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Bloomsbury Chapel is situated near St. Giles, and Sir Morton Peto proposed that a mission to the poor people of the district should be established. Dr. Brock at once selected his old associate to take charge of that work. Mr. McCree was thus brought to the metropolis, where he spent the remainder of his life in such labours as but few probably were ever called to perform.
St. Giles in those days was one of the most criminal and debased parishes in London. “Drunkards and thieves, prizefighters, coiners, and beggars crowded its dwellings, and made its streets dangerous." The Rev. Dr. Clifford thus describes Mr. McCree as he entered upon his work in St. Giles, where he became known as “ the Bishop of the Seven Dials”—an open space, where he usually held services both on Sabbaths and week evenings.
“He went with his life in his hand, and with the love of men in his heart, and the message of the love of the Saviour on his lips. He went into the rooms of the people, as well as preached in their streets. He helped them in their troubles, and soothed them in their afflictions, and bore their burdens as well as warned them of their sins. He kept high his ideals and yet could plod at petty details. His fire was not less than his patience. His courage was matched by tenderness, and his faith in God forbade his despair of any man. The wells of humour never ran dry, and the fires of love never went out. The story of his quarter of a century in St. Giles, told all over the country, reveals one of the most capable and devoted pioneers in the spiritual and social regeneration of the slums' of our great cities."
The writer visited his now departed friend when he was "the Bishop of the Seven Dials,” and went with him to several places in his "diocese.” The scenes there beheld will never be forgotten. Outcast women, drunken men, and ragged children met us everywhere. He pointed to some of the schools of vice, to which he did not think it prudent to introduce a stranger. No one molested us or spoke an improper word. Every body in the motley group recognized their friend, who had a kind word for all. He did not seem to be afraid of any body. When we were walking the streets, he would quietly point us to some well-known thief or leader in vice, whom he recognized. Then he would rehearse some amusing incident which he had witnessed. Such was the confidence the people felt in him, that they would sometimes give him stolen articles to restore to their rightful owners.
While prosecuting his mission, he made several attempts to reclaim children and young people. The late Earl Shaftesbury often encouraged him by rendering such aid as circumstances might require to accomplish such benevolent and pious work. More than once the noble earl presided at meetings which Mr. McCree addressed on behalf of his mission. For many year's he also acted as secretary of the Band of Hope Union. He was one of the most energetic apostles of that movement, and was so well versed with every phase of the temperance question, that he was always ready to speak on its behalf at every opportunity.
During the quarter of a century that he laboured in St. Giles, he often made excursions into the provinces, partly for recreation and also that he might by means of lectures give the people in the country a better idea of what constituted life in London. To many his lectures were revelations. They could not conceive there were so many pandemoniums in the great city. Not a few youths who afterwards went to reside in London were put under his care, and to all such he was always a friend indeed. He sought situations for them, introduced them to respectable society, and watched over them with true paternal care.
The wear and tear of such a busy life so told on his constitution, that he needed rest. In 1874, therefore, he accepted a call to the pastorate of the Baptist Church, Borough Road, Southwark, where he laboured until November, 1892, when he was called from earth to heaven. This was an entirely new field, but he still held several services on Sunday, indoors and in the open air -organized Bible classes, prayer meetings, mothers' meetings, Bands of Hope, Dorcas, Tract, and Temperance Societies, musical services for the people, popular lectures, dinners and free teas for the poor, rescue meetings for women, sick poor fund, clothing club, Pure Literature Society, lending libraries, cricket club, etc.
He also contributed largely to the press, and published several small volumes. His lecture excursions, though less frequent, were still numerous, while his correspondence was voluminous.
One of the last letters which he wrote me was about three years ago:
“Your touching letter," he says, “has just come. As I am going off on one of my journeys I reply at once. Your letter was very welcome. I remember the days of old. I never forget your sermon at Middleham on * The Tree of Life.' Blessed be God it still buds and blossoms and bears fruit, still gives forth its leaves for the healing of the nations. . I never go to Newcastle now though I have many invitations, but all my dear friends have crossed the flood and I seemed when there to be walking in the midst of the dead. I am very busy preaching, lecturing, writing, etc. The poster I send will give you a glimpse of my daily life.
