The Ashburton Guardian. Magna est Veritas, et Prevalebit. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 1881. Denominational Education.
TOWN EDITION. [lssued at 4.50p.m.j
There is one subject of great public importance with regard to which the large number of candidates for the ensuing election seem quite at sea, and flounder about, not knowing which way to turn. They would like to say the correct thing about it, and to appear self-consistent, but Mrs Grundy and the proprieties will not allow them to be anything of the sort. The subject to which we refer is State Education, and more particularly State Education in its religious aspect. It is considered a sort of axiom that the State ought to undertake the education of the masses, and that that education ought to be “ free, secular, and compulsory.” To this, however, the Protestant clergy of various denominations have tacked on the addendum that the education must not be “ Godless,” and that “ provision must be made for the reading of the Bible in the schools.” Very possibly it must; but these advocates of the much admired “ free, secular, and compulsory system” don’t seem to see that as soon as the Bible is read in schools they become, to all intents and purposes, denominational and not secular. How can the instruction be entirely secular when the Bible is read constantly ? It is a contradiction in terms to make so foolish a statement. What these advocates of a piebald system of public instruction really mean but do not like to confess, is that they are in favor of a denominational system of education, but one of such a kind as that Protestant schools can take advantage of it and yet that Roman Catholic schools shall be excluded from the benefit of Government grants. This is most objectionable, and contrary to that fair play and religious liberty which we are in the habit of boasting of, as being specially the property of the Briton, and most of all the colonial Briton. To the genuine Roman Catholic, it is a matter of conscience that religion should be a necessary accompaniment to secular teaching, and the reading of the Bible, particularly the reading of the Protestant version of the Bible by a layman, without note or comment, is not religious teaching. On the other hand, there are some of the Protestant sects—notably the Presbyterians and Wesleyan Methodists—who object as a matter of conscience to all State grants for what they consider false religious teaching. There is the hitch, and our candidates who so glibly profess their faith in a free, secular, and compulsory system of public instruction, and also in the reading of the Bible in schools, and also in perfect religious liberty, and equality of all sects in the eye of the law, do not throw out the slightest hint as to the way in which they get over the difficulty. There is a way, but it is one which has not hitherto found much favor with the public mind. It is that the whole question of religious teaching should be ignored by the Government as a matter outside of its province, and that absolute power should be left in the hands of each committee to decide what kind of religious teaching there should be in its particular schools, how much of it and at what times, and that the State grants should be made according to the number of children who can pass the Inspector’s examination in the usual items of secular knowledge. Under this method no one sect or denomination could obtain an unfair advantage over any other. Proficiency in secular knowledge, and that alone, would determine the amount of the State grants. Perhaps, however, its perfect fairness to all, and complete adaption for securing the best educacational results, are not by any means the objects which the educational wire pullers of the colony would like to see attained. If they cannot deal a double blow to the secularists on the one hand, and to the Roman Catholics on the other, the best educational results are not deemed by many people to be of much account.
Sons and Daughters of Tbmpehancb. —A full report of the tea meeting and entertainment which took place at the Templar Hall last night, under the auspices of the above Society, will be found on our first page.
Ohebsb and B utte rP a cto ry Lectures. —The Willowby schoolhouse not being available for the 16th instant, the dates of Mr Bowron’s lectures have had to be altered as follows :—Ashburton Forks, 16th; Willowby, 18th inst.
A Confectioner in Court.— For introducing his bootmaker to his youthful assistant’s tailor, or, in other words, for kicking him out of his shop, Mr J. E. Bashford, confectioner, was summoned by the youth at the Christchurch Police Court yesterday. The man of tarts said the boy was very “ cheeky ” and well merited his punishment. The juvenile did not seem to have quite made up his mind in Court as to whether he was hurt or not by the application of Mr Bashford’s boot, but he objected to receiving more kicks than halfpence. His Worship said the case was a trumpery one, and inflicted a flue of Is and costs.
Sale Adjourned. —The sale of Messrs Cooper Brothers’ plant, etc., advertised for Tuesday, 16th, has been postponed until Monday, 21st inst. Excess of Zeal. —The Dunedin police intend taking proceedings under the Gaming and Lotteries Act in connection with the use of the totalisator in the southern city on the Y.R.O. Spring Meeting.
Off to the Races. —The trains from the South passed through Ashburton last night and to-day crammed with holidaymakers off to Christchurch for the Show and Races. The Cathedral City was not very full yesterday, but visitors from all parts have been rolling up to-day, and the town is filling fast.
Re-commenced. —Mr W. T. Davison notifies that he has re-commenced business at the Town Hall, in the premises lately occupied by Mr J. R. Mooar.
Pierced by a Snag. —The little steamer Wallabi ran into a snag near Wanganui yesterday, which pierced one of her plates, and it is feared that she will become a wreck.
New Zealand Pottery. The New Zealand Pottery and Glass Company (Dunedin) has received from Government a bonus of L 250 for the first LI,OOO worth of household pottery manufactured in New Zealand.
A Promising Claim. —Quite a sensation has been caused in Reef ton and its neighborhood by the find made in the Golden Point mine on Thursday. Shares have gone up nearly one hundred per cent, in value.
