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meet on terms of common love to Christ, why should we not do 80 ? The severest conflicts in the Church have raged over the meaning and method of a symbol. If the Church of this day shall learn the higher truth of the symbol, and its adaptation to divergent classes of mind, it will herald the coming of the day for which all other days were made.
The third suggestion made by the Dean is eminently practical, and if followed up, will ultimately lead to inuch more communion than the demonstrations of which he has sketched the outline. It is that efforts be made on both sides to promote mutual understanding and friendly intercourse. It will be dangerous to underrate the extent of the consequences and the intensity of the feeling which the national establishment of Episcopacy, and therefore the national sanction of religious inequality, has produced. One-half the professing Christians of the United Kingdom are at this moment supporting by voluntary and unaided effort the entire fabric of their Church organization ; they are providing by the same means an amount of collegiate education for their ministers, which, if gathered together in some provincial cities, might assume the character of a great University. There are neither tithes, nor church rates, nor large endowments to help them do their work. They seldom even ask a court of law to decide any question affecting the large amount of property belonging to them; they have, with the exception of Roman Catholics, little rank or territorial wealth to ennoble them; they are compelled to work at a strain and at high pressure, often not in honourable competition with one another-which they well understand, and the laws of which they seldom transgress—but under direct antagonism from the wealth, and landed interest, and clerical influence of the favoured form of ecclesiastical government. In no other department of English politics and social life is the same phenomenon conspicuous. Conscientious convictions are generally respected. It is astonishing to observe the length to which men may go in their religious opinions, in their scientific heresies, in their political creed, and suffer, in consequence, nothing but a little 'chaff' or misapprehension. They may believe in republican institutions, or they may renounce all faith in God or man, and they suffer no social exclusion ; they are not cast out of universities as evil; they are not regarded as necessarily and wilfully blinded, nor is their work ignored at all hazards; but let them once entertain a practical doubt as to the efficacy of Apostolical succession, and the Scriptural character or philosophic soundness of a State Church, and charity is at an end, and civil and social inequality begins! There are many dignitaries of the Church of England who
The Irish Church Question.
repudiate the tone of public opinion and action on this subject; but whatever be its cause, it is a strange un-English fact, which has to be taken into account when fellowship and Christian communion between those who so strangely misunderstand each other, are broadly advocated. We shall not, on account of these remarks, be accused of unwillingness to promote a right understanding, & mutual recognition, a cordial Christian agreement on those great principles which we hold in common. We are satisfied that Nonconformists have much to learn in the school of Christian charity, though they have in our recollection made prodigious advances in a direction that would have been difficult for their forefathers to have conceived. It will be a happy day when Dissenters cease to rail' at 'the vantage-ground occupied by the State Church; but they will belie all their history if they do not continue to protest against all religious inequality in the administration of the laws of England. We believe that as an aid to transforming raillery into manly argument, evil suspicions into honest speaking, harsh misunderstandings into mutual respect and thankful co-operation, few things will be more serviceable than such sensible, gentle, courageous, and Christian utterances as those of the Dean of Canterbury. We accept them, moreover, as significant of the times, as indicative of the drawing nearer to each other of all high and Christ-like souls, as descriptive of that union to Christ on which the union of Christendom turns, as a conspicuous and notable illustration of the glorious fact that ' in Christ Jesus there is neither Jew nor Greek, neither bond • nor free; but that all are one,' even as the Father and the Son are one, not in their visible manifestations, but in the Eternal Spirit.
ART. VIII.-(1.) Letter to the Right Hon. Chichester Fortescue, M.P.,
on the State of Ireland. By John, EARL RUSSELL. Longmans. (2.) The Irish Church Question. A Letter to Lord Dufferin, K.P.,
etc. By the Rev. ALFRED T. LEE, LL.D. Rivingtons. (3.) The 'Contemporary Review.' March, 1868. Strahan and Co. (4.) Speech of Edward Miall, Esq., M.P., in favour of the Impar
tial Disendowment of all Sects in Ireland, delivered in the House
of Commons, May, 1856. Second Edition. Arthur Miall. (5). The 'Times' Newspaper. March, 1868. It is a matter of congratulation that the Irish Church question should at last have passed out of the region of statistics. There is a time in all controversies when facts are of the first importance, and it is the habit of the English mind to conduct the initiatory stages of public discussion with a sole and exclusive reference to such matters of detail. Indeed, it is almost impossible to reach the ordinary Anglo-Saxon intellect in any other way than through the medium of hard and palpable facts. Mr. Cobden probably understood this intellect better than any other modern agitator or statesman, and we find that in the earlier stages of the Free Trade movement he confined himself, in great measure, to the skilful exhibition of facts. He perfectly well knew that, to the eminently practical, and, perhaps, too practical English mind, a thing was of far more importance than a thought, and that there was no possibility of fixing in it a thought but by the repeated repetition of a thing. Of als nations in the world we have the least power of evolving anything out of our internal consciousness. We have never yet, in any of our dynastic revolutions, laid down an abstract principle of government. We have never yet passed a single law which has been avowedly based upon a principle. Burke once said that he hated abstract principles, and that they were of no use in the discussion of the practical politics of a nation, and this has been the belief of all the statesmen who preceded, and of all the statesmen who have succeeded him. There is something both to regret and to rejoice in this circumstance. More, probably, than anything besides, it has helped to give solidity to the progressive reforms of the English constitution. When, as in some other nations, laws have been based upon theories without reference to actual experiences, it has been universally found that they have no enduring character. The political philosophers of one age have always upset the political philosophers of the age preceding it. And so the governments of states, from the times of Greece and Rome, have travelled round a circle, generally ending just where they began. This should not be the history of a nation's growth, for it is not growth, but mere arbitrary experiment. The line that describes the political, social, and religious development of a people should be an ever-lengthening and an everbroadening line, never going back to the point from which it started; or, rather, the critical events in its history should resemble the upward steps of a wise and good man's life, whose experience has been derived from well-attested and often painfully-felt facts, who has drawn from those facts principles of higher and higher conduct, and who, at last, governs all his actions by a reference, not to what is merely expedient or profitable, but to what is just, righteous, and pure.
