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denied, I presume, that this country is There is another most important conon the whole advancing in intelli- sideration for promoting an enlightened gence. The means of improvement ministry. Religious teachers there cer
liberally and more general- tainly will be of one description or othly afforded to the young than in for- er; and if men of well furnished minds mer times. A closer connexion sub- cannot be found for this office, we sists with the cultivated minds in oth- shall be overwhelmed by the ignorant er countries. A variety of institu- and fanatical. The human heart is tions are awakening our powers, and disposed by its very nature to religious communicating a degree of general impressions, and it wants guidance, knowledge, which was not formerly wants direction, wants the light and diffused among us. · Taste is more ex- fervour of other minds, in this most tensively cultivated, and the finest interesting
Conscious of productions of polite literature findweakness, and delighting in excite. their way into many of our families. ment, it will follow the blindest guide, Now in this state of things, in this in- who speaks with confidence of his creasing activity of intellect, there is communications with God, rather than peculiar need of an enlightened min- advance alone in the religious life. istry. Religion should not be left to An enlightened ministry is the only feeble and ignorant advocates, to men barrier against fanaticism. Remove of narrow and unfurnished minds. Its this, and popular enthusiasts would ministers should be practical proofs, sweep away the multitude as with a that it may be connected with the no- torrent, would operate with an unre. blest improvements of the under- sisted power on the ardent imaginastanding; and they should be able to tion of youth, and on the devotional convert into weapons for its defence susceptibility of woman, and would the discoveries of philosophy, and the even prostrate cultivated minds, in speculations of genius. Religion must which feeling is the most prominent be adapted in its mode of exhibition to trait. Few of us consider the prone. the state of society. The form in ness of the human heart to extrava. which we presens it to the infant will gance and fanaticism, or how much not satisfy and interest the advanced we are all indebted for our safety to understanding. In the same manner, the good sense and intellectual and rea if in a cultivated age religious in- 'ligious improvement of ministers of struction does not partake the general religion. elevation, it will be slighted by the Ignorant ministers are driven al. very minds whose influence it is most most by necessity to fanaticism. Undesirable to engage on the side of vir- able to interest their hearers by ap. tue and piety.
peals to the understanding, and by I have observed, that an enlightened clear and judicious and affecting de nge requires an enlightened ministry. lineations of religion, they can only On the other hand it may be observ. acquire and maintain the ascendancy "ed, that an enlightened mististry is a which is so dear to them, by inflaming powerful agent in continuing and ac- the passions, by exciting a distempercelerating the progress of light, of re- ed and ungoverned sensibility, and by finement, and of all social improve. perpetuating ignorance and errour. ments. The limits of this essay will Every man of observation must have not admit the full development of seen melancholy illustrations of this this sentiment. I will only observe, truth, and what an argument does it that perhaps the most reflecting men afford in favor of an enlightened are not aware how far a society is in- ministry! debted for activity of intellect, delica- Nothing more is needed to show the ey of manners, and the strength of all great interest which the community its institutions, to the silent, sul tle in- ought to feel in the education of young fluence of the thoughts and feelings, men for the ministry. But it will be which ate kept alive in the breasts of asked, Are not our present means sufmultitudes by religious instruction. ficient? Are not our pulpits filled with
