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Moreover, Roman Catholic priests as well as our Protestant brethren have, contrary to the principles of individually, have been and still the British constitution, been re- are, exposed to grievous persecucently appointed, at public expense, tion principally arising from the parto stations in the British colonies; tial dealings of the Irish executive, while, both at home and abroad, which have the tendency of perpatronage is now largely distributed verting the most hallowed instituamong Papists and persons favour- tions of the land into a means of able to their interests.
injustice and cruel oppression. In Ireland, the Protestant church,
BRITISH AND FOREIGN BIBLE SOCIETY.
The following extract from the letter of a clergyman in France, will be read with interest by many :
Dec, 26, 1837. I am requested by the Committee
of the Normal School, to write to you for a new grant of Bibles duodecimo, of Martin or Ostervald, and of New Testaments of Ostervald. The number of our pupils in both schools has so much increased, that we should feel exceedingly obliged to you if you would kindly consent to give us three dozen of Bibles and fifty New Testaments. Perhaps you will allow me to say, that is is, in fact, for your own countrymen that we beg; since we have more than thirty-six poor English children, whose parents reside in France, in our free schools.
• Though I write in the name of the Committee of the Normal School, you will excuse my taking this opportunity of giving a little news of our Bible Society. Thanks be to our heavenly Father, that Bible Society now has thirteen Branches, spread throughout the whole Departments of Nord, Aisne, and Somme ; some of which are doing, indeed, more than I expected, especially in the way of collections! Lately, I went through the whole of them, by order of the Committee ; and was in some places much gratified to see their intelligent zeal : but in other places, I was sorry to see that the march of the work was much weakened by men, who should, on the contrary, push it on. But the best will be, if God is our strength and help. As to the distribution of the Holy Scriptures, they have not done much yet; and the reason is, that we have had five Colporteurs for the last four months, who have done, in many quarters, that part of our work. We are now, with our dear friend
M. de Pressense, thinking of placing one Colporteur under one of the local Committees of the Branch Association; which will, we hope, with our Lord's blessing, excite ihe zeal of the members of those Committees.
Indeed, dear sir, the Lord does not leave us without manifold proofs that the Bible work is the work of his hand. I could tell you of many facts which would rejoice your heart; and in which the Lord has put aside all human agents, to work mighty things with the code of life. I will only give you an instance:In a village three miles from us, a pious mason, lately a Catholic, sold a Bible to an inkeeper (un aubergiste.) The man and his wife' began to read the book ; 'though the priest went into their house, to tell them they should not do so. • However,' said the woman,
we will read it; for we have not seen any thing in that book which is bad or wicked.' They went on reading; and they were convinced that their selling on the Sunday, and receiving men to get drunk, as is the custom her ihat day of rest, was a bad thing. They met in our town the man who had sold them the Bible, and told him what bad taken place in their views. He spoke with them, and engaged them to come on Sunday to my church. Meanwhile, a great struggle took place in their bosoms. They saw clearly, as they told me last Sunday, their duty ; but they began to think of what would become of them, if they were to leave and shut their inn: and they were, too, made uneasy by the clamours of their neighbours, who used to say they would kill them if they were to turn Protestants. Now, these two dear people, instructed by the blessed Book, and the inward
teaching of the Spirit, began to pray. were glad to have that occasion to They were strengthened; and re- vituperate him. However, he did solved to give up entirely their inn, not repent of that step, and felt that seeing they could not retain it with the peace of God is better than
any a good conscience.
