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in the British school-room. In the even. town, J. Culross, of Stirling, T. W. Mel. Ang a public meeting was held in the chapel. hurst, and H. H. Bourn, of Glasgow, R. The Rev. John Spurgeon, of Cranbrook, Thomson, of Millport, and J. Crouch, stuoccupied the chair. Mr. T. E. Slaughter, dent from Mr. Spurgeon's College. In the one of the deacons, gave a brief account course of the evening, John Jackson, Esq., of the past history and present prospects Hillside House, one of the deacons, in the of the church. The pastor then gave a name of the members of the church, pretouching narration of his conversion and sented to Mr. Thomas Fyfe a handsome call to the ministry. The charge to the writing-desk, as a token of esteem for him pastor was delivered by the Rev. John as a member and a deacon, on his leaving Aldis, of Reading. Very suitable ad Rothesay to reside at Ardrishaig. dresses were then delivered by the Rev. RYDE.-On Tuesday evening, March 6th, W. A. Blake, of Brentford ; W. C. Bun

the friends who have worshipped sinca ning, of the Tabernacle College ; H. W. December last in the Assembly-room, Stembridge, of Tenterden; Kendon, of

High Street, were publicly formed into Goudhurst; Gill, of Rye ; Jackson, of

and recognised as a church of Christ of the Sevenoaks; and J. Drew, of Margate.

Particular Baptist denomination. The Rer. UNION CHAPEL, LUTON.-On Tuesday, H. Kitching, of Landport, read the Scrip Feb. 20th, the annual tea-meeting of the tures, offered up prayer, and delivered the church and congregation connected with introductory address. One of the friends Union Chapel, Luton, was held. Five having stated the grounds upon which they hundred persons took tea, the recently were acting, the Church Covenant was altered school-room being tastefully deco read and assented to. Prayer was offered rated for the occasion. At seven o'clock a by the Rev. H. Hardin, of Towcester, for public meeting took place. The room was

a blessing upon the newly-formed church. densely crowded, and numbers were unable The Rev. E. G. Gange, Landport. then to gain admission. The chair was occupied administered the Lord's Supper, with apby W. Willis, Esq., LL.D., barrister-at propriate prayers and addresses. The Rev. law, who, in his opening remarks, made H. Hardin addressed the spectators. kindly reference to the improvements lately MINISTERIAL CHANGES.-The Rev. Jas. made in the chapel and school-room, and Davis, of the Pithay, Bristol, baving congratulated the church on its prosperous accepted the cordial and unanimous invita. condition. Addresses were also delivered tion of the newly-formed church at Teigt by the Revs. W. Cuthbertson, B.A., of

mouth, South Devon, commenced hin the Congregational Chapel, Bishop's Stort pastoral labours at Teignmouth on Lord's ford; W. T. Henderson, of Devonshire | day, March 11.--The Rev. J. M. Stepbens, Square Chapel, London; G. H. Davis, of B.A., of Regent's Park College, has ac• Houghton Regis; C. H. Emerson, of

cepted an invitation to the pastorate of the Breachwood Green; T. Hands, and H.

church at Naunton and Guiting. He will Ashbery, of Luton; and T. R. Stevenson,

enter upon his duties on the first Sabbath pastor of the church.

in July. -The Rev. Thomas Pottenger, ROTHESAY, N. B.-Services were beld in Rawdon, has accepted the unanimous inti Ardbeg Chapel, Rothesay, on Tuesday, tation of the church at York, to the pastoFebruary 27th, for the purpose of publicly rate, and commenced his ministry on Sun designating Mr. Alexander M'Dougall, of day, March 4th. An eligible site has been the Metropolitan Tabernacle, London, as secured for the erection of a chapel, which pastor of the Baptist church. In the 'un will be proceeded with in due course. avoidable absence of the Rev. A. Macleod, The Rev. R. Morris, of Westmancote, has of Glasgow, the Rev. R. Thomson, of Mills accepted the unanimous invitation of the port, presided. Mr. Thomson read two Baptist Church, Garway, Ross, Herefordportions of Scripture bearing on the neces shire, and entered on his stated duties sary qualifications of a pastor, and offered there.-The Rev. J. Parkinson, of Guila. the ordination prayer. The Rev. J. Cul borough, Northamptonshire, has received ross, of Stirling, afterwards addressed the an invitation to labour at Brightside, Shefpastor in a pointed and practical manner, field, with a view to the formation of a and was followed by the Rev. W. Grant, Union church.-The Rev. W. F. Gooch has of Grantown, who gave a spirited address resigned the pastoral charge of the church to the church, when the proceedings ter at Foulsham, Norfolk, and has accepted minated. A soirée was held in the same the cordial invitation of the church at place in the evening, when about 350 Diss, in the same county, and purposes persons sat down to tea. Colonel Scott entering on his new and enlarged sphere presided. Addresses were delivered by Mr. l of labour on the second Sunday in April, M'Dougall, Messrs. W. Grant, of Gran

THE CHURCH.

