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“For what was the city of Boston for five heart, and life of my theology. I have been nights under arms; her military on the alert, steeped in Edwards for more than forty years. her citizens enrolled, and a body of five hun. When the theology of these men goes down, dred men patrolling the streets ? Why were I expect the Bible and Christianity will go the accustomed lectures for public worship, down.” and other public secular meetings suspended ? Why were the citizens, at sound of bell, con
As his numerous children, when at vened at mid-day in Faneuil Hall to hear home, were scattered over five States Catholicism eulogized, and thanksgiving of of the Union, he adopted the novel fered to his reverence the bishop for his mer- method of sending a circular letter, of ciful protection of the children of the pil- large size sheet, in which each might grims ? And why, by the cradle of liberty, write a few lines, and send it forward and under the shadow of Bunker Hill, did by mail to another, until the full sheet men turn pale and whisper, and look over came back to him with something from their shoulders and around to ascertain each of his sons and daughters. whether it were safe to speak aloud, or meet
Owing to the failure of Mr. Arthur to worship God? Has it come to this
, that Tappan, in 1837, one half of Dr. B.'s the capital of New England has been thrown salary failed him ; but, by the geninto consternation by the threats of lic mob, and that her temples and mansions erosity of his friends and his parish, stand only through the forbearance of a Cath- the sum was made up, and he was enolic bishop? There can be no liberty in the abled to give his time and personal inpresence of such masses of dark mind, and fluence to the Seminary, until the of such despotic power over it in a single Western College Society was formed, man. Safety on such terms is not the pro- and its own funds became large enough tection of law, but of single-handed despot- for its support. ism. Will our great cities consent to receive In 1838, he took an active part in the protection from the Catholic priesthood, de- formation of the New School body of pendent on the Catholic powers of Europe ?" the Presbyterian Church, and felt that
He succeeded well in his financial the cause of Christ and the welfare of undertaking, and contributed to the a large portion of that great branch of welfare of the institution as well in the church would best be promoted by preaching to rich men in private, as to a separation, when, in spirit, on so poor students in public.
many questions, they were already We have an account of a delightful divided. family meeting, when eleven children After this, he returned to his ordiwere present, and on the Sabbath three nary work of teaching and preaching, of them preached for him. It was lit- and revivals followed his earnest eferally a family circle as they joined forts, both among the students and hands and sung “Old Hundred,” and members of his parish. He thus the Doctor in the middle made them a speaks of systematic theology : speech, and then embraced each child, and then all took of each other a fare
“Why should a topic in theology be exwell kiss, and sung a hymn.
ceedingly distrusted the more it becomes sysIn reply to reports against Dr. tematic ? Are not all the works of God in
the natural world systematic; — the orrery Beecher's soundness at this time, we
of the universe, the anatomy of bodies, plants, have his letter to Dr. Plummer, in and trees, and the chemical laws of matter ? which he says :
And is matter methodized, the mere footstool “Dwight was my theological instructor of immortal mind, while law, and motive, and father; there is no difference in our the- and moral government, and the remedial inology. Edwards, Bellamy, Fuller, and With- fluence of the atonement, and redemption are erspoon have constituted the bone, sinew, thrown heap upon heap in immethodical masses ? And is all approximation to sys- professorship at Lane, and returned to tem in subjects which angels desire to look Boston in 1851. He there resided, into, and which, in their eternal unfoldings, preaching occasionally, and superinare destined to make forever, by the church, tending the publishing of some of his to principalities and powers, the brightest works. In 1856, he removed to Brookmanifestations of the wisdom and the riches lyn, N. Y., and attended upon the of the goodness of God, without foundation, preaching and at the social meetings of revealing only immethodical indiscrimina- his son Henry Ward. His mind gradtion?
ually faded away, until but little intelThe following from a charge to one lect was left; but his calm, spiritual, of his sons, illustrates finely his own benignant countenance remained, and spirit as a preacher :
he passed peacefully away at last into “An ambassador of Jesus Christ to nego. the land of cloudless minds and undetiate a peace between God and man- it is caying powers. the mightiest power God delegates to mor Dr. Brainard furnishes a very intertals. Be strong in the determined purpose. esting letter of reminiscences, and anGive thyself wholly to the work; half a man alyses of his character, talents, and is almost worse than none; the devoted half work. Says one who knew him well :is never but little more than a quarter. Preach not human philosophy, but the
“The thing of all others in him that afgospel. Take heed to thy body; to thy fected me most was, not his intellect, or his mind; to thy heart; to thy doctrine. The imagination, or his emotion ; but the absopower of the heart set on fire by love is the luteness and simplicity of his faith. The ingreatest created power in the universe." tensity and constancy of his faith made
eternal things real to me, and impressed me On the relative merits of Congrega- from childhood with the visionary nature of tionalism and Presbyterianism, he worldly things, so that I never felt any desire says: .
to lay plans for this world.” “I have tried both ways, and I wouldn't It was a sublime sight to see this give a snap between them, though, on the venerable man, with such a life of labor whole, where community is established and and care behind him, stand up in a intelligent, I think the former is rather
crowded lecture-room in Brooklyn, better.”
