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. “And these violets,” said I, “what are they for ?? . " They are to put in a glass in my mother's room," she answered. “ I thought she would never go out and get violets again, and therefore I gathered them for her. But my mother is not unhappy about being ill,” added the sweet little girl, 6 because our dear Saviour visits and comforts ber.” · I found myself strangely affected by the discourse of the little Emily. There was an elegance and a refinement in her ideas, which I had never before observed about a child ; and, being totally ignorant of the power of the Holy Spirit of God in producing these beautiful effects, I attributed them to the more than ordinary care of a refined and well-instructed mother in the direction of her early studies. But again, I thought that accomplishments of this kind are above the capacities of children. Where, then, and how can this child have acquired these ideas? Had I understood the boly scripture, I should not have had so much difficulty in tracing the peculiar loveliness of this little girl to its right cause.
Being, however, not a little confused and perplexed with what I had seen and heard, I wished Miss Emily a good morning; and hoping that I should meet her again some other time, as she so often came that way, I returned into my garden. • The next day the little shepherdess appeared again with her basket. I met her at the gate, and invited her in; while she, with great politeness, begged to be excused till she had asked her mother's leave. I wished to present her to Mr. Graham, and would have had her come in without waiting her mother's permission ; but she refused with a mixture of inflexibility and sweetness, saying, “I must not disobey my poor mother, now she is ill in bed.”
I replied, “You are a sweet, good child, Miss Emily; and your mother is very happy in having such a little girl.” ..“ Mamma loves me," she answered, “but I am not good.” · This reply of the little girl surprised me; and on questioning her further, she made me understand that her mamma had taught her that all mankind are sinful and utterly depraved, and that she herself could not do the least thing well without the help of the Holy Spirit of God.
It cannot be supposed, that I could have lived between thirty and forty years in a Christian country, and been constantly in the babit of attending the divine ordinances, without hearing of the depravity of human nature; or that I could have read the bible continually, as I had been in the habit of doing, and never have found it there : yet so it was, that this doctrine, out of the mouth of this little girl, seemed perfectly new to me, and came with a force, which I could not account for. I felt ashamed and embarrassed before the child, and hardly had presence of mind to say to her, “Well, my little miss, go home now, and if your mamma will give you leave, call upon us to-morrow in your way to the village."
Mr. Grabam smiled at my enthusiastick description of the little Emily; but the next day, when she came, with her mother's permission, into the garden to speak to us, in her way to the village, he confessed that she fully answered my description of her.
From that time she came every morning, when I generally contriva ed to have some little nice thing to send by her to her mother, from whom I received many grateful messages in return, with one or two little notes, elegantly written on small slips of paper, expressive of gratitude, not only for my kindness to herself, but to her little Emily.
Finding, however, that what what I had done for this distressed lady was too little, I resolved, as soon as Mr. Graham should be able to walk, that we would go together to see her, the cottage in which she resided being so situated as not to be approached safely with a
carriage. . In the mean time, as the summer advanced, the strawberries in the garden began to ripen fast : but we had not yet gathered any, when one morning our little Emily came in as usual, and with a peculiar meaning in her sweet face, stood awhile, lingering and looking earnestly at me, even after I had told her that it was time to go : for her poor mother, in one of her notes, had requested me not to detain her longer than a certain hour; adding, that she could not bear to be long deprived of her. Emily, however, as I said before, this day lingered some minutes after I had told her that it was time to go. At length, colouring deeply, she said, “ Ma'am, will you sell me some strawberries ?”
I was surprised at the request, and the more, as she had never before asked for any thing. I was going to say, “ No, my dear, I will give you some;" but Mr. Graham checked me, whispering, that he wished to know what the little girl was about.
“ I have got a penny of my own, ma'am,” she said, perceiving my hesitation, “and I should like to buy some strawberries instead of a
“ What, for your own eating ?” I said.
