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sionate and gentle sympathy shewn, upon every serious effort to scrutiin similar circumstances, by a wise nize a mind disturbed by a consciand faithful director. But Kenelm ousness of sin. His parent immewas repelled; and if, as we humbly diately finds a solution of the trust, he ultimately obtained a place mysterious re-visitation in natural in heaven, he was not, alas ! assist
causes, and seems to bid him fly ed in his journey thither, by these at once to the world for a cure; admonitions of an ecclesiastic and and argues, at the same time, that a parent.
a recent act of confession and comThe course of the convert's narra- munion might remove all fear of tive brings us, at length, to the death- guilt. We have, therefore, before bed side of this amiable and con- us, the painful spectacle of a tender scientious young man who was "sore parent, led away by the false system let and hindered,” in his early aspi- which he had embraced, persevering rations after holiness, by the delu- in diverting the thoughts of his sions of the church in which he was child from one of the most importeducated. In the twenty-first year ant duties of religion, self-examinaof his age be sickened of a typhus tion. A psychologist from a German fever; and, as it supervened, the university would have pursued exmelancholy feelings of a former actly the same plan, and prescribed period again oppressed him. His a similar remedy-the expulsion of father thus describes the circum- gloomy thoughts, by the gaieties stance:
and pastimes of the world. If our “He said his scruples, such as he had convert had accurately distinguished combated and surmounted three years be- between scruples founded on false fore, had returned and had distressed him estimates of duty, and such as were of late, beginning from a time to which he referred; since which time, and, as
the fruits of a really tender conhe believed, from the efforts he had science; if he had defined the semade, he had suffered from a head-ache veral dimensions of the gnat and and pains in his chest and limbs. aware that an illness was at hand which the camel, and thence shewn the would account for the sensations of which inconsistencies of men who select he complained without reference to any their own vices and virtues, as taste mental uneasiness, I endeavoured by re or constitutional temperament may proaches and praises to restore his tran- direct; we might have given the quillity. You are indebted for your head-ache and other pains to allowiug casuist some credit for a wise mayour mind to dwell on useless and ground nagement of his patient's case. But less apprehensions. Cheerfulness, hope, there runs through the whole story and gaiety are the best things in the world to make the blood circulate and
an anxiety, on the part of the condistribute equally the animal heat. Enough vert, to explain away the purity and has been said to you on the subject of strictness of the Gospel. ' He is an scruples, and you have admitted the rea- advocate, for example, for theatrical sonableness of what has been said: I had
entertainments; and even, in this hoped they were gone for ever. You are a great comfort and blessing to me : very instance, as opposed to his be satisfied with yourself. You were at son, who stedfastly shunned, and to confession and communion five days ago : his dying day, every allurement to has any thing occurred since, on which the play-house of the convert's replied, “ No, nothing.' This we after- sophistry on this subject the followwards remembered with great comfort.” ing is a specimen :
“ In Italy I was instructed, that there The reader has already seen by the universal church, but only by the
exists no excommunication of actors by what means the painful emotions decrees of some particular dioceses, in rewhich pressed upon this interesting mote ages, when the scenic art was reputyoung man at Stoneyhurst were ed infamous on account of the representaremoved. The wound had been tions, then almost always contrary to good healed slightly; and there were fession of actors are guilty of great sin, if
morals : that they who exercise the prothose, not himself, who frowned they exhibit on the stage any thing shame
pp. 341, 342.
ful or obscene, but not otherwise : that sources of contamination, on the
proximate. We are not
theatres; of course he is doing right. The since the lawfulness or unlawfulness of them may vary at every moment, accord convert's manner of defending the ing as scenic representations are agreeable stage sinks him deeper in the mire or repugnant to good morals.
of the system, than if he had been “ Priests go to plays in Italy, generally quite silent. He writes like a perretiring before the ballet. I have seen a cardinal at a private theatre: that it was
son who wishes to defend himself a private theatre, was a circumstance of against a foreseen attack, and is also some importance in point of decorum, but well aware of the feebleness of his of none in point of morality, concerning defensive which it is fair to presume that his emi
weapons. This protector nence entertained no doubt or scruple.”