“The Primitives are very kind to me-invite me to open their chapels, etc., and we often laugh and cry and shout together. God bless you, may we meet in glory."
Mr. McCree never forgot his former connection with Primitive Methodism. In one of his books he gives a graphic account of a camp meeting which that denomination held on the Town Moor, Newcastle. Our limited space will not permit us to give more than a paragraph. After referring to several, who, during the day, had addressed the multitude, he says:
“ But, see, here comes the man of the hour--a man of rough face, shaggy hair, big head, loud voice, flashing eyes, strong brain, horned hands, stalwart frame, and fearless mien ; a man who spends hours and nights in solitary prayer; who sees Satan and fights with him ; who believes in God, Christ, heaven, and hell as realities; who reads volume after volume of theology after his day's toil; whose sermons are brooded over until they are as hot as his own coke-oven; a man of faith and prayer, and spiritual struggle such as we seldom see.- Thomas Waller, of BLAYDON.* He looks like a
• This picture is not overdrawn. I knew good Thomas Waller well.
man going to fight; he has prayed for hours about this season ; tears have deluged his face ; he has entreated God to bless him as he never did before, and he said to a friend, 'I've got the promise! so expect something.'
“ Thomas Waller is up,' is whispered through the crowd, and all press towards the stand. We are breathless, listening to the text, and at last it comes from the preacher's lips, "If the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?' It is like a crash of thunder. Both saints and sinners feel thrilled. None dare stir. This rough cokeburner is as Elijah the prophet. The sermon scathes like fire. It is an appeal to saints to battle against sin, and to sinners to flee to Calvary. He spares none; knowing as he does, and says he does, the plague of sin in his own heart; he dilates on heroism in God's service, on self-mastery, and on perfect sanctification, until his fellow-Primitives groan and pray for holiness as they stand in deep and awful attention before him.
“Then he suddenly turns to the sivner. With his Bible in one hand and his coloured silk handkerchief in the other, he appeals to him to repent and seek salvation, “Where shall the ungoully and the sinner appear?' he cries aloud in a terrible voice. 'Where? when God shall come down with clouds of darkness about Him. Where? when God shall rain snares, and fire and brimstone, and a horrible tempest upon the wicked. Where? when hell shall move from beneath to meet the sinners and to swallow them up.
“But the man is after all a messenger of peace. Sinner,' he cries, thou art close to hell, but see, Christ is coming from His cross to save thee.' (Sume lines of poetry were then quoted and the writer proceeds.) The effect of these lines, delivered as they were with a combination of earnestness and winning tenderness, was wonderful. Preachers and people wept, praying men shouted, Lord ! save now.' The crowds bowed their heads and prayed, and for a time heaven seemed to visit earth with mercy, joy, and love. After a hymn and prayer the camp-meeting came to an end, and Richard Raine, melodious as ever, marched the people from the field, singing :
*Oh! then we'll shine, and shout, and sing,
When all the saints get home;
For Jesus bids us come.
6" Amen, amen,”
my soul replies,
And claim a mansion there :
Where we shall part no more.?”
Good Thomas Waller and most of his fellow-labourers at the camp meeting, with “the Bishop of Seven Dials," have met in their Father's house. They were well known to the writer of this article, who feels like saying,
“My company before me have gone." But by grace I will follow on and join them there. Farewell, my dear McCree, until we meet in glory!
How quickly nature falls into revolt,
THE VALUE OF ENTIRE PROHIBITION.
BY REV. J. L. DAWSON, A.B.
