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PASSION

PASSION-TIDE.*

Let

every one, young or old, try to conASSION means “Suffering.' Passion

quer the sins and faults from which our

dear Lord died to save us. tide is the time when the Church

Let every one reminds us day by day of the sufferings

think about the Saviour during the solemu

Passion-tide, especially on Good Friday; which Jesus Christ endured at the close of His life on earth.

and giving up for the time all pleasures and He Who was God and man chose to suffer

merry-making, keep close by His cross,

learn more of Him, and strive to grow more a cruel death, because that was the only

like Him.

E. L. way of saving the world from sin and everlasting misery. Think how great was His agony, when, knowing what was coming to

THE CROOKED FINGERS pass, He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane to His Father three times, to re

HILE shaking hands with move, if possible, this sorrow from Him!

an old gentleman the other But think how perfect was His obedience

day, I noticed that some of when He added, “Nevertheless, not My will

his fingers were quite bent but Thine be done.'

inward, and that he had not It is sad to remember that the Chief

the power of straightening Priests and Rulers conspired against the

them. Seeing that I was Holy Jesus, that Herod the king set Him

surprised at this he said, at naught, and Pilate the governor con

'In these crooked fingers there is a good demned Him just to please the people.

text for a talk to children.' But what shocks us most of all is the

* Let us have it, if you please,' we said. thought that it was Judas, one of His own

• For over fifty years I used to drive a chosen Apostles, who had been His com

stage-coach, and these bent fingers show the panion for three years, who now treacher

effect of holding the reins for so many years. ously sold him to His enemies for the sake

Does not this teach us how repeated acts of gain! St. Peter, too, fell away in the

form a habit, and that a habit once acquired time of trial, and denied bis Master three

generally remains through life? times; and all the disciples forsook Him.

The old man's crooked fingers, dear But they all, except Judas, came back

children, are an emblem of the crooked to His service, and gave the remainder

tempers, words and actions, of men and of their lives to the work which He bad

women. called them to do.

When you see men and women persist What more did the God-man suffer ?

in doing and saying things that are wrong, Mocking, and scourging, and spitting,

and make themselves and others unhappy, and crowning with thorns, while yet He

remember that when young they never perprayed for His persecutors, Father, forgive haps thought of being so wicked; but they them.' At last-on the Cross of Shame

said wrong, and did wrong, and continued He yielded up His life. Oh! what love to

saying and doing wrong, until, like the old go through all these torments and this

man's fingers constantly used in driving, bitter death for us!

they became fixed in the course in which See Luke, xxii. and xxiii.

they had so long been engaged.

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THE ICELANDERS' CUSTOM.

Ellie, like a sensible child, dried her eyes, and tried to think no more of it; but

the next day her teacher called at their HE Icelanders have a cus- house.

tom, which is, however, Oh do, pray, Mrs. Dunne,' said that dying out, of singing a young lady, do let little Ellie come. It guest out of the house. would be such a pity she should miss the The stirrup-cup having treat, and a day at the sea-side would do been duly presented, the her all the good in the world. It is quite whole family collect round a safe place, no cliffs to fall down, and I

the door, and speed him shall willingly take charge of her for the on his way by chanting such verses as the day, and bring her safe back to town, if following :

you can meet her at the station.' “God's right hand be holden o'er thee,

Do, mother, let me go! pleaded the
Circling thee with peace profound;

child.
May IIis shading wings protect thee,
Guardian angels watch around !

And Mrs. Dunne, thanking the lady
Jesus' death and precious bloodshed

for her kind promise, gave a rather reBring thee blessing evermore ; May thy soul, thy life, thy honour,

luctant consent. In His keeping rest secure.'

The long-expected morning came, and Mr. Metcalfe assures us that the fore

Ellie, dressed in her best clothes, was sent going is a literal translation of one of the

to the school-house, where the happy party Icelandic chants. Is it not a pity that so

were to assemble. She was received at the pleasing a custom should be given up?

door by her teacher, Miss Young, who took her hand during the walk, sat beside her in

the railway-carriage, and pointed out all LEFT ON

that was new or wonderful on the way. THE SAND-HILLS.

