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For AUGUST, 1837.
THE HOME MISSIONARY SOCIETY CO-OPERATING WITH THE BRITISH AND FOREIGN
Sailors, as such, have not been directly contemplated by the noble-minded directors, nor by the invaluable evangelical agents of the Home Missionary Society. British villagers, whose spiritual interests were neglected, in the populous rural districts, and especially those in the vastly increased manufacturing localities, have been the principal objects of that very useful institution : and God has graciously crowned the devoted self-denying labourers with his abundant blessing
Seamen have, however, participated in some good measure in the benefits arising from the ministry of the Home Missionary Society, as many of its important stations are found in six or seven of our maritime counties ; and the writer of this will not soon forget some crowded congregations to whom he was privileged, once on a tour, to minister the word of life at some rising sea-ports. Satisfactory evidences are possessed of the great benefits arising to seamen from the Home Missionary labourers in several sea-ports ; and they must, therefore, be hailed as important auxiliaries to the British and Foreign Sailors' Society. Unquestionably they may become of far more importance, and it must be delightful to reflect that there is an increasing solicitude manifested by the Committees of both institutions, to render still more efficient the co-operation of their agents. With a view to call public attention to this subject, we have much pleasure in giving the following paper a place in our Pilot:
“ The Home Missionary Society's Appeal and Statement,
renewed for the year 1837. " Since the institution of the Home Missionary Society in the year 1819, other kindred bodies have arisen to cooperate in the same truly great and holy purpose — the evangelization of the poor and unenlightened peasantry, in neglected districts at home. And it is conceded now, by Christians of every denomination, without even a single exception, that our own country is in that awfully alarming state of moral destitution which requires combined and the most strenuous efforts to remedy. In this stupendous design, “ The Home Missionary Society" stands prominently before the religious public; and with evidence accumulated from the past, puts forth afresh this Appeal, presenting, with proportionate confidence, the claims of the Society for future increased countenance and support.
“ To those who may ask, What, then has this Society accomplished, and what is it doing ? it is promptly replied, Inquire at the eight stations in Devonshire, at the five in Warwickshire, at the nine in Yorkshire; besides those twenty-five others in Cumberland Dorset - Durham Hereford - Hertford Kent - Norfolk Northumberland - Oxford Somerset Stafford - and Wilts. And if the whole land be not yet occupied in the length and the breadth of it, the friends of the Society ask, Is it nothing, that on an average, more than thirty thousand fellow immortals are thus brought statedly under the means of grace, and made acquainted with the joyful sound of the Gospel that joyful sound which brings “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will towards men ?”. Is it nothing, that sixty-six Sunday schools exist more than could have existed without the Home Missionary Society ?
- nothing that six thousand children are there taught in the principles of Christian truth? And is it nothing, that Pastoral Aid has been for eighteen years rendered to a considerable amount to those who needed it, that they might extend the circle of their influence from towns to the hamlets and villages around them?
· The Society has not laboured in vain! Peaceful villages, family devotion, Christian churches, cottage prayer. meetings, and the songs of Zion, are now seen and heard, where, till this Society was formed, peasants never assembled but to revel in profanity and dissipation ; there,
where immorality triumphed, and the rising generation were left in ignorance and wretchedness! Who does not wish and
pray that the good which has been done might be far more widely extended? What Christian, young or old, can refrain from contributing, in such proportions as the Lord enables, to so patriotic and holy a cause ?
“If further particulars of the Society's success under the blessing of God be demanded, the printed and authentic relations in its quarterly Chronicles and its Magazine testify the results ; showing the necessity of the existence of such a Society, the means which this Society has employed, and the success which has attended its efforts; relations which have warmed many a cold, invigorated many a languid, reproved many a scornful, and rejoiced many a faithful heart.
