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Ireland. The following pastoral letter, written in a vein of primitive simplicity and piety, has been lately addressed by the Archbishop of Tuam to the clergy of his dioceses.
"My dear sir, -It is my intention, with the Lord's blessing, to establish a Home Mission throughout my dioceses of Tuam and Ardagh. Under this plan, my purpose is to send some one or more of my clergy, whom I may think proper to select out of either of these two dioceses, into such parish or union, or district within the same, where it may appear to me spiritual benefit may be administered by the means of preaching the word of life to the poor Roman-Catholic multitude surrounding, either in the parish church, or some more convenient place, on such days and at such hours as the officiating minister, and others of the neighbouring clergy, may advise; at whose hands it will be expected, that both the times of preaching, and the places shall be arranged, and due notice thereof given to the people, so that the preacher shall have nothing whatever to do but to preach at such times and places as may have been so arranged by the aforesaid appointed persons. I feel no doubt of your approval of this arrangement, and of your active co operation with me in rendering it effective, by taking such part as I may assign to you from time to time in its progress. The Lord's grace be with you. Amen."
We congratulate every friend to religion in Ireland on these auspicious measures. The Church of Rome has ever had her missionary priests; and the Church of England, after the Reformation, adopted a similar plan. We are glad to find it revived in Ireland; and we heartily wish it were followed up in some parts of England where it is scarcely less needed. How many thousands of poor miserable beings, sunk in vice and ignorance, are perishing in the courts and alleys of our vast metropolis itself, for want of such a home mission among us!
INFANT SCHOOLS IN THE UNITED STATES.
The controllers of the public schools of Philadelphia have resolved that it is expedient to establish schools for the instruction of children under five years of age, in connexion with the existing public schools. This is the most important measure, in favour of Infant Schools, which has taken place in the United States. Detached institutions of the kind are to be found in nearly all the principal towns; but this is a project to make the system general, and to incorporate it as a part of common school education.
TINNEVELLY MISSION. The Church Missionary Society's missionaries at Tinnevelly, who in consequence of the defalcation in the society's
funds, have been obliged to dissolve the female seminary, have sent over an earnest address to their fellow-Christians for special assistance on the occasion. "Dear Christian friends," say they, "you have heard of the grace of God manifested in this district, by which thousands of our fellow-men have turned from dumb idols to serve the living God, and to inherit eternal life by our Lord Jesus Christ. There are in one hundred and forty villages, 1250 families, consisting of 4305 souls, who bow no longer to stones and wood, but learn to worship Jehovah in spirit and in truth. There is every prospect that many more will do likewise. Christian places of worship are rising in every direction, and the desert begins to blossom. Now, in the midst of all these pleasing labours and joyful prospects, we receive the unexpected intelligence, that the funds of the society have greatly diminished; and we are called apon to make large reductions of the expenditure of this mission. Trusting in the gracious care of our Heavenly Master, we were indeed not materially perplexed by this intelligence. We feel assured that his work will go on. We think it, however, our duty to appeal to you. According to present appearances, not only will the work already in progress suffer, but also the increase of the work will be checked. We must give up a number of schools; we must dissolve our female seminary-we must be sparing in visiting our numerous congregations. When new applications for Christian teachers are made, by persons who desire to be delivered from the iron chain of idolatry, we must tell them that we cannot send them
and when they crave for assistance to build places of Christian worship and schools, we must refuse them.
"Now, will you really have us to do so? We can scarcely believe it. Had you been this day with us in the town of Tinnevelly, and seen in the midst of that idolatrous city a small temple of Jehovah's facing a temple of Satan; had you seen the house of God filled with the worshippers of Jehovah, and twelve men of them baptized into the death of Jesus; had you seen crowds of heathens at the doors and windows listen attentively to the word of salvation, encouraging every hope that they also sooner or later will submit to the doctrine of the Cross for salvation; your heart would have rejoiced, and you would have determined, The mission shall not suffer by our want of exertion.
"The reduction made in this mission amounts to 2161. per year. Every hope of supplying new demands is taken away. The new church in Tinnevelly is already too small for the new congregation: another church will soon be required. In other villages new people ask for teachers, and for assistance in building places of worship."
