Page:Life of Octavia Hill as told in her letters.djvu/207

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ON JOINING A NEW SOCIETY

faith. I care very little to express it anywhere but in life. . . . How much these people lose by their omission I believe they will one day know. I think the time will come when all this round world will seem to them mainly precious, because it was made by a Father and redeemed by His Son.

October 30th, 1860.

To Miss M. Howitt.

In these days, when so many conscientious people seem to be seeking over the whole world for some new good work, and cannot see the holiness of that which lies near them, it is very delicious to find people owning their home work as first and most blessed. At the same time, I cannot feel that I should join your Society further than I have joined it already. It feels to me that all people who are obeying the best part of the nature that has been given them, do, more or less, belong to it ; that those, who know from Whom the light proceeds " that lighteth every man that cometh into the world," know themselves to be bound into a society by that gift, by being children of God and heirs of Christ.

Do, dear Maggie, believe that I feel it the greatest honour to have been asked to join your Society, and have great sympathy with you about it.

To Mary Harris.

How the real bond of family re-asserts itself, dominant over fancy, attraction, yes even perhaps, in a measure, over friendship itself ! as tho' it would teach us how tremendous is the botod of duty. Certainly we have duties to our friends too ; but they seem to have more relation to what we feel instinctive longing to do,