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assertion ; but fear cannot annihilate tion that it is the truth, is one of the facts, though it may refuse to see them. things most needed in preaching to the The fact remains ; only let us be careful present generation. Multitudes who to state it correctly. In its broad aspect cannot go down to the depths themthe fact is visible enough to any open- selves will yet believe if they see that eyed observer who can compare the you have examined the foundations, preaching and religious books of thirty that you are satisfied of their stability, or forty years ago with the preaching and that you are resting your whole and religious books which find most soul upon them. Enlarged freedom in acceptance now. Assuming then, the preaching, thinking, and talking on fact of change in this respect to be religious subjects is another good result. admitted, let us try to find its elements. Ministers are not now required to be And here we are confronted at the out- perpetually presenting certain forms of set with that which is the most marked truth which were thought to be essenintellectual feature of our time—the tial. The secret police of orthodoxy revival and prevalence of scepticism in has almost, if not quite, vanished from matters of religion.

We shall

our congregations. The practical apscarcely overstate the fact if we say plication of Christianity to our daily that the intellectual world is pervaded life may be set forth without neces. by an atmosphere of scepticisin. But sarily being accompanied by a saving our students and preachers, and our reference to the doctrine of justification best hearers, belong to this intellectual by faith. Preachers and people are less world. They, as readers and thinkers, afraid of good works than they used to cannot escape from its atmosphere ; and be, though it is not so evident that they they must be, to some extent, influenced practise them more. Yet further ; the by it. Its immediate effect is that they prevalence of scepticism has demondo not so readily receive all that they strated the need for competent knowread and hear as their fathers did. They ledge and intellectual power in our stop more often to ask the reason why, pulpits. We want, indeed, Christian and require a good reason before they men, devout men, honest men ; but can be satisfied. Another effect is that they must also have brains-brains the lines of doctrinal demarcation, which trained for use, furnished with knowused to stand out clear and distinct, are ledge, and capable of wielding that now scarcely recognised. Few educated knowledge as an instrument of power." men of the present day will answer to These changes in the intellectual life the name of either Calvinistor Arminian. of the churches is accompanied by It follows, as a consequence, that the changes equally marked in the social old systems of theology are either wholly life of their members. “As our preachrejected or only partially received. ing has become broader, freer, and Now, in all this there is some good, more secular, so it has been with our but also some evil. The spirit of scep- social and church life ; and, as the ticism is the bane of faith. But faith lines of demarcation in doctrine have is the soul's organ for seeing and grasp- more or less vanished, so the old line ing spiritual things. In proportion as of separation between the church and scepticism enters the mind, the sight the world has become gradually more and hold of such things become dim and more faint. The change, as thus and feeble. Is there not reason to fear broadly stated, may seem to be simply that this effect does actually exist for the worse, but a closer examination among us? Evil in these and other will show that it is not altogether so. forms has, I think, been wrought by The worth of the line which separates the scepticism of our day; but good the church from the world depends not has also come out of it. Increased so much upon its distinctness as upon its clearness and strength of conviction nature. Thirty or forty years ago, the have, I hope, in not a few cases, been church, not only of Independents, but obtained. The man who has battled of all who were accounted evangelical with the everlasting no,' and come Christians, was marked off from the off victor, has a far stronger hold of the world chiefly by the prohibition of truth than he could ever have had with- amusements. The man who followed out the conflict. And this certainty of the hounds in a red coat was concluded the truth, this clear and firin convic- to be a child of the wicked one. The - Let us,”

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gun and shooting-jacket were scarcely way for advance to a higher morality; compatible with church membership, only let us take heed that we do advance though occasionally tolerated. To look in that direction.” upon a horse-race was sin. To play at cards or billiards was sin ; and even

REMAINS OF MAN IN CALIFORNIA. chess and draughts were with difficulty

- In the Transactions of the Chicago saved from condemnation. The theatre Academy of Sciences, vol. i. p. 2, Dr. J. and ball-room were absolutely pro

W. Foster claims for the human skull scribed; while dancing, under any discovered last season in the gold-drift circumstances, and the reading of plays, of California a greater antiquity than were looked upon by many godly people that of any of the human remains which with grave displeasure. There are, per

have hitherto come to light in the drift haps, not a few Christian people who of Abbeville and Amiens, in the valley still retain these views, but the pre- of the Somme, or in the loess of the vailing tendency has been to change all Rhine. It was found in a shaft 150 this. The extent of the change is feet deep, two miles from Angelas, various in different localities, but, more in Calaveras Co., California, and is or less, the movement in favour of re- now in possession of the State geologilaxing these restraints has been univer- cal survey. The shaft passes through sal.” Objections against these indul. five beds of lava and volcanic tufa, and gences may be advanced, and several four deposits of auriferous gravel. The are stated by the speaker.

