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Positivists and Agnostics. Two of the shalt not see them all ; and curse me best known sat immediately under the pul- them from thence.'” A few pages furpit. Stanley himself might have said ther on, another passage in the same smooth things to them ; at least, he would pamphlet is thus described : “We have a have endeavored to find some common long string of concordance-gathered texts ground ; but Bishop Magee had no ten- commanding Christians to give freely, derness in this direction. His sermon was to be ready to give and glad to distribas uncompromising a manifesto of mingled ute,' and so on ; which, with many referinvective and sarcasm as ever had been ences to the great success of our voluntary heard within the walls of the Abbey. societies are urged as overwhelming proof The impugners of the Pentateuch were of the scriptural inconsistency of those smitten hip and thigh ; but it may be who, with such texts in their Bibles, vendoubted whether the effect went beyond ture to defend an Establishment. As if, intense irritation in those who felt them- forsooth, any one denied that voluntary selves attacked. The Bishop bad, no effort was a Christian duty, as if we did doubt, anticipated the opportunity, and not quote and enforce these texts in every he used it with a vengeance. His sermon charity sermon that we preach.” Again, lasted just an hour, but the Guardian, the term voluntary system is applied, he while printing the other two sermons ver says, to chapels with pew rents. “The batim, gave the Bishop some twenty lines minister on this system first buys or hires only, called it “ eloquent,” and merely a chapel, duly provided with comfortable quoted the eulogium on Stanley,
accommodation, pewed, cushioned, lightAs uniformly consistent was another ed, heated, and beadled ; and he proconservative line on which the Bishop ceeds to let out this accommodation, and steadily moved. During his tenure of his own ministry, and the ordinances of the Rectory of Enniskillen,* he published the Gospel with it, to those who can a pamphlet, which in later editions grew afford to pay for them. Terms cash. If into a little volume, in favor of Church this be voluntaryism, it certainly is not Establishment. Like everything which the voluntaryism of the New Testament, he wrote, it is racy reading. For exam- to which our opponents are so fond of apple, after urging that the • voluntary sys- pealing. The primitive Church, we are tem” so called is viewed by its advocates told, had no tithes and no church rates. in an ideal state which never has been or Had it any pew rents? Do we read that can be realized, while the same controver- Paul was appointed by the elders to a sialists magnify and distort the evils in the fashionable church at Ephesus, or that Establishment, he applies his tests to a James possessed an eligible proprietary pamphlet of Mr. Miall's, says that this is chapel at Jerusalem ? Does the pew-rent so conspicuously unfair that Mr. Miall is system provide for the preaching of the obliged to shift his ground half way Gospel to the poor ?" He taunts his opthrough, and to change his standpoint alto- ponents with having their minister at their gether, and then compares him to Balak. mercy and keeping him so.
“They "Some men love to choose their standing treat him like a wild beast who is kept point for the survey of any system to humble by being kept poor. They pray which they are opposed, as Balak advised for a blessing upon his basket and his Balaam to choose his long ago : 'Come, store, while they take care that his basket I pray thee, with me unto another place, shall be empty and his store nothingness from whence thou mayest see them : thou itself.” It had been argued that you shalt see but the utmost part of them, and secure more spirituality by means of the
poverty of your ministers. “You do * The following are the chief dates in his isters from a lower class of men. . ::
not; you only obtain your supply of minlife :-Born December 17, 1821 ; Ordained, 1844; C. of St. Thomas's, Dublin, 1844. Your only difference will be that you will 1846 ; St. Saviour's, Bath, 1847-1850 ; Min. have ignorant and ill-bred worldliness. of Octagon Chapel, Bath, '1851-1856 ; Inc, of ... Some men would fain treat their Quebec Chapel, 1856-1864 ; R. of Enniskillen, ministers as the Brazilian ladies treat the 1860-1864 ; Dean of Cork, 1864-1868 ; Dean fireflies, which they impale upon pins and of Chapel Royal, Dublin, 1866–1869 ; Bishop of Peterborough, 1868-1891 ; Archbishop of fasten to their dresses, that the struggles York, 1891 ; died May 5, 1891.
and flutterings of the dying insect may
give out sparks of light for their adorn- Popery is nothing if preceded by plunder ment. . . . I once heard of an ill-paid of the Protestaut Episcopacy. Putting minister who went to his deacon to solicit two sins together, they make one good an increase of salary. "Salary !' said action. Throughout its provisions this the deacon, 'I thought you worked for Bill is characterized by a hard and nigsouls?' So I do,' replied the poor gardly spirit. I am surprised by the inman, “but I cannot eat souls ; and if I justice and impolicy of the measure, but could, it would take a good many souls I am still more astonished at its intense of your size to make a dish!'”
