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No man is good enough to entitle his character to be taken as an argument against the first principles of morality.
The Evangelical party among the clergy are by no means 'pious enough to have their characters taken as an acquittance from their first obligations of truthfulness ; and I am thankful to say that, for my own part, I have never done them the injury of increasing their arrogance by offering them these religious compliments. A High Churchman's consistency and honesty I can understand, while I vehemently oppose his conclusions. An Evangelical clergyman's honesty is to me a mystery beyond any other in Christendom.
Meantime the best hope of reformation is for the long lines of the Nonconformists to thrust home their bayonets into the consciences of the clergy in this battle of the Lord, and not to flinch from the only words which rightly denote the act of adopting formularies, when their plain sense is denied. Terrible as the charge of falsehood is, it is true; and it is only by pressing it home that Liturgical Revision can be brought about. To invent a fine name for this habit of falsehood, and to term it a 'non-natural sense put upon words through general agreement, or by the authority of precedents,' is just as weak and as wicked as to invent the mild name of kleptomania to excuse shop-lifting in ladies. Thieving is the same thing in a servant girl and in her mistress, and lying is the same thing in a stable-boy and in a clergyman. The only difference is that the one lies for a few shillings, the other for station, authority, and ample preferment; and we may not term this last Pseudomania. The vehement action of conscience among those clergymen would soon generate that which they have not at present, political power to enforce their views. And when Liturgical Revision begins, some other alterations in the Church of England will begin also. The Prayer book is the keystone of the arch that bridges the stream of English life, and when that stone is taken out for repairs, the coffer dams and the centering will be employed for examining the piers and the foundation,
I will close this letter with the testimony of the straightforward, stiff-necked, Bishop of Exeter, as to the meaning of the Baptismal service. He says, ' If infants be not born again of the Spirit of God in baptism, the Church, which affirms that they are, teaches superstition of the grossest kind, AND ALSO TEACHES A LIE, BOTIL TO AND OF THE HOLY GHOST. But if baptized infants be so born again, those ministers who teach the contrary, not only are FALSE TO THE MOST SOLEMN vows, but teach as God's Word what is manifestly sacriligous and blasphemous.' I am, my dear Ğunningson, yours truly,
DOROTHY TRUDEL, OF MENNEDORF.
A remarkable cause has lately been tried in the Court of Cassation of the cantou of Zurich. Malle. Dorothy Trudel, of the village of Mænnedorf, has several times been brought before the magistrates of the canton of Zurich for “the illegal exercise of the art of healing." In the month of August, 1857, Malle. Trudel was summoned to dismiss all her patients, and was ordered to cease from following this vocation ; she was fined 60 francs by the prefect of the district for neglecting to comply with this injunction. The charge was repeated in the month of March last, and again she was condemned to a fine-this time of 150 francs. But Mdlle. Trudel appealed from this decision, and the tribunal of the district of Meilen confirmed the award of the prefect. In consequence of this judgment, Malle. Trudel carried the case before the Supreme Court of the canton of Zurich, who have reversed the decision and acquitted her fully.
The result of this strange process has been that, for several years past, Mdlle. Trudel has superintended, at Mænnedorf, an “institution of prayers.” In this asylum-half hospital, half chapel-(moitié maison de santé, moitié oratoire), she has every year received many hundreds of people suffering under all kinds of diseases, and the greater number of them have gone out cured, though she employed only the resources of a pharmacy, unconnected with that of the doctors of the faculty, allopathic or homøopathic. She healed, indeed, solely by the apostolic means,-prayer, the laying on of hands, and anointing with oil. Day and night Malle. Trudel was always ready to pray with her guests, among whom were found men of all religious professions, and of almost all the cantons of Switzerland, of Wurtemburg, of Baden, of Bavaria, and even from France and Prussia. Her vast establishment was almost constantly filled with those who came to employ her succour, and often her crowded chambers and the throng which besieged her door presented an affecting sight. By the witnesses for the prosecution themselves it was proved that, thanks to this single agency exercised upon the faith and imagination of the patients, a great number of them were cured, and testified in their several homes the most lively gratitude and respect for their benefactress. In many places the people looked upon her as a saint, and were convinced that she worked miracles. Men of the clearest intellect, occupying the most exalted ranks both in science and in the Church, after visiting her asylum at Mænnedorf, and observing attentively that which occurred there, expressed a highly favourable opinion in respect to Malle. Trudel,
which could not be charged as the effect of superstition, as the popular admiration might reasonably have been. Among these may be numbered Bishop Kapf, of Stuttgard ; De Marriot, of Basle; Professor Tholuck, of Halle; and Monnard, of Bonn; and many others. We can render full justice, with these eminent men, to the self-denial and to the efforts that Mdlle. Trudel makes to implant religious convictions in the minds of her patients, and to lead thus, by restoring to them that composure which they have lost, to the physical cure which is the only object of their anxiety in coming to Mennedorf.
It is not denied that patients have left Mdlle. Trudel uncured. In allowing this, we only admit that she has not discovered, more than the gentlemen of the faculty, a universal remedy; but numerous declarations of practising physicians will not permit a doubt on the fact of the cures obtained.
