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residence—the summoning of convocations-the revision of the liturgy, &c. &c. &c. have all their several advocates; we say not that they are all, or equally unimportant; we think something may be done, and something ought to be done, for improving small livings, and for checking and taxing pluralities, and non-residence; though we conceive many years must elapse before these evils can be terminated without great injustice to individuals, and serious injury to the church; but all the plans which have been mentioned, leave the real danger just where it was. No plan we have yet seen, provides for the positive insufficiency of our existing church establishment, to meet the religious necessities of a vast and rapidly increasing population;—of an extending and mighty empire.
We may, perhaps, here be reminded of the ecclesiastical establishment provided for the East and West Indies; of the increase of churches at home; of the labours of the National School Society; and of the laudable exertions of the Societies for the promotion of Christian Knowledge, and the Propagation of the Gospel in foreign parts; but still we recur to our position our present Church establishment is insufficient to meet the religious necessities of our vast and mighty empire. The equalizing of livings, the prohibition of pluralities, the enforcing of residence, may possibly remedy existing evils; but no regulations of this nature can supply the positive, the alarming deficiency of religious instruction, by which large masses of the community, and immense portions of the empire are left to perish in ignorance and sin.
The provision made for the religious instruction of the empire, remained very nearly stationary from the period of the reformation, till the commencement of the present century. Meanwhile, to say
nothing of the increase in population at home, thousands and tens of thousands of our fellow-subjects were called forth to occupy civil or military situations in far distant colonies; here they spent the prime and flower of their days, exposed to many dangers, to powerful temptations, without any restraint from the superintendance of others; without any religious instruction or caution. Alas! how many have fallen victims to disease, and returned no more to their native land; but of those who survive and return, how few are under the influence of any serious impressions! They went out young; they had little early religious instruction; they passed years without public worship, without hearing sermons, without any religious opportunities; for our colonies, our factories, our garrisons, our land and sea forces are more destitute of chaplains than those of any other nation professing Christianity. Is it then any matter of surprise, that so many who have acquired their fortunes abroad, are found without any religion at home; and when such neglected and ill-instructed individuals occupy responsible situations in the administration or the legislature, is there not reason to suppose that they will be indifferent to a church, from whom they have received no instruction, and hostile to the perpetuating of revenues which may appear to them misapplied? Nor should it be forgotten, that the Wesleyan, Presbyterian, Independant, and Methodist Teachers in many of our colonies very far exceed the clergy in numbers, and that consequently a considerable portion of the more serious individuals who return home are disposed to favour the dissenting cause, rather than promote the interest of the establishment.
Nor is there any thing in our proceedings at home which can effectually counteract the unfavourable current which continually
sets in from our colonial possessions. The advocates for the church record with delight the provision of additional accommodations in our churches for half a million of persons in the last thirty years. We rejoice in every addition of this kind, but if it shall be found that the population increases with inconceivably more rapidity than the church accommodation, however we may rejoice at what has been effected, we must still lament that the melancholy statements of Dr. Yates are too applicable at the present moment. The crowded congregations in our new churches evince the necessity of those erections; and prove the impolicy of the still existing restraints on church building; the expence, however, which these churches have in many instances occasioned to the parishes in which they are erected, has called forth symptoms of opposition, which threaten considerable inconvenience; while the absence of all endowment, and the absolute dependance of the ministers on the pew rents, has introduced into our new churches one of the worst features of the dissenting system. The evils of popular election are transient in comparison of those which arise from dependance on popular applause for daily bread.
And after all that has yet been done there are numerous places, even in the immediate vicinity of London, where the well-disposed find great difficulty in discovering churches at which they can attend; where the careless sink gradually down into practical neglect of all religion, and are in fact heathens bearing the Christian name; and where vast multitudes of the poorer classes are totally destitute of all religious instruction. It is melancholy to witness the lost and degraded state of the poor labouring gardeners in the neighbourhood of Fulham, Battersea, &c. and the awful profligacy to which multitudes of our seafaring countrymen
are exposed at the eastern extremities of the metropolis. Alas! how many of these may say, No man careth for our souls!
