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1846.]

Religious Intelligence.

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man of Boston was then chosen Moderator of the Conference; Rev. F. D. Huntington of Boston, Scribe ; and Rev. Messrs. Ellis of Charlestown, and Young and Clarke of Boston, Standing Committee. Thanks were returned to Mr. Hall for his Address. Resolutions were passed, instructing the Committee to consider by what name the Conference may in future be best known, and to make arrangements to secure a more punctual attendance of the members; inviting ministers of the Christian Connexion who might be present to take seats with the Conference; and authorizing the appointment of a delegate to attend the meeting of the Christian Conference in Wilkesbarre, Penn., next August. The Moderator appointed Rev. Mr. Bellows of New York, and in case of his absence Rev. Mr. Thomas of South Boston. Rev. Mr. Osgood of Providence R. J. offered resolutions respecting the preservation of " documents bearing upon the history of the rise and progress of Liberal Christianity in this country," the exertions that should be made by the members of this Conference “to gather such documents, whether books, pamphlets, sermons, reports or periodicals," and forward them to a common depository, and the appointment of a Committee to take the subject into consideration and receive such documents. The resolutions were adopted, and Dr. Lamson of Dedham, Mr. Osgood of Providence, Mr. Young of Boston, Mr. Ellis of Charlestown, Mr. Burnap of Baltimore and Mr. Hosmer of Buffalo, were appointed said Committee. Froin the questions presented by the Standing Committee, the Conference selected this for discussion, viz.: What are the peculiar dangers at present, to the character and standing of our body, in relation to the exercise of liberality and freedom. The discussion which followed was conducted with candor and spirit, and was maintained through the morning by several of the brethren, each one of the speakers confining his remarks within the space of ten minutes, according to a vote of the Conference. An adjournment then took place to the afternoon, when resolutions that had been offered in the morning by Rev. Mr. Parker of Boston, expressive of the views which the Conference entertain of the unchristian character of the institution of Slavery, and of the war into which the country has been led through the sinfulness of the nation in this respect, were adopted.

Sunday School Society. - The eighteenth anniversary of this institution was celebrated in the Federal Street meetinghouse on Wednesday evening, May 27. The President of the Society, Hon. Stephen C. Phillips, presided. Prayer was offered by Rev. Mr. Cordner of Montreal ; after which portions of the annual Report were read by the corresponding Secretary. Addresses were then made by William Brighan Esq. and Mr. P. W. Warren of Boston, Rev. Mr. Bulfinch of Nashua, N. H., Rev. Mr. Briggs of Plymouth, Elder Harvey of the Christian Connexion, from Pennsylvania, Rev. Mr. Thompson of Salem, and Rev. Mr. Holland of Rochester, N. Y. The President offered a few remarks at the conclusion of the meeting. The singing of several hymns by children belonging to Sunday schools in this city augmented the interest of the evening.

The Officers of the Society for the present year were elected at the annual meeting April 15, 1846, when Hon. Stephen C. Phillips was chosen President ; Rev. R. C. Waterston, Corresponding Secretary; Mr. S. G. Simpkins, Recording Secretary ; Mr. L. G. Pray, Treasurer.

At a subsequent meeting of the Board of Directors the following persons were appointed " Associate Agents for the present year, to visit and address Sunday schools,” viz. Rev. F. T. Gray, Rev. R. C. Waterston, Rev. A. B. Muzzey, Rev. Charles Brooks, Rev. Chandler Robbins, Mr. L. G. Pray, Mr. R. W. Bayley, Mr. Isaiah Bangs, Mr. G. G. Channing, J. A. Andrew, Esq.

Convention of Congregational Ministers. — This association of the Congregational ministers of the Commonwealth met as usual, on the Wednesday afternoon of the anniversary week. Rev. Dr. Lamson, the Preacher for the year, presided. Rev. Nehemiah Adams of Boston was reelected Scribe, and Rev. S. K. Lothrop of Boston, Treasurer. The regular business of the Convention, consisting principally of the appropriation of the income of various funds devoted to the relief of widows and children of deceased members, was harmoniously transacted. A report of a Committee appointed the last year was adopted, by which the right of membership was allowed to ministers having the stated charge of a congregation, though they may not have been inducted into that charge by the customary services of Installation. Rev. Ezra S. Gannett of Boston was chosen Second Preacher for the next year, after two ballotings; Rev. Parsons Cooke of Lynn being the First Preacher according to the election of the last year. On Thursday forenoon the annual Sermon was preached before the Convention, in the Brattle Square meetinghouse, by Rev. Alvan Lamson D. D., of Dedham, from 2 Corinthians xi. 3, - on Congregationalism ; after which the usual collection was taken up, amounting to $167,35.