upper bed of tufa was homogeneous, and he continues, "give to these their due without any crack through which a weight. But is there not something to skull could have been introduced from be said on the other side? Let us sup- above. The date of these gravels is pose one of our churches in which these referred to the Pliocene, i.e. the age prohibitions were most rigidly main- before the volcanic eruptions took place tained to be brought under the inspec- which cover a great part of the state, tion of some outside visitor of adequate an age preceding the mastodon, the intelligence and high moral and reli- elephant, and other pachyderms. gious culture. What aspect would such Since the appearance of man, therefore, a church present to him? Would he in that region, the physical features not say, "The morality of this people have undergone mighty changes. The is inverted; their vision is distorted ; volcanic peaks of the Sierra have been small things appear to them great, and lifted up, and glaciers have descended great things small. They sternly pro- into the valleys, freighted with scribe certain practices which are, at gravels, and the great cañons themthe worst, only doubtful in their moral selves have been excavated in the solid character, while they tolerate others rock.The Academy. which are essentially and flagrantly evil. Card-playing, dancing, and other LONDON.-Cross Street.The annual similar things are incompatible with meeting of this society was held March their Christian fellowship; but un- 20th. The report of the committee charitableness, covetousness, untruth- enters somewhat minutely into the fulness, unforgiving resentment, and question of the financial position of the dishonesty, at least in trade, seem to society. This, though not so flourishnestle undisturbed beneath their very ing as desirable, is apparently improvaltars.' It would be

that ing and the prospects of the society are these vices have ever been prevalent in hopeful. The income has been £372, our churches, but the charge is true and its expenditure £398. The society that they have not generally been made

wrong say

has lost since its annual meeting the the objects of ecclesiastical discipline or

services of the Rev. Mr. Hiller, who of social condemnation. It is time that has passed into the spiritual world; and the morality of our churches should be for the last eight months has enjoyed re-adjusted upon the basis of eternal the pastoral labours of the Rev. Dr. right and wrong. The relaxation of Tafel. These services have been so the old restraints, the tendency to successful as to encourage the society bring back the small things to their to renew and extend their engagement real dimensions, is, I think, one step in the right direction. It opens the

with Dr. Tafel. Among the institutions fostered in the society are their

to

“Sunday School,” and “Junior Members' Mutual Improvement Meeting. Both seem to be usefully employed, though the numbers in attendance are not large. In the Sunday School the minister has an advanced class, which is studying the True Christian Religion. In the Junior Members' Society lectures and papers on religious, literary, and scientific subjects have been given by Revs. Messrs. Gorman, Barlow, Tafel, and Quant, and by several members of the Church in London. The society is looking forward to the Meeting of Conference

which is to be this year held in their Church.

TRACT SOCIETY.-The annual meeting of this society was held in the Girls' Schoolroom, Peter Street, on the evening of May 9th. The Rev. J. Hyde was in the chair, and introduced the proceedings in a brief address. The report which was read by the Secretary showed an increase in the issues of the institution, and a promising state of the funds. Addresses were delivered during the evening by Mr. Mackereth, Mr. Hodgson, Revs. R. Storry, W. Woodman, and J. Boys, and by Messrs. Brotherton, Seddon, and E. J. Broadfield. In the course of these addresses several topics of present interest, suggested by the resolutions, were dwelt upon by the speakers. Mr. Mackereth pointed out, that while tracts had been often constructed on the principle of frightening men into religion, the purpose of the New Church Tract Society was to enlighten men's minds, and to lead them to a rational discernment of the truth. Mr. Storry took up the subject of the increased attention given to the Bible, and the great work of its revision at present occupying the attention of some of the leading scholars of the age. Evidences were given of the increased liberality of thought and unity of purpose which this work had produced among the several sections of the Christian Church. Its accomplishment must attract increased attention to the Word, but could not remove the difficulties which beset its merely literal interpretation. Passages would still appear apparently at variance with the moral attributes of the Supreme Being, and the Church would continue to need a law of interpretation to enable her to rightly uuderstand the Word of God.

