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PRESBYTERIAN SYNOD., Issue 8052, 31 October 1889
The Synod resumed this morning at ten o’clock. The Very Rev. the Moderator presided, and there was an attendance of about seventy meihbetsv
The sederUnt was opened with the Usual devotional exercises.
The Clerk laid tin thb table Copies of a general index of tho proceedings of the Synod from 1866 to 1888, compiled by the Rev. J. H. Mackenzie, of Wallacetown. , A vote of thanks was accorded to the Rev. Mr Mackenzie, and it was resolved that the eXpenSes incurred by him for the benefit of the Synod be refunded, CHURCH EXTENSION. The Rev, Mr Borrie brought up the report of the Committee upon church extension. Tho report was introduced as follows s The work of the Church Extension Committee has been chiefly routine, and by way of supplying vacant charges. There is still plenty of room for vigorous aggressive work in supplying the outfields with the Gospel and its ordinances more regularly, but until the funds are relieved by the erfection of some of the present church eitoneioh Charges into sanctioned charges, and until the church as a whole responds more heartily to the annual appeal for funds to carry on church extension work, the Committee cannot undertake any new fields. The Committee would again press upon the notice of the okurch the vast importance of supplying the preached word to all our people, and of the Church being as Widely ramified and as regularly maintained ad the school. The Committee are pleased to learn that tWo chiiroti extension charges (Elfldo and Walkiwi) are taking steps to be erected into regularly sanctioned charges. Tho Synod will need to determine what position Pnkorau, Strath Taieri, and Wanaka shall continue to hold in relation to the church extension funds.
There Lava been no g eat changes during the year, either in the field or the staff of workers. Having dealt in detail with the field and the staff, the report showed the following particulars of finance That there was an increase in congregational contributions of L2B, and the end of the year showed a credit balance of LSS 2s Id. The Comm ttoe Concluded thblr report by thanking Miss M.R.M. for her handsome yearly donation of L 49 18s, commending her example to the wealthy members of the church, and anew commending this very important scheme to the prayerful interest and liberality of the whole church. In presenting the report the rev. gentleman, after referring to the position of the various church extension charges, alluded to the importance of home mission work, and pointed out that in many places there was no adequate church connection. This was therefore a grand field for work, and on close investigation he felt certain that the state of things disclosed by the report on the state of religion was existent in fact, and that greater energy was needed in the direction of home mission work. It was thought by some that foreign mission work militated against the necessity of home church work ; but experience showed that the church that did most in the one line did most in the other. He moved the adoption of the report in the following terms : “ Adopt the report, express satisfaction at the increase in the congregational contributions; at the good work being done in the church extension charges, and that two of them are applying for sanction as regular charges; thank Miss M.R.M. for her handsome donation of L 49 18s, commend her example to the wealthier members of our denomination ; and anew commend this important scheme to the interest and liberality of the whole church, and enjoin that the collection for church extension be made as near the time appointed as convenient, and report the same to the general treasurer as soon thereafter as possible ; that presbyteries be enjoined to send to the convener detailed reports of mission stations and church extension charges before the meeting of the Committee in April of each year; instruct the Committee to authorise the Colonial Committee of the Free Church of Scotland to give Mr John Asher, when licensed, a commission to this church in the usual manner; and that the recommendation in reference to Mr Borne (i.e., his appointment as deputy to bring the claims of church extension work before the people) contained in the report bo given effect to. Attention was drawn by several speakers to the inconvenience experienced by outlying districts arising from the constant changes of the workers in those fields of labor, and to their frequent withdrawal after a few months’ work, when the district where they had been working was left for a time without anyone in charge; and several suggestions were made towards remedy. The deliverance was adopted after a brief discussion. TEMPERANCE. The Rev. J. Chisholm brought up the report of the Committee on temperance, which was to the following effect:—Presbytery of Dunedin: In some parishes the temperance movement had advanced almost to the stage of prohibition, although the greater sobriety of the people was attributed by some to dull times. High water mark in the temperance movement was now far above the level of several years ago. Presbytery of Oamaru: On the whole progress had apparently been made. Presbytery of Southland : The temperance' movement was making decided progress, and advantages were here shown resulting from congregational societies. Presbytery of Dunstan: On the whole the temperance movement was making good progress on the goldfields, especially in the case of young men. Presbytery of Clutha: The movement was making steady progress, especially among the young. The report concluded as follows: —
