ONE great white sheet of snow has covered the ground for the last fortnight, and has given to our Fen a wild and weird appearance. All work on the land has been at a standstill, and there has been so little work about that it is to be feared, many are feeling the pinch. Still at such times may be seen the great advantage of living in the country over London. Alone and unknown in London in winter without work, a high rent to pay weekly, every mouthful of food, and every stick of firing to be bought and, paid for at the time, is a far more serious matter than shortness of work in the country. Wages may be lower in the country, but poverty as constantly met with in all parts of London during the winter is fortunately quite unknown here. There is always something to fall back upon in a village even if it is but a little.
A number of entries had been received, and everything foreboded a good match, when the frost intervened, and now we must be patient, and await a change of weather.
On Monday, January 25th, the Inspector paid a surprise visit to the mixed and Infant Schools at Downham. He expressed himself quite satisfied with both Schools.
ON Tuesday January 19th, under the auspices of the Cricket Club, a Concert was held in the School. There was a very large attendance, and the performers consisted chiefly of friends from Ely and other places. We are very much obliged to them for coming out to help to enliven our dullness. Our next Concert will be held on 5 Tuesday, March 2nd. We have been very fortunate in being able to provide some kind of entertainment once a month during this winter.
Thanks to those who belong to the Glee Club, and are always ready to- help,- and also to others from outside who so readily respond to our invitation to come and Supplement our own efforts we have had more public entertainment than in any previous winter. Still, it does seem such a pity that those who have the ability do not all join in trying to infuse a little brightness into the quietness of village life. It ought to be a real joy to us to use our talents to give others pleasure. Our entertainments have fortunately nothing to do with any particular religious or political opinions, but are intended to bring about more social unity, and to provide an evening’s enjoyment to as many as desire it.
MR. BULL left Downham for good on Wednesday, January 20th A great many engagements at the last prevented him from paying a farewell visit to all his friends. However, they may be sure that they will all find a place in his daily prayers, and that he will not forget Downham before the Throne..
Mn. B. LEE of Oxlode has presented a new lamp to the church at Pymoor. We feel greatly indebted to him, for it was much needed.
ON Wednesday Evening, February 17th, a Missionary Meeting will be held in the S in connection, with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign parts. An address will be delivered by a Missionary from abroad. He will give us an account of God’s work in the land in which he has been working.
THINGS ABOUT THE PRAYER Box.—What we now call a “Prayer Book” was used in the British Church in the second century, or about 1700 years ago. From then until now at Public Worship a Prayer Book has always been used. There was no Public Worship without a fixed form of prayer. The one we use now can be traced back to a very early date. It has from time to time been altered, but to all intents and purposes it is the same Prayer Book. Three fifths or more than one half Of the Prayer Book is taken from Holy Scripture. One fifth is over 780 years old, and one fifth over 200 years old. Or to put it in another way half the Prayer Book is praise; a quarter is prayer, and a quarter is Reading from Holy Scripture. It contains devotions to be used at Morning and Evening Services, at Baptisms, Confirmation or “laying on of. hands,” Holy Communion, Marriage, Visiting the Sick, Thanksgiving after Child Birth Burial, and Ordination. Also Prayers for special occasions, and some instruction, as the Catechism and Articles of Religion. The use of all these is compulsory upon all Church people.