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Missionary Magazine, and they are disposed of at a penny each, to those children who choose to purchase them. Perhaps introducing something of this kind into Sunday-schools, would tend to keep up the children's interest in Missionary exertions; but when first introduced into the school, there was for a time a much larger demand for them than at present; and I dare say others have experienced the same thing. How is the demand for them to be revived? I should recommend every Teacher to set an example, and purchase them ; and then he should make use of the anecdotes, and other facts contained in those magazines, in the class, and tell them where he read them, and recommend them to the children. This, I have no doubt, would raise a demand for them. But how is this demand to be kept alive? If every child in his class buys them, he should still make use of the anecdotes, &c., therein contained, as though none of them knew any thing about it. This would lead them all to read the books, and enter into your telling it to them with greater interest: for I remember once in illustrating what I had been saying to the class, I told them an anecdote, which, as it happened, one of the boys had read before, and he said, “I read that in such a book," naming it, and seemed very much pleased that he knew what I did; and to the remainder of the anecdote, (for I had not finished telling them,) I had their attention rivetted to what I was saying, more than if this incident had not occurred; so that if the Teacher did make use of the anecdotes in the before mentioned magazines, some of his class would immediately recognize where he obtained them, and would tell him so, and thus raise a wish in the others to have the books, and then purchase them: and this is one way to keep up the demand for the magazines; and if he can create and keep up in his class an interest in them, they will soon have an interest in Missionary exertions.
Yet, still God's blessing is needed. It must be sought by prayer upon every exertion like the present, that is, to raise an interest in children respecting Missions and Missionaries; and then we may hope, if exertions are used, and if God's blessing is sought by prayer, in faith, that God's blessing will be found.
I beg also to offer a few remarks respecting the duty of junior Teachers, who have the care of some of the youngest children, on this subjeet.
It is an usual practice in Sunday-schools, to collect money for Missions. All are invited to give pence, but many, (more especially the younger children,) I believe give their pence, because they are asked to give, or see others do so, without understanding the object for which they give.
A little boy in my class, brought a halfpenny, and told me, he wanted to put it into the box that is usually carried round the school. I told him he should do so. But before he did so, I said to him, “What do you give the money for?” “I don't know," he said. I then said, “You put it into the box, don't you?” “Yes." “ Well, then, what is the money done with, when it is put into the box??” “It stars in the bor," he said, very innocently. “Do you know what is done with the money after it is taken out of the box?". “No," he said. Upon which I asked some of the other boys, why the money is collected in boxes, and one of them told me it was for the Missionaries. I went farther, and asked them what Missionaries are, &c., but did not obtain an intelligent answer. The fact is, that when the children are asked to give, they go home, ask their parents for a penny or a halfpenny, the parents ask them “ for what?” “The Missionaries," it is given them. They come to the school, put the money into the Missionary box, and there the matter ends. This is generally the case, at least with the younger children; so that it is the Teacher's duty to explain to them the meaning of putting money into the “Missionary box,” suited to the small capacity of their understanding, and not too much of it, or else it will overload their shallow memories.
But perhaps it may be objected to, by some, that it is too early to explain these subjects to the youngest children, but wait till they can fully understand them. Now, I would ask those persons, these two questions : Ist, If we can begin a good work too soon ? and 2nd, If "our early impressions are ever forgot?” The answers are self-evident, No. The sooner those impressions are planted, the deeper will they take root, and the stronger will they grow. · I would also kindly hint to junior Teachers, who use in their classes Watts' Divine Songs, that they should get their classes to learn the fifth and sixth hymns, with reference to these subjects ; and then there would be an opportunity to enlarge on them, though it ought to be in a simple style, illustrated with simple anecdotes, to fasten what they say on their memories.
Teachers should endeavour to impress on the minds of the children the duty, the motive, the privilege, and the blessing, of imparting of what they possess, (be it ever so trifling,) that others may be possessors of the same blessings as themselves.
Finally, I have no doubt, that if an interest in this blessed object was cultivated amongst children, so would their piety increase with it. I beg to remain, Rev. Sir, yours faithfully,
Wm. — September 15th, 1845.
“WHEN OUGHT THE DOORS TO BE CLOSED!". REV. SIR, Your correspondents on the subject, “When ought the doors to be closed?” after expressing their opinions, refer it for that of others. It is not that I presume to be more wise than others who have exercised their judgment before me, but possibly my experience may be greater, having had the principal charge of a Sunday-school many years.
I have ever looked upon punctuality of attendance as most essential to its prosperity. The example should on all occasions be given by the Teachers, that the children may not have the opportunity, on their part, of confirming their late attendance by the irregularity of those they look to for example.
I am no friend to coercive measures, in the conducting a SundaySchool. Respect, authority, and obedience from the children, may be obtained by the exercise of much patience, kindness, and a feeling interest in their welfare. Gain but access to the hearts of the chil. dren, and you have the attention and respect you can require.