HALF-WAY measures must always contain concessions to the evils with which they grapple. Local option laws are all half-way measures. They assert the right to prohibit. Some of them a ssert it very strongly. The Nova Scotia “ Liquor License Act, 1886," for instance, is remarkable in this respect; for it makes thirty-four prohibition voters stronger than sixty-six voters who favour license, in every polling district outside of Halifax city, and forty-one stronger than fifty-nine in that provincial stronghold of the traffic itself. The Scott Act itself is not nearly so strongly prohibitory, for it merely furnishes the prohibitionist even chances at the polls with the anti-prohibitionist. But both “Acts" concede the legal right of the traffic to exist in the community, provided .it can secure a certain prescribed number of votes in its favour. It is true that the “Act” first named places license at a great disadvantage in its struggle against prohibition, but it nevertheless makes licenses possible, and provides for their issuance whenever the polling district or ward section declares in favour of their being granted.
Now, the licensing of a great moral evil like the liquor traffic is, with every prohibitionist, a matter of conscience. He has decided that it cannot be licensed anywhere without sin, and he is always fearful lest he may himself share in the responsibility for the traffic's continuance wherever it is still upheld. Certainly his moral responsibility in the matter has limits. In a Scott Act election contest, his duty is done and his conscience clear, even when prohibition has been defeated and free rum voted in, provided he has cast his ballot in its favour, and done what he could to induce other electors to do likewise. And after the fifteen or more licenses have been granted to applicants residing in Section A, Ward II., Halifax, the prohibitionists of that section are free from all moral guilt in the matter, if only they have both refused themselves to sign the certificate of any applicant and used what influence they had to get others to refuse.
It is no sin to be out-voted. When we have stood with the right and done our best striving to get it the victory, to stand bravely in a minority still militant is one of the highest glories of our manhood. · But the duty of the prohibitionist is not bounded by the limits of any local option law. He is not simply citizen of a polling district, nor even of county or city. Every Canadian prohibitionist is also citizen of a province, and of a Dominion composed of many provinces. And being such, it is his duty to enquire if his country, taken as a whole, does not number more prohibitionists than anti-prohibitionists among her electors, and, on finding it so, to demand, in the name of government, according to the will of the majority, and in the best
interests of majority and minority alike, that the liquor traffic, in all its branches, be outlawed by the Dominion government at once and forever.
It is his duty also to do what he has lately done in Manitobaobtain the opportunity to express himself on the question of provincial prohibition of sale, and then make his voice heard. What could the pro-traffic cry of Halifax, or St. John, or Charlottetown, for instance, avail in such a case against the anti-traffic shout of the province at large ? As long as conscience lives in the prohibitionist, the fight will go on. He can never enjoy more than partial moral rest until entire prohibition has been enacted and brought into operation throughout the Dominion. The first advantage, therefore, of the entire prohibition of the liquor traffic, would be this: It would give ease of conscience in the matter to a very large portion of that section of our people who are devoted to the interests of righteousness, and bring such a release to their energies, that they would be free to engage, on behalf of themselves and the public, in other weighty moral undertakings. The importance of this is only made clearer to the discerning when they reflect upon the fact that comparatively few perceive it. There is yet many a great popular wrong waiting to be corrected. Each must be fought and overcome in its turn. When will the last one be overtaken and slain? It becomes us to march rapidly.
We may now look at the value of entire prohibition as a law viewed side by side with such local option measures as at present exist.
1. It would prohibit everywhere. It would give no community the place and time for self-injury and self-disgrace which local option furnishes. It would cause the strong to protect the weak and restrain the vicious. · In other words, it would carry the strength of the prohibition sentiment from those counties and provinces where it is superabundant, and place it on guard over those portions of the Dominion in which the traffic has its strongholds.
2. It would strike at importation and manufacture as well as sale. Prohibition of sale alone is like trying to keep a people from taking cholera or the small-pox by building close, high walls about the hospitals, when you could as well drive and keep all infected persons out of the country and burn the hospital buildings to the ground. Close, high walls are excellent in their way, but they must have gates, and the gates must be open sometimes.
3. The officers appointed for the enforcement of a Dominion prohibitory law, would derive their authority and their salaries from the federal government, and would thus be less subject to local influences than similar officers are under the various statutes at present existing. This would be desirable, of course, only when the party in power would be itself favourable to the enforcement of the law. Otherwise it would be far better that these officers should be so appointed and paid that each would most