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occurrence of an election for Members of Parliament, to give. our vote to no candidates, of whose solemn conviction that no further concessions to Rome should be made, we are not perfectly satisfied. On that Resolution we are prepared to act; and whether the candidate be father or brother, or dearest friend-whether he call himself Whig, Tory, Conservative, or Radical— whether he be for free trade, or for so-called protection, we will not make that the first consideration ; but our first question will be this-Will you betray or will you defend the Protestant faith of your fathers ?' I am now addressing some few hundreds of electors. If you mean by your presence here that you are honest-hearted Protestants, and that Protestant truth is dearer to you than the bread which perishesas it must be, if it is dear at all—or anything in this world, then you will go and do likewise ;' you will vote for the man who is opposed to further concessions to Rome. May you be like a plain working man in our own vicinity, some time ago, on the occurrence of a general election. On that occasion I met this pious man incidentally in the street, and he said to me, 'O Sir, what I would have given, to have seen you the day before yesterday. I went to your house, but you were not in. I was so agitated to know how I ought to vote in the sight of God.'. 'I am glad you did not see me,' I replied, for I could have given no opinion in the matter; I act myself as God determines my judgment, and leave others to do the same.' "Well, Sir, I thought, how should I act ? for some men came and said to me, “Why, will you not vote for this candidate? he will give cheap bread to the poor; and you are a poor man;” others said, “Will you not vote for that candidate? he will uphold the Bible against the Romanists.” Now, I was at a great loss; so I got up early, and went to my back room before my wife was moving, and knelt down and prayed that God would influence me: and I no sooner got up, than I went in and said to my wife, I tell thee what, Betty, I will go and vote for so-and-s0,—the man that will uphold the Protestant faith and the Protestant Church; for however fine a thing cheap bread may be, or however well it may be for a poor man to get plenty of the meat which perisheth, what is at all to be compared with that, without which his soul would be lost? and it would profit him nothing “ to gain the whole world, and lose his own soul.”Would to God there were such a spirit in every elector of our Christian country! We should have nothing to fear, if they were to take the matter to a throne of grace, and ask counsel there,--never to vote for the man who would support Antichrist, and to put the Virgin Mary between Christ and the everlasting Father, and represent the God of all grace and consolation as an irritated and avenging God, when He is full of compassion and love the man who would support a Church, that allowed to be put forth by one of
Sorands wife,; andand
her dignitaries, the blasphemous doctrine that we listened to this morning.
« My Christian friends, on the issue of the next election under God, will depend, I believe, the political and national destiny of this country. The next Parliament will either recover for us the lost ground which has been sacrificed, or send us down the inclined plane with fresh rapidity to ruin. And who will make the next Parliament? Electors of England! men do not care for remonstrance. A million and a quarter of names cast under the table as blank paper! If you do not petition, it is said, See, the people do not care about it, we may go on with the measure;' and if you do, it is no good; either way you are neglected. Electors of England ! assert your place in the British Constitution. You cannot do it in St. Stephen's, but you may do it at the hustings. Ask the man who comes forward, as the first question, not • How will you vote with regard to free trade?' although that is well in its place; not. How will you vote with regard to matters, which merely involve the perishing, shining dust?' but How will you vote on matters of eternity-on the bearing of the state upon “ the truth as it is in Jesus," the Protestant faith, which our forefathers sealed with their blood ?"
“ My Christian friends, but when we have done all, what are the efforts of man, whose breath is in his nostrils?' Surely we are taught that 'men of high degree are vanity, and men of low degree are a lie;' surely we are taught, that an arm of flesh can never sustain us, and that the promises and professions of men are not to be trusted in. Oh! then, let us go more humbly and simply to God, that He may maintain his cause, defend his truth, supplant and subvert its enemies, and give its friends the victory. Be it so, that Antichrist again obtain temporal power; be it so, that infidelity make common cause with her, to serve her purposes; be it so, that for a time the saints of God be trampled under her feet; and much as I tremble for our country, and weep for the sorrows that are coming upon her, as did Jeremiah of old, when he wished that his head were waters, and his eyes a fountain of tears, that he might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of his people, yet we may still hope for victory, for Antichrist can never long prevail, and his temporary triumph will be the prelude to utter and eternal destruction.”
