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country; and there is no doubt that if the attraction of pictures could be added, the circulation would rush up at once to 100,000, or even more. We are, therefore, very anxious to see our way to this improvement; the only bar to it being the expense.
In answer to our appeal in January we received the promise of 17. 15. and 10s. annually from three or four persons, who are always foremost in any good cause. This is encouraging; and yet without more such promises or payments it would be most unwise to increase the publishing expenses of The Banner, which have already entailed a most serious outlay.
January 14.-A friend sends us 17 earned by making a knitted shawl out of wool sent in answer to an appeal she made some time ago. She says:-'It is really quite surprising to see what a number of things I have been able to manufacture out of scraps of wool. Perhaps you would not mind repeating my request, and begging your lady readers. to notice that such contributions should be sent to Miss F., 10 Oxford Road, Cheltenham.'
Miss Clarke's Plain Needlework Society is effecting marvels. A parcel from her, which has just reached us, is found to contain no less than 225 articles of clothing!
Received another cheque for 50%. from British Guiana, sent anonymously by the same kind friend who gave us 50%. in December for the Workmen's Restaurant at the Docks. To receive such liberal help from so distant a source is peculiarly cheering.
Another very kind donation of 10l. comes to us from Nice, accompanied by a request for circulars and reports. The sender remarks:-'I have not received any papers about the Society for two years.' This is a sort of reproach not often brought against the Secretary!
Fanuary 16.-'The enclosed cheque is the result of the labours of fourteen of our schoolchildren. They learnt to sing and act the little opera, "Red Riding Hood," and many hours have they spent in perfecting both words and music; afterwards they gave an entertainment in aid of your Home.
Some of our generous friends adopt a somewhat hazardous plan of transmitting money to us by enclosing it in the railway parcels they send us. The other day, as one of the carriers was handing a parcel out of his van at the Orphanage door, a little packet of silver fell out of it into the mud. He picked it up, remarking, with a grim smile'Well, your folks do up their money queer!' This is by no means the first time that such a thing has occurred; and as all railwaycarriers are not immaculate, it must be confessed that such contributions run a great risk of never reaching us-to say the least of it.
Fanuary 19.-A friend writes :-' May I trouble you with the enclosed small sum in stamps towards illustrating The Banner of Faith? I hope to send the same sum each January. The Magazine is excellent, and has found great favour in our parish. I have sixty families who take it in, and I soon hope to have more. Most of our people are fairly disposed towards the Church, and only want a little attractive teaching on the subject, to make them more intelligent members of the same, and I am sure this Magazine will be a great help and boon.'
This is only one out of many similar assurances which have encouraged us greatly amidst the trouble and expense it has cost us to launch out in this new direction.
We shall be very glad when we can see our way to at least one picture every month, as an almost universal wish is expressed for this embellishment. Not quite universal, either; for a person who signs himself 'An Admirer of Our Work and The Banner of Faith,' puts in a word on the opposite side. He says:-'I am so delighted with The Banner, and lend it to several people, who seem to appreciate it highly. I wish you every possible success. Some persons, I see, wish for illustrations; but I think it is better to leave them out, and to sell the Magazine at its present trifling cost, rather than introduce pictures and make it more expensive. As it is, I consider it one of the best pennyworths I have ever seen. With every good wish that the work may prosper, I am, yours, &c.'
A letter, dated from Dutoitspan, South Africa, encloses 67. for breakfasts and dinners for the poor, collected during last year.
1. Ios. came from a footman for the Convalescent Home, besides contributions from other friends amounting to 247. for the same object.
Several Ios. donations to the Breakfast Fund were also received. Many persons seem to find pleasure in the thought that they are thus providing a hot Sunday breakfast for one poor child throughout the year.
Pressing letters urging us to admit children to the Orphanage are constantly coming in, but some of our correspondents waste a great deal of time in writing long descriptions of cases not at all eligible for this Home. As children are received entirely free of all expense, we are obliged to adhere very stringently to the rule that they shall be orphans indeed; that is, they must have lost both parents.
It is often pleaded that a child with a drunken father, or a wicked, careless mother, is really worse off than one with no parents at all. But it is always a question, whether it can be right to relieve people of the responsibility of their own offspring, simply
because they decline to perform the duties of parents towards them. At any rate, this is not a question which we are called upon to decide, since those who have been deprived by death of the care of father and mother, and are left entirely alone in the world, have, manifestly, the first right to a free Orphanage.
Such a case, attended by peculiarly sad circumstances, has been lately brought to our notice. A family, consisting of a man, his wife, and five children, living in the manufacturing districts, were all attacked with scarlatina of a very severe type. The father's wages had been small, yet, by care and economy, he and the mother had managed to keep the family in comfort and respectability, without any external help. The man died of the fever, and the other six members of the family were then removed to the hospital, where his wife also sank under the violence of the malady. The five little girls are still under hospital treatment, but recovering; and the doctor who attends them has written to ask whether, in case no relative can be found to take the children, we could receive one of the desolate little creatures into our Home. We have replied we should make every effort to take as many of the family as might be left unprovided for. We hope to find room for them at Broadstairs, as the Orphanage is quite full; for it is truly a most afflicting case, and one with which every kind and Christian heart must sympathise deeply.