Altogether, although there has been little aggressive effort this year, the movement seems to have been taking a firmer hold of the community. It is especially gratifying to find on every hand testimony borne to the fact that the young are, as a rule, keeping aloof from strong drink. “My hope for temperance,” writes a leading member of the Dunedin Presbytery, “ is- in the family. It is a permanent gain when the household is a temperance society.” This hope is virtually realised in the experience of another writer from Southland, who says: “ Parents universally here are bringing up their children to abstinence. When our young folks go over to Victoria they are literally shocked at the intemperanee of youth there.” A number of temperance tracts were sent to the various ministers for circulation. In this direction much more might be done. New methods are perhaps desirable, but ytur Committee feel assured that if an ordinary measure of energy and enthusiasm were thrown into the old methods the results would be vastly more encouraging than they have ever yet been,
The ,Rev. moved tiid 4tlbp: tlQil 6i the following deliverance: Adopt the (report, thank the Committee and especially the convener, regret that so niany congregations sHoUld fall lid reply ,to the (meries of the .Committee i notWithatandinj; rejcico iii the firm hold that the temperance movement is, gaining upon the community, especially upon the young; commend to ministers and office-bearersthe need . of renewed, diligence and watchfulness, so that this mtsveftient ffiay drill be kejHt prtilbihentiy before the church ; renew the recommendation that societies should, as far as possible, be carried on on congregational lines; further recommend that on the last Sabbath of November special prominence be given to the subject of temperance; and Instruct the Committee to arrange for a deputation to make representations to the Minister of Works oft the violation of the Licensing Act. Mr Adams referred to the prevalence of Sunday trading in Dunedin, and suggested that the Synod should, strengthen, the hands of the police by appealing to the (government on the subject. Ift the doUrSe of his fdmafks Mr Adams said that the fact of so many hotelkeepers holding civic positions had the effect of damping the ardor of the police in the matter.
The Rev. Mr Kirkland suggested that .a deputation from the Synod should.wait Upon the Minister on the subject while he was in Dunedini ~ .... . . . .. ~ . Thb Rev, Mr CUHtvV said nb knbvV it to be the case that in certain cases where the police had instituted prosecutions for Sunday trading the policemen had received subsequent intimation from headquarters that they should not be over vigilant, With regard to the hopeful nature of the report as to the increase of temperance amongst the froufig, it Was; he regretted to say; ntii His experience. Attention being called to the fact that Mr Jago happened to be in the room, it was resolved, on the suggestion of the Rev. Mr Chisholm, that he be asked to address the Synod on the temperance question. Mr J ago said that having come quite uni prepared to speak he was not in a position to make stich statements on the subject as It was dfesifable should be made to such an assembly. Tbe law respecting the sale of intoxicating liquor bn Sunday was frequently dnd Opbnly violated with iffipUhlty, and it was demoralisiftg to trie entire community to haVe a law openly violated with impunity—quite irrespectively of the undoubtedly injurious effects which restilted from the violation of this particular law. If the, present provisions of the law were not siffncient stick tneasures shoiild be adopted as would Teault In an efficient law being passed. He would be very glad if the Synod would back up the movement made yesterday by the deputation which had waited on the Minister. He might explain that that deputation had waited on him not with a view of dealing with the matter at all, but in order to make an appointment for a deputation; and it had been intended to obtain from the Synod and other representative bodies an influential deputation who might wait on the Minister with Weight and authority. The Minister’s time, however, was limited, and the matter had to be gone into at once. He was sure it would rejoice the temperance reformers in the community if the Synod would make some representation to the Minister which would be productive of beneficial results. Tho Very Rev. the Moderator thanked Mr Jago on behalf of the Synod, and assured him that tho subject of temperance was one in which the Synod took a very deep interest; After several other speakers had spoken iu the direction of urging further efforts in the cause of temperance the deliverance was adopted. The Synod adjourned at 1.15 p.m.
PRESBYTERIAN SYNOD., Issue 8052, 31 October 1889
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