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who lately had the temerity to distrain upon some tenants who would neither pay rents nor give up possession of the land. The towns and villages are tilled with strangers—idle-looking ruffians, who lounge about all day, do no work, and yet, by some mysterious means, have no appearance of lacking either food or raiment. The military and police are completely foot sore with the weight of duty imposed upon them.*
To the Editor of the Protestant Magazine.
Sir,—I beg leave to subjoin a sketch or outline of petitions to the Legislature or Government on questions of the highest importance in the present critical situation of the British empire :—
1 st. Petition against Romish Bishoprics in England.
"That your petitioners have heard, with great alarm and concern, that it is in contemplation to establish Romish bishoprics in England, and that too, as there is too much reason to fear, with the concurrence of Her Majesty's responsible advisers.
"That yonr petitioners feel it to be their duty to protest most solemnly against such a proceeding, which, by encouraging and setting up again a false and idolatrous religion, from which our fathers had been so mercifully delivered, would bring down the judgments of Almighty God upon the land.
"That your petitioners feel themselves in duty bound further to protest against such a measure, as being an invasion of the rights of our Sovereign Queen Victoria, who by the law of the land is the supreme temporal head of the Established Church of these realms.
"That your petitioners also consider such establishment of Romish bishoprics to be a daring attack upon the religion and liberties of a free people, an attempt to subvert the Christian principles of our constitution, and a violation of that Article of our Church which maintains that the Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this realm of England.
"Your petitioners, therefore, earnestly entreat your Honourable House that no such jurisdiction may in any degree or manner whatsoever be suffered to be exercised in England by the Papal power. "And your petitioners will ever pray," &c., &c., &c.
Id. Petition against Romish Schools in England. "That since the State has provided a system of education for all classes of Her Majesty's subjects, without exception, based upon the Holy Scriptures, there can be no just plea for departing from
* We might add to this list several murders, and murderous attacks, which hate since been perpetrated. We do not say that Popery is the sole and entire cause of all these; but we do ask, were there no Popery in Ireland, and no dark system of auricular confession, and "priestly absolution," if the land would so oftentimes be stained with the blood of her peaceful citizens ?—Ed. Prot. Mao.
this principle in order to favour and assist the false and idolatrous Church of Rome.
"That your petitioners firmly believe that any grants of public money to Romish schools would be extremely prejudicial to the interests of Christianity, and totally repugnant to the Christian principles of the British Constitution; and, therefore, your petitioners earnestly entreat your Honourable House not to allow or sanction them.
"And your petitioners will ever pray,'' &c, &c, &c.
3d. Petition against Diplomatic Relations with Rome.
"That your petitioners have observed, with deep concern and alarm, a disposition on the part of Her Majesty's Government to open diplomatic relations with the Court and See of Rome.
"They, therefore, beg leave humbly to represent to your Honourable House, that since all communion with that See is expressly prohibited by the law of the land, as enacted at the settlement of our Protestant Constitution, and as your petitioners conceive that any step of this kind would be sinful and impolitic, dangerous to the interests of our holy religion, to the rights of the Crown, and to the peace and safety of the empire;
"They therefore implore your Honourable House not to sanction or permit any intercourse or communion whatever with the Court and See of Rome.
"And your petitioners will ever pray," &c, &c, &c.
ADMIRAL LORD EXMOUTH ON THE STATE OF IRELAND. To the Editor of the Protestant Magazine.
Sir,—In the "Life of Admiral Viscount Exmouth," by Edward Osier, Esq., published in 1835, your readers would find (chap, v., p. 130) some most suitable and admirable remarks upon the state of Ireland, and the utter inutility of concession to the Church of Rome. Lord Exmouth was remarkable for a sound penetrating judgment, plain English common sense; and that common sense enhanced and improved by a very general acquaintance with men and countries of all climes, and of various forms of political government. The opinion, therefore, of such a man, is by no means to be contemned. It was Lord Exmouth's very decided opinion that the Emancipation (so called) of the Roman Catholics, and the admission of any of their number into the British House of Commons, would never satisfy Ireland, or procure quiet and safety in that unhappy country. "Ascendancy," this great man said, "is their object. You may postpone, and by loss of character parry the evil for a short space, but not long, depend upon it. You and I may not see it, but our children will, and be obliged to meet the struggle man to man, which we may now shirk. By God alone can we be saved from such consequences; may he shed his power and grace upon us as a nation!" Was not this quotation almost prophetic, and do we not live to witness its proof and truthfulness? "Securities" were named, which would accompany the proposed concessions. "Securities!" exclaimed Lord Exmouth, "it is all nonsense; I never yet could see them, and I never shall." This was said ere the nineteenth century commenced: its demonstration in 1847 is as clear as the unclouded sun. Our refuge must be in God, and in the power and grace which Lord Exmouth besought for his country and his times, and conjointly with this, wo must still protest against concessions to the Romish system. Wishing you much success in your labours,
I remain most truly yours,
A REVIEW OF MARTIN LUTHER'S VIEWS COMPARED WITH THE ROMANISTS', ON CLOISTER VOWS, CELIBACY, POVERTY AND OBEDIENCE TO THE RULE OF THEIR ORDER, AND DISPENSATIONS.