We would that every platform throughout the country reechoed the same sentiments. We should rejoice to see a nucleus formed in every Borough town of the United Kingdom, of firm, sound-hearted, Protestants, united to defend the Institutions of their country in Church and State. If only half a-dozen electors, men of piety and principle, would thus unite, they would soon rally a greater body round them, the holy flame would then kindle, and the cause of truth would again be triumphant throughout the land.
Punder her the sorrorthed the
THE TENTH ANNUAL REPORT AND PROCEEDINGS AT THE
ANNUAL MEETING OF THE PROTESTANT ASSOCIATION.
The Annual Meeting of the Protestant Association was held on Wednesday, May 13, in the large room, Exeter Hall; J. P. Plumptre, Esq., M.P., in the chair. Amongst the gentlemen on the platform were Sir Digby Mackworth, Bart. ; Major Penley ; James Bateman, Esq.; Thomas West, Esq.; J. Knipe, Esq.; J. Farrer, Esq.; General Latter; Richard Nugent, Esq.; the Very Rev. the Dean of Ardagh ; Revs. Hugh Stowell, Charles Prest, Dr. Marsh, Edward Dalton, R. J. F. Thomas, Dr. Bennett, Dr. Holloway, W. Shirley, W. Ayerst, A. S. Thelwall, J. Hopkins, - Ainsworth, J. R. Robbins, and R. W. Dibdin. The proceedings having been opened in the usual manner with prayer, by the Rev. Dr. HOLLOWAY,
The CHAIRMAN addressed the Meeting to the following effect :I appear before you, actuated by the same feeling by which I have ever been influenced when advocating the cause ; I wish to express no feeling of antipathy, no feeling of hostility, no feeling of unkindness, towards my Roman Catholic fellow-sinners and fellow-subjects. God forbid ! On the contrary, I trust I can in some measure feel compassion for them, and a desire that they may be partakers of that glorious liberty wherewith Christ makes his people free. (Hear, hear.) It is heartbreaking and painful to see the slavery in which the Roman Catholics are held, wherever the Roman Catholic religion is dominant and prevalent; and, humanly speaking, in those countries where a strict prohibition is given against the circulation of the Scriptures, and where the priests abound in numbers as well as watchfulness, it seems almost hopeless for these poor benighted slaves to obtain deliverance. The contemplation of multitudes of our fellowcreatures, under such circumstances, must go to the heart of every one who can feel for the present and the eternal welfare of his fellowcreatures. (Applause.) But we have not merely to look to Popish countries abroad. The same system is carried on in the sister island, and I am very much afraid it is growing and 'increasing amongst us in our own land. I am afraid that that system has been fearfully and shamefully countenanced and encouraged by members of our own established religion, who, embracing in the first instance notions alien from the true principles of the established religion, have been led on step by step, encouraging and drawing others in their train, and have shown at last the tendency of the principles by which they have been actuated, by identifying themselves with the Church of Rome, (Hear, hear.) If we had not to meet together on such an occasion to utter again and again our protest against Popery itself,—that frightful system, dishonouring the great Head of the true Catholic Church, Christ Jesus, the Head of the Church Universal-dishonouring him and enslaving the intellect and the temporal and spiritual interests of our fellow-subjects who are members of the Roman Catholic religion ; if we had not to do this, we might well associate ourselves together, and meet together with a determination to do what in us lies to protest against those men to whom I have
alluded members of the Oxford school, - call them by what name you may,-Puseyites, Tractarians, or whatever names belong to them; to protest against them, not as members of the true established religion of this land, but as members who in heart, and in too many instances, have proved themselves in truth and in fact to be members of the Church of Rome. (Applause.) You have reason to watch against the progressive inroads not only of Popery itself, but of many who may not as yet have openly embraced the religion of the Church of Rome, but who yet belong to the pure Church of the land, and have not yet honestly come out from that Church, but who still, maintaining their position in her, are spreading their poison, are doing infinite mischief in every way to promote their own ends, those ends being neither more nor less than to favour the religion which we as Protestants detest and abhor. (Applause.) We ought to associate and endeavour to strengthen each other as members of this Association, when we remember what has been going on in our country during the last half century. We know the spirit which has been gaining ground among our rulers, and which appears to be still gaining ground. We know that concession after concession has been made to the Church of Rome. We know the privileges which