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recognized, make real that unity which so largely constitutes the strength and usefulness of the Church. This necessity is illustrated by that which led to the organization of the Sunday-schools. Its work is a substitution for one feature of neglected home duty. It may be said, and that not without cause, that owing to lax family training, it has become a necessity in the Church. Family teaching and public catechizing are almost obsolete. Hence parental and pastoral duty, in this regard, have become practically delegated functions.
The Sunday school teacher occupies an anomalous position. He assumes a responsibility which is not natural, viz., that of caring for others' children. He teaches from a sense of duty, and necessarily lacks the authority and interest which the parent is supposed to have in the religious training of his children. But he knows, also, that, as a rule, religion is not taught nowadays in the family, and that many of the children under his charge come from godless homes. He does simply what he can under the circumstances; hands tied and often niuch discouraged in his work and labor of love. But it is a work that must be done. The sadly changed. condition of Church and home life demands an intelligent recognition of the im. portance of Sunday-schools, and therefore the subject is of great importance, but fraught with difficulties. The proper instruction of the young is a mat. ter of great moment, and such instruction depends upon the qualifications of the teacher. How are they to be fitted for so responsible a position ?
Perhaps the organization of a so-called normal class might answer the question. But right here is difficulty to be met. How comprehensive shall such a class be made? To cover the whole ground of desired information it must of necessity be very extensive, and require considerable time and study for even an intelligent understanding of the subjects. There must be studied the Bible itself, Church History, the Prayer Book, Evidences, Reason for the Church or for Being a Churchman. Anything less than this would leave the teacher incompletely furnished with requisite knowl. edge. But, again, another difficulty thrusts itself into notice. Will the Rector into whose hands the matter would fall have the time to devote to this work ? Are not his hands already full ? And then, again, house. keepers, business men, school teachers, and school misses, who compose the working force of most Sunday-schools, will not be likely to give the time and thought that are necessary for such an undertaking. And so one might go on and enumerate difficulty after difficulty which surrounds this important matter of Sunday-school work and come back to the question which confronts us as a Diocese, as a Church: “ How is it possible to make the work of the Sunday-school more effective, that it may more fully fullfil the purpose which called it into existence—the careful training of the young for active, intelligent Church membership ?” Does it not demand, first, recognition of duty, and, second, a willingness to make all necessary sacri. fice to meet its demands.
That this Diocese may put itself on record, at least, that it recognizes the importance of Sunday school work, your committee submit the following resolutions:
1. Resolved, That the Rector or Minister in charge of each Parish or Mission be Superintendent of the Sunday-school, who shall have the whole oversight of the work of the same, such as appointing assistants and teachers, and the system of instruction.
2. Resolved, That we recognize the great importance of constituting the Word of God, the Church Catechism and the Prayer Book the basis of Sunday-school instruction.
3. Resolved, That no person shall be deemed qualified to act as a teacher who has not received Christian baptism.
4. Resolved, That increased efforts be made to deepen the spiritual life of the teachers, as their godly influence over the scholars depends largely upon the extent in which the truths taught influence and fashion their own individual lives.
5. Resolved, That we recommend that the Rector, where it is possible, or some person appointed by him, meet the teachers once a week for the study and preparation of the lesson.
6. Resolved, That we recommend the frequent holding of Children's Services, in which catechising shall be a prominent feature.
. 7. Resolved, That at the meeting of all Diocesan Convocations, a definite time be set apart for the consideration of Sunday-school work, with a special service for the children of the Parish or Mission station in which the Convo. cation is held, at which time reports from superintendents of schools shall be presented.
8. Resolved, That the Rector or Minister in charge of each parish or mission station be asked to conduct normal classes for Sunday-school teachers, looking to the better qualification of them for their duties, and that the course of instruction include such subjects as Christian Evidences, Church History, The Canon and Inspiration of Holy Scripture, Liturgics, and Systematic Divinity.
ISAAC H. KIERSTED,
On motion of Rev. L. F. Cole, the subject of the resolution was referred to the Committee on Canons.
The second resolution was adopted.
Mr. J. J. Bingham moved to refer the subject to the Committee on Canons.
On motion of the Rev. J. J. Faude, Mr. Bingham's motion was laid on the table.
The Rev. Charles Morris moved to amend the third resolution to read : “who are communicants," which was not adopted.
A motion to adopt the third resolution was not adopted.
The fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth resolutions were adopted.
The Rev. J. J. Faude presented the following, and the resolution there in contained was adopted :
The Indiana Commissioners of the American Church Building Fund beg leave to call the attention of this Convention, and, through it, the at. tention of the Churchmen of Indiana, to the progress of the Commission and the growth of the fund.
of the whole fund aimed at-ore million dollars—there has been contributed about $135,000. The large amount of this which has been contributed during the past two years shows an awakening to the importance o the fund. This awakening has been quite as noticeable in Indiana as elsewhere. Down to January 1, 1887, Indiana had sent $177.05. In 1885 no parish in this Diocese contributed. In 1886 one parish contributed, while in 1887, fourteen parishes contributed. During the past year there has been sent by Indiana parishes $184.18, making a total for this Diocese, since 1880, of $392.01.