ARRANGED BY REV. C. SMYTH, B.A., OXON., FROM HIS "GERMAN TREATISES,"
In refutation of the dry and fanatical praises of the claustral life, the Reformer gives a short account of St. Anthony, the Thebaic hermit, and his conference with a poor shoemaker who lived at Alexandria. St. Anthony once upon a time wished to ascertain who was to be his companion in sharing with him a happy eternity. This hermit had conceived excessive satisfaction with himself, in consequence of his life spent in solitude, privation, and prayer. It was intimated to Anthony in a dream, that there lived a poor tradesman destined to be his partner in future bliss, whom he would find at Alexandria; the saint desired an immediate interview with this individual, and, of course, expected to find him possessed of the most exalted acquirements in the ascetic life. St. Anthony found him working at his trade to support his wife and family, and thus accosted him:—" I am sure, my friend, that you lead a most spiritual life; tell me then, I implore you, what you do, and what you eat, what you drink, how and how often you pray, how you spend the whole night,—is it not in vigils and orisons?" "No, indeed," said the mechanic, "but every morning and evening I thank the Almighty for his gracious protection,—for all his daily care and tenderness. I implore him to forgive me all my sins for Jesus Christ's sake. After that I beseech him most humbly to govern me with his Holy Spirit, and to deliver me from all temptation. And when I have ended my prayers, I begin to work upon my leather, to earn a maintenance for myself and family. This is all that I do, and I watch against committing aught that may wound my conscience." No sooner had the saintly Anthony heard this account, than his wonder was only equalled by his conviction, that his self-invented austerities and corporeal chastisements were no real service done to God; and that the Christian world should never embrace his past practices. And Luther properly remarks, that this grace to see his errors, and to confess them, and to warn others against their adoption, was not vouchsafed to St. Anthony alone, or for his own happiness and security; but that it was intended to prore a warning to all posterity, and to persuade the Church of Christ never to seek and expect eternal life from self-righteous rules and inventions, but rather to trust entirely to the mercy of the Almighty, and to the grace of Jesus Christ for ever and ever!
But this was not a sufficient foundation for St. Hilarion. St. Jerome informs us that Hilarion tasted no bread for forty years, and drank nothing but water till his seventieth year. All this abstinence appeared marvellous and most meritorious in the eyes of the multitude, whilst Luther most strongly disapproves of such fanciful holiness, which found countenance in the legends and lives of the saints, and he contrasts with these pretensions the sanctity of Christ and Paul. He asks why we do not follow the latter? Why we do not adopt their rule of life? Because we may be quite sure, that if we follow the example of Christ and obey his rules, we shall please the Father of Mercies far more than Carthusian friars, though they never eat meat once after their profession. And why do they hold to abstinence? Ah, a holy man has given such a rule! But is this a sufficient answer? "Let them boast of their own marvellous works, and laugh at ours," says Luther, "and vaunt with full mouths of distant pilgrimages and adventures like saint-errants, what does it all amount to, when compared with the real holiness of an Abraham, and the Baptist's preaching repentance? And who are their authorities, and what are Francis and Dominic when placed beside the Patriarchs?"
( To be continued.')
THE ADDRESS OF THE REV.