And if the Society has had, from the liberality of its friends, a sum amounting to more than sixty thousand pounds, besides the benefit of many additional thousands which have been indirectly devoted to the same objects through its influence, what is all that “ among so many,” even of millions of our countrymen perishing for lack of knowledge ? Oh, that He who multiplied the loaves and fishes to satisfy the temporary wants of a famishing multitude, would grant the petitions humbly and fervently offered, and put it into the hearts of his faithful followers to add yet twelve, twenty, yea an hundred and a thousand-fold, to the mites heretofore contributed ; that our OWN LAND may indeed be covered with the knowledge of the Lord ! Oh, that British Christians were duly alive to the best interests of their own country, and would adequately yield that temporal support without which, not even Apostles could go forth to proclaim repentance, and publish the messages of pardon, peace, and salvation, to the regions round about them! Then could the Society's agents, like an army, go forward under the same banner which distinguished those first Evangelists, armed with the same weapons, and looking for the same crown. Surely the Cross, the Spirit, the buckler of Faith, and the helmet of Salvation, shall subvert the mighty power of Satan; and England, happy England, shall ever continue to be “a praise in the whole earth!”
AN AMERICAN CAPTAIN. A stage, passing a few years ago from New York to Boston, was much crowded. Late in the evening a sea captain, who was one of the passengers, related to his companions a narrative of his own circumstances. In a dreadful storm his ship had been wrecked, his
money and his property lost, and every one on deck had perished except himself, who had been saved by being on a plank for several days. The company were interested in his narrative; they pitied the unfortunate captain, who was returning home to his family entirely destitute; but they wondered that a man, relating such a tale, and telling of an escape almost miraculous, should confirm almost every sentence with an oath. Nothing however was said to him. In the morning, when the stage stopped, Mr. B., one of the passengers, invited the captain to walk on before with him, designing to step into the stage when it should come up: this proposal was agreed to. They walked on alone, when Mr. B. said “ Did I understand you last night ?— the stage made much noise - did you say that you had lost your ship?"-"Yes!”—“That you saved your life on a plank!” " Yes!
“Let me ask you one more question ; when on that plank, did you not vow to your God, that if he would spare your life, you would devote that life to his service ?"
“ None of your business,” said the captain angrily. The stage by this time came up, and they entered it. Towards evening, as the stage was entering Providence, the captain informed the company that he should not sup with them, as he was so unfortunate as not to have any money. Mr. B. took from his pocket and offered him a handsome
“ No," said the captain, “ I am poor, yet I am no beggar.” –“But,” replied Mr. B. “I do not give it to you as a beggar, but as to an unfortunate brother.
You must know, that I profess to be a Christian, and I am taught by my religion to do good to all men. The Gospel prescribes no limits to benevolence, it teaches us to do good unto all.” The company applauded, and pressed the captain to take the money. He silently put it into his pocket, without even thanking the donor. His countenance, however, betrayed uneasiness. The company supped together, and the captain took his leave, after having asked Mr. B. when he left the town. He was informed that it would be on the morrow at sunrise. They then parted. The captain went home with a heavy heart, while Mr. B. retired to rest. He was surprised the next morning at daylight, to hear some one rap at the door ; he opened it, and beheld the captain standing before him in tears. The captain, pressing his hand, said, “Sir, I have not
slept a wink since I saw you. I abused you yesterday, I am now come to ask your pardon. I did, while on that plank, vow to God that I would live differently from what I had ever done, and by God's help, from this time forward, I am determined to do so."
The captain could not proceed; they pressed each other's hands, and parted, probably to meet no more in this world. — Anecdotes of Social Life.
Love suffers long with patient eye,
Nor is provok'd in haste,
And long forgets the past.
To seek her neighbour's good;
“And who is my neighbour?"-Luke v, 25–37.
THE INFIDEL COLONEL.
The certainty that there is a futurity of some sort or other awaiting every one, creates, insensibly or involuntarily, even in those who most desire or endeavour to disbelieve it, an uneasy apprehension about its nature and consequences, as it approaches. Many instances show that no scepticism can destroy the fear or the belief of such possibilities.
The Colonel Chartres or Charteris of the last century is an instance of this. He was so notorious for his avarice, rapacity, and profligacy, that both Pope and Hogarth made him one of their points of severe satire. Yet, though he had lived in contempt and violation of all moral and religious obligations, when his final hour approached, nature and reason roused a sense, that some of the results which he had most ridiculed were not impossible to him.
We have an intimation of this feeling of his mind, in the private letter from the Honourable J. Crawford, dated Edinburgh, 27th February, 1732 : “ I acquaint you of the death of the famous Colonel Chartres, regretted by none. He has left no less than fourteen thousand pounds sterling a year. Upon his death-bed he was exceedingly anxious to know if there was such a thing as Helly and said that