shabbiness. It is a small and pitiful Bill. I cannot give more of these quotations, It is not worthy of a great nation. This but have taken so many because they make great nation, in its act of magnanimity and up a good specimen of Magee's early ut- penitence, has done the talking, but has terances on this subject. His great effort put the sackcloth and ashes on the Irish came in his memorable speech in the Church, and made the fasting be perHouse of Lords on the Irish Church Dis- formed by the poor vergers and organestablishment Bill on the 15th of June, ists." 1869, a speech still talked of with enthu The other passage is from his perorasiasm by those who heard it, and of which tion. Menaces had been uttered against the late Lord Derby, then within a year the House of Lords should the Bill be of his end, said that it surpassed in elo- thrown out by them. The Bishop's reply quence any that he had heard in that is the following :—“My lords, as far as House. He had been selected for the see menaces go, I do not think that it is neces. of Peterborough by Disraeli, who was de- sary that I should say one word by way of lighted with his sermon on the meeting inducing your lordships—even if I could of the Church Congress at Dublin, when hope to induce you to do anything by Mr. Gladstone had declared for the Dis- words of mine—to resist these menaces. establishment of the Irish Church. The I believe that not merely the spirit of elections had not yet come off, Disraeli your lordships, but your lordships high was still Premier, and he took the oppor- sense of the duty you owe to the country, tunity of making Magee an English bish- would lead you to resist any such intolerop. The choice was abundantly approved ant and overbearing menaces as those when he stood up next year in the House which have been uttered toward you. I of Lords on behalf of the doomed Church. believe that if any one of your lordships It is curious in reading that great speech were capable of yielding to those mento note that much of it, both as to argu- aces, you would be possessed of sufficient ments and incisive illustrations, is taken intelligence to know how utterly useless from the early work from which I have any such humiliation would be in the way quoted, but the style is more finished, of prolonging your lordships' existence as and each argument is driven home. There an institution, because it would be exactly are two passages only which space will the case of those who for the sake of preallow me to quote. The first has refer- serving life lose all that makes life worth ence to Mr. Gladstone's peroration, in living for-it would be an abnegation of which he spoke of the Bill as an act of all your lordships' duties for the purpose justice and reparation to Ireland.
of preserving those powers which a few “What a magnanimous sight! The years hence would be taken from you. first thing that this magnanimous British Your lordships would then be standing in nation does in the performance of this act this position in the face of the roused and of justice and penitence is to put into her angry democracy of the country, with pocket the annual sum she has been in the which you have been so loudly menaced habit of paying to Maynooth, and to com- out of doors, and so gently and tenderly pensate Maynooth out of the funds of the warned within these doors. You would Irish Church. The Presbyterian mem- then be standing in the face of that fierce bers for Scotland, while joining in this ex- and angry democracy with these words on ercise of magnanimity, forget that horror your lips—Spare us, we entreat and beof Popery which was so largely relied on seech you ! spare us to live a little longer, and so loudly expressed at the last elec as an order is all that we ask, so that we tions in Scotland. They have changed may play at being statesmen, that we may their mind, on a theory that a bribe to sit upon red benches in a gilded house,
and affect and pretend to guide the des- hereafter to judge us for our speeches and tinies of the nation and play at legislation. for our deeds; and, my lords, there is Spare us for this reason that we are ut- that other more solemn and more awful terly. contemptible, and that we are en. verdict which we shall have to face ; and tirely contented with our ignoble posi- I feel that I shall be then judged not for tion! Spare us for this reason—that we the consequences of my having made a have never failed in any case of danger to mistake, but for the spirit in which I have spare ourselves ! Spare us because we acted, and for the purposes with which I have lost the power to hurt any one! have acted.” In the Life of Bishop Wil. Spare us because we have now become the berforce it is implied, on the part of the mere subservient tools in the hands of the Bishop or his biographer, that Bishop Minister of the day—the mere armorial Magee was insincere in this speech, the bearings on the seal that he may take in ground of the charge being that be bad his hands to stamp any deed however fool- already expressed his opinion that it was ish and however mischievous ! And this of no use fighting a losing battle (iii. is all we have to say by way of plea for 283). Among Bishop Wilberforce's great the continuance of our order.' My lords, qualities, freedom from jealousy was never I do not believe that there is a peer in conspicuous. I have two remarks only to your Jordships' house, or any one who is make on the condemnation of Magee. worthy of finding a place in it, who could (1) Reports of Bishops' confidential meetuse such language or think such thoughts, ings had always been held absolutely sacred and therefore I will put aside all the men until that biography published some of aces to which have referred. For my- them, and this, too, in a manner of which self, and as regards my own vote, if I the accuracy in several cases has been were to allow myself to give a thought to strongly denied. (2) There was no inconconsequences, much might be