* Built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being

the chief corner-stone."

MAY, 1866.

THE SPRING.

BY THE REV. O. M. BIRRELL. Most of our large towns have been constructed in such a way as to shut out nearly all traces of the operations of nature, and to prevent thousands of their inhabitants from being able to tell by any visible sign what season is coming or going. Those, however, who have persevered steadily all the year round in an early walk in the direction of the country are sersible at this moment of the passing of an extraordinary and general change over the tarth's aspect.

A very little while ago everything looked dead. The sun seemed hardly disposeil to get up at all, and at most only crawled from bebinıl the distant church tower, and then sloped off in a line nearly level with the horizon as the shortest way to his bed in the west. The early vapours were in consequence hardly ever dispersed, and the gleam which reached you occasionally was chill and sickly. The trees were cheerless; and the snow-drifts under the hedges, despoiled of their original purity, seemed scarcely to know whether to go or stay. At length the airs have become genial ; a soft tlush of green las tinted the ploughed land; great buds which you had not before noticed cave had the gum which sealed them dissolved by the growing warmth, and you are at last startled by flowers colouring sheltered spots with their gold and purple. A singuiar sympathy with all this has stolen over the unds of men, especially of those who have been at all imprisoned iuring the winter. You notice the sick man, with the pallor still on his Cheek, and the ankles tottering under the unwonted load, leaning on "Le arm of wife or sister, gratefully pacing the sunny side of the street; and La the country roads, a little way out of town, how pleasant it is to sce wplete families, in carriages unusual to them, accompanying the longte lather or mother into landscapes which they hail as “ opening Pradise !"

Bat this is not a time of mere enjoyment. It is to the husbandman a time canxiety and responsibility. Work may then be done which cannot afterwards fit overtaken. He must be afield early and late, confirming the hold of the young plants, sowing fresh seeds, and outrooting the sprouting weeds. All the negligence of these weeks will afterwards be brought to light, and all their diligence rewarded; for when the autumnal suns crown the year with goodness, God will give to every such: man "according as his work shall be." This is true of the spring-time of our natural life. There is a season when the mind is pliant and susceptible. It puts forth its new powes timidly and tentatively. If a thoughtful and intelligent guardianship is given to it, it will finely open, acquiring every day new stren; t.. knowledge, and beauty. But if it is treated with harshness or negligencs if the soil is not prepared for the soft rains, and the weeds are allowel to come up rank and strong, damage is done which can never be perfectly remedied. It is sad to look upon a field of good soil covered witi. desolation, but no sadness is like that produced by the sight of one, whose childhood gave promise of good, ending in sterility-the countenance fall of trust, the step free and elastic, the language pure and noble, giving plaza at last to the reserve of conscious guilt, the irresolution which comes iron victorious temptation, and the selfish hard look which follows upon indulgeid sin.

Yet we are forbidden to despair. Just as the new life in nature makes its appearance, not only in cultured lands and gardens, but also occasionally in the courts and alleys of great cities and among heaps of rubbish in ruined mansions where one hardly looked for it; so the spiritual life greets you, now and then, not only in pure Christian homes, but in places whera vice and ignorance seemed to forbid the expectation of such a miracle. In a moment, sometimes, such a soul is called from its couch of death, and stands upright, throws off the air of the maniac, and is calmed and clothed in an instant-just as the earth, in northern latitudes, flings off her cloak of snow, and puts on her green mantle in a few hours.

This is a transition, whether slow or rapidl, more delightful than at other which takes place upon our planet. What is lovelier than the growing seriousness of the soul, the increasing sensibility of conscience, the deepci ing love and reverence for Christ, the passing away of winter and th coming-on of the eternal summer? Let it ought not to be overlooked tig as the natural winter, in our climate, makes many efforts to return, ani sometimes immediately after a warm day, or even before such a da is well over, sends biting blasts which nip the young plants, it is so trit the moral winter from which the spirit lias escapeil. It is a very noticeabil fact that some of the sharpest tests of picty have occurred in its springtime It was soon after his call that David was forced out of his retirement, an made to face the flatteries and hatreds of Saul's court. It was in the sam season, probably in the seventeenth or nineteenth year of his age, that Dank was taken from the religious associations of his native country, and exposed the idolatries of Babylon. It was not long after Saul of Tarsus receife his life's commission that he was assailed by the taunts and persecutions his countrymen; and was it not, to allude to the highest example, at the very opening of his public life t at our Lord was led off to the horror the wilderness?

It is not likely that any of us shall escape those frosts, and we should therefore be prepared for them. The gardener is neithrown off his guard by a few genial days, but keeps up his shutter behind the more delicate shrubs, and gives protection to what it is possible to protect. Do you find those companions leave behind them a distaste for the companionship of God ? Decline intimacy with them. Does that sort of reading, though not in itself wrong, unfit you for what is healthful and elevating ? Take it in smaller proportions, or abandon it altogether. Do you tind anything giving power to your passions, relaxing the vigour of your purpose or diminishing your desire to serve and enjoy God? Throw up a barrier against it. Turn in another direction and enjoy the sunshine. Let not your early blossoms be blighted; let not the whole-hearted dedication of your first months end in Innifference ; let the spring pass into summer and the summer into the fruitful autumn of eternity!

