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SUITED TO THEIR YEARS, and the teaching of religion or morality through the medium of terror, (qu., as opposed to the greatest-happiness system ?) will either depress and cramp, or ultimately render young minds daring and reckless."-(p. 326.)
So! the defect of moral education is to be supplied by omitting THE CATECHISM AND THE SCRIPTURES as being is unsuited to the years” of children; and the sanctions of religion are not to be enforced by terror, by the fear of present or future punishment, lest it should depress or cramp young minds, but to be inculcated on the intelligible and convincing plan of moral calculations-e.g., Come here, my dear; you are now nearly seven years old, and though it will be a great many years before your mind can be mature enough to understand the catechism or the Scriptures, which must be left for your adult and voluntary consideration, you ought now to comprehend the simple principles of moral calculation, which, if properly worked out, will prevent you from ever doing wrong; for the only object of a good education is to teach you what actions conduce to your own greatest happiness; all such actions are right, and accord with your moral duty; whereas all actions which injure your own greatest happiness are wrong, and the result of moral miscalculation. Learn then, my dear, to practise moral calculation.
Certainly, after this, the catechism would be unnecessary, and the Scriptures might safely be laid aside until the faculties (and the inclination ?) become suited to their reception.
But enough of this trash. Let us turn to the concluding article, (happily the concluding article of the work itself, as well as of No. xx.) and see whether members of Government can be justified in supporting writers who entertain views so hostile to the existing constitution in church and state.
“ If there were a general and profound conviction of the importance of education, rightly understood, and of the improvements which are requisite in the education of all classes, in order to give them the best opportunity of attaining happiness, such A JOURNAL AS THIS, and many more having the same object, would be easily supported. But such a general conviction does not exist. As in matters of religion, so in education, many assent to doctrines and principles, but few are in earnest about them. If such a conviction cannot be produced among the middle classes in this country, we can hardly expect, under our present constitutional forms, ever to see education assume the rank due to its importance, and receive all the ameliorations of which it is susceptible. Though our constitutional forms are such as to prevent much good from being accomplished, whenever the change that must precede the attainment of this good is opposed to the interests or prejudices of a small number in the possession of political power, it must also be admitted that the many often mistake their own real interest, and would resist measures which every thinking man (viz., every member of this committee) knows to be for the interest of the whole community.”—(p. 8.)
“In this country the matter is not so simple, owing to the distribution of sovereign power ; which distribution, while it may prevent some bad measures from being carried, is constantly opposing obstacles to good ones It would appear to a careful and unprejudiced observer, that our constitutional forms are, at present, extremely ill adapted to promote measures tending to the general interests of the country. The various members of the sovereign power, and the various interests, as they are called, which exert their influence on the sovereign power, are continually elbowing and jostling
QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF EDUCATION."
one another, like people in a crowd.
Such a government as this, if it is here rightly described, can do no good, if it attempt at once an entire reformation of education.”—(p. 9.)
The remedy for this deplorable condition of our" constitutional forms,” appears to be in simplifying the constitution by vesting the entire sovereignty in the House of Commons. Of course. But then the present House of Commons is not sufficiently enlightened to meet the views of the committee. It must undergo a purgation, and be defæcated of all those individuals the clog of whose prejudices disables them from keeping up with the progress of the age. “ It now contains
wellinformed men who are zealous to do all that is practicable for the general improvement of education ; but a majority of such men it certainly does not contain.” (p. 10.) But we must hope to see this House of Commons so improved, by some process not very clearly intimated, as to be “strong enough to carry into effect all undoubtedly useful measures, in spite of any opposition from the other members of the sovereign power.” Thus we are to have members of the sovereign power who are not to be allowed even a controlling efficacy in the constitution, provided the measures of the House of Commons are “ undoubtedly useful !” Here is wisdom. And lest there should be any doubt in the mind of those who are panting and toiling after the strides of the committee, how the undoubted usefulness of measures is to be ascertained, it is pretty clearly insinuated, that this expurgata editio of the House of Commons must be directed by
an administration” consisting, it may be presumed, of persons immediately connected with the writer of this article. The
great panacea for all the evils under which our PRESENT constitutional forms doom us to groan, is, however, a charter to be granted to the London University, with the power of conferring degrees! This GREAT ACT of the administration” will “ take away all unfair advantage on the part of the graduates of Oxford or Cambridge,” (p. 22 ;) and, in plain language, will prevent any bias in favour of the church or of the old constitution in the system of education throughout the country.
