The Victorian Parliament has voted an annual grant to our funds, not as a religious endowment, but in recognition of the service which we render in the reclamation of criminals, and what may be called, if I may use a word which has been so depraved by Continental abuse, the moral police of the city. Our Officer in Melbourne has an official position which opens to him almost every State institution and all the haunts of vice where it may be necessary for him to make his way in the search for girls that have been decoyed from home or who have fallen into evil courses.
It is in Victoria also that a system prevails of handing over first offenders to the care of the Salvation Army Officers, placing them in recognizance to come up when called for. An Officer of the Army attends at every Police Court, and the Prison Brigade is always on guard at the gaol doors when the prisoners are discharged. Our Officers also have free access to the prisons, where they can conduct services and labour with the inmates for their Salvation. As Victoria is probably the most democratic of our colonies, and the one in which the working-class has supreme control, the extent to which it has by its government recognised the value of our operations is sufficient to indicate that we have nothing to fear from the opposition of the democracy. In the neighbouring colony of New South Wales a lady has already given us a farm of three hundred acres fully stocked, on which to begin operations with a Farm Colony, and there seems some prospect that the Scheme will get itself into active shape at the other end of the world before it is set agoing in London. The eager welcome which has thus forced the initiative upon our Officers in Melbourne tends to encourage the expectation that the Scheme will be regarded as no quack application, but will be generally taken up and quickly set in operation all round the world.
CHAPTER 8. A PRACTICAL CONCLUSION.
Throughout this book I have more constantly used the first personal pronoun than ever before in anything I have written. I have done this deliberately, not from egotism, but in order to make it more clearly manifest that here is a definite proposal made by an individual who is prepared, if the means are furnished him, to carry it out. At the same time I want it to be clearly understood that it is not in my own strength, nor at my own charge, that I purpose to embark upon this great undertaking. Unless God wills that I should work out the idea of which I believe He has given me the conception, nothing can come of any attempt at its execution but confusion, disaster, and disappointment. But if it be His will--and whether it is or not, visible and manifest tokens will soon be forthcoming--who is there that can stand against it? Trusting in Him for guidance, encouragement, and support, I propose at once to enter upon this formidable campaign.
I do not run without being called. I do not press forward to fill this breach without being urgently pushed from behind. Whether or not, I am called of God, as well as by the agonising cries of suffering men and women and children, He will make plain to me, and to us all; for as Gideon looked for a sign before he, at the bidding of the heavenly messenger, undertook the leading of the chosen people against the hosts of Midian, even so do I look for a sign. Gideon's sign was arbitrary. He selected it. He dictated his own terms; and out of compassion for his halting faith, a sign was given to him, and that twice over. First, his fleece was dry when all the country round was drenched with dew; and, secondly, his fleece was drenched with dew when all the country round was dry.
The sign for which I ask to embolden me to go forwards is single, not double. It is necessary and not arbitrary, and it is one which the veriest sceptic or the most cynical materialist will recognise as sufficient. If I am to work out the Scheme I have outlined in this book, I must have ample means for doing so. How much would be required to establish this Plan of Campaign in all its fulness, overshadowing all the land with its branches laden with all manner of pleasant fruit, I cannot even venture to form a conception. But I have a definite idea as to how much would be required to set it fairly in operation.
Why do I talk about commencing? We have already begun, and that with considerable effect. Our hand has been forced by circumstances. The mere rumour of our undertaking reaching the Antipodes, as before described, called forth such a demonstration of approval that my Officers there were compelled to begin action without waiting orders from home. In this country we have been working on the verge of the deadly morass for some years gone by, and not without marvellous effect. We have our Shelters, our Labour Bureau, our Factory, our Inquiry Officers, our Rescue Homes, our Slum Sisters, and other kindred agencies, all in good going order. The sphere of these operations may be a limited one; still, what we have done already is ample proof that when I propose to do much more I am not speaking without my book; and though the sign I ask for may not be given, I shall go struggling forward on the same lines; still, to seriously take in hand the work which I have sketched out--to establish this triple Colony, with all its affiliated agencies, I must have, at least, a hundred thousand pounds.
A hundred thousand pounds! That is the dew on my fleece. It is not much considering the money that is raised by my poor people for the work of the Salvation Army. The proceeds of the Self-denial Week alone last year brought us in #20,000. This year it will not fall short of #25,000. If our poor people can do so much out of their poverty, I do not think I am making an extravagant demand when I ask that out of the millions of the wealth of the world I raise, as a first instalment, a hundred thousand pounds, and say that I cannot consider myself effectually called to undertake this work unless it is forthcoming.
at our arrival, and said one to the other, “This is the
English Premier League (EPL)
All India Football Federation (AIFF)
President of India
For three weeks Hanson had remained. During this time he