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AN INCIDENT OF SLAVERY. A little American girl, called by the pet name of Pink, was one of a family who had a portion of negro blood in their veins. When the father, a celebrated physician, died, his wife and children were sold as slaves, but Pink was left to console ler sorrowing grandmother, who had purchased her own freedom. When, however, she was nine years of age, the slave dealers would spare her no longer, but seized and sold her for £180.
The Rev. H. W. Beecher heard of this, brought the little girl--only a few months ago---into his church, told the circumstances to his congregation, and asked them to subscribe and purchase Pink's freedom. A collection was made, amply sufficient for the purpose. One lady gave an opal ring, which Mr. Beecher put on Pink's finger, telling her to wear it as her “freedom-ring." Each class in the Sunday school contributed a dollar for the purpose ; and we do not doubt that the children will ever rejoice to have had their share in so noble a work as purchasing Pink's freedom,
Echo.-The Gospel plan.
Echo.-Both friend and foe.
Echo.--Love them still.
Echo.--Never strike again.
Echo.-Lead them right.
Echo.-To the end.
Echo. - Directly go.
REVIEW AND INTELLIGENCE. The Mother in her Household : by H. Green, M.A. (London:
Whitfield.) Price 4d. This sermon well sets forth four main excellencies of a mother, viz., wisdom, kindness, watchfulness, and perseverance. It will guide a parent in her duty, and aid a teacher in his expositon of a very beautiful passage of Scripture,-Proverbs xxxi. 10—31.
Physiology for Common Schools : by Mrs. Bray. (London:
Longman.) “This small work,” says Mrs. Bray, “is chiefly intended as a lesson-book for our common schools, and is an attempt to make intelligible to children of the poorer classes so much of the nature of the vital organs and functions as shall give them some correct ideas with respect to the means by which disease may be avoided and health preserved.” The book is written in an interesting style, in simple Saxon words, and is illustrated with wood cuts. Since “ cleanliness is next to godliness," we may safely recommend it for use in Sunday Schools. Where it cannot be introduced as a class-book, it may be put in the library, or read by the teachers as a text-book for conversation and explanation.
MANCHESTER DISTRICT SUNDAY SCHOOL ASSOCIATION.Probably the most numerously attended and spirited meeting
held under the auspices of this association took place on Good Friday, April 6th, at Dukinfield. A beautiful spring morning served as an additional attraction to friends who had a distance to travel, and the chapel was quite filled by a large congregation at the eleven o'clock service. The Rev. R. Brook Aspland, M.A., of Hackney, delivered a valuable and instructive sermon on the occasion. After the service some three hundred persons assembled at dinner in the large schoolroom, generous provision having been made for their guests by the congregation and teachers. At two o'clock the body of the chapel was again filled; and the business meeting was held, under the presidency of the Rev. John Gordon. The annual reports were read by Mr. Jeffery Worthington, one of the Secretaries, Mr. Charles J. Herford, the Treasurer, and Mr. John Taylor, the recently-appointed visitor. A strong appeal was made for largely-increased funds, in order to make the office of visitor permanent and effective. Since entering upon his duties in January, Mr. Taylor had paid visits to eleven schools
. Several visits had also been made during theyear by other gentlemen, and likewise by students of the Home Missionary Board. The report expressed a hope that Mr. Taylor would receive
assistance of this kind from gentlemen interested in Sunday Schools. The report showed a decided increase in the average attendance of both teachers and scholars in the district schools during the past year. Allusion was made to the change in the editorship and management of the “Sunday School Penny Magazine;" the committee stating that, though there was a serious loss upon the issues of last year, they looked forward to the future with hope and confidence. The giving up of the illustrations had not injured the sale, which had, in fact, somewhat increased. The meeting accorded a warm vote of thanks to the Rev. John Wright for his long and zealous services as editor of the magazine. A number of other votes of thanks were adopted, and the officers for the next year were appointed ; Mr. John Booth, of Monton, being the President, and Mr. George Payne taking the place of Mr. Richard Wade, as one of the secretaries. In the course of the proceedings, a wish was expressed to open a room in Manchester in connection with the association as a sort of Sunday School Exchange. The speakers at the meeting were the Revs. J. Wright (Bury), J. Colston (Styal), J. Cropper (Stand), J. Harrop (Manchester), W. Binns Birkenhead), J. Freeston (Dob Lane); the Rev. H. Ierson and Mr. I. M. Wade, who attended as a deputation from the central association in London ; and Messrs. D. Harrison, J. Ogden, S. Broadrick (Dukinfield), John Booth (Monton), J. Robinson (Mossley), W. Collier (Swinton), E. Shawcross, J. Worthington, and Dr. Marcus (Manchester)." At four o'clock a tea-party was held in the school-rooms, at which from four to five hundred persons were present. Afterwards the chapel bell again summoned all to the general meeting ; at which Mr. Samuel Greg, the retiring president, occupied the chair. The Rev. John Wright introduced the question of “Religious Instruction in the Sunday School,” in an able and instructive speech. An interesting discussion followed; the speakers being the Revs. H. Ierson, James Drummond, J. c. Street, Joseph Freeston, Dr. Marcus, and Messrs. I. M. Wade, and James Glossop
HURST-STREET DAY SCHOOLS, BIRMINGHAM.–For the last three years prizes have been given to all children who have attended these schools for 176 days in each year, and fulfilled the necessary conditions as to cleanliness and behaviour. In the first year 110 prizes were given, in the second, 155, and in the third, 199. By this system the bad effects of competition are avoided, regularity and good order increased, and interest and attention drawn to the useful books distributed among the scholars. The prizes for this year were distributed on the evening of Thursday, March 29, in the presence of the parents and friends of the scholars.