It is the mission of the New Church to supply this law, and the Tract Society is one of the agencies by which this is to be accomplished. Mr. Woodman followed, and dwelt upon the opening prospects of a more extended culture of the great body of the people under the new Education Act.

A merely intel. lectual education would not, however, necessarily prepare the way for the religious advancement of the nation. This progress required moral culture as well as intellectual instruction. The progress of the New Church has been Iess rapid than its most sanguine friends were led to hope. All the agencies of Divine Providence, however, are over us, and eternity before us, for the full realization of the aims and objects of the Church. Doubtless Divine Providence could open men's minds to a sight of the highest truths, but when in unsuitable states for their proper reception, they might only be inflated and injured by them. The great object of the New Church should be to do good to men, by promoting their regeneration. All, indeed, belong to the new dispensation who are in good, and by truths their good will be purified. Hitherto our agencies, like the ancient engines of war constructed to throw stones, had been too exclusively occupied in overthrowing error and in producing rational and intellectual arguments in support of the doctrines. But there are difficulties to be removed, and the path on which we must next enter will be that of exposition. We must endeavour to explain the difficulties of the letter of the Word, to harmonize its apparent contradictions, and to lead men to an enlightened knowledge of its teaching, and to a constant and diligent practice of its precepts. The proceedings throughout appeared to interest the friends assembled, and will doubtless encourage the committee to renewed labours in the great work in which they are engaged.

ADELAIDE.—The Adelaide Society of the New Church intend erecting a new place of worship, the lease of the ground upon which their chapel in Carrington Street stands expiring in December 1871.

They have purchased a suitable piece of land for the purpose in Hanson

Street. A design has also been selected by the committee and adopted by the Society. The estimated cost of the building is £860. This will include the internal fittings, but not any vestry, shed, or fencing. The dimensions are 41 by 30 ft. and it is calculated to seat 170 hearers.

The committee expect that the sum available from the accumulated Building Fund will amount to about £500 at the end of 1871. They are very anxious, however, to complete the building without involving the Society in debt, while they would regret very much to be obliged to substitute an inferior design.

They believe the friends of the Church will unite in “doing what they can” towards the erection of the building, but it is very desirable that the committee should know, without delay, at least approximately, the additional amount upon which they may depend.

They therefore respectfully invite the Co-operation of their brethren, and will esteem it a favour to be informed of any supplementary aid which may be rendered to the Building Fund. The secretary is Mr. F. W. Botting.

DEPTFORD.- On the afternoon of Wednesday the 26th April, the foundation or memorial stone was laid of a new place of worship in Warwick Street, Douglas Street, Deptford. The building about to be erected will accommodate upwards of 200 persons, and will cost, when completed, about £900. It is of a neat design of Byzantine character; the dressings to the door and windows will be of Bath stone, the capitals carved, and the remainder of the front is to be executed in Suffolk white and red bricks. The interior is designed as an arcade on each wall, the arches being supported by pilasters with moulded and enriched capitals. The roof timbers will be to sight, and all the woodwork will be stained and varnished. The plan of the building is a parallelogram with chancel raised two steps above the floor level. The archi. tect is Mr. Edward C. Gosling of the Woodlands, Old Charlton. At four o'clock on the day above-named, a considerable number of the members and friends of the Society assembled on the site. A hymn having been sung, Mr. J. Rhodes, the leader of the So

ciety, offered up the Lord's Prayer, after which Richard Gunton, Esq., the treasurer of the New Church Conference, laid the stone in due form, using for the occasion a handsome silver trowel lent by Alfred Braby, Esq., secretary of the Camberwell Society. Mr. Gunton then addressed the spectators on the meaning of the ceremony, and the nature of the doctrines to be preached in the Church. The stone bears the following inscription:-“New Jerusalem Church, This memorial stone was laid by Richard Gunton, Esq., treasurer of the New Church Conference, &c., 26th April 1871; Edward C. Gosling, architect ; Perry Brothers, builders."

After the ceremony tea was provided in the Alliance Temperance Hall, Union Street, of which about 120 persons partook. Upon the tables being removed, Mr. Rhodes took the chair at seven o'clock. A hymn having been sung and prayer offered by the Rev. Dr. Bayley, Mr. Rhodes thanked the friends for their attendance and gave several interesting particulars in connection with the Building Fund. The meeting was then addressed by Rev. T. Chalklen, Messrs. Braby, Austin, Rev. Dr. Tafel, Mr. R. Gunton, Rev. Dr. Bayley, and Mr. Ramage. The Church is to be consecrated on Wednesday, August 9, during the session of the New Church Conference in London, when Rev. J. Hyde, president of Conference, is expected to preach.