have been granted, which the wisdom and piety of our forefathers thought fit to withhold from the Church of Rome. Step after step has been made in advance; but still that body remains restless, grasping at something which they think they ought to have, and the possession of which will bring them nearer to the attainment of their own ends. I ask, is it becoming for us, as Christians, as Protestant men, to sit quietly while these things are going on? (Applause.) It is true, we may have difficulties to contend against, but this is not a time to let our hands hang down and our knees be feeble. (Applause.) If our difficulties increase, our faith and hope should rise up in proportion. If God has permitted incursions to be made on the truth, I trust the effect will be to rally all honest men who love the truth in Christ Jesus, and lead them to see the importance of zealously, stedfastly, perseveringly, contending for the faith once delivered to the saints. No one, who knows the Bible, can for a single moment entertain a doubt as to the result of these trials, for the Lord reigneth, and will reign, and his truth must and will prevail. (Loud applause.) The Secretary read the following
REPORT. In entering upon their Tenth Annual Report, your Committee cleem it necessary to review the past and present position of this country with reference to Popery and Protestantism. In doing so, they cannot but feel that whatever cause existed to render the formation of such an association as this desirable in the first instance, events have recently occurred to render its continuance and increased exertions yet more important.
At that period, 1835, Popery was making rapid progress. The confidential advisers of Her Majesty, were pursuing a course of a most dangerous kind. Under the name of expediency, they were sacrificing the Institutions of the country. In the name of Justice to Ireland, they had been 'persuaded to despoil the Protestant Church in Ireland of her revenues, and to suppress ten of her bishoprics.
Still there was a powerful and vigorous opposition, headed by one who, it was supposed, from his early attachment and often avowed principles, would be prepared to withstand the further encroachments of Popery. But events have disappointed all such expectations. The position in which the country is placed has changed, and not in this respect for the better. Those who were the opposition have become the Ministry, and, as the confidential advisers of the Crown, have supported in office, measures more dangerous than those which, when out of office, they resisted.
The Charitable Bequests Act, the Maynooth Endowment Act, the Religious Opinions Bill, are all steps in the wrong direction. They do not give a favourable impression of the firmness and stability of the British Constitution, nor of the principles of public men. Instead of marching forward, in opposition to Antichristian errors, they represent us as retreating before the power of the Papacy
Nor have we been less exposed to the encroachments of the Church of Rome, than we have to the betrayal from amongst ourselves. Rome has successively attacked and despoiled, though not yet de. stroyed, the Church of Ireland. She is now adopting a different course. From attacks upon our Church, Roman Catholics lave proceeded to secure the endowment of their own, and by the Act so hastily passed last session, for the permanent endowment of Maynooth, notwithstanding the Petitions of one million and a quarter of people, has laid a foundation on which may be built an elaborate superstructure, for the endowment and patronage of her entire ecclesiastical system.
PETITIONS.--Your Committee bave closely watched the proceed. ings in Parliament. The number of Petitions last year against the Bill for permanently endowing Maynooth, amounted to more than 10,000; and signatures, to more than 1,250,000. This was chiefly accomplished through the agency of the late Anti-Maynooth Committee, of which many of your Committee were members,—they having deemed it wise that the opposition to so dangerous and unprecedented a measure, should be rendered as wide and general as possible.
Though a hope was at one time entertained that, yielding to the loud and strongly-expressed opinions of so large a body of the people, Government might have withdrawn a Bill alike uncalled for, unpopular, and unconstitutional; those hopes were not realized, and the measure passed by a large majority. Your Committee, however, knowing that the nature of idolatry is not altered by the sanction of Parliament, but still exposes individuals and nations to the wratlı and punishment of the Almighty, have seen but one course open before them, and that has been, to prepare and adopt a Petition for the repeal of the Maynooth Endowment Act of las session. And they cannot but express their gratification that an Hon. Member, to whom the cause of Protestantism is deeply indebted, has in the House of Commons given notice of a Motion for leave to bring in a Bill to