We trust that such an appeal as this will not remain unanswered, whether by special contributions to this object, or by increased subscriptions to the funds of the Church Missionary Society, to enable its conductors to avail themselves of the multiplied opportunities of usefulness which are opening before them.
BOHEMIAN PROTESTANTS. The following is an extract from a letter from the Countess Von Reden, of Buchwald, Silesia, acknowledging the receipt of a small sum of money, collected in consequence of the interesting appeal in behalf of a congregation of Bohemian Protestants. (See our last vol. p. 185.)
"You have given to me, and our poor pious people at Hermansseiffen, inexpressible pleasure, and excited their loud thanksgivings to God, by your last letter, enclosing a second donation of 30%. sterling, for their assistance. I determined to cross the mountains myself, and to convey it to their own hands. This little pilgrimage into Bohemia belongs to one of the most pleasant recollections of my life. I sent my carriage before me into Bohemia empty, and made use of chairs, to convey me and my friend across the steep mountains. I then passed through a country unknown to me, but of a beautiful character, and reached Johannisbad at night. Early next morning, a deputation from the small Protestant congregation of Hermansseiffen came to meet us, and served as guides and as helpers in need; for in my life I never drove through such steep and rugged roads. Having reached the highest point of the Blue Mountain, we feasted our eyes on the beautiful prospect before us, illuminated by the rays of the morning sun; being a valley of immense extent, covered with villages, which lie between the towns of Trautenau, Arnau, Hohenelbe, &c. Night fogs were skimming along the plain, but the chapel and the modest dwelling of the minister at Hermansseiffen appeared like a bright spot in the wilderness, lying at our feet. We now left the carriage, and walked about two miles to the end of our journey, like missionaries. The walk was rendered extremely pleasant by the conversation of our guides, who gave us an account of the origin, persecutions, and the present formation of their congregation.
"Our first visit was to the eminence on which the romantic dwelling of the minister is situated, and we entered the simple rustic chapel, called the PrayerHall, with peculiar emotion. Besides on Sundays, three times in the week meetings are held as in the Brethren's congregations. Our entrance into the village was truly joyful; all the Protestant inhabitants stood before their houses, bid us welcome, and, coming towards us, gave us their hands, and accompanied us to
their churchwarden, at whose house we rested. The present I brought with me was received with heartfelt gratitude. Being Sunday, all the people in this part of the village looked clean and comfortable, and we felt quite at home among them.
"At half-past eight we went to the pastor, who, with his wife, received us with respect and sincere affection, and conducted us into his simple dwelling. From far and near communicants came in and begged him to write down their names, and to be permitted to be guests at the table of the Lord. We now went to the church. The building is small, but kept quite clean, light, and seems valued as a jewel. I was deeply affected at beholding the congregation filling every part of it; the greatest silence and attention prevailed; their eyes were fixed upon their minister, and their hearts seemed to receive every word with eagerness. His preparatory address before the communion was most impressive, and the celebration of the sacrament remarkably solemn. We left the church at half-past eleven, filled with gratitude for this work of God, and could not resist the pressing invitation of the dear pastor to share with him his humble meal. He is satisfied with a very scanty provision, is wholly devoted to his calling, and enjoys the general esteem and confidence of his congregation.
The liberal contribution you have sent for these poor Protestants was faithfully delivered to the minister and elders, who gave me a regular receipt. It was announced to the congregation from the pulpit, as the gift of British benefactors, who are never weary in well-doing; and is to be appropriated for the benefit of the schools. The former collections paid for the chapel, but nothing is left to increase the inadequate salary of the poor minister. I hope thus, my dear friend, to have fulfilled the commission with which I was entrusted, to your satisfaction, and once more present to you and your English friends the most cordial thanks of the congregation at Hermansseiffen."
