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has in no wise decreased. As the obituary read was that of Richard Lecture must be published, it would Tabraham: a man noted for extreme be premature to criticize it now; an self-denial, who got and saved all he early notice of it will be submitted to could, that he might give the fruits our readers.

of his privation to the Church The only election into the ‘Hun- of Christ. His power of personal dred' this year was by seniority, influence grew as he neared the and the single vacancy was caused grave.

Next followed the name by the retirement of a Supernume- of William Oliver Booth : in his rary. The oldest Methodist Preacher

younger days one of the most elomight find it difficult to tell how quent and effective of Methodist many years it is since death left un- Preachers, always a soul-saving touched the entire Legal Conference, evangelist, a prince whose prayer At present the 'Hundred' consists of had power

with God; for many years sixty-seven Ministers elected on the a sufferer in whom patience' had her ground of nomination, and thirty- perfect work. The mention of his three on the ground of seniority.' name reminds us of his father, John The nominees, of course, are, as a Booth, who was converted under the rule, at the time of election, younger ministry of John Valton, and who than those who owe their election became one of the finest types of oldto 'seniority'; and as now the alter- fashioned Methodism. We are arrested nate vacancy is filled by nomina- again by the name of Henry Fish, the tion, admission into the Legal Con- son of a village schoolmaster in the ference will be more rare than hereto- Doncaster Circuit, and the brother of fore. The Rev. R. M. Willcox has a Local Preacher of rare power and well merited his promotion by forty- earnestness. Thirty-two years of three years of faithful service as a enforced silence have caused the Methodist Preacher, and especially present generation almost to forget by the skill and assiduity which he his fame. But, till his voice failed has evinced as Superintendent of him, his impassioned rhetoric and Circuits and Chairman of Districts. strong thought placed him near the

The election to the Chair of the front rank of Methodist orators; Conference of the Editor of this whilst, better still, the Holy Ghost Magazine, by so large a vote, must confirmed his word with signs followbe taken as a decisive proof of the ing. His pen, too, did valuable serdeep interest felt by the Methodist vice to our literature. Now we listen Ministry in this important depart- to the memorial of one the date of ment of the Work of God.

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birth ries us back the The Conference Prayer-meeting later years of John Wesley. William was marked by as much fervour and Tranter has left us--the last Methosimplicity and as rich an effusion dist Preacher who was contemporary of the spirit of grace and of suppli- with our founder. The friend of cations' as any we have ever attended, those holy women, Mrs. Fletcher and

Though Death has not invaded the Lady Maxwell, he caught no small Legal Conference, he has, nevertheless, measure of their zeal. Sceptics of thinned the ranks of the Ministry. the pattern of Sir G. C. Lewis would From such a roll of 'good men and be compelled to admit that William true,' it is hard to select names for Tranter

had completed his hundredth comment; those we perforce pass

year. The year's death-roll contains in silence are no less worthy than also such names as Andrew Kessenthose over which we linger to speak whose labours in training native a few appreciative words. The first Christian schoolmasters and "Mis

sionary students have yet to be esti- vented the French Conference apmated at their full worth; William pointing one of its own body to visit Davis Tyack—'among good men... England. Dr. Punshon, however, distinguished for his goodness'; had recently inspected French MethoEdward Walker-a genuine Chris- dism, and he held a brief for it. tian gentleman, of dignified, yet easy Right well did he discharge his combearing; and amongst our hopeful mission. The heart of every one rising Ministry, the sweet-spirited that heard him throbbed in sympathy and saintly Charles Louis Sutcliffe with Pastors and people, worthy suc- thoroughly able and faithful cessors of the Huguenots and Vaudois, Methodist Preacher and administra- who endure cheerfully for Christ's tor. In the Missionary Obituary the sake so great poverty and hardship. name of Samuel Hardey claims Timely, too, was his reference to Mr. special notice--the scion of a fine old Gibson's work in Paris, France is Methodist house, and the elder of two preeminently the nation of a great Missionary brothers, as indefatigable city. Hitherto French Methodism as he was meek-mannered, as free has flourished mainly among the from self-assertion as from self- peasantry of the traditionally Protesindulgence; and Ferdinando Bosio- tant South ; a successful attack upon Italian Minister, political prisoner, the capital would go far to relieve popish priest, and finally Methodist the chronic impecuniosity which alPreacher ; a

