Page images
PDF
EPUB

From J. G. Kanouse, Saline, Mich. of novelty it may excite attention, but

it requires persevering effort to keep Jehovah, in his abounding goodness, alive any enterprise that has nothing to has in some degree broken in upon the commend it but its own native excelslumbers of this church, and given us lence. From this whole community I a small degree of the spirit of repent-, have at all times received the most reance. In fact, there has been a more spectful treatment, but it is painful to general engagedness in the things of witness the indifference which they religion in this church than ever before; ( manifest in regard to the things that and in one neighborhood, where I have concern their best interests, for time spent my time for two weeks, some 20 and eternity. Within a short time a souls have been inquiring what they door of usefulness has been opened at shall do to be saved. A number of Montrose, a village directly opposite the them have expressed hope in the par- city of Nauvoo. Till very recently it doning mercy of the Gospel,—others of has been entirely under a strong Morthem will, I trust, be conducted by the mon influence, but there are now some divine Spirit to the “ Lamb of God who Presbyterian families there, and I taketh away the sin of the world.” preach there once in three weeks. With one exception, this work has been Brother Clark, from Fort Madison, also confined to heads of families, and in a occasionally visits them. neighborhood where heretofore we have had no strong hold. Thus God may enlarge our borders in a direction where we least expected it. Pray for us, that

New Purchase. we “faint not in well-doing.”

From Rev. W. A. Thompson, Fox P.

0., Davis Co. IOWA:

In making this, my first report in the

new year, I would commence by reFrom Rev. D. Jones, Keokuk, Iowa,

cording my gratitude to Almighty God,

and under him to your Society, for their The good done by a missionary in a generous aid in supporting the Gospel community like this, is not to be mea- in this remote part of our common counsured by the number immediately i try. It was under the auspices of your gathered into the church. Nothing Society that the only church of our order short of an actual residence where in the territory west of the Des Moins there is such a state of society, can' was organized some two or three years give our eastern friends any just idea' ago, and had it not been for the foster. of the counteracting influences with ing hand of the same Society, it must which we have to contend. Our con- have remained until this time destitute gregations are fluctuating. It is rarely, of the regular ministration of the word. if ever the case, that our morning and Owing to the great number of sects, evening audience is composed of the and to the sectarian feeling that presame persons, but if it is a little un- vails, my congregations are usually pleasant, or there are other attractions, small. The majority of professors are our meetings will be thinly attended. members of the Methodist Church, and The people will at one time be at but few of them are seen at our meetpreaching with a degree of regularity, | ings. They have their class-meetings and at other times they are absent for at the same hour that I preach. The many weeks together. From this cause Mormons have meetings occasionally, my meetings last summer were large, there being one family of them two but during the fall, from sickness and miles distant. They have but little in. indifference, they were for a time dis- fluence as a sect in this vicinity. The couraging, but now there is again a Campbellites hold their meetings less more promising state of things. The frequently in this neighborhood. Their same unsteadiness is seen in other principal preacher in this county having things. While any thing has the charm held meetings for some time near one

of my preaching places, and having the rock four miles, with which to made no converts, at length seemed to stone it-I can now say we are comgrow impatient, and preached his fare-fortably “fixed." well sermon.

Only one Sunday school, of about 25 This portion of lowa being very new, and members, is continued through the win. remote from mechanical conveniences, the ter. In this there seeins to be a considera. work of building a shelter for his family was ble interest. By the generosity of Chris. both indispensable and difficult. Probably, tians at the East, we have received, at the East, where there are sympathisince my last report, a box of books zing friends around, and the requisite facilities from the A. S. S. Union. As I hope to of materials and labor, a minister might build have six or seven schools in the spring, la good frame house at less expense of time these will be very seasonable. I have and personal effort, than the cabin above decheering evidence that the S. S. books scribed occasioned to the missionary in the are doing much to create a taste for New Purchase. reading, and awaken an interest in reference to Sabbath schools. Had we a few more faithful and competent teachers, the usefulness of our schools would

WISCONSIN. undoubtedly be greatly increased. I have established Bible classes at

From Rev. C. H. A. Bulkley, Janesmy principal stations for preaching, four

ville, W. T. in number, which are pretty well at- Rejoicing in the missionary work. tended. Since my last report another day school has been opened, making I cannot restrain my emotions of two now in the county. We hope there gratitude, nor withhold their expression will be one or two more in the spring from you, at the retrospect of the way

along which my Master has led me. If Land sales.