CHRISTIANITY IN CEYLON. The following is an extract from a letter from Sir Richard Otley, Chief Justice of Ceylon, to the Principal of the American seminary in that island :
"As I may not be able to visit your station again previously to my departure from Ceylon, I take the present opportunity of addressing you on several points connected with the system on which you are proceeding, and which I witnessed in full operation on the day of your last annual examination. On that occasion I felt real satisfaction at the progress of the boys in mathematics and in natural philosophy. The value of these sciences may not be immediately apparent to those who
are not aware of the intimate connexion between the superstitions of the heathens of India, and their absurd notions and gratuitous hypotheses in natural philosophy. Still the first duty of all engaged in the education of the natives, is, to teach them the value, and to prove to them the truth of revelation which we profess to believe. All other objects ought to be rendered subservient to this, and be estimated chiefly in proportion to their tendency to promote it. In this respect, instruction in mathematical science and sound philosophy holds a high and important place in the minds of those who conduct the education of the people in Ceylon.
The next point to which my attention has been directed is, the education of the females; and your plans and exertions for the purpose of enlightening their minds, and elevating the moral standard amongst them, have met my unqualified approbation, and shall receive my hearty co-operation."
CREEK INDIANS. A missionary in the Arkansas country writes:
"There can be no doubt but that the Spirit of the Lord is operating on the hearts of many among the Creeks of the Arkansas. They have had none to teach them since their arrival in this country, till lately, but some very ignorant Blacks, who have no education; yet they have held meetings on the Sabbath, and the
Lord has blessed their endeavours. This is a marvellous display of Divine power, for the means. The cluster of inquirers, that are wont to surround me after preaching, this day applied for advice. They said, they thought persecution was about to be raised, their chiefs talked of proscribing those that pretended to preach. On examining into the matter, I found that these preachers, or exhorters, had lately begun, as they themselves expressed it, to take in dreams for experience.' And the chiefs, it seems, thought that this was foolish, and that they might be better employed. Being yet a stranger among them, and ignorant of the degree of influence I had gained, I waved the point of advising in this manner, but immediately commenced a short discourse from these words: He that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath my word, led him speak my word faithfully, saith the Lord.' Their countenances settled into a smile of approbation, mingled with regret at their mistake; for no people have I found more ready to receive the word when made known, let it apply where it will. They saw their error, and engaged in future to leave dreams out of their system, and take in for experience love and good will, faith and good works. With all their ignorance, there are some of the excellent of the earth among these people. Some of them have attended our communion, and we received them as the beloved in Christ Jesus our Lord."
THE REV. EDWARD MANSFIELD. James Mansfield, knt. Lord Chief Justice
To the Editor of the Christian Observer. THE retired life of the most exemplary country clergyman seldom furnishes many incidents of sufficient general interest for the pen of a biographer; but still private Christians are commanded to respect the memory, and to follow the examples of those who have been their spiritual guides. On this account, their examples and instructions should be preserved and remembered. When viewed in this light, they become precious relics not for superstitious veneration, but for pious imitation and instruction. From these considerations, I have collected the following particulars respecting the late Rev. Ed. ward Mansfield, a truly faithful servant of his Divine Master. As the period of his death, as long back as 1826, may be beyond the usual range of your Obituaries, I send only a brief notice; but a fuller account will be drawn up for private circulation among his immediate friends.
The Rev. Edward Mansfield was the second son of the late Right Hon. Sir
of the Court of Common Pleas. He was born in London, in 1779; was educated at Westminster School; and in 1799 became a resident member of St. Peter's College, Cambridge. He had been previously placed for some time under the tuition of the late Rev. John Owen, at Fulham, and was much impressed by Mr. Owen's scrmons and instructions; and began about that time to think seriously upon the great subject of religion. He took the degrees of A.B. and M.A. at the regular times; and was elected a Fellow of his College. In 1806 he was presented to the living of Bisley, Gloucestershire, by the Lord Chancellor Eldon, between whom and his father a long and intimate friendship had existed. He had taken holy orders before, but it does not appear that he ever served any regular curacy. In 1808 he went to reside at Bisley; and in 1814 married Hester, the only child of Joseph Grazebrook, Esq. of Far Hill, near Stroud. This lady still survives, with eight children, to cherish the most affectionate remembrance of his many excellencies. Their union was eminently happy.