man of strong mental most starves our Gallic Societies to and moral force, who proved by death. The address of the black sacrifices the sincerity of his evan- Bishop, Dr. Campbell, abounded with gelical convictions. All these were pathos, humour, and eloquence. He noble, useful men, for whom our is unquestionably in earnest ; a true Church is devoutly thankful; yet leader of his long-oppressed race. all belonged to the rank and file of Emancipation has opened the way the Ministry. Not one had passed the elevation of the Negro, and it is the Chair ; not one had been elected doubtless wise to encourage the to the Legal Conference, save 'on coloured population of the United the ground of seniority.' Happy is States in their self-help and independthe Church that is so rich in spiritual ence. Possibly the barriers between power, administrative skill, intellec- the white and the black races may tual wealth and gifts of utterance. vanish as the latter are uplifted and

The Open Session was occupied refined by the Gospel. The Bishop chiefly with Ireland, France, and the verged on the rather dangerous African Methodist Episcopal Church ground of politics : but the politics of America. Mr. W. Guard Price were American, not English, and the dwelt upon the social difficulties which controversies he referred to have Irish Methodism has to contend with, been dead and buried long ago. When and its ever-pressing struggle with he claimed recognition for the Church Rome. Mr. James Wilson, a former which he rules as an integral part of President of the Primitive Wesleyan- the Methodist family, the Conference Methodist Conference, told the story of no less cheerfully than justly allowed theunion between it and the Wesleyan- it, and we trust that the Revs. W. Methodist Conference, showing how Arthur and F. W. Macdonald may Providence prepared the way for it. be able to return the visit which His presence as one of the Representa- Bishop Campbell has paid to English tives to the British Conference proved Methodism. how real the union is. The necessity It is only of recent years that the of saving every possible shilling pre- Conference has formally received

for

deputations from other ecclesiastical meeting is 'springing up; and neglect bodies. The two of the present year of it is only too common. To permit were not inferior in interest and value it to die of inanition would be to to any of their predecessors. The break our trust, in the face of first that appeared upon the platform Christendom. Second, we are rerepresented the Dissenting Ministers sponsible for maintaining in its origiof Birmingham. Birmingham Non- nal prominence the doctrine of the conformity is inseparably associated Holy Ghost.' Mr. Dale did not in so with the name of R. W. Dale, and it many words mention the witness of was natural that he should clasp the the Spirit, but that doctrine was President's band as its leader. The doubtless in his thoughts. It is imaddress which he read bore manifest possible to exaggerate the importance marks of its origin; it plainly pro- of this, not merely in our theology, ceeded from Mr. Dale's own pen. In but also and principally in our experireply, Mr. Arthur spoke weighty ence. Third, the doctrine of Chriswords as to the true unity of Christ's tian perfection and complete sanctifChurch-all its sections being alike cation is another of the great truths rooted in Him; and Dr. Punshon which' we hold in trust for Christtraced the genealogy of Methodism, so endom.' Other sections of the as to illustrate and expand the Presi- Church are now claiming their share dent's phrase when he said that in him- in the priceless heritage, let us see to self and Mr. Dale beat the strong it that we lose neither the truth itself pulse of spiritual consanguinity.' nor the form of sound words which Usually speeches from some of the enshrines it. We may recognize in deputation have preceded the replies, Mr. Dale's utterances the voice of the but Mr. Dale bad not intended to ad- Churches, calling upon us to be faithdress the Conference. In response to

