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of 1880, has increased to thirty-seven. A small organ was purchased last year from one of the other churches in the town and fixed in the chapel, at the cost of £30. The organ was a great bargain, and answers the purposes of the congregation well. For some time the Mortgagee, Mr. M. Tipper, held out the promise to the Kidderminster friends of a gift of £20, if they would raise $40, and so
This result shows how much can be done by a few people in a very little time when all are determined to do their best. A few earnest men and women, who desire no special mention made of their names, gave life to this movement. They have their reward in the success which bas crowned their efforts.
What we now want, Mr. Editor, in this circuit is a baptism of holy influence and heavenly blessing on all the Churches. Much has occurred, during our labours in the circuit, of an encouraging nature. The prospect of substantial and permanent improvement is brighter than it has been for many years, and the day, I would fondly hope, not very distant when the circuit will be strong and selfsustaining.-Yours sincerely,
Three months ago a committee was formed to get up a sale of work, to be held at Christmas, so as to meet the kind offer of the Mortgagee. The subject was taken up with spirit, and prosecuted so vigorously as to bring the effort to a most satisfactory issue. The sale was held on Tuesday, 26th of December, and following day. J. Brinton, Esq., M.P. for Kidderminster, opened the sale, making at the time some very encouraging observa. tions on the work we are doing as a Connexion in the country, also in the town of Kidderminster; following up
the effort then being made. The fol. lowing shows what has been raised :
By Mortgagee, £20; J. Brinton, Esq., M.P., £10; G. Holdsworth, Esq., £3 38.; W. Green, Esq., £1; T. Banks, Esq., 10s.; by Collecting Books, £8 3s. 3d.; by Children's Cards, £3 ls. 4 d.; by Entrance Fees, £4 4s. 7d.; Mrs. Hodgkiss and Miss Evan's Stall, £5 13s. 5d.; Mrs. Hudson and Mrs. Bowen's Stall, £5 138.; Mrs. Tipler's Stall, £2 118. 11d.; Hardware Stall, £3 168. 5d. ; Refreshment Stall, £2 ls. 8fd.; Fruit Stall, $1 68.20.; Commission Stall, 12s. 6d.; Engine Room, 88. 7.; Bee Hive, 8s. 11d. ; Weighing Machine, 58. 9d. ; Fairy Land, 5s. 3d.; Donations by Friends not desiring their names to be mentioned, £15 12s. 6d. ; total, £88 178. 64d. Disbursements thus :To Mortgagee, in reduction of debt, £60; Expenses, £11 58. 54d.; to Current Account, £17 12s. 1d.; total, £88 178. 6d.
CIRCUIT. RED HALL SUNDAY-SCHOOL CENTENARY
BAZAAR. The celebration of the centenary of the Red Hall Sunday-school has been brought to a pleasant and successful close by a bazaar, which was held in the Mechanics' Institution, Ashtonunder-Lyne, on November 16, 1882, and following days.
Early in 1882 it was felt by the teachers and friends of the school, that as that year was the centenary of the school's history, it was fitting that there should be some worthy celebration of so interesting an event. The ordinary anniversary sermons were scarcely sufficient, and so, after much deliberation, it was decided that perhaps the best plan that could be adopted was to get up a “Centen. ary Fund,” by means of special religious services and a bazaar, the object of which should be to meet the cost of painting and decorating the chapel premises, to pay off all debts on the chapel trust estate, and to provide for any other improvement
that might be made in the interest of church and school. Accordingly, in July and August of last year, special religious services were held. Religiously the services were exceedingly pleasant and profitable, and financially they were fairly successful, the collections amounting to the sum of £54, which, though a little less than was expected, was very gratifying. After these services the friends settled down to the arduous work of preparing for the bazaar, which was to complete the effort so favourably begun. The time was short, for though the bazaar was ultimately postponed, it was then intended to hold it in October; so sewing meetings and bazaar com. mittee meetings became the order of the day. Young and old, members of the Church and teachers of the school, friends in different parts of the circuit, worked as hard as strength and opportunity would allow; though perhaps, as the case is generally with bazaar workers, a few had more than their share, both of care and work. In addition to our own people, other friends of the school, both Churchmen and Dissenters, very kindly sympathised with the movement, and did something to help it forward to a successful issue. The result was that, on the day of opening, we were all alike surprised and pleased at the appearance of the several stalls, laden as they were with an unexpectedly large assortment of useful and fancy goods, calculated to suit both the tastes and purses of rich and poor.