As to the judgment of the Court of Zurich, whatever may be the opinion formed of Malle. Trudel and of the efficacy of her prayers
, of her anointings and her imposition of hands, it appears to us that judicial processes and the intervention of prefects and gendarmes are not the right means to dissipate facts which definitively rest on a religious conviction. On such subjects, an appearance of persecution only increases the energy of the popular feeling. It would, besides, be difficult to interdict prayer by the side of the bed of a sick patient, as a violation of the laws which make the art of healing a privilege guaranteed by the state, or at the very least this part (ce role) played by a state, in which Christianity is freely professed, would be too strange not to excite the instinctive reprobation of the public conscience. In the asylum of Mænnedorf there is no pecuniary speculation to invite the intervention of the police laws. Malle. Trudel seeks no worldly gain in this remarkable hospital. She only obeys a kind of religious mission : all the witnesses testify to the fuct that she receives the poor (absolutement gratuitment) without the smallest payment, and that she only accepts from persons in moderate or comfortable circumstances the moderate sum of from four to ten francs (3s. 4d. to 8s. 4d. per week.)
We have given above a summary of the facts of the case as they were reported by a political journal which was entirely neuter on the question. They fully agree with the recital of our correspondent, and lend an unexpected confirmation of his testimony. He writes :
You have expressed a desire to have some account of a visit I paid to Mdlle. Trudel at Monnedorf. I send it to you with so much more pleasure, as it may help you to form a just idea of the person of whom so much is spoken, and of whom such opposite judgments are formed. I went there without being sick either in body or mind, and with the full intention to see with my own
eyes, and to allow nothing to bias my judgment; therefore, I wils describe to you only that which I have myself seen.
I reached Mdlle. Trudel's, at Mænnedorf, about nine o'clock in the morning, where, perceiving that a meeting was being held, I waited with others at the door of the hall; the windows were all open, and the forms filled with patients—lame children, ladies dressed in silk, men with crutches, women knitting, blind of both
Not a word from the person who conducted the meeting escaped me; it was a female voice, in a dialect half Zurich, halt good German. I could not suppress a singular impression in hearing a woman speak in public to 150 or 200 auditors, for I had not time to determine if this was suitable or not, for the manner in which Malle. Trudel explained and applied the word of God was so remarkable, so suitable, so profound, and went so direct to the heart, that my spirit was captivated. Those who surrounded me had contentment and happiness sparkling in every countenance. All knelt at the offering up of prayer; it was the most fervent, at the same time the most simple, prayer; not a word that every other child of God might not also have offered, but that which did good was that intimacy with the Lord, that assurance of being accepted (exaucé), and that heart so full of compassion and of love. I said to myself
, this is the faith wbich renders present the things which one hopes for, and is a demonstration of things which are unseen.'
After the meeting, several persons passed round the pulpit, with open Bibles in their hands, to ask for passages to meditate upon. Malle. Trudel drew them by lot; each one read his aloud, and she added some affectionate words. In order to introduce myself, I also asked for one. She invited me to spend the morning with her, and took me by the hand. I expected that we should be alone, but two ladies had already taken their places, to write letters that Mdlle. Trudel dictated to them almost word by word, still continuing the conversation with me. A mother brought a baby, and laid it upon the table, for the mother (so they generally called her) to lay her hand upon its shrivelled thigh. A girl came also to sit before her, that she might lay the other hand on her bad knees. The postman brought her half-a-dozen letters that I opened and held before her eyes; she read them, communicating to us some passages. Many persons entered, some to ask advice, others to bring her friendly messages, to communicate to her some news, to speak to her of the house arrangements. All this while she dictated the letters, and imposed the two hands, certainly. I said to myself, she is a disciple of Him who was meek and lowly in heart.
The bell rang for dinner, which was served in three rooms, for the number of guests amounted to a hundred. Some youngladies
waited at table ; in general, all the service of the house, and even of the kitchen, is done voluntarily. After the mother had asked a blessing, it was still she who kept up the conversation, still bolding her left hand imposed on the swelled cheek of a lady by the side of her. At two o'clock, the second meeting was held, which she requested me to conduct. At five, a prayer meeting; at eight, a fourth meeting for edification. The chapter for meditation in the morning is that of the words of the day of the Moravian brethren; the evening is that of the text of the brethren ; for the meeting at two o'clock, the portion for meditation is drawn by lot, after sing. ing and prayer. I have rarely seen, as at Mænnedorf, the two qualities of a good meditation united: the reflections are excellent, and they completely exhaust the contents of the chapter. You would be much mistaken by supposing that the auditory is ever tired of edifying itself ; for between the meetings I heard songs of praise echo from one of the chambers ; in another there were prayers; in the great common hall groups read the Bible. Very often, late in the evening, when one might reasonably believe the mother harassed with the fatigues of the day, she pours out her soul in prolonged prayers with those around her.
The next day at breakfast, I learned that Malle. Trudel had been called to a sick person of the village, at two o'clock in the night, and that she remained with him some hours. This happens frequently; often also she gives up her bed to patients. Her sister Catherine, a Martha in the good sense of the word, knows no other pleasure than to look after the house, the fields, and gardens, to employ all her time, and all her activity, for the good of her guests, contenting herself-she, the proprietress-with a small bed on the garret floor. One may learn from the example of these two sisters what it is to bear one another's burdens, but they appear to carry alone the burdens of all and every one. Everybody appears so cheerful; many are even radiant with joy and happiness. Imagine the kitchen, too narrow for a small household, where, however, they prepare three or four meals for three tables; well! the girls who do the work there~ I have more than once noticed are content and joyful, while almost sinking with fatigue. It is one of the blessed fruits that many persons have carried away from this house a more complete self-forgetfulness, a more entire renouncement of her own ease and pleasure, and from henceforth the need to seek her happiness and the element of her life in devoting herself, body and soul, to the service of her neighbour.
The next day, while Malle. Trudel spoke at her morning meeting, she held her hands imposed on the patients placed beside her. One was completely deaf; at the close she applied her watch to her ear and the patient heard it tick. I remarked among the audience a young girl, whose expression, as the meeting finished, became more