When they arrived at the place, the

children were allowed to run about and OTHER, we

are to have amuse .themselves without restraint. The an excursion to the sea- elder boys began a game of cricket, and side next week, and teacher others ran races ; whilst the girls formed says, though I am so little, into groups, and gathered wild flowers ! she will try to get me taken amongst the sand-hills or shells on the with the rest.'

beach. ‘Don't set your heart Towards the middle of the day a bell on it, Ellie, for I should sounded calling them all to dinner, and be afraid to let you go.'

soon the various classes were seated in Ellie was just going to cry, when her circles on the green grass.

Miss Young mother, taking her on her lap, said, - took care that little Ellie should have her

• My little girl knows I would not refuse share of everything nice, and when the her any pleasure without a good reason ; dinner was ended teachers and children so don't fret, dear : perhaps next year, again scattered into companies, and amused when you are older and wiser, I shall be themselves as they liked best. Ellie, with able to let you go.'

several other little girls, climbed to the top

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Very ili.

of a hillock, and raced down again, till, hot 'I cannot find Ellie Dunne anywhere! and tired, they lay on the ground and said Miss Ellis to her friend Miss Green. began building castles of sand.

This was

"Perhaps she is with that group on the rather dull work for Ellie, and as she lay on beach who do not seem to have heard Mrs. the dry grass and gazed at the blue sky Hunter's bell. I will walk round that way overhead and the blue sea beneath, with with my class, and bring her on if she is the waves sounding a gentle lullahy, she there. You had better search again at this dropped into a quiet sleep.

side of the hill.' Ellie's companions grew tired of castle- • And if I do not see her,' replied Miss building and ran off to play hide-and- Ellis, I shall conclude she is safe with seek among the sand-hills, and so the you. But we can make sure about it when little girl was left alone. Miss Young we get to the station.' had watched her till she joined the other However, owing to the confusion caused children, and feeling sure that she was safe by such a crowd of children, and the rapidly and happy, she walked to the station to increasing darkness, the two did not meet meet a friend whom she expected to join again, and each hoped their little charge the party, and there she received a message was in some other carriage with her friend; to hasten back to town, as her mother was and so when Mrs. Dunne came to the

Even in the hurry and confusion station, according to appointment, no Ellie of the moment Miss Young remembered was there. Failing to obtain any tidings her promise to Mrs. Dunne, and begged of her child, the poor woman in a state a lady who was with her to ask one of of distraction rushed off to Miss Young's the other teachers to look after Ellie, and house, and heard that her little girl had bring her safe back. Certainly,' replied been left in Miss Ellis's care; from her, after Mrs. Hunter, I shall see that it is all a weary search for the house, she could only right.' She then hurried back to the find out that Ellie was supposed to have party on the sand-hills, and seeing two of returned with Miss Green. No satisfaction the teachers walking together, gave them could be gained from any one, and the last both a special charge to take care of little train for the night having already started, Ellie Dunne, and mind that she was not the poor mother had nothing for it but to left behind.

return home and tell her husband of the The most pleasant things must have loss of their child. What a miserable an end, and about sunset it was time to night they passed, until the first train took think of returning Mrs. Hunter went them with some kind neighbours to search about ringing a bell to assemble the for the missing Ellie! Over sand-downs, children, and soon most of them were along the sea-beach, and far up into the collected on a flat green space overhanging country, they sought in vain; no tidings the sea, where the clergyman gave a short could be obtained from either villagers or address, in which he directed their hearts farmers; and after a day spent in fruitless in gratitude to God, who had given them endeavours to find their darling, the un this as well as every other pleasure and happy parents returned home by the last blessing which they enjoyed. Then, after train. singing an evening hymn, they set off to

(Concluded in our next.) walk to the station.

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