But while a regularity of attendance is necessary, they will present many plausible excuses for their being late. Yet they are not such, in general, but a right feeling on the part of their parents for the children's welfare might overcome. Much may be done by an interview with them, showing the bad effects in the school the late attendance of their children has on the rest, as well as the interference with the discipline of the school; much more may be obtained in possessing the minds of the children to be punctual. With this the object is at once accomplished.
The most effectual way I have found is requiring the children, at the opening of the school, after prayer, to repeat the lesson given them to learn during the week; and as punishment to those late in attendance, to keep them back after the morning service, with those who have neglected to commit to memory their appointed lesson. This does not often occur. Thus as they have both distinguished themselves, part by late attendance, and the other by idleness, they are again distinguished by forming a class of delinquents, keeping them all in a while, till some lesson from each is repeated, (perhaps less than the appointed one.) This is altogether a mortification. It is felt by the children as such, and I have invariably found it a most effectual way of gaining the desired end.
I need not observe, it is imposing a further confinement upon the Teaehers; but strictness of discipline cannot be obtained without the conductors of those to be taught being partakers of the necessary tedium. I trust my fellow teachers, having buckled on the harness, are prepared to encounter all difficulties; and if it should be our inestimable happiness, to be made (by the grace of God) the honoured instruments of training the dear children in the path of virtue and true religion, of cultivating the young plantation in such a manner as, by the divine blessing accompanying such endeavour, to lead them to partake of the Saviour's love, that they may be adopted into his family, and become his elect children, this is an object deserving all our activity and energy, in the use of every means in our power. That both Teacher and children may
" Then with joy appear
Before the Judge's face,
Sing his redeeming grace,”
C. P. Margaret Roothing, 23rd Sept., 1845.
SUMMARY OF PASSING EVENTS.
“There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel
of the Lord that shall stand.” "Can ye not discern the signs of the times ?” is an expostulatory query, which, if it had any force at the time when it was spoken by our Lord, has an infinitely greater one after the lapse of more than eighteen hundred years; and he must be blind indeed who looks around him into the world, who cannot see that the stamp of its final dissolution is becoming each year more widely and deeply marked, more discernible to the eye of mental observation, and more progressive to the grand crisis. It would be presumptuous in mortal man, to endeavour exactly to antedate this period, and contrary to the whole analogy of God's dealing with man, and the truths of revelation, to expect that he should be able; but as the pale flush of morning gradually deepens, as the dawn advances into the broad and well-defined lines of sunrising and day, so as the catastrophe of earthly things approaches, the signs of the times will become more decided ; events shadowy and unmarked will take form and substance, and accumulate in number as they are more frequent in significancy, and the expectation of men be fully aroused, as the “fulness of the times,” in its secondary sense, is completed. The position of the Church, in the British Isles and abroad, does more than indicate that the “love of many shall was cold." The strenuous efforts of Romanism in England, France, the British de
pendencies in India, and among the Chinese, seem like a prelude to those convulsive throes of Popery which prophetic visions teach us to look for, ere the millstone is cast into the sea, and Babylon falls.-The peculiar aspect of political affairs, the breaking up of parties, the reckless attacks made on long cherished principles and long settled convictions, the avowed support of forms of malignant errors spread over the horizon, their murky clouds of future disa tress, perplexity, and dissension, such as the latter days will usher in-the progress of Christianity among heathen nations, though far from general, or adequate in the remotest degree to our conceptions of “the knowledge of the Lord, covering the earth as the waters cover the sea,'*is yet so striking as to arouse the attention of the thinking mind to these ulterior results. The knowledge of these things, while it keeps us from being unduly excited by a fanatical because ignorant notion of its nearness, is well calculated to keep us sober and watching unto prayer, for the end of all things is at hand.
Passing over the intervening continental countries, we wish to draw the attention of our readers to that vast and most interesting dependency of the British Crown, INDIA. Events are transpiring there, which every real Christian cannot but hail with delight, as likely to pave the way for its ultimate conversion to Christianity. There was discovered some time ago, in a district of country partly in the Bengal and Madras presidencies, bordering on the Godavery river, the existence of human sacrifices, to a frightful extent. The people who were found to be involved in the practice, are the Kauds; and their country is somewhat larger than Scotland. A bill has however been lately published in India, to institute means for effectually abolishing this diabolical custom. This will, of course, cause British agents to be stationed among them, and bring them into closer connection with the government; and we hope that thus a door will be opened for the diffusion of Christianity there. Another measure, bearing date 15th January, 1845, has been likewise sanctioned, to abolish the law which previously existed, entailing the forfeiture of all possessions and property, on converts from the Hindoo or Mahomedan religions. This as it may be supposed, exercised a great influence over the native mind, and must have prevented many from embracing Christianity, through fear of total ruin. The removal of it will, consequently, give (we hope) an
* Nor are we to anticipate, it is clear from Scripture, the universal progress of Christianity over the earth before our Lord's coming; or when the Son of man cometh, will he find faith in the earth?" is doubtless equivalent to a negation.