thing. He had not been long a simI have no doubt you will read ple workman, when I received a with pleasure the following proof letter from a friend of my family, that the Lord is merciful towards who resides in the South of France, his people:- A Roman Catholic was who wanted a foreman of the same foreman in a manufactory, from kind of work known by F- He whence he was dismissed because wrote to me to find him one, offering he would not consent to work on the to give him eighty-four pounds a Sunday. From that situation, which year, and rooms in his large manubrought him in seventy pounds a factory. He desired to have a pious, year, he entered one as a plain active, and intelligent man, to fill workman in the same shop, where up that situation. Of course, I he earned only twenty-six pounds a thought directly of our friend Fyear; but then be could work or who, as well as myself, saw therein not work on Sunday, as he chose. I a very kind interposition of the have had a conversation with the Lord : he accepted the proposition I master; who, so far from bringing made to him, and was received with any charge against the man, told me a great deal of pleasure by Mr. that he was quite satisfied with his H- Wonderful is the love of conduct. Our friend suffered much our heavenly Father toward His in consequence, as his friends and
people! wife are quite strong Catholics, and
MAHOMEDAN PILGRIMS. The following account of the Cere- rather than to accept free grace with monies used by Mahomedan Pil- an humble and believing soul. If grims appears in the Journal of Mr.
these poor pilgrims in the night lie Blanchard, Missionary to Abyssinia. down to rest, they are not allowed to
Nov. 14–This afternoon we reach- lay their heads on the bed; but they ed Rabagh. I did not go into the must hold it with their hand, suptown, because the captain told me ported by their left arm. They have that all the inhabitants were robbers. this evening made a great noise with This is the place where the Maho- their prayers. They seemed to be medan Pilgrims generally put on rather irrational beings, than men their cloths. The men of my vessel possessed of a rational soul. For shaved their heads, washed them- hours they were sitting in a circle, selves, and each put a white cloth nodding their beads like madmen, round his loins, and one over his and bellowing like oxen, while one left shoulder: the other part of the of them was continually giving the body they leave uncovered, even signal. They pitied me, because I their shaven head. In this humble was not a Believer, like them. The clothing they remain, until they Mahomedans here are exceedingly have finished their vow in Mecca ; bigoted: Christians they consider. when they are considered as saints, as dogs, and swine ; and it is only and are called Hadjin. It is indeed by a great work that this deluded very trying for these poor men to be people can be brought to the obeexposed all day to the heat of the dience of the Cross of Christ; for besun, with an uncovered head. But side their considering their religion thus it is with the human heart: we far superior to Christianity, it is are very prone to work out our sal- also of such a nature, that it satisvation by exercises of penitence, fies the carnal mind of men. which after all are of no avail,
ABYSSINIAN MISSION. MR. BLUMHARDT, after a residence • Our situation, at present, seems of four months at Adowah, thus to be rather critical. The Abyssidescribes the critical state of this nians begin to know what our Mission :
objects are in coming among them;
156 SOCIETY FOR THE RELIEF OF POOR PIOUS CLERGYMEN.
prevail upon him to drive us out of power, they would not for a moment the country; which object, indeed, suffer us to remain in their country. they have several times tried to But it is chiefly the priests who effect. Oobieh, however, decided stir up the people against us. They, this time, as before, in our favour. of course, have to fear the most; The complaints which the priests because, if the minds of the people bring forward, are, that we do not be enlightened, they are afraid of observe fast days, administer the being detected as lying priests, who sacraments in our house, and not in keep the people in ignorance and their churches, and consequently superstition; and who, instead of degrade them.
