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SWEET Charity! the fairest of the Graces,
Nor time, nor change, thy loveliness effaces;
As beautiful art thou,

With God's own impress on thy radiant brow,
As when admiring angels, in thy birth,
Watched the reflection of his smile on earth.

Like the clear sunshine every mist dispelling, Thou lightest up with gladness many a dwelling; And virtues rich and rare

Are nurtured by thy genial warmth and care; Thy softened kiss can ice-bound feelings melt, And flowers spring up where'er thy touch is felt.

Lowly art thou, and gentle, and forbearing;
All that thou hast with others freely sharing;
Thou sowest, day by day,

The seeds of happiness on life's rough way;

And bearest, like the south wind, gifts which cheer The drooping heart, and tell that Spring is near.

Sweet Charity! we see thee everywhere;
Now bearing up the poor man's load of care;
Now brightening the sick room;

Or weeping o'er some loved one's early tomb;
Now soothing with thy music thoughts of strife;
Now bravely battling with the ills of life.

As one who joyously the harvest reapeth,
So good reports thy memory grasping keepeth;
And when with sudden blast,

Doubt would his chilling influence o'er thee cast,
Hope, thy fair sister, clasps her hand in thine,
And frustrates in a moment his design.

Thou never failest; rapidly advances

Year after year, yet still we meet thy glances,
Kind, winning, tender, free;

And all-exhaustless seems thy sympathy,

Like the pure stream which deepens as it winds,
And with new channels, new resources finds.
Sweet Charity! the fairest of the Graces,
Nor time, nor change, thy loveliness effaces;

Nor will thy charms decay,

When earthly scenes shall fade and pass away;
For thou wilt fill with joy the world above,
Where all is happiness—for all is love.

H. M. W.


[Abridged from Miss Barber's "Sunshine; or Believing and Rejoicing," an interesting series of home and foreign Missionary Sketches.-ED.]

IN a yard of the town, near the small habitations of some Manchester weavers, a few children were playing at marbles. Every now and then, one of the number, followed by the eyes of a younger child, turned aside from the game, to con over some Protestant rhymes, which he was eagerly trying to learn by heart. "What do you do so for ?" said little Christie. "What have

you got there ?" "It is my task for the Sundayschool," said the other; and forthwith he kept on, buzzing something to himself. Christy asked to hear it. No; in vain he opened both his ears, nothing could he catch. But Christy's curiosity was more and more excited. At length, he thought of an expedient; he coaxed out of his mother a hard-got consent to let him go to the Sunday school, and hear his playmate say his task.

There, perched upon a high form, sat Christy, his little feet dangling in the air, his hands in his pockets, eyes and ears wide open, to take in all the astonishing information which was being poured forth on all sides, in his presence; for the earnest, thoughtful and observant boy received with the deepest attention, those solemn truths, which so many a Sunday school child hears, without learning, from boyhood to youth.

Each returning Sabbath saw little Christy often stealing from his parents to go to this Sunday school. He heard the Bible read, he heard that it was God's own Word, and to be read by all-he could not read it, but he clasped it to his heart with joy; he heard explained the holy truths of Christianity, stripped of their Romish disguise; he heard of God the only Father; of Jesus Christ the only Redeemer; of the Holy Ghost, the strength and comforter of the faithful. Meanwhile, where was Christy gone, became the question at home. and his mother discovered, in great anger, the place of his Sunday resort. From this time, poor Christy went but rarely to the Sunday school.

But he kept in his heart the treasure he had acquired of the knowledge of Christ-small though it was. As he grew up from youth to manhood, more and more was he set upon following the Lord according to his conscience, until at length the home disquiets reached such a height, that the door of his mother's house was closed upon him, and she would see him no more; he was turned out into the streets of the great town, to earn his living as he could.

Christy had two possessions-his faith, his knowledge of which was very faint and imperfect, and his filial love, in which he had just experienced such a bitter disappointment. He had no trade, no means of getting a livelihood. A Christian man took pity upon him, and engaged to teach him the trade of a weaver; by help of this friend, Christy established himself in lodgings, a little way out of the town. Here, on Sabbaths, and

in the pauses of labour, he would resort to a green hill, which rose just behind the house, and flinging himself upon the grass, pass many hours in paroxysms of mental distress. Then he would rise, and go to the corner of some street, where his mother was likely to pass, that he might catch one glimpse of her. Well did he know, even in the distance, the small blue pattern of her gown; she seemed to him almost as an angel, and there would he watch, until she had gone by, and he could see her no longer.

It happened there worked in the same trade with himself a modest and pleasing young girl, who went among her companions by the name of "Ayl'ce o' old Ned's," i. e.," Alice, the daughter of Edward," it being the Lancashire custom to call people, not by their surnames, but by the Christian names of their fathers and grandfathers joined to their own; thus, " Kit o' Chris o' Kester's," would mean, "Christopher, the son of Christopher, the grandson of Christopher." Ayl'ce was known among her friends, not only as a modest, pleasing girl, but as one who truly loved and feared the Lord. Strict in her manners and deportment, avoiding the slightest approach to worldliness or finery in her outward appearance, never seen at any place of vicious resort, but always at the prayer-meeting, or the preaching, where Christ's humble followers met together, Ayl'ce had established the character of being, not almost, but altogether, a Christian. Much did Christy long to make her acquaintance, but he had never got beyond a few words interchanged in the street, or at the prayer-meeting.

It was summer-time, and Christy was sitting on a low wall in the street, a field being on the other side. He was watching the birds and the flowers, and the sunbeams as they played on the shining blades of grass, when, coming along at a little distance, he spied Ayl'ce. She must pass by him. Should he speak to her? No, he would wait and see whether she would speak to him.

Ayl'ce came up-she passed him—not a word! He watched her going quietly on, when suddenly she stopped, turned back, and coming up to him, said, "Mr. is going to preach at

ing! wilt tah go an yer him?" "Ar tah a boun ?" said he.

to-morrow even

"Heigh," replied Ayl'ce, "Aw think aw shall."* "Aw hope it 'l be foin," rejoined Christy.

Soon after this, Ayl'ce's uncle died. After the funeral, Christy knew he should find Ayl'ce alone, and determined upon making a bold attempt. Accordingly, he wrote out a promise of marriage, and, with this in his pocket, he walked off to the cottage, where he found Ayl'ce alone, as he expected-busy ironing. Christy drew out of his pocket his carefully composed document.'Ayl'ce," he said again, "aw cannot court, but wilt tah be my wife; if tah wilt, sign this?" whereupon he spread the paper out before her. Ayl'ce paused and considered a moment. "Well," she said, "if tah wilt sign it, aw will." So both parties subscribed their names to the bond.

Christy went away to seek a living. He soon obtained employment. His leisure time he occupied in endeavouring to improve his mind, and add to his small stock of learning. As times grew better he prospered still more, till at last he began to think of returning to his native place, and setting up a little home of his own with his Ayl'ce.

Let us now take a peep at them by their humble fireside. Christy has commenced business on his own account; he works at the loom, and Ayl'ce at the spinning-jenny; their principal employment is making stockings, and their business is successful. A little Ayl'ce, too, is trotting about the floor.

Christy, however, is not quite satisfied; he is grate

*Taa, or Tah, in Lancashire dialect, means you; boun, going, aw, I.

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