said as to sistency in Bishop Magce's conduct. He the consequences of your lordships' vote said in substance, “ I feel that I am bound to your lordships' house and to the to support the Irish bishops. My perChurch which I so dearly love ; and I, sonal opinion is that this is a bad Bill a young member of your lordships' house, which we may as well pass and then fully understand the gravity of the course amend it; but if the Irish bishops think I am about to adopt, and the serious con- otherwise, it is our duty to accept their sequences that may attach to that vote ; view” (p. 287). That the Bishop's but, on the other hand, I feel that I have speech did not convince the House of no choice in the matter-that I dare not Lords need not be added, but it is worth allow myself a choice as to the vote that while for any one, reading his speech at I must give upon this measure. My length, to see how many of his prognoslords, I hear a great deal about the ver tications have proved true. dict of the nation on this question, but, In turning to a different subject we see without presuming to judge the conscience the same principle at the bottom of Bishop or the wisdom of others, and speaking Magee's action. In doctrine and practice wholly and entirely for myself, I desire he was all his life through a strong Conto remember, and I cannot help remem- servative, yet one who keenly watched the bering, this, that there are other and more signs of the times and the methods open distant verdicts than the verdict even of to him to preserve all that he could. He this nation —and of this moment—which had been an Evangelical,'' as the phrase we must, every one of us, face at one goes, at Bath and as Dean of Cork, and time or another, and which I myself am his convictions remained steadfast to the thinking of while I ain speaking and in end. But he was too wise and too eardetermining upon the vote I am about to nest a man not to recognize the good that give. There is the verdict of the English was being done by the High Churchmen, nation in its calmer hours, when it may and these always gave him their confidence have recovered from its fear and its panic, and grateful love. Two of his charges and when it may be disposed to judge administered sharp rebukes to the Ritualthose who too bastily yielded to its pas ists, and warned of the mischief which sions ; there is the verdict of after his they were in danger of causing, but he tory, which we are making even as we was like a faithful husband who admon speak and act in this place, and which is ishes his wife when sho deserves it, but
allows nobody else to speak harshly to eted the Church Association with the
Archbishop by nearly two to one the same night, in Tait, in consequence of the strenuous obspite of the Primate's support.
jections of the High Churchmen to the “To any three persons in the diocese," Ecclesiastical Courts and the Constitution he said, “who may be the greatest fools of the Privy Council, moved for a Royal in it, is to be given the power of deciding Commission on these Courts. Lord Oranwhether the parish, or the diocese, or the inore opposed on behalf of the Church Church at large is to be set in a blaze be- Association, and was made an example of cause they choose to club together their by the eloquent denunciation of Bishop little money and their large spite to set a Magee (see Guardian, February, 1881). prosecution going. I cannot thank the The Bishop evidently had a rooted annoble earl for the compliment that he pays tipathy to the Church Association, and the Bench of Bishops when he thus pro- during the days of the Ritual debates in poses to hand orer their discretion to this Convocation and Parliament, he lost no self-elected triumvirate of fools. Three opportunity of showing it. Thus, in persons! Why, my lords, three old July, 1873, he published a damaging corwomen in the Channel Islands would respondence convicting them of ; inaccuhave the right to prosecute for any minute racy, and in the following December he violation of the rubric—say, for turning sent them a cruelly polite letter, inviting east at the Creed—any clergyman in a dis- them to draw up a canon“ which, while trict within sight of your lordships' House respecting the sacred right of every sin[the Surrey side was then in the Win- burdened penitent to open his grief to his chester Diccese, as were the Channel pastor, would nevertheless enable a bishop Islands]. . . . About two years ago one to prevent that penitent from making and of these disputes came before me for set. his pastor from receiving in the necestlı ment, the clergyman and the parishion. sarily impenetrable secrecy of such an in. ers having agreed to refer to my decision terview--that kind of confession which a question as to the service of the church. should go beyond either the letter or the I believe I settled it to the satisfaction of spirit of the teaching of our Church.” everybody, with the exception of a Wes He supported Archbishop Tait's Public leyan preacher, who objected in limine to Worship Act, making a great stand, as the reference, because he doubted whether did the Primate himself, on behalf of the the Bishop's principles were sufficiently power of the Episcopal veto for the stopEvangelical ; that is, he was not quite ping of prosecutions. When some viosure that the Bishop would decide in his lent opponents of the Act declared that favor. Well, if he could only have found they would not obey it, that if their in the large diocese of Peterborough two Bishop sent them a monition they would other persons who were as great fools as send it on to their lawyers, and that all himself, and that, by the way, would have that was needed was fatherly conduct on been a most serious preliminary difficulty, the Bishop's part, his comment was, “I he might, under this Bill, have burdened honestly desire, as far as I can, to be the Church with a wretched lawsuit which fatherly toward these men, but when I the Bishop amicably settled."