“No," she answered, “not for myself." . Mr. Graham himself immediately gathered her a large cabbageleaf full, and took her penny; at which she appeared to be in an ecstacy of joy, her whole face brightening up in a manner that I had never witnessed in any creature before.
“I shall be so happy now !” she said. “ Yesterday my mamma wished for strawberries, and now I shall have some to give her.” She then took her leave, and hastened to the village.
I contrived to meet her at the garden-gate as she came back. I looked into her basket, and saw that the number of strawberries was not diminished, and that she had purchased but one roll. The joy of her countenance still remained without any abatement; and cheerfully wishing me a good morning as she passed, I watched her as she went tripping along the little pathway.
The next day, at the usual time, my little Emily appeared again. She came running into the garden with her basket, to tell us that her dear mamma had enjoyed the strawberries so much!-so very much! In her hand she held her penny, and begged us to sell her some more strawberries.
“ But, my dear," said Mr. Graham, taking her upon his knee, for
he was now become even fonder of her than I was, if it were possi ble to be so, '“ what did you do for your supper ?”
She looked earnestly at him, not knowing what he meant.
“Your roll !” he said, “how did you do without your roll ?-you had no roll last nigbt.”
“I did not want my roll ; I saved some of my potatoes at dinner, to eat at night,” she answered.
"But, my dear," inquired I, " what did your mamma say, when she saw you eating potatoes ?”
On hearing this question, her cheeks reddened, and her eyes filled with tears. “O ma'am!" she answered, “my poor mamma does not know now what I do.” She could say no more ; but being quite overcome, threw her arms round my neck, and burst into an agony of grief.
"What! my child,” I said, much affected ; « is your mamma so very ill ?”
I found, by her answers, that the poor lady had kept her bed for several days; but I could not find out whether she was actually in danger of death: however, I told the little girl that I would certainly come the next day and see her.
On hearing this, her countenance brightened up, and she began to tell me how her mamma had relished the strawberries. “She ate them all, ma'am," said the little girl, “ so eagerly! and this morning she wants more ; and here, ma'am, is my penny.”
“No, my Emily," said Mr. Graham, quite affected ; " no, no; we will not have your poor penny, sweet child. Take it back; you are welcome ten thousand times, and so is your dear mother, to all our garden can afford, and our house too."
But please, sir,” said the sweet little girl, “ please to take my penny: I want to give the strawberries to mamma-please to let me buy them."
There was no resisting the gentle importunity of the lovely child : it seemed to give her particular pleasure to deny herself in order to gratify her mother. There was a touching mixture of childishness and warm disinterested love in the conduct of this dear little girl, of which I never before could have formed a conception, and which quite overcame Mr. Graham and myself. We could not resist her, but, taking her penny, we all set to work to gather the strawberries; with which she hastened home as before, transported with joy.
(TO BE CONTINUED.)
Extract of a Letter from a Gentleman in Calcutta. “SOCINIANISM, I know, is the present fashion in Boston, but as all fashions are subject to continual change, that one in religion must be particularly so, the hope of which is not stayed on God. The doc
trine of the Atonement, as held by our Church, is, in my mind, só comfortable, that to want the hope which is built on it, is to want every thing. In the ardour of youth and contention, Socinianism may prevail, but its consolations are so barren for a dying hour, I cannot think it will be durable, unless permitted by infinite wisdom to run its course among the many other evils that afflict mankind. You will be sorry to hear that it is springing up here, though evidently on stony ground. A Baptist missionary, Mr. Adams, has become an apostate to this cause, and lent it his miserable aid. His associates are all men of some literary acquirements and inordinate vanity; among whom a native, of whom you may have heard, Ram Mohun Roy, is most con: spicuous. They are endeavouring to build a chapel. Not one has ever been known to attend divine service any where, heretofore, but they have been noted as open profaners of the Sabbath. No wonder such men endeavour to persuade themselves that there is no punishment for the wicked !”