just trembling, as he was, on the verge We smile as we see him writing a
of heaven, and say, that if the opporlong telegram to send to Thomas in tunity was given him to choose bePhiladelphia, and, when remonstrated tween going to heaven, and living his with for expressing himself so much at life over again in the service of Christ, length when every word costs, making he would enlist again in a minute." a new draft as follows:
This reminds us of another aged “A teacher ease up — rest — sleep - servant of Christ, who, just ready to exercise - cold water — rub— no tobacco - depart, said, “If it was the will of Father -"
God, I should like to renew my comWe see his benevolent heart as he mission to preach the gospel up to the gives his last five dollars to a poor day of judgment.” student, receiving a marriage fee of This is the spirit awakened in the fifty dollars next day, and saying to Christian heart by a study of a life like his wife, “I told you so ; God sent it.” that of Lyman Beecher, and we are
In 1846, he visited England, and at- glad that it has been portrayed to us tended the Temperance Convention, by loving hands, and would recomand the meetings of the “ Christian mend its perusal to all laborers in the Alliance.” In 1850, he resigned his vineyard of Jesus Christ.
THE REV. JAMES WILSON.
A CHAPTER IN THE ECCLESIASTICAL HISTORY OF PROVIDENCE, R. I.
BY REV. S. W. COGGESHALL, D. D., DUXBURY, MASS.
IN 1689, in the wars between Louis er portion of them were removed to the XIV., of France, and the German al- rich lands of the county of Limerick, lies, the Palatinate on the Rhine was in the west of Ireland, made vacant by inhumanly devastated by Marshal the desolating wars of the preceding Duras, under orders from Louis, and reign of William and Mary. Here of which the eloquent Macaulay gives they settled in four small contiguous à graphic account, vol. 3, pp. 97-8, towns, Pallas, Court Maltress, Killi“Fifteen years earlier, Turenne had heen, and Balligarane. “Having no ravaged part of that fine country. But pastors who could speak their own lanthe ravages committed by Turenne, guage, they were without religious inthough they have left a deep stain on struction, for a whole generation, and his glory, were mere sport in compari- had sunk into incredible degradation. son with the horrors of this second de- Drunkenness, profanity, and Sabbathvastation.” A half a million of human breaking had become almost universal beings, by this act of wanton cruelty, among them.” were rendered homeless, with snow on Mr. Wesley, in his almost incredible the ground, in the depth of winter, and evangelical labors, crossed the Irish were scattered through the cities of channel forty-two times, and spent no Protestant Germany, in a state of des- less than six years of his useful and titution and beggary.
laborious life in the Emerald Isle ; and Twenty years after this event, in the unfoldings of a subsequent century 1709, in the reign of Queen Anne, have unequivocally shown that never seven or eight thousand Palatines left was time better or more usefully spent. their impoverished and unhappy coun- In one of his visits, he was amazed to try, possessing the fatal gift of beauty, find these Teutonic settlements in the and situated as it was upon the border midst of their Celtic neighbors, and of the Fader-land, and ever open to the still speaking the language of their incursions of the French, passed down father-land, as well as the English. the Rhine, through Holland, where The labors of himself and his lay they were assisted by their Protestant helpers were soon attended with a brethren, and crossed over into Eng- great blessing among these exiled chilland, and encamped upon Blackheath, dren of the Palatinate, so that he subin the neighborhood of London. sequently declared that “three such
Being in a state of great destitution, towns as Court Maltress, Killiheen, and the following winter, the Parliament Balligarane could hardly be found elsegranted them a relief of £80,000, and where in Ireland or England. There which was an occasion of much mur- was no profanity, no Sabbath-breaking, muring by the Popish and Tory oppo- no drunkenness, no ale-house in any of nents of the government. In the them ; and their diligence had turned spring, three thousand of them were all their land into a garden." removed to the colonies, and whose de- It was from this people, with such a scendants are now among us. Anoth
2 Stevens' Life and Times of Dr. Bangs, 1 Somerville's Life of Queen Anne, p. 365.
pp. 69, 70.
singular character and history, that These were the parents of the Rev., God selected the seed with which to James Wilson, late pastor of the plant a great and powerful church in Beneficent Congregational Church in the then wilderness of the Western Providence. Such was Mr. Wilson's hemisphere. Philip Embury and his ancestry. Humble, indeed, but not associates, who formed the first Meth- without public usefulness and historic odist church in the city of New York, celebrity. Mr. W. was born in the city were of these Palatine Irish. And of Limerick, in 1760. when the first appeared in New York, He was awakened, when eighteen in 1760, bringing their German as well years of age, under the labors of that as English Bibles with them, it excited distinguished Methodist preacher and no small surprise among the Knicker- orator, the Rev. Samuel Bradburn, and bockers, to see native Irish speaking soon after became a member of a Wesboth German and English, and at the leyan society. In 1783, when twentysame time professing the doctrines and three years of age, Mr. Wesley, pleased practices of Wesley.