Why He Wept. —A swagger who was charged at the R.M. Court this morning with purloining about a dozen and a half of saveloys from a butcher’s shop, had a wonderful escape. The evidence appeared pretty conclusive, but the accused indignantly denied the theft, and, leaning over the dock, allowed his pent-up feelings free vent. To be in the dock at all was bad enough, but to stand there before his fellow-men suspected of making free with about three pounds of sausages was too much, and so he wept. His Worship appeared to pity the unhappy man, and told him he might go. Joyfully the accused murmured his thanks, and made himself scarce with as much expedition as possible. Ihe English Cricketers. —Owing to some disagreement about money matters, it seems doubtful whether New Zealand will be included in the programme of the English cricketers. The team left Nottingham for the Antipodes on Sept. 17, and were “ seen off” by train on the first stage of their journey by some thousands of spectators. At the last moment some changes in the team were made, and the eleven now on its way is consequently composed as follows A. Shaw (captain), J. Selby, and W. Scotton (Nottingham), T. Emmett, G. Ulyett, W, Bates, and E. Peate (Yorkshire), R. G. Barlow and R. Pilling (Lancashire), W. Midwinter [Gloucestershire), and James Lillywhite (Sussex). Shrewsbury, who was detained on account of ill-health, subsequently left for Melbourne direct. Art Union of London. —The Ashburton subscribers will be glad to learn that their valuable engravings have been received by the local honorary secretary, and that they have arrived from London in very good order. It may be remembered that Mr J. Tucker won the highest prize coming to New Zealand this year, which is in addition to the engraving he chose. It is an oil painting entitled “ ’Twas a raw day of Autumn’s bleak beginning,” by A. Wardle, and which the Society purchased for him for Ll 5. This picture is now on its way out. The presentation work for next year will be a set of five engravings, from the remarkable series of paintings by Mr Frith, R.A., “The Road to Ruin.” This series illustrates in a powerful manner the downward course of one for whom the temptations of the gaming-table and the racecourse have proved too strong. Affairs at Punoarehu. —The special of the Lyttelton Times, wiring from Pungarehu yesterday, says:—“A bad gale has been raging all day, but the Volunteers seem to put up with all discomforts in a most cheerful spirit. They have a bad commissariat, and worse shelter, and are to be complimented on the way they take their hardships. The new camps at Parihaka are perfect seas of mud. It is quite impossible to do anything. The Maoris are all in their whares, and, with the exception of the sentries, no men are to be seen at the camp. It is understood that the next move will be to tear down the fence round the Maori cultivations, and then clear the Natives out of Parihaka. ”
An Aristocratic Vagrant. —A strange character ended her existence lately in the Melbourne gaol says the Melbourne Herald Blanche Whittoski, a woman about 40 years of age, was a highly accomplished linguist and pianiste. She belonged to a good family in England, and as governess to one of the aristocratic families, she made the “grand tour.” She afterwards came out to Australia as governess to the family of one of the colonial Governors, but for the last few years she fell, and became addicted to drink. Ever since she has continually come in contact with the police, and served numerous sentences for vagrancy. On the 16th May she was again sent to gaol for six months.
Sydney Libelled. — Mr Crook, late of Dewsbury, England, but now, of Sydney, N.S. Wales, thus writes of the colonials : “ A word on the colonials—the white people born and reared out here. They are lazy, dirty, drunken, and deceitful. The drunkenness out here, both of men and women, is something frightful, and the immorality and vice appalling. It is a common thing to see a woman laid on the roadside drunk and incapable, unconscious to everything around. Young and old, there are hundreds of them. People can' get drunk all daymen Sundays at the taverns. The law compels the front doors to be shut, but side doors are open. It is estimated that L 19,000 are spent every week in Sydney for drink. ” Change Without Relief. —No great benefit can be reasonably expected from a change which does not involve complete or very considerable relief. Busy men go away with cares on their minds and wonder thsy are not the better for their holiday. They do not perceive that they fail to release the mind from its tension. Unless a man can leave his troubles at home it is little use for him to go abroad What generally happens is an augmentation of anxiety. There is the feeling that something has been left undone before setting out, or a harassing misgiving that all will not go well during his absence. Feelings like these spoil the best holiday, and deprive it of its power to replenish the exhausted stock of energy. Another mistake made is to preserve_ close communication with a place of business during the period of nominal relaxation. If letters and business papers are passing between the absentee and the scene of his accustomed labor, it is impossible that his mental faculties can enjoy that perfect relief which is essential to their recuperation. Better, if need be, shorten the time of absence, so that it may be complete while it lasts. The body is so closely associated with or so entirely pervaded by the mind, snd so immediately under its influence through the nervous system, that even physical improvement is impossible, except to the least emotional and most stolid of temperaments, unless the change obtained during a holiday tour, involves and includes perfect relief from mental tension. To secure this relief should be one of the objects kept principally in view by the working members of a population which labors shisfly with its brains.— Lancet. i
Cricket. —-We learn from a Christchurch paper that the following will play for the M.C.C. against Ashburton, on the ground of the former, on Friday next :—Messrs W. H. A tack, H. Page, J. F. Fairhurst, E. Thomas, W. H. Lodge, C. Strange, P. Philpott, E. Bell, A. Dunbar, F. Pavitt, and A. N. Other, The match will begin at half-past 10 o’clock.