HULL.-On Sunday 16th April, the Anniversary Services of this Society was held, when two appropriate sermons were preached by the Rev. W. Ray of Newcastle.

On Monday, 17th April, the annual tea-meeting was held, and after tea the public meeting which was presided over by Mr. Best, the leader of the Society. Addresses were delivered by Rev. W. Ray and other friends during the evening, and several pieces of music were

also sung.

On Tuesday evening, 18th April, Mr. Ray delivered a lecture on “HeavenWho are its Inhabitants, and what the Nature of their Employment?” The lecturer stated that to understand the subject it was necessary to begin at the beginning and take å glance at the order of creation from the Creator; then gave therefore an outline of crea

tion, first in its relation to spiritual ing that that festival is looked upon by things; the sun of the spiritual world, very many in the light of a holiday to whence were spiritual spheres; spiritual be devoted wholly to recreation. Conatmospheres, and a spiritual world. stantly increasing numbers, amongst The lecturer next took a glance at whom were many strangers, showed things natural: the natural sun, natu- that Mr. Wilkins' ministrations were ral atmospheres, a natural earth, and more and more appreciated. His power thus a natural world. Next he con- of illustration and the spirit of earnestsidered the object or end in view in the ness which breathed in all his remarks, mind of the Creator in the creation of were especially admired. At the close these worlds. This end was shown to of his last sermon, a purse with six be that a human race might be born on sovereigns was presented to him, in the earth, and from the human race a presence of the congregation, as a slight heaven of angels formed. Angels there- token of the esteem which he had acfore began their life in this world, and quired among the Jersey friends. our great business here is to reject the evil and be prepared for angelic homes. NottingHAM.—The Society in this Both the Sunday's services nd the town has been favoured with a visit lectures were well attended, notwith- from and the spiritual ministration of standing the very unfavourable weather Mr. Thomas Moss, B.A., of Jersey. which on the Tuesday evening was On Good Friday Mr. Moss preached in sufficient to deter any one not greatly the church on the assuring declaration interested in the subject from venturing of our Lord, “And I, if I be lifted up, out of doors. Mr. Ray's lectures have will draw all men unto me.” The invariably proved attractive to the Hull Easter services were celebrated as the public to whom he is tolerably well “Anniversary” of the Society, and the known, having made several visits to attendance was both numerous and the Society since its commencement. attentive. Many strangers were preWe have reason to believe that in

sent. The subject on Sunday morning, several instances a favourable impres- 9th April, was—“Under what form sion has been made, by the convincing should we worship God ?” and in the manner in which he commended the

evening—“On the Doctrine of an Inprinciples of the New Church to the termediate state of Souls." Both subaudience. After the lecture a hearty jects were handled in Mr. Moss' usual vote of thanks was given to Mr. Ray masterly style. A social tea-meeting for his able lecture, and to the National was held in the school-room on Mon. Missionary Institute to which the So- day, when about eighty persons sat ciety was indebted for his visit.

down to an excellent repast. The

evening was diversified by singing, JERSEY.-- To be up and doing is as music, and an address from Mr. Moss, necessary for the progress of the Church in the course of which he earnestly as it is for the advancement of our exhorted the friends to renewed efforts worldly affairs. Acting on this princi. to build up the Church within themple, the Jersey Missionary Society re- selves, and also as an external organizasolved to secure Mr. C. H. Wilkins' tion. On the Tuesday Mr. Moss deservices to preach and lecture in St. livered a lecture in the Exchange Hall Heliers during the temporary absence (granted by the Mayor) on “Symbolism, of Mr. Moss on a visit to his former or Material types of the Spiritual," and Society at Nottingham. Most amply although the evening was very unfav. have they been repaid. Mr. Wilkins ourable the attendance was tolerably came amongst us almost an utter stran- good, and the way in which the lecturer ger; he left, carrying with him the treated his subject throughout was esteem and gratitude of all for the most joyfully received by an audience powerful influence he exerted in pro- composed chiefly of strangers. The moting brotherly love and affection in

local newspapers noticed the lecture, the Society. We all believe Mr. Wil- and the Guardian gave a very favour. kins to be a born preacher and a great able account, incorporating the chief acquisition to the Church. The first points of the lecture in its report with sermon was preached on Good Friday ; pleasing explanations and examples of the attendance was very good, consider

On the following Sunday,

the same.

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