Welsh Journals

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Vol. III. New Series. DECEMBER, 1907. No. 12. A Great Gathering. REFER to the Disestablish¬ ment Convention in Cardiff on the 10th of October. Aye, verily, a great gathering ! If greatness is to be gauged by numbers, by earnestness, by intelligence, by high resolve, then I claim that this gather¬ ing was great indeed. Wood Street Chanel is one of the largest buildings in South Wales, and it was filled on that day with broad-browed, high- thoughted resolute Nonconformists from all parts of the Principality. One of the finest sights my eyes ever feasted upon ! Old men, young men ; veterans, youngsters : captains of the old guard, sturdy fighters of the rank and file ; men who had marched step-to-step with Henry Richard and Thomas dee, men who are now abreast of to-day; there they were, grey with age, grand with youth, rows upon rows, pews upon pews, of them. The spirit of the past is with us still. It was a religious gathering. True, we touched that fiery point where religion and politics meet, because we were dealing with a religious question that awaits settlement by political hands ; but never for a moment did politics outrule religion. We started with a hymn and a prayer. The hymn was noble ; its majesty of crescent note was a start of most moving grace. The spirit of the prayer—reverence, humility, beseechment— hovered over all the meeting. No man wanted to be aught but patient, and mightily passive. It is the religious spirit that will settle this question of Disestablishment. May we move on, handling the trouble in the fear of God. It cannot be denied that the meeting had perilous possibilities. It might have ended in red ruin. There was fire in many hearts ; many a delegate was a dangerous explosive. A spark—a too flaming utterance—a badly flung shell—well, I know not what might have happened. But, in the good hand of God, the possibilities were overthralled for most effectual unity. Just enough was said. Enough criticism to sting, yet not enough to poison ! Enough heat to flame, but net to destroy ! And the meeting ended in a surge of enthusiasm. In writing thus, I am mixing my meta¬ phor's unpardonably, and some readers would