The same deficiency of church room which has produced so fearful a result in many parts of our land, and especially in the vicinity of the metropolis, has also paralyzed to a considerable extent the beneficial effects of the National School Society, or even as some have asserted, rendered its schools eventually injurious to the church. seems generally agreed that the children in those schools are up to a certain point well instructed, and that many of them evince a very considerable proficiency; but the instant they leave school and enter upon life for themselves, they are not only, as other young persons, exposed to serious temptations, but deprived of those religious instructions, the continuance of which is of such inconceivable importance. No adequate provision is made for them in our churches; many in consequence are tempted to neglect public worship; the better disposed find ready accommodation at methodist or dissenting chapels; and thus the system originally hailed as the palladium of our church, is said to produce results very unfavourable to her interest. How far this is the case we presume not to decide; but the subject demands investigation. National Schools have been so long established on an extensive scale, that those more immediately connected with the society may easily ascertain their effects; and as applications are now making by authority to the benevolence of the Christian Public, it is highly important to ascertain how far the bounty already bestowed has answered the expectations of the donors.
We have dwelt longer on the dangers of our church than we originally intended, but at the same time it appears to us important that
those who really wish well to our Zion should not occupy their time on minor points, but should endeavour to contemplate the real sources of danger, and devise appropriate remedies. The danger resulting from the neglect of religious instruction in our Colonial possessions can only be removed by providing adequate and competent religious Teachers. The appointment, for instance, of one Bishop, three Archdeacons, and some fifty Chaplains, (of whom little more than half are at any given period in active employ) to communicate religious instruction to the civil and military servants of a country larger than Europe, is a miserable evasion; the attempt to provide churches at the public expense to supply the wants of our population, where that population increases ten times more rapidly than the church room provided, only deceives the public by professing to do what in existing circumstances cannot by such means be effected; and the education of the poor in the principles of the national church, if so conducted that the great majority of the pupils do not continue in that church, is really encouraging many to rest on a broken reed.
What we desire is, that the established church should be extended to all our Colonies :-that in every Colony churches should be erected; incumbents appointed; and moderate and sufficient provision be made for their support, either from Colonial or national funds :—that in all the larger Colonies Bishops should be appointed, whose Sees should be confined to such reasonable limits as should enable them to exercise a real and not a nominal jurisdiction. What upon earth can be more absurd than to place the Cape of Good Hope, New South Wales, and the whole of our East Indian possessions under the control of the Bishop of Calcutta? Provision should also be made for the education and ordina
tion of Ministers and Missionaries in our several Colonies, that the native inhabitants may no longer be dependent on the mother country for those religious teachers of which she can only furnish a scanty supply.
We desire also that the erection of churches and chapels in the establishment should be thrown perfectly open to the public. We would wish that any man or body of men might be enabled to purchase, erect, endow, and nominate to a church or chapel in any place; the ordaining, licensing, or instituting of the individual so nominated would still remain with the Diocesan, and therefore no improper person could be admitted, if that Diocesan discharge his duty. We wish that dissenting and methodist ministers might be encouraged to apply for ordination, and that the trustees and proprietors of dissenting and methodist places of worship might be encouraged to convert them into churches and chapels in connexion with the establishment; and while we shrink from the wanton alterations of Mr. Cox and Mr. Riland, we would endeavour by a careful review of all the passages in our Liturgy, commonly objected to by dissenters, to remove as far as possible every obstacle which impedes their coming amongst us with a quiet mind. We wish in short in these times of strife and contention to remove every ground of complaint which can be removed without sacrificing essential truth; to unite all Protestants as far as possible in one common bond, to follow after peace and things whereby we may edify one another. †
Our limits compel us to close. We and our readers can do little ; but that God whom we serve can turn the minds of all men, as seemeth good in his sight. To him therefore let us address our fervent petitions, that he would graciously despose our hearts, and the hearts of our sovereign, his nobles, counsellors, and senators, to the adop
have in some quarters been advanced; and a very eminent degree of zeal for God and of jealousy for the honour and purity of his truth, has been confidently professed; but the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE; and while many have been zealously employed in contending for truth and denouncing divine judgments about to be executed, we have witnessed few symptoms of His spirit who wept over Jerusalem; or of that tender, compassionate, ardent
tion of those measures which may promote the increase of true religion, and the peace, and purity, and extension of our established church; and that thus the glory of our God and Father, and the enlargement of the kingdom of our adorable Redeemer may be promoted and extended throughout the world.
desire for the conversion of the ungodly which distinguished the great Apostle of the Gentiles. Where envy and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work; and who can review the proceedings of the last two or three years but must feel that to many of the leading actors it might well be said, "Ye know not what spirit ye are of." O let us seek, and strive, and labour to attain the spirit of love, of peace, and of a sound mind!
ADDRESS TO THE NEW YEAR.
AND art thou come, fair Spirit, from above,
O may the gracious hand that gave me thee,
O be it mine, to fill thy true account
Of conscience, in the solemn hour that seals
May that account record a spirit meek,