The bazaar was held in the large room of the Mechanics' Institution, which was tastefully decorated and fitted up with the necessary stalls by Messrs. Tyrer & Co., of Manchester. The opening ceremony was character. ised by the cheerfulness and brightness which seem ever to spring from well-grounded hopes and expectations of success.
A large number of the friends assembled; several of the lead. ing ministers of the district, including the Revs. J. Medicraft, J. Rider, T.
D. Crothers, J. Gibson, W. J. Towns. end; together with the Revs. Thos. Green, M. A. J. Hutchison, Congregational ministers; Eli Andrew, Esq., ex-Mayor of the town ; Messrs. J. Waterhouse, J. Farron, J. Talent, E. Heathcote,J.Saxon, and W.D. Bridge, were present, and many others, whom it would be impossible to mention here. The member for the borough, Hugh Mason, Esq., M.P., had kindly consented to open the bazaar, but the serious illness which had prostrated him for some time previous to the day of opening, prevented bim from being present. His place, however, was taken by our friend, Richard Hankinson, Esq., J.P., of Manchester, who, after the usual devotional exercises, offered, in a manner which is character. istic of him, a few remarks of encouragement to the workers, and urged the friends to make the bazaar a success by clearing the stalls of their burdens.
Altogether the opening ceremony was a very pleasant one, and seemed to give tone to the whole after proceedings. The sales, throughout the four days the bazaar was open, were quite in proportion to the magnitude of the effort. The effort was not a great one, that is, in comparison with the efforts generally made in the Ashton Circuit, though it was by far the largest effort ever attempted by the Red Hall friends. We wished, if possible, to get £400, some expressed a desire to get £500, but £400 was the sum really aimed at ; and we succeeded, by subscriptions, including a cheque for £25 from Mr. Mason, and sales, in getting £365 158. 104d., so that, adding to this sum the £54 collected at the school sermons, the gross amount raised for the Centenary Fund was £439 158. 101d. In view of this, we think we are justified in pronouncing the centenary celebration of the Red Hall school one of the most successful efforts ever made in the circuit of which it is part. The greatest possible praise is due to the ladies who presided at the various stalls for the kindness
and patience they evinced, and the sacrifices of time and convenience they must have made in the discharge of their duties. To them and to everyone else who in any way contributed to the success of the entire movement, the sincere thanks of the Bazaar Committee are respectfully tendered.
As the ultimate result of this centenary celebration, Red Hall Church and school are now in the felicitous and somewhat unique position of being absolutely free from all pecuniary encumbrances. The sum raised has been sufficient to pay off every penny of debt, to paint and decorate the chapel, and to leave a balance in hand of £90. This balance has been handed over to the treasurers of the ladies' sewing meeting, the society and the trustees, to be used by them for the benefit of their respective societies. The friends rejoice in the happy posi. tion they occupy to-day. None of them more fully, however, than some of the veterans of the past history of the school, would have rejoiced had they been spared to see it. We know no how much of the present may be the fruit of their zeal and devotion, and in this hour of material prosperity they should not be forgotten.
gular houses, situated on the rising, ground between Ripon and the Yorkshire Dales, and the signboard opposite my garden gate informs the passer-by that it is seven miles distant from this city. The neighbourhood is charmingly varied with hills and hollows, woods and streams; nor is it without its weird legends of ghostly contacts and apparitions, with which the name of one of our ex-presidents is very closely associated. This, however, by the way.
Sunday, January 21, was the day fixed upon for commencing the work, for which the people of God had been earnestly praying weeks beforehand. Every inhabited house in the village, not excepting public-houses, and to each family, a small gospel-book and an invitation to the services had been given; nothing that we could think of to do being omitted to secure good congregations.
The first day's services proved very encouraging-large audiences, attentive hearers, and in the evening many anxious ones, of whom four found the Saviour; two, husband and wife, having long been hearers of the Word and helpers in the Church, but not until that night wholly given up to the service of Christ. May the good Lord bless and keep them !
On Monday and Tuesday evenings, and, indeed, through the week and on to the close of the fortnight's mission, we rejoiced in seeing similar signs of the Holy Spirit's presence and power, and, as usual in such efforts, God's own children have been wonderfully refreshed and strengthened.
There is yet another sign of vigorous life amongst our people at Kirkby I ought to mention. Not quite two years ago our new chapel was opened (referred to in the Minutes of Conference, 1881). A new school has now been determined upon, plans drawn, tenders accepted, and the work begun, and a very confident hope is expressed that in a few months I shall have to report to you, sir, or to Dr. Ward,
DEAR DR. COOKE,—
The good work in Ripon, of which I sent you some report a month or two ago, has been followed by a similar development of spiritual fervour and successful work at Kirkby Malzeard. I have known in other circuits certain country socie. ties which, though removed at some distance from the central society, and because of their comparative isolation, necessarily deprived of much ministerial oversight, yet maintain an ardent spiritual life that is very refreshing, and a zeal for souls that is very commendable.
