« PoprzedniaDalej »
recent Resolutions to supply the poor with Bibles at 1s. 6d. each, which cost the Society 2s. 6d., and Testaments for 6d., which cost the Society 1s. Id.
There is now no excuse for Christians residing in villages, towns, or cities, to allow a single family to remain destitute of the words of eternal life. When shall every family in England, and Wales, Scotland, and Ireland possess the Holy Scriptures?
It is not to be expected that seed time and harvest can occur together. The positive results of the circulation of the tract, like the Loan of the New Testament, will be known a few months hence better than they can be at present. Already some encouraging facts have come to the knowledge of your Committee.
The interest evinced by many Christians in the progress of the work, greatly encourages the Missionaries. One Missionary says:
"A clergyman met me yesterday, and said he was happy to find I had been so extensively circulating the tract on intemperance, and hoped it would be made a blessing to many persons.
"At one house at which I ventured to call, a gentleman opened the door. When I saw him I apologised. He looked kindly at the tract, and said, 'I rejoice to see you so employed: I dined this week with a gentleman, a friend of mine, and we had one of these at the table: it was the subject of a conversation: it is very much to the purpose: 'Go on, my friend,' said he, ‘and I wish you great success.
Some of the direct results have been reported by the Missionaries in the following extracts :
"A notorious drunkard living in having had a tract left with him, after reading it said to a friend, 'This is an excellent tract, it is true to the letter. I mean to go and read it in the tap-room, so that all may hear.'" "On giving one to a young man he expressed his thankfulness, saying, That he saw one the evening before in a coffee-house,' and inquired where it might be purchased; 'for,' said he, 'it contains more useful information than any one I have seen before.'
"Also I was met by a young woman in the street. She said her father was very much obliged to me for the tract, and after commending it, said that he had come to the determination to join the Temperance Society."
"On seeing the tract, the wife, a pious woman, requested as a favour that I would call and speak to her husband, who is a great drunkard. Although he has a permanent situation and a good salary, and she a good business, and they have no family, yet, in consequence of his being addicted to drink, they are in debt. On her account, I went the same evening, and set before the husband the awful state he was in, and the dreadful consequences which must follow such a course, if not abandoned. He paid great attention to what was said, and 'could not,' he said, 'gainsay it; and before I left, he came to a determination totally to abandon it, and to go to a place of worship. I read a portion of the Scriptures and prayed with them; he and his wife thanked me, and begged I would repeat my visit. I have called once, and was glad to hear that he had put his determination into practice."
"One instance of its influence has come to my knowledge during the week. I had left a tract at a house in —, in the -. When the husband came home he read the tract, and was so much pleased with it, that he took it immediately to his father in London; the father was equally
interested with the tract. There was a Public Meeting of the Temperance Society held the same evening, which they agreed to attend, and were so deeply interested in what they heard that, without any solicitation, they united themselves to the Society."
"One Missionary observes, while distributing in -street, one of the Christian Instruction Society's Visitors came to me and asked what it was I was giving away; on showing him the tract he said, 'I am truly thankful.' While conversing with him, another gentleman came to us and said, he also was truly glad, for a friend of his had read it, who was in the habit of spending 50l. per year in drink, but the reading of this tract had led him to abstain from intoxicating liquors."
Another Missionary reports that
"A Mr.who has been one of the greatest drunkards, and who has not entered a place of worship for twenty years, has been so much impressed by the tract that he has apparently become a sober man, attends the house of God on the Sabbath, and on Wednesday evening."
Another reports, that six persons, after reading the tract, determined to abandon spirits altogether and join the Tee-total Society.
"A female who had received a tract during my visits, informed me that her husband was determined to act upon the advice laid down in the tract to the abandonment of spirit-drinking altogether. Calling at No. 1, a young woman came to the door, to whom I gave a tract, making inquiry if there were any lodgers in the house. She replied, I'll go and see.' Waiting some time, an elderly female came and said, 'Oh, Sir, I was longing so to see the person who left the tract here, as I wanted to tell him the benefit which has been derived from one of these tracts. A young man, who had been a most abandoned character for drunkenness, till about three weeks ago, (through a person leaving one of these tracts,) was led to see his error, and determined totally to abstain, which he has done; and though it is only three weeks back, yet so great a change has been wrought, that whereas before this time he was nearly naked, having nothing decent to stand upright in, his character gone, and he as miserable as he well could be, yet now he has a decent and good suit of clothes on, and his friends are exceedingly glad to see the change. Feeling desirous of ascertaining the truth of this statement, I inquired his name, and his place of abode, which she gave me.
The same Missionary says, "Having made inquiries respecting the case alluded to in my last Report, I have to inform you that the statements there made were fully borne out by himself, accompanied by the following additional facts. It appears that for the last five years he has professed Deistical principles, but having been convinced of the evil of his conduct in relation to his temporal affairs, and finding by an adherence to the principles laid down in the tract, what benefit has been derived to himself and family, he has been induced to obey the exhortations there given, and to examine the Holy Scriptures for himself. He has also promised to attend the house of God with his wife, who is a pious woman. He has five children, whom, to the present, he appears to have neglected. By way of confirmation of the benefit derived, in relation to his temporal circumstances, I might mention the fact, that while conversing with him, the tailor came in to measure him for some new clothes. He thanked me for the trouble I had taken, and would be glad to see me any time I went that way."