Formerly a Romish Priest, Superior of a
Which he read at Cheltenham, as well as elsewhere; and which was delivered with much emphasis and feeling, was as follows:—
Beak Bkethren,—I come before you in the name of God, of his dear Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom be honour and glory and power, for ever and ever. Amen. You have already heard of me, and how the Lord has shown mercy to me. But a few years ago I was immersed in darkness, and blinded in mind^a few years ago I worshipped the wafer as God, and believed myself able to offer an expiatory sacrifice for the sins of the living and of the dead, as a propitiation for the people before God. Such is the belief, such is the idea of a priest of the Church of Home. And not only was this my unhappy state, but it was also my
business and occupation, to teach these false doctrines to others. I not only believed in Popery myself, but I have been the means of making others live in that idolatrous communion. But the Lord has opened my eyes, and sent the heavenly light of truth into my heart; and this light I am bound to spread amongst my brethren, to show them the danger in which they are living.
Shall I tell you how the Lord enlightened my own soul? It was reading and studying the holy Scriptures, and the comparing them with the doctrines of Home. The first doubt that led me to investigate the most absurd dogma of Transubstantiation was, in fact, the first ray of light that flashed across my darkened mind, and showed me the crooked and dangerous path in which I was standing. I did not pause in my investigation, but followed it on, and, in doing so, I merely yielded to the impulses of that Divine grace which wrought my conversion. I can say with St. Paul, that " I have not received the Gospel from men, but from
God." Now this Gospel must not be hidden. The light of God must not be put under a bushel, but on a candlestick,—I am a debtor to my brethren of that mercy which God has shown me. I must proclaim the Gospel to them. I must preach to them Christ Jesus and him crucified. I am an Italian—a Roman—and there where I have taught error, there must I carry the truth. You know, however, that the truth of the Gospel cannot be preached in Rome, nor spoken, nor written; and therefore have I left my country for a free land where I may speak and write the truth, none making me afraid.
Malta is the spot I have chosen for the evangelization of Italy. Its position and constant intercourse with other lands, render it a great point for operations. From thence we can introduce into Italy, Bibles, tracts, and all that we need. Italians arrive in Malta every day. The island itself is Italian in language, manners, and, above all, in religion. It is, therefore, in every respect, a good station For our Mission; but from thence the work must be carried round the Mediterranean,—wherever the Italian language is spoken and intercourse with Italy exists. The island of Corsica is in the same position as Malta, as far as language and vicinity to Italy is concerned. In Switzerland too, we have the Cantons of the Grisons and of the Ticino—-where Italian is spoken under free Governments. All these are points of interest to our Mission, and, with the help of God, we propose to occupy them all; and, great as the undertaking is, if we commence it in the name of the Lord, and follow on in his strength, we shall succeed.
But, I am asked, why dwell so much on Italy? Are there not other lands that need the Gospel? I answer, Yes, and willingly would we see it preached throughout the world; but Italy is the field to which we Italians are called, and for Italy we must labour. And not only because we are Italians, but because we believe that while no land needs the Gospel more than Italy, her conversion would have a marked and startling interest for all Christendom,
and would be attended by results of the greatest magnitude.
The religious condition of Italy is more deplorable than that of any Heathen land, India or China. In Heathen lands the poor idolaters worship statues and images of their pretended deities. In Rome they worship statues and images of saints, who are to the Papists so many deities. Now, amongst Heathen idolaters, no one believes that the statue or the picture is an actual God, but merely a symbol or representation,— the Papist believes that a piece of bread is God—they worship it as God, and pray to it as God. In no part of the world does a religion exist which teaches that a man is infallible, as Rome does the Pope; nor that requires its followers to open out every secret weakness of their souls to a fellow-man deputed to hear the confession, but this is done in Rome; and imprisonment awaits the man who does not comply at least once in the year. Am I not, therefore, right in saying that the religion of Rome is worse than that of many Heathen lands?
But some one will say to me, that certainly there are Christians in Rome? I reply, that faith in Christ, and the pure doctrine revealed by him, is that alone which makes a man a Christian; and that this pure doc.trine Rome has marred and mutilated in every single point, by a practice and doctrine directly opposed to the teaching of holy Scripture. Therefore do they forbid the people to read the Bible, and therefore do they cry out against Protestants for printing it in the vulgar tongue, and giving it to read to whomsoever will freely. You know as well as I do that Popery is not Christianity; but a political system, opposed to the most holy religion of Jesus Christ. The Papists of Italy, therefore, are not, and ought not to be called Christians, but rather, enemies and opposers of Christianity. But, thanks be to God, all in Italy are not Papists; no! nor all in Rome itself. I can assure you, that there is a religious awakening in Italy at the present moment, amongst all classes —beginning with the clergy; they already see the falsehood of their