The writer regrets that he does not possess a knowledge of the particulars which would illustrate the progress of Mr. Mausfield's religious principles, and the gradual formation of his character during his resi. dence at the University; but it is known that he read much divinity, and that Scott, Milner, and Robinson, were his favourite authors. His views seem to have acquired maturity when he came to reside at Bisley, since he entered upon the arduous duties of the spiritual cure of that parish well instructed in the duties of his office, and under a deep sense of its responsibility. This he always retained; and was often heard to declare, that, if he had viewed the office in the same light before his ordination which he did afterwards, he would never have chosen it for himself.
The parish of Bisley does not possess many recommendations as a place of residence, to one who had been accustomed to the society of London and the University of Cambridge. At that time, in particular, it was much secluded from intercourse with persons in the higher ranks of life. It is very extensive; the population six thousand and it is perhaps one of the poorest parishes in the kingdom. In this situation every thing must have appeared strange to Mr. Mansfield; but he had well considered the sacred relation in which he stood to the parish. This consideration seems to have formed the prevailing feeling of his mind, and he steadily acted under its influence. He walked in the path of duty; and, through the Divine blessing, he prospered in the great ends which he proposed to himself. His piety, humility, and zeal, as well as his worldly circumstances, well qualified him for the situation. He soon established his pastoral government in the affections of his parishioners, which is the most desirable foundation of all spiritual authority. He also became very strongly attached to the people and the place; and he was often heard to declare, that he would not exchange it for any other preferment.
Mr. Mansfield had always two full ser.. vices on the Sunday, besides very heavy occasional duties. He was most active in establishing Sunday schools for the Christian education of the poor; but he was not an advocate for gratuitous education beyond that which is religious and moral. He regularly visited the aged and the afflicted; and spared no pains in making himself acquainted with the religious state of the parish. He supplied the poor with Bibles, prayer-books, and other good books, either as gifts from himself, or at very reduced prices. He had a weekly service at the work-house, and also every Thursday and Sunday evenings; first in his own kitchen, and afterwards at the school-room. He laid his plans before his diocesan, the present Bishop of Hereford, who does not appear to have objected to them. Indeed this venerable prelate ever entertained a high
regard for Mr. Mansfield; and "esteemed him a most conscientious and exemplary minister."
For twenty years Mr. Mansfield persevered in these and all other means, which he believed were, under the Divine blessing, calculated to promote the spiritual good of his parishioners; nor were his labours in vain. The church was generally well attended, particularly on the Sunday afternoon. The number of communicants gradually increased. Many ap-. peared to be deeply impressed with the Divine truths which they heard, and to act under their influence in their lives.
Mr. Mansfield's abilities were sound and solid, rather than brilliant. His judginent. was accurate; he was an attentive observer of public affairs, and ever felt a lively in-. terest in the honour of his king and the good of his country. His piety was fervent and elevated, yet chastised and sober., Those who intimately knew him, found in him a man in whom firmness and consistency were conspicuous: who was very re-, markably raised above all selfish and worldly considerations; and who habitually stu died to do that which he believed to be right in the sight of God. His sentiments as a divine were orthodox, spiritual, and practical. In his public discourses, he dwelt much upon the fall of man from original righteousness, through the disobedience of the first Adam: and of his recovery from this state, through the obedience unto death of the Second Adam., But he was far from treating these doctrines as abstract truths, without continual practical reference to the state of the heart and the conduct of the life. He treated them as forming the life and soul of all true religion, and all sound morality. When he insisted on the fallen state of man by nature, his design was, that his hearers might be convinced of the necessity of redemption, and the renovation of the soul in righteousness. When he unfolded the atonement of our blessed Saviour, his end was to bring his hearers to seek the favour of God through that atonement. When he explained the Divine promises concerning the influences of the Holy Spirit, his design was to lead his hearers to seek to be made holy through those influences. No one more fully disclaimed the merit of all human endeavours, and yet insisted more upon the absolute necessity of good works; and that not only as evidences. and fruits of true Christian faith, but also in obedience to the authority of God, and as necessary to make man fit for the heavenly glory. He understood the Articles of our Church in their plain, literal, and grammatical sense; and his public discourses resembled the deep piety, and yet wise moderation, for which they are so remarkable. He considered the pious and moderate Calvinist and the orthodox and pious Arminian as equally entitled to his Christian regard; nor could the most discerning observe that his brotherly love
was influenced by difference of opinion upon these controverted points. His sentiments and conduct on this head, deserve the imitation of his clerical brethren.
