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a protestant king, and protestant ascendency, would be, indeed, a practical anomaly-a moral impossibility.
Βακχά προς αλκήν, θυιας ώς, φόβον βλέπων. Therefore a reformed establishment need not think themselves secure because this Titan foe seems crushed and prostrate on the earth, unless the Government chain him there, like another Typhæus, by the superincumbent weight of physical necessity. To return: O'Connell's “finest peasantry on the face of the earth” love insurrection; and they care little what may be the cause, so that they do but find a straw to fight about. They invariably feel with Sir Lucius O'Trigger, " it is a very pretty quarrel as it is," and they have no wish in the world it should be stanchedsave in blood. Still, to answer their own ends, no people are more expert in getting up a superficial appearance of tranquillity. They have always shown themselves exceedingly obedient to the tactics of their leaders. As is boasted in these days in the House of Commons, so for many months preceding the outbreak of the last rebellion, there was a strange stillness in the political atmosphere, like one of those portentous pauses of nature which precede some dreadful convulsion of the elements. In the rebellion we allude to, there were engaged at least 200,000 of these men, well organized, resolute, and till the word of command was given, “hushed in grim repose."
Lord Edward Fitzgerald, a man of unquestionable military talents, determined courage and unbounded zeal, planned the campaign, and directed the preparations. With revolutionary France the closest connexion existed. Her squadrons, armies, arms were all ready. Three of the former reached the Irish shores, once at Killibeg and twice at Killala. They returned safely to France. Hoche's invasion took place before the organization of the whole was complete. That fleet also, unespied by our winged cruisers, came to anchor in the harbour of Toulon, and not of PortsMOUTH. Can Englishmen at this day, while every great institution of the State is tottering, reflect upon these things without trembling? Since the times we speak of, an awful discovery has been made, which must prove a most important agent in all future warfare, and affect the principal arm of Great Britain,her marine. Had the portentous effects of steam been known in that internal state of Ireland to which we have alluded, nothing human could have prevented the loss of that kingdom and the destruction of the empire. To what end do we refer to these details of past difficulties and dangers, now despised, and perhaps forgotten? To impress upon the minds of thinking men, that what has been once may occur again; and to advise them that we cannot calculate upon another providential deliverance. The well-contrived system of what is called the Irish Rebellion failed (and failed solely) by those mischances to which
all human affairs which require combination are liable. Hoche's invasion was premature. To adopt a metaphor of Napoleon, the pear was not then ripe; and when the French landed at Killala, the
had been shaken from the tree. The arrest of Lord Edward Fitzgerald, and the events which accompanied that arrest, together with the partial excesses of the soldiers, precipitated the acts of rebellion before its preparations were complete. The explosion was tremendous, but happily the mine was sprung too soon.
The leaders who succeeded Fitzgerald, Emmet, Machnevin, Sampson, possessed neither their enterprise nor ability. The great machine of which they had held the key could not work without them. These fortuitous occurrences concurred with the errors and imbecilities of the French directory to preserve Ireland, at the time we speak of, to the British realm. But we cannot reckon upon double sixes at every cast. We should have our wits about us. A blow, fatal and irremediable at the connexion of these islands is aimed through the municipal corporations and the English Protestant Church in Ireland. That connexion, for the sake of Ireland herself, must not be suffered to be broken. The insidious advocates for repeal must not be allowed to go on strengthening themselves, until there will be no dislodging them from their position. Protestant interests and institutions, the outposts of the British throne, must no longer be sacrificed by piecemeal, till the Protestant religion, together with all who profess it, be pushed into the ocean. The union between England and Ireland must (please God) subsist, though England have to spend her last shilling, and shed her last drop of blood for the integrity of the empire.
SOCIETY FOR PROMOTING THE EMPLOYMENT OF ADDITIONAL
CURATES IN POPULOUS PLACES.
In our previous Numbers we sincerely deprecated the employment of lay agents by the Pastoral Aid Society, and their assumption of the episcopal functions in determining the qualifications of candidates. Whilst we feared that the abuse would be overlooked in the otherwise high character and meritorious objects of the society, there was already a power set in motion, which in the end must correct the evil, or at least leave no excuse to the subscribers and patrons of the society for not discerning it, in all its native deformity. In what we have submitted on that subject, we cannot indeed take upon us to say, that we have had the honour to suggest the formation of a rival society, but the truth is, it hath met us on the way, while we were meditating such a consummation according to our own ideas. We are happy beyond expression to find that our views so far coincide with those of the Society for Promoting the Employment of Additional Curates in Populous Places, as laid before the public, that we have no cause in this instance to be in the least scrupulous to promise our humble advocacy of the society, and of the object which it is intended to effect. It has been formed for the purpose of providing additional clergymen for our populous parishes within the several dioceses of England and Wales. The society may depend upon the cooperation and applause of the CHURCH OF ENGLAND QUARTERLY Review. We conceive their rules and regulations to signify our own notions of what is fitting in such a case, as nearly as general arrangements can correspond with particular opinions. We found ourselves obliged, very much against our inclination, to oppose the Pastoral Aid Society, because of the vicious principle we have adverted to. The present and rival institution is not liable to the like reprobation. The object is perfectly similar, but the mechanism is the very reverse ; and we certainly do not intend to fall with the same severity on a scheme where circumstances will not bear us out. In the latter undertaking the fabric would seem to be laid in the rational and solid foundation of Church of England principles, and to be compatible with the jurisdiction of the Establishment. We did most seriously put it to those individuals who had the direction of the Pastoral Aid Society, to consider the wisdom of a timely reform; but they chose to chicane with their situation, rather than be instructed by it. In answer to strong facts and fair reasoning, they produced