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general spirit of the Gospel, that he is not startled by every little difficulty; he is not staggered by every “ hard saying.” Those depths of mystery which surpass his understanding do not shake his faith ; and this, not because he is credulous, and given to take things upon trust, but because, knowing that his foundations are right, he sees how one truth of Scripture supports another like the bearings of a geometrical building; because he sees the aspect one doctrine has upon another; because he sees the consistency of each with the rest, and the place, order, and relation of all. The real Christian by no means rejects reason from his religion; so far from it, he most carefully exercises it in furnishing his mind with all the evidences of its truth. But he does not stop here. Christianity furnishes him with a living principle of action, with the vital influences of the Holy Spirit, which, while it enlightens his faculties, rectifies his will, turns his knowledge into practice, sanctifies his heart, changes his habits, and proves, that when faithfully received, the word of truth“ is life indeed, and is spirit indeed.”
ADDRESS IN BEHALF OF
THE FRENCH EMIGRANT CLERGY.
· If it be allowed that there may arise occasions so extraordinary, that all the lesser motives of delicacy ought to vanish before them, it is presumed that the present emergency will be considered as presenting one of those occasions, and will in some measure justify the hardiness of this Address from a private individual, who, stimulated by the urgency of the case, sacrifices inferior considerations to the ardent desire of raising further supplies towards relieving a distress as pressing as it is unexampled.
We are informed by public advertisement, that the large sums already so liberally subscribed for the Emigrant Clergy are almost exhausted. Authentic information adds, that multitudes of distressed exiles in the island of Jersey, are on the point of wanting bread.
Very many, to whom this Address is made, have already contributed. 0, let them not be weary in well-doing! I know that many are making generous exertions for the just and natural claims of the widows and children of our own brave seamen and soldiers. Let it not be said, that the present is an interfering claim. Those to whom I write, have bread enough, and to spare. You, who fare sumptuously every day, and yet complain that you have little to bestow, let not this bounty be subtracted from another bounty, but subtract it rather from some superfluous expense.
The beneficent and right-minded want no arguments to be pressed upon them ; but it is not those alone whom I address; I write to persons of every description. Luxurious habits of living, which really furnish the distressed with the fairest grounds for application, are too often urged by those who practise them as a motive for withholding assistance, and produced as a plea for having little to spare. Let her who indulges such habits, and pleads such excuses in consequence, reflect, that by retrenching one costly dish from her abundant table, by cutting off the superfluities of one expensive dessert, omitting one evening's public amusement, she may furnish at
least a week's subsistence to more than one person,* as liberally bred, perhaps, as herself; and who, in his own country, may have often tasted how much more blessed it is to give than to receive—to a once affluent minister of religion, who has been long accustomed to bestow the necessaries he is now reduced to solicit.
Even your young daughters, whom maternal prudence has not yet furnished with the means of bestowing, may be cheaply taught the first rudiments of charity, together with an important lesson of economy: they may be taught to sacrifice a feather, a set of ribands, an expensive ornament, an idle diversion. And if they are on this occasion instructed, that there is no true charity without self-denial, they will gain more than they are called upon to give; for the suppression of one luxury for a charitable purpose, is the exercise of two virtues, and this without any pecuniary expense.—An indulgence is abridged, and Christian charity is exercised.
Let the sick and afflicted remember how dreadful it must be, to be exposed to the sufferings they feel without one of the alleviations which mitigate their affliction. How dreadful it is to be without comforts, without necessaries, without a home-without a country! while the gay and prosperous would do well to recollect, how suddenly and terribly those unhappy persons for whom we plead were, by the surprising vicissitudes of life, thrown down from heights of gayety and prosperity, equal to what they are now enjoying. And let those who have husbands, fathers, sons, brothers, or friends, reflect on the uncertainties of war, and the revolution of hu. man affairs. It is only by imagining the possibility that those who are dear to us may be placed, by the instability of human events, in the same calamitous circumstances, that we can obtain an adequate feeling of the woes we are called upon to commiserate.