well furnished and enlightened teach- overstocked, whilst the supply vastly ers? Why seek to obtain additional surpasses the demand, the profession aids for this important end? I answer, of the ministry is comparatively de. first, that a sufficient number of en- serted, and candidates of respectable lightened ministers is not trained for standing, instead of obtruding them. our pulpits. There is a demand be. selves in crowds, are often to be yond the supply, even if we look no sought with a degree of care and dif. further than this Commonwealth; and ficulty. if we look through the whole country, The reason of this is to be found in we shall see an immense tract of the the difference between the ministry spiritual vineyard uncultivated, and and other professions. Other profesuncultivated for want of laborers. sions hold out the strong lures of prof. I answer, in the second place, that it and distinction. They appeal to whilst in our pulpits we have minis- 'the ambition, the love of gain, the de. ters whose gifts and endowments en- sire of rising in the world, which are title them to respect, we yet need and so operative on youthful minds. These ought to possess a more enlightened lures are not, and ought not to be, ex. ministry. Many of our religious hibited by the ministry. This profes. teachers will lament to us the deficien- sion makes its chief appeal to the morcies of their education, will lamental and religious feelings of the young, that the narrowness of their circum- and we all know how much fuinter stances compelled them to too early these are than those which I have pre. an entrance on their work, will lament viously mentioned. Can we wonder that they were deprived by the imper, then that the ministry is less crowd fection of our institutions, of many aids ed? which the preparation for the ministry I proceed to another remark. The requires. We have indeed many good professions of law and medicine do ministers. But we ought to have bet- not imperiously demand any high ter. We may have better. But un. moral qualitications in those who emless we will sow more liberally, we brace them. A young man, whose cannot expect a richer harvest. The habits are not altogether pure, or education of ministers decides very whose character is marked by levity, much their future character, and may enter on the study of these prowhere this is incomplete, we must not fessions, without incurring the reexpect to be blessed with powerful proach of impropriety or inconsistenand impressive instruction. The sum cy of conduct. The ministry, on the is, we need an increase of the means other hand, demands not merely unof theological education.
exceptionable morals, but a sobriety But it will be asked, Why shall we ad. and seriousness of mind, and a provance funds for the education of minis- pensity to contemplative and devout ters, rather than of physicians or law- habits, which are not the ordinary yers? Why are such peculiar aids and characteristics of that age, when & encouragements needed for this profes- choice must be made of the business sion? Will not the demand for ministers of life. On this account the number obtain a supply, just as the demand for of the young, who are inclined by their every other species of talent? This rea- own feelings and advised by others to soning is founded on a principle gener- enter the ministry, is comparatively ally true, that demand creates a sup- small. ply; but every gencral rule has its · I am now led to another reflection, exceptions, and it is one of the high- growing out of the last. The profes. est offices of practical wisdom to dis- sion of the ministry has an aspect not cern the cases where the rule fails in inviting to the young. Youth is the its application.
period of animation and gaiety. But All reasoning should give place to to the hasty observation of youth, fact. Now it is an undeniable fact, there is a gloominess, a solemnity, a that whilst the other learned profes. painful self
restraint belonging to the sions in our country are crowded and life of a minister. Even young men
of pure morals and of devotional sus- didate for the ministry cannot borrow ceptibility shrink from an employment, money to defray the charges of his ed. which they think will separate them ucation? I answer, it is not always ea: from the world, and impose a rigorous sy for him to borrow. Besides a debt discipline and painful circumspection. is a most distressing incumbrance to That path, which they would proba- a man, who has a prospect of a salary. bly find most tranquil and most How- so small, that, without exertions fore ery, seems to them beset with thorns. eign to his profession, it will hardly Do we not see many obstruct¡ons to a support him. Can we wonder that the sufficient supply of students of theol. profession is declined in preference to ogy?