hear this sort of advice given to us, I am This was the speech in which he tick- reminded of the solitary instance in which
a ruler attempted to govern in this fatherly tween the horse's ears to see if he turns fasbion, and that his name was Eli, while them back; to see if he is going to be, as his sons were Hophni and Phineas." the Irishman said of his horse, very handy
On the Barials Bill he was true to his with his hoofs. I will tell you why he Conservative ideas, and opposed the con does so. It is, first, because the man is a cession to Dissenters. In the course of coward ; secondly, because he don't one of the discussions in Parliament he know his business as
a groom ; and came into angry conflict with Archbishop thirdly, because he don't know the nature Tait. The affectionate reconciliation of of the animal he has to do with. Then the two prelates is related in Archbishop there is another class of men who proceed Tait's life (vol. ii. p. 403), but Bishop in another way. I have seen them go to Magee stuck to his opinions, though it is the working man as if he were a horse in fair to add that after the Act passed he à field. I dare say you have seen a groom loyally accepted it, and gave his clergy go up to the horse with a sieve full of wise advice upon
oats in his left hand while behind him he Enough has been said, it is hoped, to has a bit and a bridle in the other. Now show that the Bishop, besides being a there are men who come to the working shrewd politician, was a wise and fatherly classes with great promises of the oats prelate, a man of broad views, of great they are going to feed them with, which, and generous heart ; for many of his by the way, are not their own oats but speeches have had the best of results ; their neighbor's, and if the noble quadnamely, sound practical improvements in ruped had a few of the grains of sense our moral and social condition, His that are scattered about, he would sniff efforts on behalf of personal purity are the bridle and the bit, and say-I would well known ; so, too, are is endeavors to rather not have the oats. Then, occastrengthen the efficiency of his clergy, tosionally, you see a stout man approach the abolish abuses in Church patronage, to horse with a heavy whip, but he never spread education, to promote thrift. Flis gets near him—hasn't a chance. Those life was, in fact, sacrificed to his zeal on who are about to address the working behalf of the work for prevention of man to-night are not going to approach cruelty to children. One famous epigram him as if he were a horse at all : they are of his gave immense offence to the teeto- going to speak to him as a man.” talers, viz., that he “ would rather see As I have said, his outspokenness someEngland free than sober ;" but no man times got for him hard words. Thus, he strove more sincerely, or more success- angered the Leicestershire Nonconformfully, than he, to encourage temperance. ists not very long after the Congress by All who knew him recognized in him the saying that the Liberation Society would spirit of transparent truthfulness ; in fact, evidently prefer a gin-shop to a Church. the hatred of all humbug was such a pas- And the Mayor who had welcomed him to sion with him as sometimes to get him Leicester at the Congress signified his into scrapes. But then the same mani- displeasure by sending £50 to the Liberfest sincerity dragged him out again. ation Society. But in the long run noTake the following witty bit from his ad- body ever got on better with the Noncondress at the Working Men's Meeting at formists than the Bishop. Witness their the Church Congress at Leicester in 1880 : affectionate farewell to him.
“ When I hear men producing their lit A whole volume could be filled with tle scraps of compliments to the working witty sayings of his which came in pat to men in the same way as a cunning trader the purpose when wisdom was wanted to produces little bits of cloth and glass beads shut up some mischievous speaker or corwhen he goes among a set of savages, I respondent. The Bishop was generally don't quite believe in it. When I hear happy when such persons tried to draw persons trying to pet and coax working him. Thus a foolish man in Torquay, men, they remind me of the very timid who was angry with the Burials Bill, got groom who goes into the stall of a very up a memorial and sent it to the Bishops spirited horse that he is afraid is rather requesting to know what they were going vicious; he goes up to him timidly and to do and proposing to publish their retries to pat him here and stroke him plies. Bishop Magee, after objecting to there, and all the while he has his eyes be- being publicly catechised by a man that