In a distress so wide and comprehensive as the present, many are prevented from giving, by that popular excuse“that it is but a drop of water in the ocean.” But let them reflect, that if all the individual drops were withheld, there would be no ocean at all; and the inability to give much ought not, on any occasion, to be converted into an excuse for giving nothing. Even moderate circumstances need not plead an exemption. The industrious tradesman will not, even in a political view, be eventually a loser by his small contribution. The money now raised is neither carried out of our country, nor dissipated in luxuries, but returns again to the community ; returns to our shops and to our markets, to procure the bare necessaries of life.
* Mr. Bowdler's letter states, that about six shillings a week includes the expenses of each priest at Winchester.
Some have objected to the difference of religion of those for whom we solicit. Such an objection hardly deserves a serious answer. Surely, if the superstitious Tartar hopes to become possessed of the courage and talents of the enemy he slays, the Christian is not afraid of catching, or of propagating, the error of the sufferer he relieves. Christian charity is of no party. We plead not for their faith, but for their wants. But while we affirm, that it is not for their Popery, but their poverty, for which we solicit; yet let the more scrupulous, who look for desert as well as distress in the objects of their bounty, bear in mind, that if these men could have sacrificed their conscience to their convenience, they had not now been in this country; and if we wish for proselytes, who knows but it may be the first step towards their conversion, if we show them the purity of our religion, by the beneficence of our actions ?
If you will permit me to press upon you such high motives (and it were to be wished that in every action we were to be influenced only by the highest), perhaps no act of bounty to which you may be called out, can ever come so immediately, and so literally, under that solemn and affecting description, which will be recorded in the great day of account "I was a stranger, and ye took me in.” *
* This appeal in the cause of humanity, brought upon the author a torrent of abuse, in a pamphlet, bearing the title of“ Gideon's Cake of Barley Meal. A Letter to the Rev. Wm. Romaine, on his preaching for the Emigrant Popish, Clergy; with some Strictures on Mrs. Hannah More's Remarks, published for their Benefit.” Of the spirit in which this libel was written, an idea may be formed from the choice epithets applied to Mrs. More, who is called " a wolf in. a fine sheep-skin," and the “ notorious daughter of the father of lies!”
THE SPEECH OF M. DUPONT.
The following SPEECH was made in the National Convention at Paris, on tne
14th of December, 1792, in a debate on the subject of establishing Public Schools for the Education of Youth, by Citizen DuPont; and as the doctrines contained in it were received with unanimous applause, it may be fairly considered as an exposition of the Creed of that Assembly.
• What! Thrones are overturned! Sceptres broken! Kings expire! And yet the altars of God remain! Tyrants, in outrage to nature, continue to burn an impious incense on those altars! The thrones that have been reversed, have left these altars naked, unsupported, and tottering. A single breath of enlightened reason will now be sufficient to make them disappear; and if humanity is under obligations to the French nation for the first of these benefits, the fall of kings, can it be doubted but that the French people, now sovereign, will be wise enough, in like manner, to overthrow those altars and those Idols to which those kings have hitherto made them subject? Nature and Reason, these ought to be the gods of men! These are my gods! Admire nature-cultivate reason. And you, Legislators, if you desire that the French people should be happy, make haste to propagate these principles, and to teach them in your primary schools, instead of those fanatical principles which have hitherto been taught. The tyranny of kings. was confined to make their people miserable in this life-but those other tyrants, the priests, extend their dominion into another, of which they have no other idea than of eternal punishments; a doctrine which some men have hitherto had the good nature to believe. But the moment of the catastrophe is come—all these prejudices must fall at the same time. We must destroy them, or they will destroy us. For myself, I honestly avow to the Convention, I am an Atheist! But I defy a single individual, amongst the twentyfour millions of Frenchmen, to make against me any well-grounded · reproach. I doubt whether the Christians or the Catholics, of which the last speaker, and those of his opinion, have been talking to us, can make the same challenge. There is another consideration-Paris has had great losses. It has been deprived of the commerce of luxury; of that factitious splendor which was found at courts, and invited strangers hither. Well! we must repair these losses.-Let me, then, repJesent to you the times, that are fast approaching, when our philoso