SUBJECTS FOR S U N DAY LESSONS.
THE TEACHINGS OF CHRIST.
5th. Preparation for the Religious Life. May 6th.-Conviction of Sin....... ..St. Luke 17–21. 13th.—Repentance
.St. Luke xiii., 1–5. 20th.-Faith in God's Forgiveness ..St. Luke xv., 22–32. 27th.---The New Birth
.St. John iii., 1-13.
THE WORKS OF GOD. May 6th.--Natural Theology
.Beaks of Birds. 13th.--Zoology
.The Thrush. 20th.-The Flowers
The Violet. 27th.—The Heavens
THE NEW BIRTH. Carefully explain the difference between growth or development, and conversion, or the new birth. There is a great variety of moral and religious condition and experience. Many have taken a wrong path in life, and have wandered far in the ways of wickedness. The intemperate, licentious, dishonest,--all who indulge in any of the vices must experience a change before they can be truly religious, and this change is so great as to be properly compared to a new birth. With others, who have been morally and religiously educated, it is not change or conversion which is required, but progress and improvement. Some religious teachers err by expecting conversion when only growth is required; and others go to the opposite extreme, and look only for growth when a radical and inward change is necessary. Show the nature and evil consequences of both these errors. Briefly notice some of the characteristics of the two religious opinions, one deeming the doctrine of conversion of paramount importance, the other working only for progress and improvement. In a more perfect church there would be a wise combination of these elements, and this combination is beautifully shown in the teachings of Christ. In the passage of scripture selected for the lesson, Christ insists upon the new birth; but in another passage he distinctly tells us that he came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance, evidently implying that there were some to whom it was unnecessary to preach the doctrine of conversion. Some experience a great and sudden change, but, with most, regeneration is a gradual process. The new birth is only the commencement of the religious life, and should be followed by persevering efforts to cultivate all the religious virtues. Many who have experienced a great change, regard that change itself as the principal thing, and, therefore, they are for awhile stationary, and then decline in the spiritual life. Give illustrations of these several kinds of experience from the scriptures and religious biography.
THE CHURCH OF ROME AND THE
(Concluded.) CHAPTER II.-THE REFORMATION. From the earliest times of the Papacy there had always been a few people among the solitary Alpine valleys in the north of Italy who had preserved themselves from contamina tion with its later doctrines. For a long time they lived retired and unnoticed, but at last their principles began to spread among the towns in the south of France, and they drew on themselves the notice of the clergy.
This happened just at the period when chivalry was at its height. People were still zealous about the crusades; and it was in this country of Provence, in the south of France, that the spirit of romance, poetry, and fanaticism, manifested itself with the greatest energy. Pope Innocent III. preached a crusade against these unfortunate heretics, who, from being most numerous about the town of Albi, were called Albigenses.
The northern barons were glad enough to gain all the glory of crusaders, without the trouble of going to the East, and they poured down upon the poor Albigenses, plundered, murdered, and laid their country waste. Yet this was not the greatest misfortune. The Pope now took the opportunity of establishing the Court of the Inquisition, which has ever since been a curse of Europe. It was composed entirely of ecclesiastics, and before it were brought all persons suspected of heresy. No justice was shown by examining evidence. The
poor victim was tortured frightfully till he renounced his opinions; or if he remained true to what he believed to be right, he was carried away and burnt alive.
At this darkest period in the religious history of Europe, light began to dawn in our own country.
A scholar and preacher arose in England who was to deal a far more fatal blow at the power of Rome. This was JOHN WICKLIF, who was born in Yorkshire, in the year 1324. He finished his education at Oxford, where he made himself conspicuous by his good life and great knowledge of the strange philosophy taught at that time, and soon obtained an eminent position in the Church.
But Wicklif's learning was not confined to unprofitable