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in so far as I am conscious of

any

kindness of heart and love of truth and goodness, I hope that I know you. Therefore permit me, without further ceremony, to introduce to you “S. John's in the Wilderness." Do you cautiously enquire whether the acquaintance is desirable? I can only answer that if you would like to be reminded of the silver lining to that cloud which enwraps so much on earth—if you are desirous of becoming a co-worker with God, in giving succour, help, and comfort to those who are in danger, necessity, and tribulation,-if you welcome encouragement in ministering to Christ in the person of His little ones,-I am sure you will glean both pleasure and profit from these life-sketches taken in our Parish.

CLERICUS.

EASTER, 1857.

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S. JOHN'S IN THE WILDERNESS.

CHAPTER I.

OUR CHURCHYARD.-GOD'S ACRE.

I like that ancient Saxon phrase, which calls
The burial ground God's Acre !

It is just;
It consecrates each grave within its walls,

And breathes a benison o'er the sleeping dust.
God's Acre! Yes, that blessed name imparts

Comfort to those, who in the grave have sown
The seed, that they have garnered in their hearts

Their bread of life; alas! no more their own.
Into its furrows shall we all be cast,

In the sure faith that we shall rise again,
At the great harvest, when the archangel's blast

Shall winnow, like a fan, the chaff and grain.
With thy rude ploughshare, Death, turn up the sod,

And spread the furrow for the seed we sow;
This is the field and acre of our God,
This is the place where human harvests grow!

LONGFELLOW.

THERE is something very melancholy in the aspect of a city Churchyard; set apart in all the terrible loneliness of a crowd by its dull bleak wall, or sooty iron palings, and over-run for the most part by festering green mould, which corrodes the

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dusky pavement. That pavement is indeed composed of many slabs, and each one of them covers, we know, at least one mouldering body of death. The thought of all this is apt to beget impressions of the future, very like those which are suggested of the present, by the marred and faded forms of the men and women who dwell in the dark alleys around it. For in one oppressive sense of blanka profound and gloomy chaos of woe which waits on the poor hope of annihilation, we grope vainly within the dark places of a golgotha, and in the full and ghastly vision of the pale horse upon which Death sat, and Hell followed hard after him, the mind takes no account of that better vision of Him who sits on the white horse of the Conqueror, wearing the crown; for He liveth and was dead, and His name is called, the Word of God.

It is quite different with our Churchyard; although it is true that the little Church in the centre can boast neither of size nor beauty, for it is simply built of blocks of stone, rough-hewn, and of a reddish brown colour, which however contrasts very prettily with the shining green of the broad-leaved Portugal laurels that cluster in tiny thickets about its sides, just high enough to peep in at the long Gothic windows. Its only architectural ornaments are two pierced and winding

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