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the faith and fear of God. In old age we sleep little, but those long hours of darkness are added to my time for preparation, and I meditate on that closely impending hour, when the grave, as little to be feared as my bed, shall receive this worn out body till the resurrection. “ 'Tis the great birthright of mankind to die.' If my attached friends and congregation were to divide every bone of my remains as relics amongst them, placing my forefinger with a glass-case over it, in the church of Clanmarina, and my arm in the cathedral of Inverness, how much would I prefer the privilege of Scripture, dust to dust!'”
“Yes, the remains of Joseph were carried from Egypt, not to be worshipped, but buried,” said Lady Edith, “and my last request would be like that of Shakspeare, that none shall move my bones.'
"" You will not let the mob, when I lie dead,
“Life often reminds me,” said Lady Edith, “ of people wading in the sea.
At first, like a group of playful children on the shore, we scarcely wet our feet in the sparkling foam, and laughingly watch the successive waves as they roll and break against the firm beach on which we stand. Gradually the water becomes deeper, and our progress grows more heavy. The waves become threaten
ing, the billows rise, and many of those who set out with us disappear beneath the tide. Still the survivors advance into deeper and deeper water, the waves overwhelming them, till the elder pilgrims, like you and I, Bishop, stand in the front rank, about to sink, yet exhorting those behind to persevere and follow.”
“Yes,” replied the aged prelate impressively, “I must ever be ready to welcome the very bitterest dregs of that cup which my heavenly Father has wisely prepared for me. I am waiting most willingly and most cheerfully to drain the very last drop now ; but I cannot accuse myself of ever having voluntarily taken on myself any avoidable sufferings. I have been always as obediently ready to accept the pleasures of this pleasant world as its evils, knowing that God's will appoints both in their proper measure. It is a part of my religion to be happy and to make others so.”
“True,” answered Lady Edith. “If a skilful physician prescribed for our health two medicines, one sweet and one acid, we should not fulfil our duty of obedience by doubling the last and leaving out the first.”
“I often accept it as one of the clearest evidences afforded us of an intelligent God watching over his own world, that not an individual escapes being disciplined by the acutest sufferings of life. Not
one human being is ever for a single hour perfectly happy; but we are bound to await the will of God, receiving our appointed share of good or evil with equal submission. I desire neither pleasure nor suffering unless it be intended for me, and soon I shall be raised • above the reach of human pain - above the flight of human joy.” The venerable prelate, with an expression of pleasing seriousness, then looked towards heaven, and solemnly added, “There have been griefs in my lot to be mourned while life or memory remain. The last and greatest, Allan, will be, if my favourite pupil and my former parish be alienated by a vile conspiracy from real Christianity, and led to adopt a false imitation of it.”
Day after day passed on, during which the Bishop of Inverness gained strength, and Sir Allan most gladly took advantage of so favourable an opportunity to renew those old times which he had never ceased to remember with delight. Every morning saw him strolling before breakfast, his countenance full of new life, his eye sparkling with intellectual light, beside his venerated old friend in the garden. Every day they spent some hours in the library together, where the good and learned Bishop discussed, one by one, every point on which Sir Allan had been misled, turning from volume'to volume for confirmation of what he said with a readiness only to be exhibited by the profoundest of scholars.
The Bishop thus proved that Christianity at its fountain had been in the early ages pure as
crystal; how in subsequent years, wood, hay, and stubble had defiled the stream; and how eventually at the Reformation the original river separated in two, -the one half going towards Rome, polluted by a thousand abominations; and the other half, being constantly filtered through Scripture, came forth in England clear, bright, and wholesome, fit for the enjoyment of every mortal, without money or price. The first time that Sir Allan was able to reach the garden he strolled with Lady Anne and Beatrice to a summer-house, gorgeous with roses and jessamine, the birds singing themselves hoarse, and the gentle breeze that fanned the convalescent invalid came laden with the perfume of wall-flowers and of mignonette. Lord Iona, who made his personal inquiries for Sir Allan every day, had joined the party, and greatly enlivened it; but the conversation at length took a graver turn, when the Bishop of Inverness appeared, slowly advancing with Lady Edith, who gladly took her place in the cheerful circle of her young guests. They had all continued in animated conversation for some time, when Sir Allan at length said in a tone of pleasing sensibility,+“There are moments in life which compensate for years of suffering, and there are remembrances dear to the heart that neither time nor distance can obscure. Your voice, my first and best of instructors, has, like a flash of lightning in the dark, recalled to me a vision of my past self—my free and happy boyhood.” “You gratify an old friend, Allan, and a very
true one,” answered the Bishop, kindly. “I have greatly feared—I need not now say what —— ” “Then fear no more!” interrupted Allan, with unusual vivacity, “Heatherbrae has been to Father Eustace the Moscow of all his conquests. How a solemn impression of all I have escaped seems burned into my very soul! It will last for ever. Such as I am now, death at my latest hour shall find me—a true and heartfelt Protestant. That enlightened faith shall hereafter direct my prayers, my thoughts, my affections, my hopes, my very dreams. In health or sickness, in solitude or society, on sea or land, in life or death, my faith is unalterable. Once more then, my dear Bishop, let me take my old place in church, and also be received at the Holy Communion.” “In approaching the altar, Allan, a Protestant communicant is answerable for his own intention only, but in the Romish Church all depends on the intention of the priest. Through him alone grace on all occasions is supposed to be conveyed. The so called infallible Council of Trent has decreed, that however properly the form of administration may be gone through, that whole ceremony is null and void unless the officiating priest intended to administer it.—“Whoever shall affirm that when ministers perform and confer a Sacrament it is not necessary that they should have at least the intention of doing what the Church does, let him be accursed.’” “It seems to me as puzzling as mesmerism, free-masonry, or mathematics. Do these words