Is it possible to leave the scene around us without being reminded of the power which shall, one day, summon the human r ce from the chambers of the dead? The seeds which the gardener a little while ago flung into the soil became disorganised and reluced to an apparently final corruption ; Fet from those tombs life and loveliness are everywhere leaping forth. It cannot, therefore, b, a thing “incredible” that God should raise the deal. But what is it which has emerged from the ground ? The bare grain which was cast into it? No. Something related to it, but much more beautiful. There, instead, are the leaf, the stalk, the flower : a structure of exquisite symmetry, colour and fragrance. The body which was “ sown in dishonour is raised in glory ;” and when we look to the painted cup of the talip and the manifold bells of the hyacinth as they hang over the graves of the bulbs from which they sprany, we cannot but calculate that so preclous a seed as that of the body of a saint will be followed by a flower of proportionate splendour. Sown a "natural" it will be raised å "spiritual” buli—not necessarily an immaterial one, but such as shall perfectly meet the

bquirements of the spirit. Our present b ies are meant to serve both the marthly and the heavenly nature, but they lean so much to the lower as to Endanger perpetually the interests of the higher. The maintenance of a Dat balance between these two, supplies, incleed, the chief part of our a mal discipline on earth, an'l not till we have pissed the grave shall the dis42 be ended. But then, piysical and moral disorder shail depart toLiber, and the redeemed will serve Goil under conditions which adınit of a perfect obedience and a perfect blessedness. Let us, then, hold up our Curage through what remains of the winter--the breath of spring already as the brow.

SPECIAL SEASONS.

BY THE REV. J. UPTON DAVIS, B.A. "And He led them out as far as to Bethany, and He lifted up His hands, and blessed to And it came to pass, while He blessed them, He was purted from them, and carried up heaven. And they worshipped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy: ani continually in the temple, praising and blessing Gud. Amen.”Luke xxiv. 50-53.

THE Jews had been too bitter against , Cornbill,'” or “ The last from ! the Master not to be suspicious of His die's," and, scarcely knowing y followers, so that when Jesus led the have laid it aside for the New Te disciples out as far as to Bethany, He ment, when fresh truth has shone i took them from danger and fear to its pages, and we have had a clearer safety and repose, and their return to derstanding of the “truth in Jes Jerusalem, to wut there, was going We have been deep in controversy back to peril and to work. In this have closed the sceptical book of light Luke's brief statement is sug adversary to follow the current gestive of some facts in Christian ex thought which it started, when perience.

have been borne close to the side I.-Special seasons of devotion are our enthroned Redeemer. By a ch seasons of special blessing.

of association in the first link so Our Christian life does not run an explicable, and in the last so surp even course; it does not flow between ing--our thoughts have been set 1 straight and smooth, but between from the work under our hands; a' broken banks-here a wide shallow, above the rattle of machinery, 1 and there a deep pool; it broadens rumbling roar of traffic, the prattl irregularly.' We all have our spiritual of children, or the sudden silence "moods”; to-day with small joy in scratching pen and clicking nee the Holy Ghost-to-morrow full of our prayer has risen straight to " reverent thanksgiving and praise. Father” on a steadier wing than Such a “flush ” has its source in the our bedside in the morning, or in head, the heart, or both. The bless evening with our friends. We i ing may be given when our minds are strayed into a strange chapel, and enlightened to discern some new fea- new voice and fresh style have arre turo in God's character, when we are attention and quickened old feel more sensibly affected by what we into livelier exercise. Christ led already know, or when the mind makes out to Bethany and blessed us ther smespiritual discoveryand the heartex It has been well “dinned ” inti ults in the revelation. Such seasons are, that “work is worship.” So are tru to adopt Peter's phrase, “ times of re with bare boughs, in winter, tr freshing from the presence of the Lord.” And as we look for spring buds, sum

Such times of refreshing often occur bloom, and autumn fruit from tr when we are turned aside from our so we look for more than "stern du usual course. It was not resting | in that worship which is “the deep under the curtains of his father's tent, votion of a living soul." The rea but in the open air-his head pillowed | must be devoted to his children, on hard stones-that Jacob saw the for their sakes puts in the si vision of the angels. It was not when in the grey morning, and only be busy with his ring-streaked and it away on his shoulder “W speckled cattle, nor when sacrificing there are three stars in the sk in the midst of his family, but wheu But, besides that, if they pass ! alone on the other side of Jabbok, that in work, he has a word or si he wrestled with the angel like a for them, and on his coming ho prince with God. We have been read | much talk and cheerfulness. It is j ing “ To-day's Times," “ This month's / then they are most gladdened and

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