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Religious Services. — The public meetings of the week, so far as our denomination is concerned, were closed by services of Christian worship and commemoration in the Federal Street meetinghouse on Thursday evening, May 28. A Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Peabody of Portsmouth N. H., from 1 Corinthians xi. 26, on the meditations appropriate to the Communion; after which the ordinance of the Lord's Supper was administered by Rev. Mr. Livermore of Keene N. H., to a body of communicants filling the floor of the house. Prayer and Conference Meetings were held this week,

on Tuesday morning in the chapel in Bedford Street, and on Wednesday and Thursday mornings in the Bulfinch Street vestry. Prayers were offered, and addresses made by different brethren of the clergy and laity, while the singing of appropriate hymns by all who could join in this service increased the sacred pleasure of the occasion.

Ordinations and Installations. Rev. JOSEPH HARRINGTON, formerly of Chicago, III. was installed as Pastor of the First Unitarian Congregational Society in HARTFORD, Conn., April 23, 1846. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Dr. Putnam of Roxbury, from John xvii. 19; the Prayer of Installation was offered by Rev. Mr. Robbins of Boston ; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Ġannett of Boston; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Harrington of Albany, N. Y.; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Waterston of Boston; and the other services by Rev. Messrs. Snow of Brooklyn, Conn., Huntington of Boston, and Farley of Brooklyn, N. Y.

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1846.]

Obituary.

155

Rev. EDWARD Everett Hale of Boston was ordained as Pastor of the “ Church of the Unity” in Worcester, Mass., April 29, 1846. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Lothrop of Boston, from Acts ii. 37 ; the Prayer of Ordination was offered by Rev. Mr. Lincoln of Fitchburg; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Peabody of Boston; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Weiss of Watertown; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Hill of Worcester; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Huntington of Boston, and Hall of Providence, R. I.

Rev. Moses GEORGE THOMAS, formerly of Concord, N H., was installed as Pastor of the Broadway Unitarian Society in SOUTH Boston, Mass., May 21, 1846. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Gannett of Boston, from 1 Timothy i. 15; the Prayer of Installation was offered by Rev. Mr. Clarke of Boston; the Charge was given by Rev. Dr. Putnam of Roxbury; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Gray of Boston; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Barrett of Boston; and the other services, by Rev. Me rs. Waterston of Boston, and Hall of Dorchester.

Rev. JAMES RICHARDSON of Dedham, a recent graduate at the Cambridge Divinity School, was ordained over the Christian Unitarian Society in SouthINGTON, Conn., June 10, 1846. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Dr. Lamson of Dedham, from John vi. 63; the Ordaining Prayer was made by Rev. Dr. Parkman of Boston; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Gray of Boston; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Hale of Worcester; the Address to the People, by Rev. Dr. Dewey of New York; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Harrington of Hartford, Conn., Snow of Brooklyn, Conn., and Farley of Norwich, Conn.

Rev. REUBEN Bates, late of Ashby, was installed over the First Congregational Society in Stow, Mass., June 18, 1846. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Gannett of Boston, from Colossians i. 28; the Prayer of Installation was offered by Rev. Dr. Parkman of Boston; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Lincoln of Fitchburg; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Smith of Groton; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Babbidge of Pepperell; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Frost of Concord, Chandler of Shirley, and Gilbert of Harvard.

OBITUARY. Rev. ROBERT ASPLAND died at Hackney (near London, England, December 30, 1845, " in the 64th year of his life, in the 45th year of his ministry, and in the 41st year of his pastorship of the Unitarian church at Hackney.” Mr. Aspland had long been a prominent member and minister of the Unitarian body, He was in various ways connected with its interests, and by his long service, his weight of character, and his practical as well as intellectual habits, exercised a great influence. Of late years he had been prevented by repeated illness from taking so active a part as formerly in the concerns of the day. His death, though anticipated, must be severely felt. The funeral services were attended by a large number of persons, and were “conducted by Rev. T. Rees LL. D., the associate in public life, and the close personal friend of Mr. Aspland, for nearly half a century." On the next Sunday, funeral sermons were preached before

the bereaved congregation by Rev. Mr. Madge and Dr. Hutton of London, and the departure of this faithful minister of Christ after a life of such wide usefulness “ was affectingly noticed” in many Unitarian pulpits in different parts of England." His end was remarkably peaceful. Amongst his last words was a solemn declaration of the importance and reality of religion, and of the boundless mercy of God, revealed by Jesus Christ, his beloved Son."

