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WAR and rumours of war, -- nation rising against nation, -- these fulfilled and yet threatening disasters have culminated in the worst disaster of all, the "passing" of the greatest, purest, best and most blameless Monarch in our history. England's Queen is dead! The words sound as heavily as though one should say, "The sun is no longer in the sky!" Strange indeed it is to think of England without the MOther-Queen of the great British people; -- to realize that she, the gentle and beneficent Lady of the Land, has left us for ever! We had grown to think of her as almost immortal. Her goodness, her sympathy, were so much part of ourselves, and were so deeply entwined in the very heart and life and soul of the nation, that we have seldom allowed ourselves to think of the possibility of her being taken from us. Always apparently "well," -- never permitting her subjects to think there was anything the matter with her, -- bearing bravely such trials and bereavements as would have broken down the health and nerve of many a stronger and younger woman, she was always, as it seemed, ready to our call. We -- spoilt children of long-favouring fortune -- had grown accustomed to believe she would always be thus "ready," -- that our constant prayer and chant which all we in our generation have sung since we were children, "God Save the Queen!" would be so potent and persuasive as to altogether disarm the one invincible Angel who, when the hour of his solemn visitation comes, will take no denial, but "Beckons, and with inverted torch doth stand To lead us with a gentle hand Into the Land of the Great Departed, Into the Silent Land." Thither she has gone, the great MOther of a great people; a people growing out like their own English oaks, far and wide, taking broad root and spreading mighty branches in all lands -- just as her new Empire of the South has been affixed like anOther jewel to her crown, she has put off the earthly diadem and robes of earthly state and has "passed" into that higher condition of being, wherein all things that seemed sorrows become joys, and where eyes grown blind, perchance with tears for lost and loved ones, suddenly see "not as in a glass darkly, but face to face." We grieve for the loss of our beloved Monarch because it is a most personal loss, -- one which is irreparable, and which will tell on the English Empire for many years to come. But we do not grieve for her death, because we know, not only through the Christian faith, but also through the wondrous workings of Science and its recent heaven-sent discoveries, that there is no such thing as Death. We know that when the soul is ready for Heaven, the body drops from that radiant Essence like the husk from ripe corn, and sets it free to an eternity of endless joy, work and wisdom; and we are beginning to learn that all our trials and difficulties in this world, be they the trials and difficulties of an exalted position or an humble one, are but the necessary preparation for this divinely-ordained consummation. The Queen, our MOther and our Friend, lived her life with a noble simplicity commanding the admiration of the world. She accepted her many bereavements with a patience and dignity which silently expressed to all who cared to note it, the purity of her faith in God. Occupying the proudest position on earth, her days were passed in the quietest pleasures, -- and she stood before us, a daily unmatched example of the inestimable value of Home and home-life, with all its peaceful surroundings and sacred influences.

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