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He should

who are somewhat older.

confidently hope for more substantial good; either in this life or in that which is to come, (as the reward of their patience,) if, as becomes them on this occasion, they conform their own to the Divine will, and bear with Christian fortitude that end which God shall appoint to the present sickness. Albeit, I say, the whole duty of the Curate in visiting infants may be confined to the course already mentioned, yet I would recommend him to proceed address those to conversation as often as he visits children a little older; those, for instance, who have learned to repeat some prayers, and have been somewhat instructed in the first articles of the Christian faith; and in visiting such an one seized with severe sickness, the Curate with a kindly expression of countenance should make some inquiry as to his ideas of the future state, and then acquaint him with the notions he himself entertains of the immeasurable happiness of the life to come, of that security he will enjoy after this life from all those things which truly are hostile to the welfare of the soul and body, of the

In what manner he should do


beatific vision of God and most sweet society of saints and angels, the fruits of which he will for ever reap; if, I say, he shall copiously and with perspicuity discourse of these and similar subjects, he will be of service both to himself and to the sick child; for by this method (the erroneous notions which cause death to be feared being driven away) he will instil into the child those truths which at any time will tranquillize his mind, and abate the fear of death, even if they do not at the same time inflame it with a desire to depart; and therefore the Curate's gentle salutation being ended, he may address him after such method as this:

"I would not, my little child, that you should fear death; for it is never to be feared by those who depart this life innocent; to the wicked, indeed, it is a sad and terrible introduction to the torments which they expect in the future state, but to the good it opens a way to joys so immense, that if you could really now behold and fully understand them, they would immediately invite your soul to

quit the body; they are only absent that every mortal may endure earthly things. Your spirit, when freed from this prison of the body, will return without delay to God who created it, unto whom you are dearer than to your earthly parents; for they are not capable of feeling so great love for you as your Heavenly Father has for the virtuous and innocent; then you will enjoy the continual presence of God, than which nothing can make you more happy; and you will have for companions not such as you have for play-fellows here, who render your life less tiresome by means of trifling amusements and fabulous tales, and who call forth your mirth and laughter by their silly flatteries; but you will have angels and saints, whose exceeding great love and good will, and high and true discoveries which they will ever make known to you, and whose heartfelt prayers to God, and sincere gratitude to their great Benefactor, will fill you with great and endless pleasure. In a moment and immediately, without any toil on your part, you will understand that knowledge which

many, that they may now acquire it, uselessly waste their bodies in studies through the night, and weary and enfeeble their minds by too deep thought; then, moreover, that wonderful workmanship of this world in which you are living, never yet fully understood by the inhabitants of earth, you will altogether perceive; then, too, you will learn the truth of things, and the causes of events, which have escaped the most diligent inquiries of learned men; then you will exceedingly rejoice that you are freed from misconceptions and difficulties respecting God's providence, which hitherto have occupied the perplexed minds of mortals, vainly and sinfully busied in such inquiries. Filled with these and like joys you will be sensible that you are more blessed than it was in your power to be here, although all things should flow in to you at your desire, although you should be the wisest of mankind, although you should obtain the highest honours, securely retain your riches, and abound on every side with the most desirable worldly pleasures; and, therefore, you will render the

highest thanks to God, and make your utmost return of love for having granted you to finish that journey by a brief and happy course, which to some you know is long and very full of trouble, and for having so soon made you partaker of such great happiness. Neither will your body be long detained in the grave from those delights of which it will hereafter be so capable; for although it may sleep for a while in the earth, yet at the time appointed by God it will most certainly rise, not such as we now behold it, needing food and sleep and medicine, exposed to many diseases from within, and many accidents from without, and subject to corruption, but glorious, and by the immense favour of God, who will raise it up in His own time, free from the government of that heavier material of which it is now composed, free from all want, incapable of pain, and exempt from all danger of destruction: such as it will be then, it will be for ever, united to the soul, and your whole man, soul and body, will enter into the joy of the Lord. Then your eyes will enjoy eternal day, and uninjured will behold

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