Thus have your Committee at their Half-yearly Meeting again had the pleasure of reporting to you some of their special opera tions, leaving for the Annual Meeting their ordinary work, and what has related to the Fairs and Penny Theatres. The state of London-the state of the whole kingdom, requires at this moment, the serious thoughtfulness, labours, and prayers of all sincere Christians. If error is spreading, truth should be made to outstrip it in its flight; if ignorance is degrading and debasing millions of our population, knowledge—especially the knowledge of the Gospel, should be taught from house to house, humbly confiding in the Divine blessing for its efficiency to elevate and to make the people happy and while those whose duty and office it is to look to whatever in commerce or politics may bless and give stability to the commonwealth are pursuing their course, be it the concern of every Christian of every denomination, whether bearing office in the Church of Christ or not, who loves his fellow-creatures, who loves his country, who wishes well to the prosperity of Britain, and the true glory of the British throne, to unite in a holy and loving brotherhood for the advancement of the kingdom of our Divine Lord: believing and acting under the influence of such belief that "Righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people."
RESOLUTIONS OF THE BRITISH AND FOREIGN BIBLE
THE following are the Resolutions of the British and Foreign Bible Society adverted to at page 13:
"I. To offer on the part of the Society to supply schools for the poor of every kind with copies of the Nonpareil Bible, which costs the Society 2s. 6d., at eighteen-pence; the New Testament (Brevier), which costs the Society 1s. 1d., at sixpence.
"II. To withdraw the restriction hitherto laid upon all copies supplied for Sunday-schools, and to allow the children to carry the books home, and to furnish themselves with copies at the prices named. The children in all other schools, it is designed, shall enjoy the same advantage.
III. To allow, on the part of the Auxiliaries, Branches, and Associations, a general sale of this particular Bible and Testament, at the peculiarly low prices that have been named.
"P.S. The above measures will take effect from the 1st of February."
Macintosh, Printer, 20, Great New Street, London.
CITY MISSION MAGAZINE.
SUNDAY BAKING IN THE METROPOLIS.
A SOCIETY has now been in existence about three years, whose object is to abolish Sunday-baking, and to obtain the Sabbath as a day of rest and religious improvement, for journeymen bakers. We take a lively interest in whatever is calculated to benefit any class of our metropolitan population, although we cannot commit ourselves to the approval of all the measures that may be adopted to effect so desirable an object. It is to be deeply deplored that London should be a scene of temptation and of wickedness, to so many young men from Scotland, whose minds have been early imbued with religious knowledge and feeling. A very large proportion of journeymen bakers are Scotchmen, and many of them, when away from the home and the land of their fathers, yield to the power of temptation, and soon cast off even the outward profession of religion, and of regard for the Sabbath: many, however, resist the force of temptation, and other unfavourable circumstances, and retain their integrity and piety before God and men. It appears that there are between eight and nine thousand journeymen bakers residing within the Bills of Mortality. The ministers of the Scottish Kirk, and of the Secession Church in the metropolis, should especially look after these stray and lost sheep. One minister of the Secession Church, whom we know, lately held a public service in the afternoon of the Lord's-day, especially to address journeymen bakers; and other ministers are giving serious and kind attention to this class of their fellowcitizens. How many classes in London are claiming our attention ! What a field for Christian labour is London ! The enemy is at work ploughing and sowing the neglected soil. Is he, Christian, to keep possession of the ground he has no right to, and will you permit him to increase the extent of his territory by not previously occupying it? There is much land to be possessed. If you will not arise and cultivate it to the glory of God, and the benefit of man, others will seize upon it, and sow the poisonous seeds of Infidelity and vice, and thus blaspheme the name of God and destroy the souls of the people.
It may be necessary to say that the Committee of the Sundaybaking Abolition Society, have sent a copy of the following document, to the clergy and ministers of the metropolis, and we publish it with pleasure in our columns, without committing ourselves to the approval, or non-approval, of any appeal to the Legislature on such a subject:
"Committee-room, Anderton's Hotel, Fleet-street. "Rev. Sir,―The Committee of the Sunday-baking Abolition Society, deeply impressed with the importance of drawing greater attention to the situation in which the bakers of the metropolis are placed, and wishing especially to arouse a greater degree of sympathy in the minds of the Christian public, have resolved to state the peculiarity of their case to the ministers of the Gospel throughout London, and earnestly to solicit that they would embrace an early opportunity of bringing the subject before their respective congregations, or in any other way to forward the
"The Sunday-baking Abolition Society aim especially to relieve the journeymen bakers from oppressive and severe Sunday labour, and to give them an opportunity, in common with all other classes, of attending to religious duties: they feel convinced that a serious investigation into the matter, in connexion with the unhappy effects resulting from the practice of public Sunday baking, cannot fail to bring over many friends to the cause, and thereby greatly facilitate the efforts of this Association in endeavouring to obtain a legislative enactment to secure the object on a solid and permanent foundation.
"The Committee have much satisfaction in stating that since the operations of the Society, commenced in 1837, many cases have occurred where masters have discontinued the practice of baking on Sunday, and they feel stimulated to additional exertion from an assurance that a great proportion of the trade are anxiously anticipating a day when, to the men they employ, the Sabbath shall be free; but while there is so much rivalry and competition in trade, and in some cases also, a disregard of Divine institutions, it is not difficult to see that many are compelled either to continue a practice against the convictions of their own minds, or submit to the loss of some portion of their business, which, in localities where Sunday baking is a greater accommodation to customers than in others, might ultimately be ruinous.
"In such circumstances it will at once be apparent that an Act of Parliament is the only alternative whereby to secure protection to the master and freedom to the men, and it is in furtherance of this, that the Committee are desirous to communicate the following facts, trusting that thereby they may receive countenance and support from the Christian public when the period arrives for them to make application to the Legislature,
"The number of journeymen bakers within the Bills of