The following notice from the London Inquirer not only speaks justly of Mr. Aspland's services in the cause of truth, but mentions some facts of which our readers may not have knowledge.

“ With the closing year, the mortal course has terminated of one of the most eminent Ministers of the Unitarian body - the Rev. Robert AspLAND, of Hackney. ** He had been minister at the Gravel-Pit Meeting for nearly foriy years; and his great knowledge both of books and of human nature his depth of thought, power of reasoning, and nervous eloquence – together with a peculiar capacity for the practical conduct of affairs, gave him an influence with his congregation, and with the denom. ination to which he belonged, which is not often surpassed. In the year 1806, Mr. Aspland commenced “ The Monthly Repository of Theology and General Literature," a Magazine intended to unite liberal theology with attention to literature; and to afford, at the same time, a vehicle for free discussion, and a record of every thing connected with religious and civil liberty, and with the interests of liberal Dissent. In the preface to his first volume, the Editor speaks of his work as "the only periodical publication which is open to free and impartial theological inquiry and discussion;" and throughout its whole course, it maintained its character for impartiality in the admission of communications which had any claim to attention, however differing from the editor's own opinions. The Monthly Repository contains a great number of very valuable papers, of various kinds, and is a most important book of reference to all who are interested in the religious history of its period. At the close of the year 1827, Mr. Aspland transferred it to the Committee of the British and Foreign Unitarian Association, by whom it was, after a short time, parted with to Mr. Fox. On its character and objects being entirely changed, under his editorship, Mr. Aspland resolved still to supply what had become a want of the Unitarian body, and in 1834 enlarged a smaller publication, which he had conducted with much usefulness for some previ. ous years, called the Christian Reformer, to meet the new circumstances. This he continued to superintend until the last year, when his son, the Rev. R. Brooke Aspland, of Dukinfield, assumed the editorial office.

For his long-continued and efficient services in connection with Unitarian periodical literature, Mr. Aspland had the grateful respect of nearly the whole body. Various publications attest the high intellectual character and the practical value of Mr. Aspland's preaching, and his skill and power as a controversialist. In our various trusts, and in the committeerooms of our several societies, the loss of our departed friend will be long and deeply felt. He has long occupied a station of eminent importance and usefulness in our churches, and his memory will be held in lasting honor,"

*** The preceding obituary has been in type some months, but the narrow limits of our department for intelligence have crowded it out from successive numbers. The same cause obliges us to defer Notices of the meeting of the New York State Unitarian Association, the Inauguration at Cambridge, and much literary intelligence, which we had hoped to give in the present number.

THE

CHRISTIAN EXAMINER

AND

RELIGIOUS MISCELL ANY.

SEPTEMBER, 1846.

ART. 1.-RELATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MINISTRY TO

REFORM.

An Address delivered before the Ministerial Conference in Boston, May 27, 1846. By Rev. EDWARD B. Hall.

SUMMONED at a late hour to prepare something for this occasion, I take a subject suggested by the times, but belonging to all time; - the Relation of the Christian Ministry to individual and social Reform; or more simply, the Christian Principle of Reform.

There is no special satisfaction in speaking of that which is on every one's lips, has all variety of definitions, and finds a multitude of advocates or opposers equally confident and mutually distrustful; most distrustful perhaps of any one who takes what is called a moderate course, and what has come to be considered no course at all. But there is a satisfaction in even the humblest endeavor to discern first principles, and keep to them, on subjects where principle is so apt to be thrust aside by passion, and that which is most needed is least in favor - discrimination with decision.

First principles, on the subject before us and all kindred subjects, are to be found in the Gospel of Christ;- a very simple fact, but one important enough, and enough neglectVOL. XLI. — 4TH. S. VOL. VI. NO. II.

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