Oobieb's answer feeding their flocks with the pure was, that he suffered Mussulmans food of the Word of God, lead them in his country, and other religious astray, by vain traditions of men, parties, and therefore he would keeping of fast days, celebrating suffer us too. The mouth of the new moons, and observing holydays, priests was thus at that time stopin which alone their Christianity ped; but now they begin again to consists. These are always the
us. Yesterday we heard points concerning which you have that some priests of Demben had to contend with the Abyssinians, held a council concerning us; in and which the priests hold forth to consequence of which they wrote a the people, in order to prove that Letter to the Governor of Adowah, we are no Christians at all, because desiring him to drive us out of the we reject them, as contrary to Scrip- country. Another was held here ture. Some days back, a Deftera, yesterday, the decision of which we an old man, was excommunicated do not know, only that our old Deffrom the church by the priests, be- tera, who was excommunicated from cause he had often paid a visit to us, the church, has been received again and, when the Abyssinians spoke upon a protestation which he made. evil of us, would not suffer it. This The Governor here, a wicked cunexcommunication, we trust, may ning man, who seeks to get advanprove a means, in the hand of God, tage over us whenever he can, said, to confirm him more and more in that it was not in his power to drive that chief doctrine of our Religion us out of the country ; but advised --that a man is not justified by his that the priests should go to Oobieh works, but by faith only; a mistake with their Letter, to hear his deciunder which not only the Roman sion upon it. Oobieh is at present church, but all Eastern churches, in Semien; and even before we and especially the Abyssinian, are heard of this conspiracy against us, Jabouring. How odious we are in I had resolved to go to Semien, to the eyes of the priests may be seen pay our respects to him. My jourby the crafty contrivances which ney has therefore become more they endeavour to bring forward urgent; and is of greater conseagainst us, in order to get rid of us. quence than at first we thought.
SOCIETY FOR THE RELIEF OF POOR PIOUS CLERGYMEN.
We have just received the annual publication of this valuable institution. The following extracts from its correspondence may well excite the Christian to renewed and enlarged contributions to its support.
. The name of the parish which I serve as an assistant Curate is The population at the last census was twelve thousand, but is now supposed to be fifteen thousand.
My total stated income arising from
assure the Committee, that I have lowed by that of a dear child. In been very unwilling to lay before this double trial the Lord rememthem any application, and have only bered me for good in providing me prevailed on myself to do so from with a mother-in-law, who did what urgent necessity.'
she could for me and mine. By her * The applicant has served his kind attentions, my family of four curacy nearly thirteen years. The little daughters, (one a helpless instipend for the curacy is £90. a fant,) was efficiently superintended. year. The surplice fees a few Within these few months past, howpounds. From bis Mastership of ever, the mysterious providence of the Hospital and Free Grammar my God has removed from us this School, £90, a year. He has a wife most valuable prop. After a lingerand ten children, six sons and four ing and expensive illness, she too daughters. Six are dependent on departed this transitory life, and him more or less for support. It is has been received, I doubt not, into painful to me to renew my applica- a happier world, through faith in tion to the society, but my trials the merits of our Blessed Redeemer. have of late been very heavy. Not- In addition to heavy medical and withstanding our strict frugality and funeral expenses necessarily attendorder, I find it quite impossible to ant upon the circumstances of these settle some rather heavy Christmas three beloved members of my family, bills. Yet I ought rot to think my thus successively removed by death case hard, when I consider how from us, my domestic expenditure much heavier and more trying are is now considerably enlarged by its the burdens and afllictions of many having been incumbent upon me to of my clerical brethren, especially engage a respectable person as in Ireland. I am now in my six- bousekeeper and superintendent of tieth year, but thanks to God I am my little family of daughters. My able to bear a great deal of labour. recent removal to another curacy I usually work sixteen hours a day, has likewise been a new source of including exercise in the open air expense. My total income from an meals. Under my pressing
clerical services is £80. per annuin. difficulties, if your society can help Exclusive of the above I possess we again without injury to those fifty pounds per annum.
The numwhose necessities are still greater, ber of my children is four. Two full your kind aid will be most thank- services on the Sabbath, with weekly fully welcomed.'
cottage lectures now first instituted • I bave had much to struggle by myself.' with in the way both of straitened These are only selections from circumstances and family afllictions. a considerable number of similar It has pleased our heavenly Father cases, all of which most clearly to remove from me an affectionate shew what privations many pious wife, and from my children an ex- and valuable clergymen are comcellent mother. Her death, conse- pelled to suffer, and may well exquent upon ber confinement of her cite our sympathy and stimulate fifth child, was not long after fol- us to increasing contributions.
PERSECUTION AND MARTYRDOM IN MADAGASCAR.