of his new faith might reasonably pp. 313, 314.
say of a certain physician, who deThe subject of the stage affordsceived him, “I did not place more standing matter of debate to such reliance on him on account of his moralists as square their opinions by devotion ; knowing that devotion is their passions ; but it could not have but too often another mode of selfbeen previously supposed that any deceit.” one, so deeply versed in theological But the day of poor Kenelm's casuistry as the convert, could have dissolution arrived. He expired considered the inquiry as an open with apparent tranquillity, although question. The thing is either right surrounded by the usual pageantries or wrong; and a conscientious man of the Latin church; and certainly ought, at least, to walk on the safe under circumstances extremely unside. But among the strange invo- favourable to the development of lutions of the paragraphs last cited, religious feeling. He appears to there is an evident attempt to settle have maintained to the end of his the controversy by chronology and life, a seriousness of character, occageography ; we are also informed, sionally shewing itself in devotional that purity and impurity have their expressions; and far superior, we alternations ; while the author de- incline to suppose, to any thing ludes himself, and might delude related of him in the narrative. many, by playing upon the terms How bitter is the reflection forced absolute and relative, remote and upon us, as in imagination we conprocimate; leaving the attendant template his dying hours, that his at a theatre to measure its tempta- aspirations after immortal life were tions by the make of his own cha- discouraged by those who ought to racter. All this is wretched reason have been his guides to immortality; ing, and might obviously be applied by his nearest relatives, and his to
any species of evil, so as to jus spiritual advisers ! that his real foes, tify a man for approaching the vilest however kind their intention, were
those of his own house! It seems, • This,' said I, cannot be the however, that one of these opponents it have been the cause of the bright one.
cause of the suffused light; still less can is desirous of proving the felicity of While I was looking first at the suffused the departed, by intimations convey. light, then at the reflection of the lamp, ed by a vision.
the former disappeared: it was plain,
therefore, that it had not been caused by « In the night between the 30th and 31st the latter. of October, thirty entire days after the “ In the morning we visited the tomb death of Kenelm, his parents retired late of our departed son, and returned thanks to rest; in fact, at one o'clock of the to God. During the whole of the scene morning of the 31st. As they were com which I have described, which lasted about posing themselves to sleep, they heard a half a quarter of an hour, my wife's behanoise as of the breaking of a small stick. viour was sufficiently composed and recolTo me this noise seemed to proceed from lected, was consistent and rational, free the cabinet or dressing-room behind the from affectation or enthusiasm. A sudden bed ; my wife heard it as from the com and transient apparition of an illuminated mode or drawers opposite the foot of the dove with a glory might be considered as bed. We asked each other what the noise the work of fancy; but here this appearmight be, and compared what we had ance was prepared for and followed by heard. Within a minute, my wife, who circumstances, in which the imagination had raised herself in her bed, asked me could have no part. The attention of her • What light is that?' I saw no light, and who was to see the vision was directed, asked, Where?' On the drawers, by the noise preceding it, to the place brighter than any candle.' She proceeded where it first appeared; while I was roused to describe what she saw : Now it rises by the same noise, but heard by me in a and grows larger. How beautifully bright! different part of the chamber, as if I were brighter than the most brilliant star. What to be, as in the main I was, a witness only. can it mean? it is very strange you don't I repeat, the suffused light was seen by us see it.' I thought so too; but to encou both for four or five minutes. Besides the rage her, said, Compose yourself; it can form which the bright light assumed to the mean no harm.' She went on : It still eyes of my wife, the circumstance of its rises and grows larger; now it turns to- being seen by one of the parties only withwards the window-it takes the form of a out weakening the force of her testimony, dove with the wings spread out--it has a is conclusive against its being either a nabright glory all around it—it looks steadily tural or artificial light; and her testimony, at me—it speaks to my heart, and tells me aided by mine, as to the concomitant cirthat my dear Henry is happy-it fixes a cumstances, proves it to have been a sulpiercing look on me, as if it would make pernatural one. The house looked into me feel what it means. Now I know he à court; there was no house opposite is happy, and shall lament no more for from which lamp or candle could be seen; him. There--now it has disappeared.” the moon, whatever witty people may Though I had not seen the light, I could be inclined to say of the influence of the see the face of my wife while she was moon in this case, was but four days old, looking at it, and