To secure this desirable object, persons in holy orders” are to be excluded altogether by statute from taking any part in education; they are to be declared incapable of holding any “mastership or ushership of a grammar school;” and thus not only will education be placed in safe and proper hands, but the church itself will be purified from a fearful desecration. To wit
“ There is at present a considerable temptation to a man to be ordained in the established church, even if he dislikes its discipline, and disbelieves its doctrines. . .
. . It is well known that many grammar-schools have suffered grievously from having had clergymen for masters. Any measure which does not exclude them from such places will be incomplete,” &c. &c.-(p. 22, 23.)
There is abundance in the same strain, and, in truth, these quotations have been made almost at hazard, but they are amply sufficient to justify the regret expressed at the commencement of these remarks, that members of Government should give any countenance to a work so directly hostile to the religious institutions of the country.
J. H. B. M.
THE LATE BISHOP OF FERNS.
( Continued from vol. viii., p. 510.) The Bishop, anticipating rest after the fatigues of the ship, immediately proceeded to reside at Limerick, but his vigorous mind was not suffered to remain inactive. Never did any city, or any diocese, want more the superintendence of an active bishop. No man fitted for such a station had been promoted to that see for upwards of a century, and the charitable institutions of the city wanted some guide to direct and animate individual exertion. The Bishop remained but two years at Limerick, and one of them was a year of disturbance, the other of famine. In the dreadful winter of 1821, his firmness and intrepidity were of signal advantage ; and the English military officers gladly availed themselves of the Bishop's advice, when such a panic had seized the magistracy that in their application for the Insurrection Act they endeavoured to shelter themselves under the protection of a round Robin. The Bishop soon gave a practical proof of his courage, for he set out on a tour of visitation before the disturbances had terminated, lest he might increase the panic in the country by putting off what had been long officially announced. In this tour he visited parts of the united dioceses where a bishop had not been for sixty years. In the time of famine, not only his personal exertions, but his purse, was ever ready to give assistance with a liberality* which considerably entangled himfor now what he studiously kept concealed may be told—he expended in the two years at Limerick more than 30001. above the income of his bishopric.
In the latter end of the year 1822, the Bishop was translated to the extensive and important bishopric of Leighlin and Ferns. How he conducted himself in that see may best be proved by the universal dismay which the account of his death occasioned. Though requiring a strict observance of discipline in his diocese,
How necessary this was, one anecdote will be sufficient to shew. A landlord, whose rent-roll exhibited as many thousands as the Bishop's did hundreds, and whose wretched tenantry were the chief objects calling for relief, desired his agent to contribute to the general fund whatever sum the Bishop did!
he was the friend and adviser of his clergy, who applied to their diocesan in every matter of difficulty, frequently consulting him even on their private affairs; and the advice was promptly and kindly given. One day in every week was set apart for receiving the clergy, but at all times he was accessible to them, and his house was always open for their accommodation with a hospitality which has seldom been equalled, and could not be surpassed. The Bishop required regular returns of every parish, giving an account of their protestant inhabitants; and three times during his episcopacy he visited every church, glebe-house, and parochial school in the diocese. To the religious education of the poor he paid the greatest attention, establishing schools wherever he could, and encouraging in every parish the catechetical exainination under the system of the Association for Discountenancing Vice,* to which society he was the most ardent and efficient friend, and, with the exception of the lord primate, the most munificent contributor.