An interesting account has recently been published of the rigorous proceedings of the government of Madagascar against the native Christians in that country. This persecution has continued above three years, and many of the Christian converts have been called to suffer imprisonment, slavery and confiscation, but as yet pot a single instance of apostacy has occurred.
An edict was issued in 1835, prohibiting all Christian instruction
and public worship in Madagascar ; but notwithstanding this edict, a few were in the habit of meeting together on the Sunday on a mountain at some distance from the Capital, for the purpose of reading the Scriptures, singing and prayer. These have lately been detected, and the circumstance led to further search. A box of Christian books found near the residence of Rafaravavy,a Christian woman, led to ber apprehension and imprisonment; her house and
property were immediately given up her before the Government by some to plunder; and she herself, after of her slaves, of ber having observed several days of suffering inflicted the sabbath, retained and read a with a view of extorting from her a copy of the Scriptures, and conconfession of the names of her com- versed with some of her companions panions, was sentenced to an igno- on religious subjects. . These were minious death, by the hands of the the crimes laid to her charge. She common executioner. Fifteen others denied not, but confessed the truth had been apprehended, and con- of the accusation, and neither the demned to the utter and final loss of grey hairs of a parent, a zealous idoliberty, never to be redeemed by lator, could persuade, nor the frowntheir friends; and with the further ing threats of the sovereign, could stipulation, that, if transferred to terrify her into an abandonment of other masters, it should be on her profession. In daily prospect condition of being compelled to of death, she then remarked to a labour from morning to night, to the beloved friend, to whom she was utmost limits of their strength. Their accustomed, amidst mutual tears, to property has been also confiscated. pour out the feelings of her beart, Of those who were married, their that as to her life she felt indiffewives and children, whether pro- rent; that if her blood were to be fessing Christianity or not, have also shed on the land, she trusted it might been reduced to slavery, but with be the means of kindling such a the mitigating circumstance of per- feeling in Madagascar as should mission to be redeemed. The total never be extinguished.
· Did not number thus affected is said to the Saviour forewarn us,' said she, amount to nearly one hundred. • that we should incur the hatred of
Strong, however, as are the claims all men for his sake? The Son of of these suffering survivors, if, God has died in our stead, and that indeed, they yet survive, the strong- will shortly redeem us from all our est interest seems to concentrate sufferings. I know in whom I have around the closing days of the hon- believed; and though my blood be oured proto-martyr of Madagascar, shed, the word of God must prosper Rafaravavy.
in this country. She added, with From the time of her baving pro- great feeling, Pray for me, that if fessed her faith in the Lord Jesus it be the Lord's will I should suffer Christ, which was about seven years now, that he would take my soul to ago, Rafarava vy gave the most sat- himself; but that if I am spared, I isfactory evidence of the power of may live more than ever to his the Gospel in its transforming influ. glory. Nothing grieved her, she ence, and in her whole deportment remarked, so much as the spiritual honourably exemplified the Cbris- state of those around her; and that tian character. Mild and open in the immediate prospect of martyrdisposition, yet energetic and perse- dom itself was less painful to her vering in her efforts to do good, and than seeing all her connexions living endowed with highly-respectable in wickedness. natural abilities, she presented one The Queen did not, at that time of the happiest illustrations of the think fit to inflict on her the punnative character the missionaries ishment of death. A pecuniary fine had met with, and, under the influ- was imposed, equivalent to half the ence of religion, one of the most amount of her estimated value if sold satisfactory examples they could into slavery; and she was severely desire of success in their ministry ; threatened and warned, that though all who saw her beheld a heathen her life was spared, she should be who had been brought from dark- taught a lesson not to trifle with the ness to light, and was filled with the edict of the Queen.' fruits of the Spirit. Her efforts in Scarcely could a more striking behalf of others, sustained by her example of Christian forgiveness own consistency of deportment, and meekness be found in all the could not be, and were not, without records of the church, than she diseffect.
played on this trying occasion. In the summer of 1836, her faith While many of the members of her and patience were put to a severe family, indignant with her accusers, test. An accusation was laid against as slaves who ill requited former