ORIGINAL CORRESPONDENCE: i,
OPENING OF THE SCOTS CHTjTRCH
AT MAITLAND. "' ", ' /
To the Editors of the Sydney Herald.
GBNTLEMEN-May I request the favour of your inserting the accompanying notice of the Service*
at the "opening of the Scots Church at Maitland, , on Sunday last, m an early number of* ypur paper. '
Those Gentlemen who have aiiitribiited. towatds,
t)ie undirfaking, but who w ere ^pwventca^ jMjpiJ
attending on the occasion, will doubtless fuel gra- tified at perusing the subjoined extract of the very oxcillcnt address delivered to the cougregation by the Re». Mr. Pinkerton. __ )
1 am, Gentlemen, JV ,
Your most obedient Servant.
A eONSTANT.-BKA'DER. Hunters River, 14<A Nov. 1882. ": '??- ? .'
Divine Service w¿s perfowned/Jbr the first time, in the Scots Church at ¡Maitland, on Sunday the 11th current, by the Rev, 'fir. Lang, and the Rev, Mr. Pinkerton, the Acting Presbyterian Minister of the district. After the'bsunl introductory Ser- vices of the Church of Scotland, viz. the singing of Psalms, Prayers, and the reading of the Holy Scriptures, Dr. L.' delivered a discourse suited to the occasion, from Exod. xx. 24, " In all places where I record thy name, I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee." In explanation of this passage of Scripture, it was observed, that, under the Gos- pel dispensation, God may be said to record his name in every place where the ordinances of reli- gion are so dispensed as to exhibit his glorious character to the admiration, the gratitude, and the lave of men; and that wherever the name of God is thus recorded he will assuredly vouchsafe his presence, in giving efficacy to the ordinances of religion, in strengthening and supporting his Minis- ters, and in blessing the Christian people.
- Immediately after the sermon, the Rev. Mr. Pinkerton delivered a very impressive and truly Christian address to the congregation. After ex- pressing his gratitude to Almighty God for the prospect afforded by the erection of an additional place of Christian worship in the district, the Rev. Gentleman proceeded in some such terms as the following :-" Lest any one, however, should ima. gine that I would thus evince or express a con- scious exultation and triumph, simply asa Member and Minister of our National Church, because a place of worship in connection with it lias been opened here this day, I must protest myself to be actuated by no such party or sectarian views. On the contrarj-, my desire and- determination are (so long as I shall remain here), to make it my busi- ness neither on the one hand to preach up the Presbyterian foi ni of ecclesiastics! polity, nor, on the other hand, (even if 1 were, as I most certainly am not able) to preach down Episcopacj'. There is room enough and to spare, methinks, for all the labours of the clergymen belonging to both deno minations, here and elsewhere, who ought indeed to have but one ; and it is the best cause, nt heart, even as they hate a common ground, within com- pass of which all the most peculiar and the most precious doctrines of Christianity lie : on which, therefore, as preachers of the same everlasting Gospel, as the servants of one Master who is in heaven, as heralds of the Prince of Peace, as the ambassadois of one King despatched on the same errand of redeeming love, they should meet .is brethren, and join hands; not in the comparative'y selfish and low endeavour to " lengthen the cords and strengthen the stakes" of their respective Churches, but in setting up and spreading wide to all the winds of heaven that one blood dyed ensign of the crucified Redeemer, to w hieb alone God has promised the gathering of the nations. My senti- ments on these different kinds of pi caching, I must own, are contained in the following brief expres- sions of one of the purest and most heavenlj' minded spirits which e\ei bieathed in the gross atmosphere of this world, who, upon being remon- strated with by his brethren for not carrying this very controversy with him to the pulpit, as they assured him all besides himself did, replied, " If all of you preach to the times, allow one poor brother lo pi each for eternity."
That our efforts, then, have so far been crowned with success, in the building of this additional fabric, in which the one living and true God moy be worshipped in the assembly of his people of all sects, and where not Presbyterianism, not Episco- pacy, not Catholicism, hut Christ Jesus and his Gospel, may, in all singleness and simplicity both of heart and speech, again and again be preached, again and again be pressed on jour acceptance, verily, broth]en, I do rejoice. And when the sound of the church-going bell is heard in the still- ness of the Sabbath morn, swelling its note of tune- ful invitation upon the breeze to your homes em- bosomed in the vast forest, whose long silent echoes that sacred minstrelsy never awoke before, O ! be not ye as the deaf adder which stoppeth her ears against the charmer, charm he never so wisely ; and O ! be well assured, the voice which will then be lifted up in this place, fraught with the message of reconci- liation, will move in perfect unison with so harmo- nious and hallowed a tone, when it also calls on the passers-by in such words as these, " Suppose not that, like the Pharisees and Scribes, we have en- compassed sea and land to make proselytes; but let him who hath ears to hear come and judge for himself, whether in truth or not we do allege that we have so compassed both sea and land, to an ex- tent of which Scribe or Pharisee never dreamt, in obedience to the command of our blessed Lord, " Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature, Go out into the highways and hedges and compel them to come in that my house may be filled."
This address, which was extended to a consider- ably greater length, was evidently well received, and appeared to make a considerable impression.