Our cause at Kirkby is one of these. The village is one long street of irre
that the school has been completed | I observe this book contains a judiand opened, free from debt-a very cious selection from the American desirable consummation !
books, and also what I call the cream J. LEE Fox. of Wesley's hymns, most fitted for
special services. You have done the BIRMINGHAM.
right thing, Mr. Editor, in publishing UNETT-STREET.
the book for a penny, for writing as I On Sunday evening, January 7th, in am among the working classes in a connection with the Annual Covenant Midland district, I feel satisfied that Service and Lord's Supper, forty-one a more expensive book would not have persons who had joined the Church 80 very extensive circulation as this during the year were duly recognised one deserves. Perhaps, however, you and welcomed into Church fellowship have a more costly edition that will by Mr. G. Gratton. A copy of the meet the tastes and means of those rules of our community was given to of our friends who can afford it. By each member, also a card containing the way, I should like to ask if there suitable “Counsels to New Members.” are any copies of the music to be The Church is growing in numbers obtained, and at what cost? I am par. and strength. The Rev. G. Hallett ticularly anxious about this, because also took part in the service.
I see some of the names of old tunes
which used to be sung when I was MY DEAR MR. EDITOR,—I have to young, but which in these days of express my thanks to somebody, pro questionable progress are pushed out bably to yourself, for sending me a of use. We have had two parcels of specimen copy of the new “Hymns these hymns since they came out, and and Songs for Mission Services," our people are highly pleased with which are published by our Book them. I cannot expect you to reply room. I may say that for years past
to me direct, as I feel sure you have I have felt the need of such a col- | enough to do without that. A line or lection of hymns for the use of our
two in the large magazine will answer people in prayer-meetings and other the purpose of-Yours sincerely, such occasions.
A Son OF NEW CONNEXION.
FAITH, THE EVIDENCE OF THINGS Not SEEN.-A strong faith has the power to make a virtual and present reality of those things which are in fact future. Be it so, that as yet we have not heaven, nor the visible presence of Christ, nor the glory and blessedness of the future world. But in the Bible we have the promise of them ; we have the title-deed, and the bond, most solemnly made out and delivered to us. All these things are, therefore, ours, and, in the exercise of faith, a virtual and present reality. A man reckons his notes, bonds, and bills, which are the certificates and confirmations of absent possessions, as so much property. He counts himself as truly and really owning the property, in amount and kind, which his papers, his notes and bonds, represent. How much more, then, should we have faith in our title-deeds, in our bonds, and deeds, which are written in the blood of the Son of God, are confirmed by the oath of the Father, and are witnessed by the Holy Ghost!
OF MY VISIT TO AUSTRALIA, PRESENTED TO OUR MISSIONARY COMMITTEE, AND PUBLISHED AT ITS REQUEST.
By C. D. WARD, D.D. With deep gratitude I record the fact of my safe return to our little island home, from the wonderful land of my late visit ; a land twenty-six times larger than Great Britain, and only one-fifth smaller than the whole of Europe.
After fifty-four days and nights upon the sea, I landed in Victoria op October 30, was met and welcomed by Mr. Masterman and six or seven friends from Richmond, and after a day or two's rest in Melbourne, I became the guest of Mr. Masterman, and began my assigned work. It related
1.-TO OUR MISSION PROPERTY.
(A.)- MELBOURNE. This consists now of one church,* and one Sunday-school behind it. The site is in Church-street, in the city of Richmond, three miles from the centre of Melbourne. It is 63 feet wide and 105 feet long. Its present value is about £6 10s. per foot frontage, or £400 for the block. Tho church is a good erection, mainly of red brick, and the interior especially is very attractive and comfortable ; it will seat 450 people. The school, erected in the rear, is in all respects suitable; the large assembly-room forming the second story, with class-rooms below. The estate is freehold, and is settled on our own Model Deed. The land was not given by Government, but bought for £180 by our people. It was our third interest in Victoria. The first and second were on sites granted by the Colonial Government at West and East Melbourne respectively, and whatever. limitations might be attached to the original grants, they were all swept away by a subsequent Act, which made the gifts, and all such gifts, abso-late and unrestricted, but declares that, for the future, no land shall ever be given to any denomination whatever for ecclesiastical uses. Subsequently
* I use the word "church” as being in universal use in Australia. April, 1889.