Still more afflicting, however, is it to remember that equally sad things are happening every day in this our proud, prosperous, and commercial country, and that no proper provision has ever before been made for the bringing up of children thus reduced to entire destitution, through no fault either of themselves or of their parents.
The sad descriptions so constantly given us of these unfortunate children make us long for the day to arrive when some generous benefactor shall put it in our power to add to the walls of our present Orphanage, and so extend its benefits to a hundred more homeless ones.
January 23.-'Dear Mr. Secretary,-It has for years past been my great wish and aim to give my life up entirely to the work of CHRIST by joining a Sisterhood. The way at last seems open for me to take this step, and I now venture to write and mention the subject to you. Perhaps you will kindly advise me as to whether it would be possible for me to join the Sisters of the Church in their life and work. Could you also give me any rules that might be in some sense a help to me in the way of preparation?' Such applications as these are by no means uncommon, and we look upon them as a very hopeful sign of the times. Surely it must be through the leadings of GOD's Holy Spirit that we find a growing desire amongst the young to devote themselves to a life of active service for the Church and the poor.
But besides those whom GOD calls to give up all for His sake, there are many others whose vocation is different, and who yet might help the Sisters in their work from time to time, merely as a temporary arrangement. All our members are not, perhaps, aware how gladly they would be welcomed if they wished to spend a few weeks in working at the Home and helping with the various branches of the Society. If it were not for occasional assistance of this sort, a considerable portion of the work must at times remain undone.
are countless; and so we earnestly beg all who have anything of the sort, which they are either not using or have thrown aside, to place it at our disposal.
Parcels containing shirts, stockings, comforters, socks, and counterpanes were duly received, and are gratefully acknowledged.
Received: several nice boxes of clothing, a package of Church furniture, and a hundred oranges. We were gladdened by a letter containing 100l. towards our Convalescent Home, and 10%. for two poor Missionaries. Only one share of the conditionally-promised 1,000l. now remains unpaid.
We hear that the Newfoundland Missionary has not only received the cost of a pony, but one or two very acceptable donations besides. Several other Mission priests are anxiously hoping to have some of their needs supplied; two especially are in great want of Communion plate, and two others of some decent covering for the altar, a few surplices, and some linen. Indeed, the needs of our poor brethren abroad
January 27.-'I am so thankful that I had the opportunity of making the Sisters' acquaintance, when they visited this part of Yorkshire. I spent a very happy half-hour in their company at the vicarage-house in this small village, where I first learned about their work in London. It is very little I can do with regard to money, but, thank GOD, I have a great desire to do all I can for the Society. I distributed the collecting-cards among my friends, and the amount obtained is 3. 115. 7d. My little class at the Sunday School have done their best. I hope the LORD will bless our endeavours to help you in your work of mercy, and you shall have my constant prayers.' Such is the letter of our North-country friend, and we could hardly have had a kinder one.
A visitor brought a beautiful outfit for an orphan, everything complete-boots, shoes, tuckers, &c.
Another caller adopted one of the children. Three little girls were sent up from the play-room, that she might choose one of them, and it was amusing to see how each drew herself up and tried to look her very best, hoping she might be the happy, favoured one.
Received aprons, frocks, several pairs of old boots, two nice outfits for girls going to service, a small box of apples, and some packets of tea, sugar, and rice.
January 21.-From the Docks a Sister writes:-There are but few labourers at work in the Docks at the present time. A man told us he had had but one day's work in the last fortnight. There are lots of ships in the Channel,' he said, 'but they're perfectly blocked by the contrary wind and dense fogs. If only the wind would shift, there would be plenty of luck for us all.' We may remark that the old proverb, 'It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good,' does not
seem to hold good for those whose daily bread must be earned as dock-labourers.
January 23.-One day this week the fog was so dense that the Sisters had quite to feel their way from the Restaurant to the Soup-stall in the Dock, and the man who wheels the truck was hurt by a cart knocking up against him. He got on to the wharf at last, but was quite unable to see the stall, and would have passed it, had not the men who were waiting for their dinner called out, Holloa, man! wherever are yer running to? Here yer are!'
This was at the Wapping stall. On the other side it was quite too dark to see to serve out the soup, and the Sisters were very thankful when one of the men produced a lantern, which he had considerately borrowed for their use. When his companions came to tell him it was time to restore the lantern to its place, he replied, 'No, no ; I shan't take it back so long as the "young ladies" wants it!'
The civility shown by these rough men certainly makes it pleasant work to do anything for them, and is gratifying when we compare it with their rude, free-and-easy ways upon our first acquaintance.
Not that they are always equally pleasant. About a week ago, for instance, a very low set of men took one morning to grumbling at the food, and trying to intimidate those who were serving into giving them larger portions at the same price. This could not be; for the object of this food mission is to help the honest labourer to get a good dinner for a fair sum, and not to enable him to live on charity.