ful to our past. As the President the President's request, however, he said, the admonition “bad fallen from delivered a speech as seasonable as it his lips with a force with which no was frank and forceful. Methodism Methodist lips could have attered it.' is one of a community of Sister- God grant that it may be beeded! Churches. What is it that those The deputation from the Methodist Churches hold us responsible for ? New Connexion Conference, the first Mr. Dale tells us, with much of that has stood upon & Wesleyanappreciation and something of warn- Methodist Conference platform, suging: First, we are 'in some sort... gested the closer relations which the trustees' of the institution of the various Methodist bodies are forming Class-meeting •Whatever slight with each other. The pleasure of modifications,' urged Mr. Dale, 'may receiving the deputation was heightfrom time to time be necessary in that ened by the presence of Dr. Cooke, organization of yours, we do ven- eminent as theologian, author and ture to ask, on behalf of the other Preacher, ever the consistent friend of Evangelical communities of Christen- the parent Methodist body. The old dom, that you endeavour to secure it man' proved himself still eloquent.' permanently for the Christian world.' The tone to both the conversations And the Pastor of one of the largest on the State of the Work of God was Independent Churches in these islands, taken from the fact that the number

successor of John Angell James, of members in Society is now less by lamented the want of such a means three thousand two hundred and of Christian fellowship in his own sixty-four than it was last year. It denomination. Among ourselves in is only right, however, to place by certain quarters weariness of the Class- the side of the decrease the return of

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ten thousand and forty-five young of. Mr. George Lidgetts outspoken
persons meeting in Junior Society- address produced a deep impression,
classes
, now tabulated for the first

at any rate upon ourselves, He said
time. Of course, the Conference what

many have long felt, but have
never intended that children should hardly dared to whisper. Here are
be withdrawn from full membership a few of his sentences :
and drafted into Junior Classes, but,

"There is no institution 80 essential to
beyond all doubt, financial considera-

the existence of Methodism as the Classtions and the convenience of the

meeting, and every man amongst us who young mesting with the young have by his conduct discredits that institution caused considerable numbers of chil

reduces to that extent the number of our

Church-members. If a Local Preacher dren to leave the adult and join the

stands up in our pulpits and endeavours to jurenile Class. Besides—though this

indace those who are before him to join seems to have been completely over- the hosts of the Lord, whilst at the same looked in the conversations-in pre

time it is known that he is a man who vious hundreds of converted

never meets in Class, that man discredits years

the institution. The same thing may children have united themselves to

be said of Society-stewards, of Circuitour Societies; this year the new stewards and of other officers. We have

converts from the young have sought such men amongst us—some of them hold. fellowship with those of their own

ing the highest official positions—who pay

in their Class-money on the day of the age. In view of this and of the fact

Quarterly Meeting, and who in that and in that upwards of sixty thousand per- other ways discredit the institution. If sons have

been admitted during you talk about leakage—there is more the year, we may well accept grate

leakage caused in this way than in any

other. I know it will be said by those fully Dr. Osbort's counsel : Let

who have assumed the responsibility of us beware of discouragement.' And appointing men to these offices who do not the Doctor's plea for yet more efficient meet in Class, that there are other advan. care of our children ought to bring

tages to which you must not shut your forth visible fruit, though possibly

eyes. These are men who by their liber

ality and ability to help us are of very not till after many days.' There is great importance to us. Well, I would another side to the question of the listen to any one who spoke after this and the ex-President manner,

and I would admit to the full all

that he had to say. But then I would look touched upon it gently but firmly.

at the other side, and I would venture to Our gains are not duly proportion- say that the disadvantages that flow from ate to our agencies. Very solemnly such appointments far outweigh any adbould we ask ourselves: Are con

vantages that you can possibly derive from Ersions as numerous with us as they

them. For instance, here is a Circuit

steward ; he occupies the highest position ere with our fathers ? And it is

that a layman can hold in the Circait, and Ply too true that there is wanting yet it is known that he does not meet in t constant, steady, assiduous, suc- Class. The knowledge of that fact does ful working of our ancient discip

more to discredit the Class-meeting than

all that you can say in favour of it will do which,... before all else, would to uplift it. Further, see the effect upon to our prosperity.' Mr. James that man's children. He does not meet 1 ascribed the decrease to “leak

in Class ; his children therefore do not and to the small encouragement

meet in Class ; and the consequence is that
you

lose fruit that ought to be most easily to evangelistic work in some gathered.'

