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we do it honour, and do not despise it. When a native inclines to embrace the Christian religion, if he see that its ministers are respected by the State, and that Christianity in a Hindoo is recognised by Government, he knows that he shall have protection. At present, he sees nothing in Christianity but reproach and ruin. He sees no native Christian recognised, as such, by Government: he sees no native Christian raised to offices of trust or honour. Nay, the ignorance of the people is so great (particularly in Bengal, where there is no community of native Christians enjoying political consequence, as in the South), that they doubt whether their civil liberties are equally secure to them under the denomination of Christian, as under that of Hindoo and Mussul
Ought we then directly to encourage the profession of Christianity? Most undoubtedly, if it be from Heaven. We ought to encourage it, not in a mercenary, but in a moral manner; by recognising the principles of truth and justice inculcated in the New Testament; and confiding to natives, professing Christianity, such offices of trust and confidence as they may be qualified to fill.
3. If the formation of an Ecclesiastical Establishment would operate in any degree to coun
teract the system of discouragement above noć ticed, it would alone be an important benefit to India, and to Christianity. But the principal and immediate advantage of Episcopal superintendance in India, refers not to the natives, but to the Europeans.
It is objected, that the Europeans are few in number (as if they were scarcely worthy of so much attention); that Bombay, for example, is a small Presidency to have a Bishop. Bombay is a small Presidency, but it is nevertheless an epitome of the English Government, and ought faithfully to represent that Government in Church and State. The Christian religion must be acknowledged at Bombay: I mean, the English religion, for the Roman Catholics have a Bishop at Bombay already. Let us recollect, moreover, that this small settlement has 7,783 Euro peans ; of whom 842, being civil, military, and marine officers, are, it is to be presumed, men of liberal education, and of good connections in their own country. There are bishoprics in England and Ireland, which do not contain a greater number of persons, of equal consideration, than there are in the settlement of Bombay.
In Bengal there are 13,308 European Protestants (men); of whom, 2,589 are civil and military officers, most of them allied to the first families in this kingdom. Of these 13,308 men, a tenth part do not return to England. Their children, by English mothers, are generally sent home; but their children, by native mothers, remain generally in the country. The parents desire, of course, to educate their children in the Protestant faith; and to bring them, at the proper age, to the Bishop for confirmation, to renew the vows of baptism. But, as circumstances are, they must die in the country, and leave their offspring to select such a religion, among the various casts, as they shall choose. The expression which Bishop Lowth used, in respect to this conduct of the Church toward her sons, may be seen in another place*: it will not be here repeated.
Character and Duties of the Bishop. :
1. The Bishop ought to be himself a preacher. The natives will naturally look for the most perfect example of the ministerial character in the Bishop himself. A Bishop in India ought to be one, who shall maintain, in some degree, a primitive and apostolical character, and devote himself much to preaching and episcopal visitation. No where in the world do the clergy more require the occasional admonition and encouragement of a superior, than in India; where the climate and the example conspire to throw them into a torpid state, as preachers of Christianity.
* See page 112.
2. It is incredible how much good may be done in India, both in a spiritual and temporal sense, by a Bishop of exemplary life and manners. the first place, he sees a
great haryest” before him, and he is the chief labourer. His diocese is not less, in local magnitude, than his native country. His piety would give some impulse to the zeal of his Clergy, stationed through this vast extent, and there would be no limit to the
progress of native instruction and civilization. Again, his funds being ample (and it is for this reason chiefly that it is proposed they shall be such), he would have it in his power to do acts of liberality ;-to feed the poor Hindoos during the seasons of scarcity, to provide an asylum for outcast Christians, and to acquire a character creditable and honourable to the Christian name.
But, further, he approaches near to the rank of the Governor. He is the proper representative of Christianity, and of his country. The Governor is recalled in a few years, but the Bishop remains. For what has an Indian Bishop to do in England ! He may, indeed, return for a season, to visit his friends, and refresh his health and spirits ; but,
when he receives consecration as a Bishop for India, it ought to be with the spirit of a man who is willing to live and die among the people committed to his charge. Nor will there be a great sacrifice in this. It is agreeable to Eastern principle to reverence religious men. During the conflicts and wars of Hindostan, the Christian Bishops were in general respected. · Even their endowments and territorial rites have, in some instances, survived the revolutions of Empire.
It will be the duty of the Bishop to make an annual or biennial visit to the principal places in his diocese, for the purpose of Confirmation, and to acquaint himself with the character and circumstances of his clergy and people.
3. It will be the province of the Bishop, on his first arrival in India,
First, To institute schools in the places where they may be chiefly required: that is to say, as many schools as can be supplied with properly qualified schoolmasters.
Secondly, To institute the College for the instruction of the natives and others in sacred learning; and to select for education persons of approved character, native and European, whose views shall lead them to the sacred office, or to the humbler situations of Catechist and Schoolmaster.
There are respectable families in India who de