When they found their wishes could not be complied with, our poor, rough friends were as cross as naughty children. However, their fit of ill-humour did not last very long; and there were very blank looks when next day the stall appeared minus the particular dish they had complained about. Being too much ashamed to ask for it, the grumblers crept round to the back and whispered to our truck man :- Any stew to-day?'
'No,' growled the other, for he had felt himself much aggrieved by their conduct of
the day before; 'no, that there ain't. It's too good for the likes o' yer. Yer don't know good wittles when yer sees 'em.'
The inquirers turn back abashed; but one -perhaps more persistent than the restreturned to say :
'Well, they've got "stew" on the stand at t'other side of the Dock, for I see'd it go in.'
'Very likely 'tis so; they knows what's good, and doesn't grumble like you. You'll get no more, so you needn't think it.'
Fanuary 25.-A large steamboat in, and more men on the London Dock. Just as the second bell rang to summon our diners back to their work, a man who had been one of the loudest in his murmurs the other day came up (trusting not to be recognised), and said, self-complacently :
'There's been a lot of complaints made when they needn't have been. The things is good enough. It's not the reg'lar men as grumble; it's them as comes down for the day. We was bad off afore you came here, for there warn't a bit of food fit to eat in the Dock. It's best not to notice what the men say.'
The Sister to whom he addressed himself could hardly help smiling to herself to hear him thus confessing his own foolishness.
There is so much discussion among our customers as to who the Sisters of Charity are, that thus cater day by day for their needs, and why they do it, that a few circulars have been printed and distributed about the S. Katharine's Restaurant, explaining the real motives which have actuated the founders of these refreshment-houses for labouring men; the position of the orphans who wait in the Restaurants being also plainly stated.
The customers are excessively pleased with these papers, especially as they contain the assertion that the Sisters are not Roman Catholics, but very earnest, devoted members of the Church of England. The men are also interested in the little account of the orphans who wait upon them. Some beg to take the circulars away to their friends; others ask for papers explaining further the charitable work of the Society.
There is a very wide field open to those
who can discover the way to interest the working-classes in those whom they as well as we would designate as 'the poor.'
In our own limited sphere we have frequent occasion to notice their great liberality, and the cheerful manner in which they will deny themselves for the sake of others. It is a not unfrequent occurrence for a man, who appears himself to be almost an object of charity, to slip a coin into the hands of one of our Sisters, saying, 'There, Sister, you can make some good use of it, I know.'
Fanuary 30.- From Paternoster Row most cheering news reaches us concerning the new Parish Magazine.
Considering the wide and varied circulation which it already enjoys, it is quite remarkable that hardly one adverse criticism has been passed upon it.
From the clergy of North and South, East and West England come letters of approval and congratulation. What chiefly gratifies us, though, is the assurance that the workingclass are said really to read it with pleasure and interest.
One clergyman writes :- My poorer parishioners say, "It is written so as we can understand it."' Another -My people seem to like it much, and consequently the circulation of our Parish Magazine has gone up from one, to two hundred.' A third :-'I wish to write and express my great satisfaction with the first number of the new Magazine. I hope it will maintain the same sound Church tone in which it is begun. Like other of your correspondents, I should be glad if one or two good illustrations could be introduced, but I would rather have none at all than such vile daubs as one sometimes sees. I have localised the Magazine for my parish, and you may judge of the popularity of No. 1 by the fact that I have obtained 120 subscribers out of a population of less than 500. So that in future there will be very few families, either of Churchmen or Dissenters, into which The Banner will not make its way, for this year at any rate. enclose one of my local covers, and remain, dear Sir, &c., &c.'
Another writer says sensibly :-‘The number I have seen is all that I could wish. I am thankful to find a Magazine, of sound Church principles, which I can distribute freely. In these country parishes the influence of one person has enormous weight, and if a publication appears to savour of extreme doctrines it is avoided. Editors, too often, appear to forget the difficulty we priests have in small parishes, and so put in terms and stories which go down only in larger parishes.' Most true; but this is an error which the Editor of The Banner of Faith is determined to avoid.
Several clergy have forwarded us their local covers and printed matter for inspection; and, as the size chosen for the Magazine admits of a good, bold type being used, we must say these covers, with their parish news printed inside, strike us as a very great improvement on what we have before seen.
Some exceedingly considerate persons continue to forward contributions towards the publishing expenses, which are very heavy, and one clergyman most kindly promises 17. annually towards some pictures. He says:'The Magazine is being largely circulated here, and is much liked; but some illustrations will make it perfect.'
February 1.-A few weeks ago 17. 14s. 6d. was brought to us by a friend. It was collected in a curious manner. She told us that several of her family were in the habit of coming down late to breakfast, and in order to cure themselves of this slothfulness they agreed, that, for the future, each offender should pay a fine, the sum so collected to go towards the Building Fund of our new Home. Last year a still larger amount was sent us, labelled Elbow Money.' This was the proceeds of a penny fine inflicted upon any of the younger members of the household who were guilty of leaning elbows on the tablethe father and mother having been allowed to purchase indemnity for themselves by a previous subscription of a shilling each.
The Metropolitan of Canada, and the Bishop-Coadjutor of Fredericton write that, in acknowledgment of the valuable and use