the tears glittering as if besides, the window shutters were closed a bright light passed through them while and excluded all lights, artificial or natyral. they fell down her cheeks. The French “ To use the words of a learned,, raword would be ébrillantées. There still tional, and respectable old man, the curé remained a suffused light in the room par- of St. Agricol, to whom I related the matticularly on the wall above the drawers, as ter, 'Ce qu'on voit, on voit.' True, --what of the reflection of a nearly extinguished one sees, one sees; but the Scripture, fire. This was observed by both of us. with that intimate knowledge of human It lasted about five minutes, growing grad- nature evident in its every page, speaks of ually fainter, and at length failing entirely. some who will not be persuaded even While looking at this suffused and darkish though one rose from the dead.' red light, and reasoning with myself how “ The term of thirty days has been ob. or why the bright light had not been seen served in the cathedral church as that at by me, I remarked on the floor by the the end of which revelations have some. open door of the cabinet, the reflection of times been made of the happiness of dea veilleuse, or small night-lamp. These parted souls.” pp. 377--381 lights are made of a single thread of cotton A monk in the last days of his half an inch long, steeped in melted wax, dotage, and after half a century's and when dry, inserted in little flat pieces confinement within a monastery, of cork, which are floated, while the cotton is burning, in a small quantity of oil. This might be forgiven for stating the night-lamp was placed in the remotest rule of the church respecting supercorner of the dressing-room, which went the whole length of the bed-room. I saw
natural visitations. He might also its reflection on the floor only, and only so
not be blamed if he was totally unfar as the open door permitted it to be acquainted with optical illusions,
and the operation of various physi. the Gospel is, "Blessed are the cal causes, under circumstances, and dead which die in the Lord, from at a time when wonders are expected, henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit ; and where trifles are magnified into that they may rest from their lamiracles. The convert himself ac. bours; and their works do follow counts for the preservation of St. them.” Had consolation, in the Benezet's body by the agency of instance before us, been derived water, in producing adipocire; but from a legitimate source, we think we scarcely know whether he is in that the parents. of Henry Kenelm jest or earnest. Of late years, good would have drawn their portion sense, aided by matters of fact and from the remembrance of their practical experiment, has dashed child's character ; marked as it was from its pedestal many an idol of we do not say with what degree the superstitious. Invisible girls may of distinctness-by the operations now-a-days be seen ; and the statue of an awakened conscience, and by of Memnon--if it be the original - many hopeful symptoms of a devoat length emits sounds perfectly in- tional mind in the prospect of death audible. Ferriar and Hibbert have and eternity. When good men die, examined spectral appearances with the feeling of their pious survivors as little remorse as has been shewn is, that the departed gave testimony, by the geologist, who finds the caves on this side of the grave, of their of fairies and genii: to be composed meetness for the kingdom of glory. of argillaceous schistus and basalt; The evidence is not posthumous, but while the German giant of the Bro- retrospective. ken has been mashed to tatters by After the above extracts and comthe mace of M. Haue*. We regret, ments, we leave to the reader's dehowever, to have marked, under the cision the question, FROM what, and pretensions of a falsely enlightened to what, was our narrator convertphilosophy, many guilty endeavours ed? Must we not reply, From one to discredit the miracles of Revela- shadow to another? His work illustion itself, and to intimate the cre trates the emptiness of all religion, dulous weakness of such persons as so called, which is not productive believe in their reality, and who of active and consistent holiness. also believe that the Divine Agent Exactly the same exposure might in such cases has no where signified have been made, had the convert his determination never again to ap- originally belonged to the Romanpeal to human sense by great signs Catholic party, and deserted to the and wonders. We shall not go out opposite camp. By their fruits ye of our way to interfere with the faith shall know them,” is a test applicaof those who suppose themselves to ble to every member of the universal be in possession of credible proof of visible church; since, throughout recent visitations from the spiritual its various enclosures may be found world; but our present subject of the luxuriant growth of the thorns complaint is, the passive and puerile and the thistle; while the vine alone prostration of the convert's under- bears the grape, and the fig-tree its standing before the strange decisions own luscious produce. of his adopted mother. How could The author's preface is dated a professor of the faith of Christ, March 1826 ; nearly seven and mingled though that faith may be twenty years since his absorption with much false and foolish sophis- into the papal system.