TO CORRESPONDENTS. A COMMUNICATION on dressing churches at Christmas was received too late to be inserted before that festival, and it is thought best to defer it for the present, that it may appear more seasonably at another time. An article on Prayer Meetings has been unavoidably delayed, but will appear in our next. A second communication from “ One of the People of the South” will also be inserted in the number for March. SENESCENS is received and approved ; and also a paper on Butler's Analogy. Both will be inserted as soon as our limits will permit.“
Our correspondent CANDIDATUS will have perceived the satisfaction we have derived from his communication on the subject of the ancient Agapæ, though we have freely expressed our views whenever we have felt ourselves obliged to differ from him. We shall be glad to know him, and shall be happy to receive further communications from his pen. He will, we trust, consider all our remarks as dica tated by a spirit of friendship, and with this preliminary, we shall take the freedom to observe that he has not displayed as much accuracy and elegance in his choice of words and arrangement of them in his sentences, as he has learning and industry in the accumulation of his materials. We are persuaded that he is as capable of the former as he is of the latter. We beg leave particularly to obserre, that the use of such technical expressions as t usus loquendi" and "exegesis" is, we believe, peculiar to Andover, and will occasion some trouble to many of our unlearned readers. We wish that the valuable communications of CANDIDATUS may be acceptable and interesting to all; and for this reason whenever any Latin or Greek or Hebrew expression interrupts the sense of the passage to the mere English reader, we shall be glad if he will subjoin a translation. The passage from Valerius Maximus may be mentioned as an example.
ERRATA. We have received from a highly respected correspondent the following correction of errours in the account of the New Jersey convention in our Number for December, 1822. "I notice a trifling errour in the last Number, as it respects the counties in New Jersey, in which the churches are placed. Nine counties only contain churches. The church at New Brunswick is in Middlesex county. Trenton is in Hunterdon, not Burlington county; and St. Mary's, Colestown, and St. John's, Chew's Landing, are in Gloucester, not Burlington county."
In the same Number p. 380, col. 1. the word i, at the beginning of the last line of the note, was omitted, in some copies,
Having been a subscriber to the “Gospel Advocate," from its first publication, I have with some degree of anxiety expected to find some communications from you, Mr. Editor, or some one of the “ society of gentlemen," on the very important subject of prayer meetings in the Episcopal church. In the number for September, the subject is introduced in a sermon from James iii. 1. The reverend author of that discourse, having written with some severity against prayer meetings in general, and suggested some apprehensions respecting their improper introduction into some parishes among the members of our communion; I have waited the publication of the two following numbers, presuming some one of the readers of the Advocate, more capable than myself, would take up the subject, and fully state his opinion, and those of the good and the wise, who have written on the subject, in favour, or in opposition, to a practice which has been so long prevalent among our brethren of other denominations.
In my opinion, these meetings are of vital importance to the pros. perity of our church, and the spiritual growth and improvement of its members.
I therefore take the liberty respectfully to notice a few of the remarks made by the reverend gentleman, give some scriptural references, and state some facts; boping to remove some of his prejudices and those of many pious churchmen, against prayer meetings in general, and those of the Episcopal church in particular; where laymen are permitted to take a part in exhortation and prayer.
In page 271, the writer of the discourse finds it necessary, to “restrain and discountenance the pride of individual opinion, or the excessive ardour of individual feeling and persuasion in religious things, which would lead men, with little opportunity of qualification for such an office, to affect to be teachers of their brethren." In page 272, he speaks of those who “distract the minds of the weak, and infringe the right order of the Church ;' of a “rash and unauthorized assumption" of the ministerial office ; of those " who take upon themselves to regulate the opinions, and authoritatively influence the actions of their fellow men, in things of sacred and eternal import;" of the “ magisterial attitude too often taken,” &c. ; of him who is governed by a spiritual pride," and of those who are governed “by
10 GOSPEL ADVOCATE, vol. III.