nothing but vague disclaimers, and justified their adherence to a pernicious abuse, such as that of lay agency, that the nomination of the assistant rested with the incumbent to whom aid is given. But difference of opinion between these parties cannot by any human means be prevented in the long run. It were labour in vain to attempt it. Besides, they never fairly met the point at issue. What was the preventive check upon the subsequent proceedings of their coadjutor? on what principle might the authority of the Church be securely maintained over him? or how, in the course of time, were they to hinder their society being made the nursery of dissent? are we not taught by the history of all ages, that religion (so called) in the hands of half-informed, selfish, and factious men, is a very dangerous instrument? might not that “ill-will to Zion," which generates equivocally “all monstrous, all prodigious things," cuckoo like, adulterously lay eggs in the nest of the Pastoral Aid Society, and leave the Church herself, as it were, to brood over and hatch them, till, like foul and ravenous birds, they come to pollute her with their touch? Of course it could not be expected that the evil would show itself in the infancy of the society. But the germs are in the constitution, which sooner or later must make themselves evident, when probably it were vain to hope to eradicate the distemper. This was what the public strongly felt, an apprehension in which we participated,
and to which we gave free expression in our preceding Numbers. Whilst we were yet meditating on the danger, to our great gratification we were presented with the rules of a new society, and every prospective difficulty was at once cleared before our mental gaze. The question lies within a very narrow compass. The working tools of the Church Pastoral Aid Society are not fitted to the difficult operation they have in hand, because not made of the right material. On the other hand, the instruments of the society under our notice would seem to consist of the best and purest metal, and to be nicely adapted to the important work they are destined to accomplish. In the first place, this institution received the patronage of our late sovereign. He had notified his will to become an annual subscriber of 3001. It may be truly said in such a case, that “ the king's name is a tower of strength, which they upon the adverse faction want." The archbishops of Canterbury and York, and bishop of London, have each put down their names for annual subscriptions of 2001. Secondly,—and in this essential attribute consists the main distinction between the two societies-the assistants or agents must have been already ordained, and so will be qualified to preach the glad tidings of salvation. Their being in orders is a sufficient answer to all our objections, and is a guarantee against those dangers which we unwillingly found ourselves compelled to point out in the machinery of the Pastoral Aid Society. The state of spiritual ignorance in which many districts throughout the country are plunged is awful to contemplate, and would seem to enforce a liberal subscription to compass the objects of this society. We are well aware that it is the duty of the State to put an end to such lamentable destitution; and it has been objected, that government should rather be urged to fulfil its obligations in this particular, than an association, supersede the necessity of its exertions. But an exhibition of public feeling—such an evidence as a liberal subscription will afford of our countrymen being alive to the urgency of the case—the covert censure thereby implied on the government's dereliction of its duty, cannot fail to impress ministers with some sense of the responsibility involved in their high offices, and must tend to accelerate the period when they will take the work into their own hands. " The additional Curates' Fund” has already ascertained an income of 30,0001., and we entertain not a particle of doubt, but that this most efficient mode of improving the condition of the people will receive a support commensurate with its high claims on the public patronage. It is the cause of christian philanthropy, of enlarged benevolence, of enlightened patriotism, of kind and genuine humility. The cause of truth against infidelity and atheism, of knowledge and virtue against ignorance and crime, of christian precept and principle against actual heathenism in the midst of our native land. It would be to libel our fellow-countrymen to question for an instant the promise of such a society. It must succeed; it must flourish; and it can only close its labours by the zeal of government being awakened in the same holy cause, and so superseding its necessity.*
We apprehend that the reading public by this time are cognizant of all that can be offered, pro and con, on the question of church rates. What with pamphlets and speeches, delivered in and out of parliament, the subject is worn thread-bare. We have no wish to make a resumé of the article upon the history and origin of this impost which appeared in our last Number. Since then ministers have been twice defeated (we mean virtually) in their endeavour to coerce the good sense of the people of England. In the first instance the majority was twenty-three; on the next occasion, the opposition gaining an accession of fourteen, and ministers falling short by four, their majority was only five. If the House of Commons had really represented the feelings and opinions of the English nation, the result would have been still more triumphant. As it is, deducting those members who hold office and their accomplices, together with those who are under the direction of O'Connell, neither of which section of the house ought, by rights, to count on such a question, it will be seen that Government (so called) were outvoted on their antichurch rate measure,-a circumstance, by the by, which, in the olden time, must have necessitated their downfail. We have little doubt that ministers felt themselves emboldened to the compassing of this act of sacrilegious spoliation, in the plain face of facts, reason, arithmetic, and all the authority, parts, and eloquence in the kingdom, by the example of the payment of the cess in Ireland having been supplied from the reserved surplus income of that church. But there is a wide difference in the relative circumstances of the two cases. In the Irish vestries, the vast bulk of the parishioners, namely, the Roman Catholics, had no voice; which might be fairly admitted as a valid reason for abolishing church rates in that kingdom; but in England dissenters are not excluded from the vestries; so that the same principle of legislation is not applicable to the two countries. For weeks previous to the discussion a vast number of petitions were presented against the ministerial measure; and it is worthy of notice, as being, we believe, an unexampled thing in this or any other country, that such numerous petitions should
* The Rev. W. J. Rodber will act provisionally as Secretary ; and all communications may be addressed till further notice to “ The Additional Curates' Fund,” No. 4, St. Martin's-place, London.