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hopeless situation, suicide or prostitution is the alternative to which she is reduced. Thus, the very possibility of repentance is almost cut off; unless it be such repentance as may be exercised by the terrified sinner in her last agonies, perishing in the open streets, under the merciless pelting of the elements, of cold and hunger and a broken heart. And yet the youth, the inexperience, the gentle manners once, of many of these miserable victims of man's seduction, plead hard for mercy, if mercy might be consistent with the safety of the treasure we so sternly guard. We have high authority to say, that these fallen women are not of all sinners the most incapable of penitence not the most unlikely to be touched with a sense of their guilt—not the most insusceptible of religious improvement; they are not of all sinners the most without hope, if timely opportunity of repentance were afforded them: Sinners such as these, upon John the Baptist's first preaching, found their way into the kingdom of heaven before the Pharisees, with all their outward show of sanctity and self-denial.
This declaration of our Lord justifies the views of this charitable institution, which provides a retreat for these wretched outcasts of society, not for those only who by a single fault, seldom without its extenuations, have forfeited the protection of their nearest friends; but even for those, generally the most unpitied but not always the most undeserving of pity among the daughters of Eve, whom desperation, the effect of their first false step, hath driven to the lowest walks of vulgar prostitution. In the retirement of this peaceful mansion.
withdrawn from the temptations of the world -concealed from the eye of public scorn-protected from the insulting tongue of obloquy-provided with the necessaries of life, though denied its luxuries furnished with religious instruction, and with employment suited to their several abilities - they have leisure to reflect on their past follies; they are rescued from despair, that worst enemy of the sinner's soul; they are placed in a situation to recover their lost habits of virtuous industry the softness of their native manners, and to make their peace with their offended God.
The best commendation of this charity is the success with which its endeavours, by God's blessing, have been crowned. Of three thousand women admitted since the first institution, two-thirds, upon a probable computation formed upon the average of four years, have been saved from the gulf in which they had well nigh sunk, restored to the esteem of their friends, to the respect of the world, to the comforts of the present life, and raised from the death of sin unto the life of righteousness and the hope of a glorious immortality.
Happier far their lot than that of their base seducers! who, not checked, like these, in their career of guilty pleasure, by any frowns or censures of the world, "have rejoiced themselves in their youth" without restraint" have walked," without fear and without thought," in the ways of their heart, and in the sight of their eyes" and at last perhaps solace the wretched decrepitude of a vicious old age with a proud recollection of the triumphs of their early manhood over unsuspecting woman's frailty; nor have once paused to recollect, that "God
for these things will bring them into judg
But with Him is laid
up the cause of ruined innocence: He hath said, and he
will make it good,
"Vengeance is mine,
and I will repay."
ROMANS, xiii. 1.
Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers.
THE freedom of dispute, in which for several years past it hath been the folly in this country to indulge, upon matters of such high importance as the origin of government and the authority of sovereigns, -the futility of the principles which the assertors, as they have been deemed, of the natural rights of men, allege as the foundation of that semblance of power which they would be thought willing to leave in the hands of the supreme magistrate, (prin
* Preached before the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, January 30. 1793; being the Anniversary of the Martyrdom of King Charles the First.