 7th. Have you a library attached to your School to lend the elder children suitable books to read at home?
Books. ist. What books are used in your Schools ? 2d. Do you use cards, sheets, or spelling books for the lower
classes ? Sd. What sort of spelling books do you use? 4th. Are your bibles and testaments divided into small parts,
or are they only used entire ? 5th. Do you reward the children, and how frequently? 6th. Are these rewards given in books or otherwise ? 7th. Do you reward the children who have continued in the
School till going to trade or service with the scriptures? 8th. As it is proposed to form a general depository for books
suitable for Schools in the Union, are you willing to purchase from it only ?
New Schools, Provided any places within your district have not a School, will your committee, at a convenient time, make the following enquiries. Ist. Can a suitable place be obtained to teach in ? 2d. Can proper persons be obtained as teachers ? 3d. Are there a sufficient number of children likely to attend ? 4th. Can the expence be defrayed on the spot?
If not, 5th. What assistance is wanted ? Oth. Could you personally assist at the opening of these Schools in instructing the teachers, &c.
On the most NecesitoUs Objects of SUNDAY Schools.
I HAVE long wished to see some observations in your valuable Repository, or some other periodical publication, recommending and urging the friends of Sunday Schools to make it their business to seek and enquire for the most ignorant and distressed children, as the proper objects of being instructed in Wisdom's ways; and I am much gratified to find the subject noticed in the Evangelical Magazine for the present mouth.I trust some of your correspondents, more able than myself, will endeavour to satisfy the Conductors of Sunday Schools, that it is their bounden duty to go and teach those who are in reality sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death, and thereby be instrumental in snatching them as brands from the burning, for it is too evident, unless such steps are adopted, thousands yet will perish for lack of knowledge, in the present day, of Gospel light. Every person connected with a Sunday School must be acquainted with the carelesness and indiffe, rence manifested by many parents as to their children's educa. tion, and that the latter require more than common incitements to induce them to attend, even if their parents are disposed to encourage them: hence it is obvious, that those children who are permitted to break the Sabbath, and have no kind friend to say to them, “ This is the way, walk, ye in it," are in a most deplorable state indeed, and claim the immediate regard of the Christian who has tasted, that the Lord is gracious, and is anxious to see the youths about him trained up in the fear of God.
It may be said, that the work of the teachers in Sunday Schools is already very laborious, which I am most willing to admit; but I trust they will not relinquish their labours of love, because a few more souls may be committed to their care. I entertain better thoughts of them, and am persuaded, as they go on in the work, they will find much cause for joy and rejoicing, through Him who has said, The harvest shall be sure, and he that fainteth not shall reap.
I cannot refrain from stating, that any regulation in schools, which has a tendency to prevent an increase of scholars, appears to be highly improper; and the rule established in some institutions, that no child shall be admitted without an appli, cation being first made by the parent, is of that description, because many children are thereby deprived of the means of education, as their parents, rather than apply for their admission, will let them continue in ignorance and vice, which will appear from the following account, which I know to be correct;
In a populous village, not sixty miles from London, containing upwards of 1000 children, a Sunday School was established about seven years back, in which scarcely more than sixty scholars were ever collected, and for the last three years they only amounted to about thirty. A gentleman, active in promoting such institutions, observing the declining state of the school, inquired into the cause, and found, that a rule had been made to admit no child unless its parents applied to the manager, he immediately suggested the propriety of rescinding the obnoxious regulation, and giving notice, that the school was open for all who were willing to come. The hint was attended to, and more than seventy children were added in the course of a fortniglit. The school, instead of being under the direction of a single individual, is placed under the management of a committee, superintendent, &c. and continues in a flourishing state, receiving the support and approbation of the public, who were previously unconcerned about it. Similar statements might be made, but this will suffice to shew the necessity of teachers, visitors, and others, engaged in Sunday Schools, saying unto the distressed and forlorn, “ Why stand ye here all the day idle?" and by rewards and promises, induce them to enter into the service of the Lord.
Letter to the Editor. SIR, · CONSIDERING the object you have in view to be that of
conveying information respecting “ Sabbath Schools," by which, beside affording a considerable portion of interesting intelligence; the errors some have fallen into are made known, and the beneficial effects resulting from the adoption of useful plans receive publicity, that the one may be avoided, and the other more generally adopted to our universal advantage and improvement, I conceive the insertion of the following account, not altogether foreign to your intentions.
The School in which I have the honour of being a teacher is situated at the south western part of the metropolis, a short distance from that ancient and magnificent structure in which are deposited the remains of the worthy and the noble, the ingenious and the great, whose names have graced the pages of English history, in the midst of a city, which by the capaciiv of its buildings, proves that it was originally intended for the residence of the nobility, but is now crowded with the lowest order of the community; sometimes eight or more families dwelling in one house ; the poverty of theşa residents evidences