which the national life of England is tending. In the centuries of our past history we have lived a hard, painful, and in many respects a humiliating life. We have had a long continued experience of bad doing. Generations after generations have eaten little else than swine's husks, and we are now coming to the conclusion that swine's husks were not intended to be the food of men. On the whole, the history of our country, well as it will compare with that of other nations, is not a history which can be read with a feeling of pride or exultation. It exhibits much more vice than virtue, much more haughtiness than humility, ignorance than wisdom, and cruelty than love. We have gone out of our way to do evil. There is scarcely a chapter of it that does not now raise the blush of a burning shame upon our cheeks. But one thing is nearly always evident. Scarcely ever have the people stopped growing in all the ways in which a nation can grow. Measured by centuries, the growth has been enormous.
We have taken the lessons of experience as they have been presented to us. We have never ultimately rejected the logic of facts. We are, we believe, gathering from those facts solid principles upon which one day will be based all the legislation of the empire. Bacon's was a typical English intellect, and his philosophy is characteristically an English philosophy. By slow and painful induction, such as is necessary for the discovery of all or of any truth, we are finding out what is the right way in which a nation should be governed. And the God of justice and righteousness is, we hope and think, giving to us the grace, when once that way is found, to walk therein.
What a history has been the history of our government of Ireland, and how gladly now would any patriotic Englishman blot it out of the annals of his country! We have done every: thing which ignorance and lust could do to bring a conquered people into what is termed submission. We have hanged and slaughtered; we have taxed and confiscated; we have driven out and exiled. There is only one good thing in all our dealings with that country, and that is, that we have lived to repent of our misdeeds. The worst of all these misdeeds has been the imposition of an alien Church upon the people; we say the worst, because it affects the highest interests. It is a crime to injure the body of a man: we have been, for centuries, doing our best to injure the consciences of a whole nation. It is a crime to pervert a human character: we have been doing our best to pervert the character of Christ's Holy Gospel. It is a crime to govern with partiality and prejudice: we have governed Ireland with flagrant injustice.
Apart from all questions of large benefices and small populations, of parishes without Protestants and parishes with Protestants, of Bishops' incomes, of converts who have been made so by soup and converts who have been made so without soup, the Established Church of Englund in Ireland stands condemned on the highest of all grounds. Numerical failures in one part of the country may possibly, in some cases, be met by numerical successes in another part, although we have never yet met with such cases; but we have now got beyond this stage of the controversy. It has practically narrowed itself into two lines—the right of any State to impose a Church upon a reluctant people, and the policy which, in the present juncture of affairs, the English Government should pursue towards the Irish nation. These are the lines upon which, either forward or backward, the best thought of the English people is now travelling; and we think we are not exaggerating when we say that it is travelling with almost unprecedented rapidity in a forward direction. All the most liberal and enterprising intellect of the country has made up its mind, first, that it is unjust to impose a form of religion upon a people to which they manifestly object; and, secondly, that, in view of the highest interests of the British empire, it is expedient that the Irish State-Church should be both disestablished and disendowed. This is not the most abstract form of discussing the question of any State-Church, whether that of a majority or that of a minority, but it is the form in which the English people have, for the most part, now chosen to discuss this question. If it has its disadvantages, it has also its advantages. We must choose-having no choice, indeed, in the matter-for the present, at least, to discuss it in the same way.
Taking the facts as they stand, which are denied only by one or two unscrupulous platform defenders of the Irish Church, what have the advocates of this institution to say in its behalf? The ablest and the most prominent of these advocates are Dr. Lee, whose last pamphlet we have placed at the head of this paper, and the Dean of Cork, who has probably said, in his reply to Mr. Maurice in the Contemporary Review,' all that is likely to be said on his side of the matter in debate. We take Dr. Lee first. This gentleman is the most prolific pamphleteer of his generation. We suppose him to be an Irishman, but we may be mistaken in this point, for he possesses the enviable faculty of never seeing the force of an opponent's argument or the relevancy of one of his opponent's facts. Dr. Brady, a clergyman of his own Church, has convicted him of almost incredible ignorance and disingenuousness concerning the