such a burden? I now proceed to another most im Where this burden however is cho, portant consideration. We have seen, şen, the effect is very unhappy, and that a large number of young men, the cause of religion is often a suffer. whose tastes and feelings lead them er. The candidate, unwilling to conto the ministry, is not to be expected. tract a larger debt than is indispen. It is also a fact, and a very decisive sable to his object, hurries through fact, that those young men who possess his studies, and enters unfurnished these tastes and feelings generally be: and unprepared on the ministry. His long to families, whose circumstances first care is, as it should be, to free are confined, and whose means of edu- himself from his pecuniary obligations; eating their children are exceedingly and for this end he endeavours to
The children of the rich, unite some secular employment with born to prospects of ease, and formed his sacred calling. In this way the to gaiety if not licentiousness by in- spirit of study and of his profession is dulgence, have little relish for the damped. Hé forms negligent habits ministry. On the contrary, the sons in his preparation for the puipit, wbich of poorer families, whose circuinstan- he soon thinks are justified by the ces impose great self restraint, whose wants of a growing family. His im, collegiate education is their whole por- perfect education therefore is never tion, and often demands their own as completed. His mind remains sta. well as their parents' exertions, are tionary, A meagre library, which he naturally formed to greater serious- is unable to enlarge, furnisbes the ness and consideration, and to a wil. weekly food for his pock, who are lingness to meet the toils and uncer- forced to subsist on an uninteresting tainties of the ministry. From this repetition of the same dull thoughts. class of the young, the ministerial pro- This is the melancholy history of fession does accordingly receive its too many who enter the ministry. largest supplies. Do we not at once Few young men among us are in fact discover from this statement, that this sufficiently prepared, and the conse. profession demands from the commu- quence is, that religious instruction is nity peculiar encouragements?-Let not what it should be. The commu. me briefly repeat what I have said. nity at large cannot perhaps underFrom the nature of the ministry, a stand how extensive a preparation small proportion of the young are dis- the ministry requires. There is one posed or fitted to enter it, and of this idea however which should teach small number a considerable part are them, that it ought to be more extenunable to defray the expenses of their şive than that which is demanded for education; and yet the community has any other profession. A lawyer and the highest possible interest in giving physician þegin their employments them the best education which the with a small number of clients or paimprovements of the age and the op- tients, and their practice is confined plence of the country will admit. Is it to the least important cases within not as clear as noon day, that there their respective departments. They ought to be provided liberal funds for have therefore much leisure for prethis most valuable object?
paration after entering on their pur. Will it lere bę asked, why the can- suits, and gradually rise into publick
notice. Not so the minister. He en- could not prevail. The funds of this ters at once on the stage. All the due institution are indeed respectable; but ties of a parish immediately devolve they are already appropriated by the upon him. His connexion at the first donors, or required by the general moment extends to as large a number system of liberal education for the supas he will ever be called to serve. His port of existing establishments, and" station is at first conspicuous. He is very little can be furnished from its literally burdened and pressed with resources for the great end which has duties. The mere labour of compos- now been recommended. The assist. ing as many sermons as are demanded ance afforded to students in theology of him is enough to exhaust his time is very limited, and not one professorand strength. "If then his education, ship has as yet been established exhas been deficient, how is it to be re. pressly for aiding their preparation for paired? Amidst these disadvantages, the ministry.t The Hollis Professor can we wonder that the mind loses its of Divinity, and other Professors' of spring, and soon becomes satisfied the University, do indeed cheerfully with very humble productions. How contribute to this object, as far as important is it, that a good foundation their prescribed duties permit. But should be laid, that the theological as their offices respect primarily the student should have time to accumu. undergraduates, they can render little late some intellectual treasures, and service in proportion to the demands that he should be trained under cir- of this most important end, cumstances most suited to give him Two professorships are immediately an unconquerable love of his profes- wanted at the University. The first sion, of study, and of the cause to is a professorship of Sacred Literature, which he is devoted!
designed to introcluce students to the These remarks, it is hoped, will original languages, in which the . show the importance of liberally en- Scriptures were written, and to the dowing a theological institution. It various sources of light and informanow only remains to consider this ob. tion, which are required to the interject in relation to Harvard University. pretation of the Scriptures. A very mistaken opinion is sometimes Another professorship, still more expressed, that this University is suf- necessary, should embrace for its obficiently opulent to accomplish any jects sacred eloquence, and instruction object, without further publick assis., in pastoral duty. It should be designtance. A more erroneous sentimented to instruct candidates for the min.