Mr. Mansfield took particular delight in the duties of the Lord's day. He generally chose the subjects of his sermons, and wrote part of them, on the preceding Monday. He rose earlier, and retired later to rest on that sacred day, than on any other; and he was much pained with any conversation which had no reference to religion. He might be truly said to keep the Sabbath holy, and that it was a delight to him.
As a public instructor, his manner was commanding and impressive; and what he said produced the greater effect because he was known to feel and live under the influence of what he taught.
Mr. Mansfield truly possessed the grace of humility. This humility appeared in all his conduct, which never betrayed affectation, vanity, or ostentation. He was equally remarkable for charity. It would be difficult to find a person, in the same worldly circumstances, who spent so little upon himself, and so much upon the poor and the needy. He was also eminently distinguished for sincerity and integrity of heart; and was peculiarly free from every species of guile. When he was presented to the living of Bisley, he gave an instance of the liberality and disinterestedness which marked every action of his after life. His father had the living valued; but he consented to receive a very reduced sum; and his private charities could not be less than the whole emolument, after paying his curate. It is believed that Mr. Mansfield gave away as inuch as one hundred pounds yearly in small sums of three pence and sixpence. Divine Providence had blessed him with an independent fortune; and he to the utmost improved it to the good of his fellow-men.
address was open and unaffected; his couversation pleasant, frequently animated, and almost always as the Apostle enjoins, "with grace. seasoned with salt."
In 1810 he was appointed by Bishop Huntingford to preach the visitation sermon at Stroud. In the same year he preached the two assize sermons at Glou
cester. In 1811 he was one of the select preachers before the University of Cambridge; and the writer of these remarks well remembers the impressive manner with which he delivered four discourses before that learned body; and the crowded and at. tentive congregations which were present.
Mr. Mansfield ever took the deepest interest in the advancement of religion, both at home and in foreign countries; and he particularly rejoiced in the success of every institution which had for its object this divine cause. It was found after his death that he had been a subscriber to thirty religious and charitable institutions.
Mr. Mansfield continued to do the whole duty of Bisley until the summer of 1819, when he was prevailed upon by his father to keep a curate. He was happy in procuring the assistance of two gentlemen in succession, the Rev J. Gathorne and the Rev. Arthur Roberts, whose sentiments and habits were quite in unison with his own. Both these gentlemen confirm the character which has been given of Mr. Mansfield.
In the state of mind, and the labours of love, which have been described, Mr. Mansfield continued for twenty years the faithful and beloved Vicar of Bisley. His constitution was naturally sound and vigorous, and during those years he was favoured with good health. On these accounts, humanly speaking, he was likely to have reached a good old age; but the midst of life we are in death." On the evening of July 11, 1826, accompanied by his eldest son, he was going on an errand of benevolence in behalf of his poor parishioners; when both were thrown with great force from an open carriage, in consequence of the unruliness of the horse. The son received but little injury; but Mr. Mansfield received a severe compound fracture in his leg, and his whole frame was severely injured by the concussion. He survived this affecting accident only nine days, and was able to say very little between the afflicting event and his death. But though he was able to say only little, that little was sufficient to shew the truly devout and spiritual state of his He mind. Such brief sentences as the following fell from time to time from his lips :-" O God, thou hast been my help, so that I shall not greatly fall.”—“ I will extol thee, my God, O King; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever; for thou hast not let the enemy triumph over me."-" Whosoever believeth in the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved."-"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not
Mr. Mansfield's conduct in his own family was most examplary. He generally rose early, and spent the morning in private devotion and reading the Scriptures. For several years he committed a portion of Scripture to memory every morning; by which means, his mind became well stored with the language and sentiments of the inspired writers. The family prayers morning and evening were conducted by him in a manner well calculated to promote edification. His whole behaviour marked the affectionate husband and the tender parent. The education of his young fainily dwelt much upon his mind. preferred a private education to a public one, for boys; and left his executors under restrictions upon this point. He thought that a private education is more favourable to forming the religious and moral character. He did not appear fond of general society, and in mixed company was rather reserved; but his disposition was habitually lively and cheerful. In his own family and with his intimates, his