What melitry, resort to a nocturnal blaze of oration his mind may have underlight, and the alleged undefined gone during the last two or three figure of a dove, for comfort on the years, we have no means of knowdeath of a son? The assurance of ing.
The present examination of * See Christ. Obsery. for 1813, p. 806. his conduct, as given to the world
by himself, involves, as we trust, no verted, that your sins may be blotted violation of the delicacy due to a out, when the times of refreshing living writer; since nothing is as- shall come from the presence of the sumed, on this occasion, affecting Lord.” Here is the consequence of his personal character, but what is a true transformation, the obliteradirectly deduced from his own pub- tion of guilt, and the promise of lished confessions. We certainly Divine consolations, proceeding from consider that no Romanist who had the Saviour himself. We do not seriously examined into our author's aspire to give a definite interpretadeep acquaintance with scriptural tion of the last clause of this admotheology would have supposed his nition ; but “times of refreshing" communion to have drawn a prize, doubtless are afforded to all such as when this aspirant was re-baptized are sound converts to the faith of by one of its priests. Yet, it may be Christ crucified. The subject of here remembered, that when Hen- conversion is, indeed, so fruitful in rietta, daughter of Charles the First, mistake and perversion, when touchand duchess of Orleans, was carried ed by unskilful hands, that our most to her grave, the eloquent Bossuet practical divines guard and fence it pronounced a funeral oration; in around with all their caution and which, as far as we recollect, he care. They usually commence their declaimed on what he called the definitions of the word, by stating accomplishment of the times of con- what it is not; and, having made fusion-meaning the troubles in this negative preparation in order England - in the restoration of the to defend it from the first and most princes to the bosom of the Catholic natural mode of abuse; proceed to Church. If history be faithful, and tell what it is, but minutely, slowly, if, as Burke said, it keeps an awful elaborately; 'as though they were record of human actions, this daugh- determined, if possible, to leave no ter of England, who was ultimately possible avenue for the intrusion of poisoned by her husband in a fit of insincerity, no space of unoccupied jealousy, ought to have been receive ground, where the hypocrite might ed with emotions, not of triumph, plant his foot and claim a station but of shame; and if a man of among the heirs, of the heavenly Bossuet's genius and attainments kingdom. But why do holy men was so enslaved by ecclesiastical exercise all their cautionary wisdom and court influence, as to prostitute on this subject, but, as one reason, his talents by eulogising one of the from their self-knowledge having children of infamy, how can we painfully taught them the danger of wonder at the eagerness displayed persons too hastily assuming their by religionists of all persuasions, to conversion even before they well swell their numbers by recruits from knew the difference between a change other parties, without any serious of religious theory and a renovation scrutiny of their proselyte’s motives, of the mind. Let the reader comor even of their personal character! pare with the detail of «conversion" But this is conversion--a term by now before us, such specimens of which, when we read its application spiritual auto-biography as have in the awakening appeals of such been so acceptably given to the men as Baxter and Alleine, we are Christian world by Baxter, Newton, taught to understand the transition Scott, and other able ministers of of the soul from the darkness, help- the New Testament; and he will Jessness, and guilt of nature, to the feel-or we compassionate him if he light and power, and sanctifying in- does not feel as if he were sudfluences of the Holy Ghost. " Re- denly transported from a dreary, pent ye,” said St. Peter--not his waste, and frozen wilderness, into a assumed successors." and be con- region of exuberant beauty;