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and always lighted up a smile on her dark, wrinkled face. He would often say some pleasant thing to cheer this lonely pilgrim on her way to Zion.
One day Mr. B. took a friend from the country to see Betty. As he stooped and entered the cottage door, he said, “Ah, Betty, you are alive yet.” “Yes, tank God,” said Betty.
Betty,” said he,' “why do you suppose God keeps you so long in this world, poor, and sick, and blind, when you might go to heaven, and enjoy so much?”
While Mr. B.'s tone and manner were sportive, he yet uttered a serious thought, which had more than once come over his mind. Now comes the sermon.
Betty assumed her most serious and animated tone, and replied, “ Ah, Massa, you no understand it. Dare be two great tings to do for the Church; one be to pray for it; todder be to act for it. Now, Massa, God keeps me alive to pray for de Church ; and he keeps you alive to act for it. Your great gifts no do much good, Massa, without poor Betty's prayers.
For a few moments Mr. B. and his friend stood silent, thrilled, astonished. They felt the knowledge, the dignity, the oral sublimity of this short sermon. It seemed to draw aside the veil a little, and let them into heaven's mysteries. “Yes, Betty,” replied Mr. B., in the most serious and subdued tones, "your prayers are of more importance to the church than my alms.'
This short sermon, preached by poor Betty, was never forgotten by Mr. B. or his friend. It made them more humble, more prayerful, more submissive in afflictions.
THE POOR MAY DO GOOD.
Nor are you, though poor, shut out from doing good, any more than you are from being good. Oh, if you had a heart to be useful, you might find abundant opportunities to employ your energies. Many instances might be adduced, if it were necessary, of persons in the humblest walk of life doing great good; and that not only by all kinds of ingenious devices, but in the way of direct effort.
Take the two following as specimens:- There was a member of the church under my care, who lived in an almshouse, and was so distorted by rheumatism, as to be quite a cripple, and unable to walk or stand, and withal her fingers, through the power of her disease, were twisted into all kinds of shapes. On entering her apartment one day, I found her with some religious tracts. « Well, Mrs. H.” said I, “what are you doing?” “Oh, sir," she replied, “I am sorting my tracts." 6. What for?” - To send out to my neighbours.” The fact was, that she had received these tracts from richer friends from time to time, and then employed some one to carry them round the spacious court of almshouses in which she lived, and other dwellings in the neighbourhood, and her work was to keep up a regular supply and exchange.. Thus poor old Ellen in the alms
house could find some way to be useful.- To give one more instance:- I was visiting a brother minister a few years ago with a view to assist him at a missionary meeting, which was to be held in his chapel. While I was in his house he called me into the kitchen, for what purpose I did not know till the scene explained itself. There stood an aged woman about eighty years old talking with the minister, and looking with a smiling countenance, and with sparkling eyes, as far as such aged orbs could sparkle, upon some silver which my friend at that moment held in the palm of his hand. It might have been supposed she was going to receive this money to multiply her comforts—for all her income was half-acrown a week from the parish, and what the kindness of her friends might occasionally bestow, out of which she paid eighteen pence for lodgings—but no, she came to give, not to receive. That money, amounting to more than ten shillings, she had earned by knitting various articles and selling them, and she was then in the kitchen, where I saw her, to place it in the hand of her minister for the Missionary Society. So you see the poor can do something for God's cause, if they have “a mind to work.” But they may also do much in the way of direct effort for the conversion of souls. Can they not warn a profane sinner? or explain the way of salvation to those that are ignorant and out of the way? or distribute tracts, and talk about their contents ? or invite the neglectors of public worship to the house of God? Let the poor understand, value, and enjoy their privilege.
FRANCE.--LYONS. The Rev. G. Fisch writes from this place :
“ We have lately been called to witness some interesting conversions. A relic dealer, who had acquired a little fortune, by this miserable traffic, has lately devoted himself entirely to the reading of the word of God. He has made himself a small desk on which he places the Bible; and he has said to me, “If I were to read history or geography, that would do me no good for eternity: I feel that this is the one thing needful.'
“ A lady, eighty-four years of age, a devotee of the Roman Church, has been converted, and cannot sufficiently express her joy in the sense of pardon obtained from God. The days pass too quick for her while she is meditating on her Saviour, as she is employed at her lace pillow.
• We have, by the grace of God, another lady of 80, who was the most zealous devotee of her neighbourhood, passing the Sundays almost entirely in the church, and communicating every day. She had in her house two chapels, containing fifty images of saints placed in niches, and spent many hours continually on her knees before them in succession; but, notwithstanding, she could not obtain from her confessor the promise that she should be saved. Now that she has believed in salvation by grace, she is in peace. She has demolished her chapels, she has become a member of our church, and proclaims the Gospel to her neighbours, &c.”