* The offices at the College are all necessary or useful, and these cannot be maintained without considerable assessments on the students. Large expen. ditures récently in building University Hall and in repairs of the other edific. es, in making two new permanent establishments for instruction, a new Philos. ophy Room, and in an extension of the Chemical and Anatomical establishment at College, with losses during the unsettled state of public affairs, have made large deductions from the College funds. Of the liberal and important grant from the Legislature, a qnarter part is by law to be applied to lessen the fees of tuition of a certain nunber of students. The other portion of this grant, received for the first two years and a half, is absorbed by the erection of the Massachusetts Medical College in Boston; and the receipts hereafter will be needed for the erection of one or more Colleges for the habitation of students, and for other valuable general purposes.
† A good deal has been recently done towards a supply of this deficiency by the Dexter foundation for lectures and dissertations on the interpretation of the scriptures, by a donation of a township of land by Samuel Parkman Esq. for: a Theological Professor for students in divinity, and by the Professorship of Greek Literature. But in order to render what has been already done effectn.. l, the additional means of education, bere suggested, sre essential.
istry in the composition and delivery It is not intended that the course of of sermons, and in the best methods instruction given to the undergradu. of impressing the human mind, and ates shall be in any degree affected by to awaken an enlightened zeal and ar- the proposed extension of the theodour in the performance of all the of- logical department. The University fices of ministerial life. What seri- in consequence of this extension will ous and reflecting man is not often re- not become a Theological College, minded on the Sabbath of the painful any more than it became a Medical truth, that some institution is needed College when the several medical proto train our ministers for the impres- fessorships were founded. It is well sive and effectual discharge of their known, that in the distinguished Uniduties! How much ability is lost, versities of Europe ample provision wasted, for want of the discipline is made for preparing students for which has now been recommended. every profession. This we trust will
We want not only these professor. be the glory of Harvard. We hope to ships. We want funds to enable our see an institution for Law as well as young men to devote a longer period for Medicine and Theology, so that to preparation for the ministry. thus our alma mater, our beloved and
These additions to the establish. venerable parent, will send forth sons, ments at Cambridge, especially the furnished for honourable and useful foundations for assisting students in action in all the liberal professions and divinity to reside there for a proper in every distinguished walk of life. time, would secure to the community Let her grateful children never rest the full benefit of the many advanta. till this hope be accomplished. ges already possessed by the univer. It may be proper to mention, that sity for theological education, partic- the object which has now been reularly its large and excellent Library. commended is not of recent sugges. How great a blessing will be conferred tion. The late Chief Justice Parsons on the church, if these aids are pro- communicated to a friend an address vided! We are apt to consider these to the publick on this very subject, as aids for Students in Theology. prepared by the late Rev. Mr. BuckThey are aids for ourselves, and for minster. The Chief Justice expresse our children, who are to sit under the ed an unusual interest in the object, instruction of those, who may thus be and observed, that a man in the last trained, and who will be unspeakable hours of life must derive great conso. gainers from our own bounty. The lation from recollecting that he had cause is our own and our children's. contributed to its completion. The reaLet us not betray it by supineness, or sons of its postponement to the present a contracted mind.
time were the peculiar circumstances It ought to be particularly observ. of the country. ed, that the consequence of enlarging These remarks are respectfully subthe theological funds of the Universi- mitted to the friends of Harvard Unity will not be the communication of a' versity, of an enlightened ministry, of sectarian character to that institution. free inquiry, and of pure Christianity. The design is not to inculcate the Let them be weighed with seriouspeculiarities of any sect, but to place ness, and it is hoped, that they will students of divinity under the most awaken some interest in the best and favorable circumstances for inquir- noblest cause, which human benevoing for themselves into the doctrines lence is permitted to advance. of revelation.
LETTER FROM LORD TEIGNMOUTH.
London, July 28, 1815. ure, the earliest opportunity of ac: SIR,
knowledging the receipt of your oblig: I embrace with the greatest pleas. ing letter of the 31st of May last.