This active and useful life was terminated by a paralytic stroke, at Liverpool, on the 12th of July, 1835. The circumstances attending the Bishop's death were as characteristic of the mind as any event of his life. The moment he received a summons from the primate to attend in London for the purpose of opposing the church spoliation bill, he determined to obey. Though, it has since appeared, he was fully aware of the danger he incurred, and had a strong feeling that he never would return, he did not hesitate for one moment, but commenced his journey immediately.t Qui cum ita affectus esset, ut, si ad gravem valetudinem labor viæ accessisset, sibi ipse diffideret : non recusavit, quo minus vel extremo spiritu, si quam opem ecclesiæ ferre posset, experiretur. When crossing in the packet to England he was attacked with a slight paralytic stroke, and again on his landing at Liverpool. He seemed to have shaken off the attack with every prospect of recovery, when early in the morning of Sunday, the 12th of July, he had a third paralytic stroke, and scarcely
Of this society the Bishop was a vice-president. In recording the vacancy occasioned by his death, they have expressed in eloquent and affectionate terms their opinion of his services. Their tribute should be inserted here, had not the article already occupied so much space.
+ The following circumstance has been communicated by the Rev. Robert McGhee. The Bishop was delayed in Dublin by an accident which happened to his carriage, and he employed himself in writing a letter to Mr. McGhee, containing some extracts which he thought might be useful to him at Exeter Hall
. They met unexpectedly in the packet. In the morning he found himself very ill, and said, he was sure he had had a paralytic stroke in the night. Not able to dress himself, he leaned on Mr. McGhee; but suddenly rousing himself he said, “I have something to say to you. Those priests will try to lead you away from the one point in question. I know them well, but do not you let them.” Thus giving a last proof how the great cause of his religion overcame all sense of personal suffering.
spoke afterward. His last exertion was writing on a slate when the bells were ringing for morning service, “À traveller who is very ill earnestly desires the prayers of your congregation.”
In addition to the works already mentioned, the Bishop published four charges to his clergy on very different subjects, but all of great ability. The first contained general directions for the clergy. The second was on the Roman-catholic controversy ; and here Bishop Doyle stepped forward as an antagonist, writing twice in reply, and then relinquishing the contest. The last appendix to the Bishop's charge is a model of controversial writing, and completely overthrew the redoubted champion of the Roman church. The third charge related to education, and was intended to refute an objection, popular to a certain degree at the present day, that rewards should not form any part of a system of education. The fourth charge was in opposition to the home mission.
A writer in the « Christian Examiner” has described the mind of the Bishop of Ferns as microscopic. Microscopic it certainly was in discovering the hidden motives of sectarianism, and exposing its attempts to weaken the church, whose discipline it abhorred ;-microscopic in penetrating the false colourings of infidel liberality, or Romish ambition. But in the sense of this writer it was not microscopic; it could take, and it did take, enlarged and comprehensive views. Let this be attested by the Bishop's writings upon tithes, from the opposition which arose in 1807 io Mr. Goulbourn's bill of 1824, which prove that he saw better than all the politicians of the day the bearings of the question, and foretold all the consequences which have followed. Let this be attested by his letters to Lord Mount Cashel. The zeal of that nobleman, the applause of the party which surrounded him, did not deceive the Bishop; he denounced their proceedings as the commencement of the work of destruction,-he predicted the advantages which the infidel and the Romanist would take of such measures ; and the state of the church in Ireland at this day unfortunately establishes but too well the quick sagacity and the extended foresight of the late Bishop of Ferns.
THE DARK AGES.- No. XI.
" Alia, ut ante perstriuxi, monachorum est causa : alia clericorum. Clerici pascunt
oves; ego pascor.”—HIERONYMUS. It will be readily admitted that those who profess to teach others should be more learned than the rest of the community. This was, however, the very point of difference between the monks and the clergy—“ monachus non docentis, sed plangentis habet