PROSPECTS OF A CONVERT. Ar an Examination of Irish Readers and Pupils in Scripture on the 19th of last March, the subject was the History of Israel, when one young man being asked what their situation on approaching the Red Sea resembled ? he said it was like that of a convert from Popery in Ireland. “ How so?” he was asked. Why, sir, behind him (like the Egyptians) is the hatred of friends and relatives.” “ Yes," said the other readers, “ you know something of that," and what's before you like the sea?" The young man's face grew crimson, he was only able to utter the single word, “ Banishment !" when regardless of the crowd around him, he covered his face with his hands, and burst into tears.
PERSECUTIONS AT DINGLE. Ar Dingle the most bitter persecution is still raging. Not a convert (souper, as they are called) can get a potato or a turf in the public market, or a drop of milk for a dying child ; nor will they get anything to purchase in a shop in Dingle with the money in their hands, if known to be a convert ; neither can they now, as formerly, get their Roman Catholic friends, relatives, or neighbours, to purchase for them, in consequence of their dread of the priest's curse, which is every Sabbath-day repeated from the Rowan Catholic altar, against any, and every one, to the seventh generation, who will aid or abet them in obtaining the necessaries of life. The poor Roman Catholic people themselves have no dislike to the converts, with the exception of a few bigots and zealots, the priest's creatures—the confraternity men and the women of orders-scapularians, &c.; and all those who have any thought, or do not resign their reason into the keeping of the priest, are actually disgusted with the continual Sabbath-day cursing which has been practised in Dingle chapel.
“ The persecuted converts,” says a correspondent of the • Achill Herald,' * 800 in number, in this Barony, are fed day by day almost as miraculously as Elijah was fed by the ravens; for truly, if the Lord did not interfere, the people would be starved by the authority of the Romish priests. Our last potato was expended last Sunday, when the Lord permitted the gale to cease, and the potato boat to arrive from Baltimore, just in time to rescue the famishing multitude. I need not, nor will not, add another word.”
The last dreadful act of the priests in the neighbourhood of Dingle was perpetuated by the Roman Catholic priest of Awnescall, nine miles east of Dingle, on the Tralee road.
A young woman, the wife of the Scripture reader of that parish, was about to be confined of her first child; the nurse had been engaged to attend her, but owing to the curse of the priest, the poor woman was afraid to attend her unless she obtained the priest's leave. She asked if she might do so. His reply to her was, “If you attempt to go near that devil, I will curse you individually to
the seventh generation.” The poor woman consequently refused to attend, and the Scripture reader was obliged to remove his wife to Dingle, at a considerable expense, to be near the Protestant physician; and it was donbtful if even in Dingle a nurse would be allowed her.
VARIOUS MEMBERS OF A FAMILY MAY BE USEFUL.
The Rev. N. Roussel, in a speech delivered at a recent meeting of the Edinburgh Ladies' Continental Association, after narrating the mode in which those who were opposed to the opening of a Protestant school had their wickedness turned against themselves, proceeded to say, " That which helped our labours yet more is that which the Romish priest could not exhibit ; that is, a family life. You may judge of this by what happened at Villefovard. I was there with my wife, my little girl, and my woman servant, and each of us took a part. My wife was the doctor, going among the villagers, taking care of the sick; my servant taught thirty little girls to sew ; my daughter, of five years and a-half old, gave les. sons in reading; and I, who was the preacher on Sunday, acted as schoolmaster during the week. You see the Romish priest had nothing to oppose to this kind of activity. When I could do nothing, my wife could do something; and when she failed, my servant and my little daughter helped ; and so we were able to meet
We were not entirely astray in any thing, while the Romish priest found himself a stranger almost always and every. where. He got himself honoured, perhaps, but we were able to make ourselves loved. Disclosures were not made to us by means of the confessional in a forced way, but in daily and free conversation.”
Oh! may this op'ning year to me,
Be one to bring me near to God;
May I advance on Zion's road!
Which makes the Christian happy here-
And fit us for a brighter sphere.
We shall be led by Bethl'hem's star ;
And still through life be ever near.
Taught by God's Word, then may each day
The mind on useful works be bent; And as our hours glide swift away,
The soul shall rest in calm content. Cold is the heart to shew our love,
To him who died that we might live; Then let us look to Christ above;
Pardon and peace from him receive. Then eager strive to do his will,
While still we sojourn here below; To others all our task fulfil
In joy or sickness, care or woe. Serene then may we wait that hour,
When to release us death shall comeDisarm'd of terror by that pow'r
Which calls us to a heavenly home.
F. J. M.
Pilgrim, burthened with thy sin,
FOSTER, PRINTER, KIRKBY LONSDALE.