With the many home claims this Diocese has, it is not to be expected that great things should be done by way of increasing this fund, but a single collection annually from each parish would bring most gratifying results. Such collection has been recommended by the General Convention, by the Bishops individually, and by our own Convention in the past.
Your committee recommend the adoption of the following resolution :
Resolved, That this Convention, realizing the importance and necessity of the aim of the American Church Building Fund Commission, urges upon each parish and mission in the Diocese of Indiana an annual offering for the fund.
J. J. FAUDE.
The Rev. J. J. Faude submitted the following report of the Committee on Lay Work, the resolutions therein contained being adopted.
Until very recent years the manifest zeal of the men of the Church was confined, so far as Christ and His Church were concerned, almost exclusively to their payment of pew rents and attendance at the Church's services, together with an occasional vestry-meeting or Convention. The women were expected to be helpers of the clergy—the workers of the Church. Men were supposed to be. too much occupied in earning their daily bread to work in the vineyard of the Lord, and Church work had come to be looked upon, as in the line of ästhetics, well enough for women, but beneath the attention of men.
The tendency of this state of affairs has been not only that little work for Christ was accomplished, in comparison with what might have been done, but that even the confession of Christ before God and man was looked upon as more or less effeminate, and so in our Church few men were seen at the services, and sewer still at her confirmations and her altars.
Perhaps the Church had for a long time been emphasizing the sacredness of the ministry to the forgetfulness of the priesthood of the laity. However this may be, we who live in the age of work can best do our duty by remedying present defects instead of bewailing the past.
But the better day is already dawning. When the General Convention permitted the Bishops to license lay preachers, a step was taken whose farreaching importance is even yet but imperfectly understood. It is too early to look for fruits from this new departure; the clergy themselves do not in all cases understand how powerful an instrument is now in their hands. But if it shall suggest that in every parish there ought to be a number of men study. ing the Bible, the Prayer Book and the Church with a special view to their “ delivering addresses and exhortations," as they may be needed, the best preparation for a great work by lay preachers will be made. Such men would be useful as helpers to the clergy in their parish churches, as pioneers in the many fields where now we have no missionaries, and, in our larger cities, in starting mission churches. In this connection may be mentioned the “ Brotherhood of Lay Readers,” some of whose stated objects are: "To aid in the extension of Christ's Church in the United States of America ; to encourage loyalty to the Church and reverence for sacred things, and to pub. lish from time to time such information as may be of assistance to the Brotherhood in the discharge of their duties.” Under the auspices of this Brotherhood a very useful “ Manual” for lay readers has been published. W. Thornton Parker, M. D., Newport, R. I, is the Secretary General.
The only organization for laymen's work which has been generally adopted throughout the American Church is the “ Brotherhood of St. An. drew.” In the excellent manual of this organization we are told that on “St. Andrew's Day, 1883, a dozen young men of St. James's Church, Chicago, agreed to pray daily for the spread of Christ's kingdom among young men, and to try and bring each week at least one young man within hearing of the gospel of Jesus Christ.” There are now two hundred chapters of this brotherhood, “with a membership of 4,000 pledged members, and extending from Maine to Washington Territory, and from Minnesota to Florida.” “The given method of service is simple and single, but the spirit of the Brotherhood consecrates to the work all the zeal, tact, common sense and experience of its members. They are fishers of men,' and as time goes by and experience accumulates, all sorts of devices come into play. Visiting committees, hospitality committees, young men's clubs, re. ceptions, Bible classes and special services for men; these are already adopted generally. The work has just begun; it will improve with age.”
Your committee was specially enjoined to consider the work of the Lay Helpers' Association of England." We are informed that “the Lay Help. ers' Association of the Diocese of London, now in its twenty-fourth year, numbers over 5,000 male communicants of that city, with the Bishop of the Diocese at their head. The workers are mostly engaged in aiding the clergy in the variety of operations incident to healthful parish life, their functions ranging from lay readers and Sunday-school workers to treasurers of penny banks and coal clubs. A considerable proportion conduct Church extension work outside of their parishes in the Diocese at large, by means of mission bands of lay helpers, headed by a reader. The missions thus established grow in time to be parishes having clergy; and then the mission band goes on to another site designated for them by Diocesan authority. One mission reader of much success is a retired admiral, another a West End baronet, the members coming from every social grade, and working together with an earnestness and steadiness arising largely from the fact of organization. The helpers partake of the Holy Communion together at stated intervals, and the Association holds gatherings in St. Paul's Cathedral and elsewhere, supplying instructions and free lectures by prominent clergymen, which are open to the public and are adapted to promote intelligent and zealous lay effort. The vast work accomplished annually by this Diocesan body is an eloquent demonstration of what a power for good lies in the hands of the Christian laity. The Association has proved invaluable in the task of evangelizing the masses of London. Similar associations are now in successful existence throughout England, in most of the dioceses, and the movement is deepening and widening. * * * it is to be noted that with the movement has come an awakened attention to the entire question of lay operation, and a considerable increase of lay activity. ## In 1884 the first definite step toward transplanting the lay helpers' movement was taken in the Diocese of Long Island. A beginning was made by the ad. mission of nine gentlemen as lay readers at a simple service in one of the churches of Brooklyn. In 1886, fourteen parishes having joined the move. ment, organization was effected under the name of the Lay Helpers’ Associ.