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church was a large room, and the minister (Mr. Douglas) was placed at the side opposite the street, so that hiş voice reached not only the members who were in front, but any in the street who stopped to listen. At the outside were two forms filled with Chinese women, several having children in their arms. Among them were some awakened souls, seeking the salvation of Jesus. From their secluded habits it shows there is some rich concern when such hearers are among the congregation.
As betimes it has happened among the highland glens, so in this region : souls have been brought to the knowledge of Jesus up among these secluded Chinese valleys; one here, and another there, act as single lights in the few hamlets or small villages of dark idolatry : and all to the glory of Him who passes by the rich and the learned, and oftentimes seeks out His own in quiet places of the egrth.
They showed much Christian affection at parting, asking us to come soon back again, and it pleases the Master still to be adding souls to the number of believers in that region.
MY DEAR YOUNG FRIENDS,—If you want to see Popery in its true colours, you inust look at it where it is at home, not in Protestant England, but in Popish Spain, in priestridden Italy, or in Catholic France. There you see it in its own dress, and can judge of its fashion and influence on the people, and in few ways can you judge of its inAuence better than by taking a glance at the popular pastimes of the common people. As you are not likely. to see these pastimes, which will never, I hope, be per.
mitted to prevail in old England, which is far merrier without them, let me describe some of them to you.
When passing through the famous old town of Bordeaux I took a stroll one evening through its magnificent streets, and took a moonlight glance at its noble river and the fleets of merchant ships which stretched as far as the eye could follow them to the west, and the swarms of small craft which lay to the east of the handsome bridge which spanned it; uniting the long ranges of quays and wharfs with the quiet, rural scenes on the other side.
On coming to a large open place lined with trees, and sparkling with gas lamps, I found the people keeping holiday-multitudes sauntering about purchasing trifling things, or looking on while little tradesmen exposed and vaunted their wares, or mountebanks plied their trade for the public amusement and their own profit. I need not describe many of the amusements, which differed little from those you may see at an English fair, but there was one that astonished me, and compelled me to watch the representation of a strange and sad event.
Behind a platform raised a few feet from the ground, stood a rough looking old woman, directing three interesting little children who stood on the platform or stage, all the four shouting out in different topes, to let all the world know that they were going to perform a tragedy, and inviting all to look and pay liberally for the sight. And what had they chosen for their play? what were these little boys of ten or twelve to represent in living pictures, for the amusement of the crowd and the old woman's profit. Nothing less awful than the betrayal and crucifixion of our Saviour. Oh! it was a sad and soul-sickening spectacle, and yet I could not help watching the movements of the little expert actors. First they represented the Agony in
the garden. One little boy in the dress in which you often see the Saviour painted, assumed a look and attitude of deep distress, while the other two for the disciples, sat down and pretended to sleep, and thus they kept that position till the old woman had turned round the stage, that it might be seen on all sides, shouting out the while, “Behold the tableau of the Agony in the Garden ; friends, be liberal! Throw me some sous. Throw in your money.” Then, at a given signal, they assumed another position. One in the character of Judas came up to give the traitor's kiss. The other, representing Jesus, was bound and led off for trial. Then they represented the crowning with thorns, and the purple robe—the scourging—the leading away to Calvary, &c. It was enough to make one weep to see a poor little boy thus mimicing the Redeemer suffering. He got a large cross on his shoulders, and staggered with it across the stage, appearing to faint two or three times, and falling down under the load ; then his little companions stripped him of his outer garments, and pretended to nail him to the cross. They raised it with difficulty, and fixed it upright in a socket, while one stood by like the Apostle John, and the other knelt, and weeping, kissed the feet of the crucified, as if he had been the Mother of Jesus, or Mary Magdalene. After that they offered vinegar, and seemed to pierce the side, and mounting a little ladder, they began to take down the boy, who hung his head and pretended to be dead. I could stand no longer, and as I came away, I heard the old woman calling out, “Behold the descent from the cross. Friends, be liberal, throw in your money. Give me some sous."
As I walked to my hotel, I said to myself, “ Thanks be to God, we have no such sights in England, and it will be
MY TIMES ARE IN THY HAND.
long before England will submit to have such acting as that, and it will be longer still before Englishmen will take pleasure in such sights as these. May God preserve our land from Popish preaching and from Popish pastimes."
My dear young friends, pray for Popish lands, especially for those little children who are trained to mimic a Saviour's agony. And you may expect to hear again from
AN OLD FRIEND. June 20th, 1857.
MY TIMES ARE IN THY HAND.
FATHER, I know that all my life
Is portion'd out for me,
I do not fear to see ;
Intent on pleasing Thee.
I ask Thee for a thoughtful love,
Through constant watching wise,
And to wipe the weeping eyes ;
To soothe and sympathise.
I would not have the restless will
That hurries to and fro,
Or secret thing to know ;
And guided where I go.
MY TIMES ARE IN THY HAND.
Wherever in the world I am,
In whatsoe'er estate,
To keep and cultivate ;
For the Lord, on whom I wait.
To none that ask denied,
While keeping at Thy side,
If Thou be glorified.
In my cup of blessing be,
With grateful love to Thee-
Than to please Thee PERFECTLY.
Which call for patient care ; There is a cross in every lot,
Aud an earnest need for prayer ;
Is happy anywhere.
There are no bonds for me ;
That makes Thy children “ free;'