He suggested meetings for both before and after the pub- Mr. Lidgett urges sharpdiscipline in day evening service, and the all such cases; perhaps, however, with 13 working of Mission-rooms an insufficient apprehension of the diffi

decrease;

our large

large chapels. ' culties that attach to it. Nevertheless, nints should not be lost sight

he is a bad soldier who will not bear

ading

discipline, a bad soldier who will not fidently condemn the phraseology keep rule. If our office-bearers, to referred to.' whom Mr. Lidgett's remarks apply, Other topics of the conversations would ponder the serious ill-effects of were—the remarkable revival at their persistent neglect of the Class- Kingswood School; the wondrous sucmeeting, the Prayer-meeting and the cess of some of our District Missionweek-night preaching, they would aries; the number of Cambridgeunderprobably see the wisdom of not for- graduates meeting in Class; the desaking the assembling of themselves sirability of making all our annitogether, as, alas! the manner of versaries' great soul-saving times; ? some is.'

the necessity of personal service and Dr. Pope turned the thought of self-examination, and the advisability the Conference to the duty of cul- of setting forth the exceeding sinfultivating personal piety, of 'perfecting ness of sin, and also its terrible and holiness in the fear of God.' The eternal consequences.

Mr. Harrithirst for holiness that pervades our son testified that Methodism has not Israel is the brightest possible har- lost its hold upon the masses. Mr. binger of more prosperous days. Bowden spoke warningly of the frivoNothing could much better illustrate lities to use the mildest possible the overwhelming importance which term—that are found in too many Methodism attaches to experience of Christian homes. Mr. Arthur pointed the deep things of God than to hear out that culture and University train. an erudite and exact theologian like ing need not damage spirituality or Dr. Pope declare with heartfelt sin- lessen love for Methodism-had not cerity that he could not pause to in certain specified cases ; and the discuss critically theological errors President, with emphatic brevity, exwhile the fact remained that every- horted to the regular observance of where our people are pressing into family worship. Perhaps during the that which they desire above all two conversations on the State of the things—a closer communion with Work of God less intense spiritual God, a more entire severance from emotion was felt than while the Conself, a more absolute conformity to ference of 1878 was similarly enthe will of Christ and reflection of gaged; but never was more food His blessed example.' And, again : furnished for serious, prayerful medi* I have wondered whether it is right tation, and never was displayed more to speak of a "second blessing." But real desire and determination to do, there is a text in which our Saviour in the name of the Lord, practical takes a blind man and partially re- aggressive work-a hopeful augury stores him his sight, and then, holding for the coming year. the man up before us for a little Upon the crowded congregation at while, that we may study his condi- the Ordination Service, and especially tion—which is a great advance upon upon the Probationers assembled to what it was—that we may watch him pledge themselves to Christ for lifein this state of struggle,...He touches service as His Ministers, and to rehim again, and he sees every man

ceive the Church's confirmation of clearly. In the face of that text, and their vows, there rested the Holy in the face of the experience of mul- Ghost. The ex-President's charge titudes of our fathers, in the face of will in due course enrich our pages; the testimonies of multitudes now it is therefore needless to review it. living, and in the face of the deep Every one might expect from Dr. instinct, the hope and desire of my Rigg scholarship, thoroughness, sterown unworthy heart, I will not con- ling thought and sound theology;

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