This Week In Brooklin History

110 years ago this week
August 26, 1887

Children have their own way

From the Brooklin column in the August 26, 1887, Whitby Chronicle:


The railway authorities have made some needed repairs in connection with Brooklin station. Its walls and ceilings have been nicely calcimized and a new platform has been built.

Professor Wyatt has been training a class of Brooklin singers for the past six weeks in the oratorio of Queen Esther which will be rendered on Thursday and Friday evenings of this week. No doubt it will be very interesting and attractive as both teacher and class are hard to equal and impossible to beat in any town in the province. Come and hear and be convinced.

It is the habit of many young people to visit the Salvation barracks after service in their own churches is over. Some of the young ladies and gentlemen don't act within the bounds of propriety. The parents of these offending ones would be very much grieved and mortified if they were aware of the affair. No man, woman or child can enter a place of worship and act in an unseemly manner without losing modesty, virtue and self-respect. I believe thoughtlessness is at the the bottom of frivolous conduct nearly always; but surely our young ladies know and hear enough of their Saviour to reverence and love his name and to act in a strictly decorous manner in any religious meeting. I wonder if parents are not most to blame. Are not children allowed to have their own way too much? Isn't it resulting in fowardness, irreverence, disobedience, and slackness of filial love? It is a maxim of this age to govern the children by love, by moral suasion. Is it not possible to carry this too far? Is it not being carried too far by many parents? Are the children not taking advantage of the kindness and laxity of the parents to rush into dangerous paths? I hate severe measures and believe them wrong -- except rarely -- and ineffective and unchristian. What the parent of this age lacks most is, I believe, firmness. His affection overrides every other consideration. Is the training we are giving our children such as to make them modest, respectful, thoughtful, truthful and kind. If it is, it is right and the parent whose children are as above is to be envied and praised. If it is not, then our training must be wrong. Can anyone answer the question, how can we train our children so as to make them what they ought to be? I fear not. Many theories have been advanced. Severe restraint won't do it, neither will unlimited liberty produce the desired result. Will a middle course do? I think it preferable and more likely to be successful. I wonder if each parent thinks of the mighty importance of properly training his children as often as he ought to. The world is full of destructive allurements and demoralizing tendencies. Are we not criminal if we neglect to arm our children for the ups and downs of life? We try to instil the scripture teachings into their minds; but do we succeed? Do parents at home and teachers in Sabbath school press the question of personal adoption of Bible teachings into the minds of children or pupils? If they do I think there are better results possible; if they don't, isn't it imperative on them to do so always? I am not finding faults with any-body. I have been thinking on this question off and on for two weeks. The Rev. Mr. Philp adverted to it in one of his admirable sermons of late. He said disobedience was the great curse of the age and country. I believe he is right. What can we do to improve the situation. Our children parade the streets too much for one thing. A street education is a soul destroyer. Children ought to be compelled or allowed, as the case may be, to read useful, interesting books and papers daily if possible, weekly at any rate. A parent should know his children's associates. If evil or undesireable results are likely to follow from them, then exercise parental authority and break the association. In conclusion all I can say is, it is a good problem. All must try to solve it, I hope all will solve it with more success than failure. But let me say, boys and girls, when you go to the barracks or any other other place of worship, remember the Almighty and Eternal God is present to approve or disapprove.

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