with his “gifts, grace, and usefulness," Among the emigrants from the Pa- sent him to the Limerick circuit, and latinate, in 1709, was a little boy, then soon after he became a probationer in but four years of age, whose name was the Irish Conference, of which Dr. Philip Guier, and who subsequently Coke was then, ex-officio, the president. became a schoolmaster among his But, marrying before the expiration of countrymen and their children ; and his period of probation, he, of course, among his humble village pupils was
became obnoxious to that rule of BritPhilip Embury, the founder of our ish Methodism which then, as now, forAmerican Methodism.
bids a preacher to marry before the When Mr. Wesley and his zealous close of his term of trial. At this and successful itinerants found their time a passage-at-arms occurred beway into this colony of Palatines, Phil- tween him and Mr. Rogers, the husip Guier was among those to receive band of Hester Ann, who was then the word with all gladness, and be- stationed in Dublin. Mrs. Rogers was came the first local preacher in the present at this interview, which ocinfant society. His was a fire that curred at the Dublin parsonage. The burned, and a light that shone. His circuit to which he was appointed ofhumble and zealous labors, as was often fered to receive him, and to support the case in these days, were attended his family, although not according to with a divine power ; and when his ig- rule. But some uneasiness arising norant Popish neighbors, seeing the among parties concerned, Mr. W. deeffects of his labors, – the ignorant en- clined to go to his circuit. As his lightened, the vicious reformed, drunk- offense, in this case, was not a moral, ards made sober, the profane prayerful, but merely an ecclesiastical one, he had and Sabbath-breakers church-attend- only to step back into the local ranks, ants, they designated him as
and was still in good moral and relig
ious standing among his brethren. “Philip Guier, that houly man,
He soon entered into business with Who drove the devil out of Ballygran."
his wife's relatives, which was that of A daughter of Philip Guier married a cabinet-maker. But, as is usually a young man of that famous race of the case, in these instances, he was not Scotch Irish, who have since made successful. God had another work for themselves known and felt in all parts him to do in a distant and important of the world, by the name of Wilson. field. He soon resolved, as did many,
at the close of our Revolutionary war, Church on Benefit Street, at the time of to emigrate to America. He arrived the great awakening in 1747, and Mr. in Providence in a ship commanded by Joseph Snow, who was one of its mema Capt. Warner, May 27, 1791. Capt. bers, and who, like Philip Embury, W., upon his arrival, informing his was a house-carpenter by occupation, friends that he had a Methodist preach- became its first pastor. The Rev. Dr. er on board, whom he recommended to Hall, the pastor of the First Church, in their notice, Mr. Wilson was invited to a Historical Discourse, a few years preach on shore, in a private house, in ago, gives an account of their separathe evening. This was his first intro- tion, with the circumstances and events duction to the citizens of Providence. which led to it, and to which I must
Such was his debut in the city of refer the readers for further informaRoger Williams, which was to be the tion on this point. scene of his public labors, and his Mr. Snow had now been the only home for nearly half a century subse- pastor of this church for forty-six quent. After this, Mr. Wilson went years ; and had thus long maintained a South to visit some relatives of his living testimony in the town of Proviwife, who resided in Baltimore ; and, dence, in favor of the twin doctrines of at one time, was preaching in the justification by faith and a spiritual Methodist churches in that city, in con- regeneration ; and, as he had thus nection with Mr. William Hammett, fought a good fight, and had kept the an eloquent and zealous countryman of faith, and in the ordinary course of nahis, formerly a missionary in the West ture he must be about “ to finish his Indies, and whom Dr. Coke had lately course,” it was thought by some that brought with him from that sultry it was best to associate a young man field of labor, where he had just es with him in the labors of the pascaped martyrdom at the hands of the torate. But not so thought Mr. Snow slave-mongers of the Antilles. Mr. and some of his friends, who privately Hammett subsequently returned to withdrew and formed the Richmond Charleston, S. C., where he at first Street Church, and built a house of landed, and where he afterwards cre- worship in 1795. The present spacious ated a secession in the Methodist so- meeting-house of that now large and ciety, in that city of secession, and flourishing church is the third of its which, though it made much noise in erection. This spectacle of a new its day, has long since come to naught, church formed, and a new house of as will also be the case with another worship built for a man who had aland more important secession, which ready been the pastor of the same has since taken place on the same spot. people for forty-eight years, is in most Why Mr. Wilson did not, at this time, striking contrast with the taste of this enter the American connection, I am fast age, which thinks that when a man unable to say ; but he afterwards re- is forty or fifty only, and has just beturned North, and in October, 1793, come a real presbuteros, in the New was ordained as a colleague pastor, Testament sense of the term, it is high with the Rev. Joseph Snow, of the time for him “ to subside,” and to give Broad Street Congregational Church, place to the juniors whom he “has and his relation to which was never brought up.” dissolved.
But not so thought the men who, This was
one of the “Separate” with their prayers and tears and valor churches, so called, and which was and blood, laid the foundation of both formed from the First Congregational the church and the State in this land.