I know my own heart, and am not too

self-confident, I may say, “ Here, O Much excitement has existed among Lord, let thy servant abide." I am sure the people in regard to the land sales I can exclaim with one of old, “ I am that were expected to come on in Fe- not worthy of the least of all the mer. bruary. Not one in ten or fifteen was cies, and of all the truth which thou prepared to pay for his land, and much hast showed unto thy servant.” anxiety was felt. But at length the But I must speak of Mount Zion, news came that the sales were indefi- | “ beautiful for situation"-the central nitely postponed-news most welcome eminence of a vast prairie and woodto the majority, but not so to those who land circumference. A communion seawere prepared to enter their land. son, rich to me in enjoyment, and plea

Our people have commenced building sant as well as profitable in its remema log school-house in Troy, which is also brance, was spent in the little temple to be occupied as a house of worship. there erected io the Lord, and that too

With gratitude to God am I able to for the first time. On that occasion say, that we now have a comfortable there were admitted by letters from house to live in, and a good well of eastern churches, seven members, five water. During the last spring we of whom were part of a large family, were literally drenched with the rains. being the parents and three daughters. I had no other alternative, if I remained Our church building is not entirely in the county, but to build or repair a completed, nor sufficiently warmed, to house. I concluded to repair a logo exclude the piercing prairie winds, and house, (there is but one frame house in render it comfortable for worship; yet, the county,) and having put on two notwithstanding this, we have ordinarily more logs round, to make room for a from 60 to 70, and sometimes 100 attenchamber, put on a shingled roof, and a dants—a congregation, which is quite good tight loft floor, besides pointing large for the country around. Six (putting mortar between the logs) it months ago, there was no clergyman re. anew; and having dug a well-hauling siding here, no afternoon services, no

prayer meeting, no church organiza- 1 your Society, and principally in depend. tion but the Methodist, and but little ence upon your fostering care, the heed given to religious matters. Now knowledge of their success may afford we have three resident clergyman; encouragement, and stimulate to greatservices three times on the Sabbath ; er devotion to tbis labor of love. four church organizations ; a Sabbath It is now a little more than a year since school; a weekly prayer-meeting, and I came into the “Mining Region,” and withal a singing school, in all which an about 10 months since I took up my interest is now evidently increasing. abode in this place. I commenced

preaching at Fairplay, Hazle Green, Church formed.

(late Hardscrabble,) and New Diggings. On the 17th of January a meeting church edifice, or school-house, and

Except at F., there was neither church, was called for the purpose of forming less than $100 could be raised on the here a church, at which brother Peet whole field for the support of the Goswas expected to be present. By some mistake he did not arrive in season, and tial church and school-house united, 26

pel. Since that time, a neat, substanI proceeded to effect the organization, by 30, has been erected at Hazle Green, which was done orderly and harmo- and that place with Fairplay has been niously. The number of members en made the field for a new minister, torolled is fifteen ; small, indeed, but wards whose support they will contriwhich yet, by the blessing of God, may bute from $150 to $200. in time become a thousand.

New Diggings, where I am now preaching is a new field. When I came

here, there was no regular preaching From Rev. John Lewis, New Diggings, I found a few scattered Presbyterians

of any denomination in the place. Wis.

and Congregationalists, and commenced Mr. L. was one of the company of Mission preaching to about a dozen people aries who went to Wisconsin in the autumn half a mile from the village. It was

in a small dilapidated log cabin, about of 1843. His original field, Fairplay, Hard- the best, and indeed the only place scrabble, (now Hazle Green,) and New Dig-which could be obtained. The Sabbath gings, has been divided, and Mr. L. gives his was awfully desecrated, hardly being whole attention to the last named settlement recognized except as the chief day in The good already accomplished by this mis. the week for business and dissipation. sion should encourage the friends of Christ The stores, groceries, (i. e. grog-shops) to attempt greater things in behalf of the and gambling-rooms were all open, Mining Region.

and crowded above most days of the

week. Intemperance was very geneWith the return of the New Year, ral, and gambling almost universal. As my thoughts have been busy with the a consequence of this state of society, past. Of trials I have nothing to say. fighting, often very severe, was comI have had a share of these blessings. mon.

But while truth compels me The work is no where without them. thus to speak of the state of morals They are here different, but perhaps among the miners in this region, it alnot greater than the minister of Christ | lows me to say, at the same time, that is often sutjected to in the highly savor they have many redeeming traits. A ed East. To my own mind, the review more open-hearted, shrewd, intelligent of the past has afforded abundant en

can hardly be found in couragement, to persevere in the effort our land. We have indeed, some from to build up the cause of Christ in the foreign climes, not a few deluded ad. “ Mines”—a region long noted for its herents to a system of false religion, impiety and forgetfulness of God. Of which teaches that " ignorance is the these causes for encourageinent, many mother of devotion.” Here, too, are cannot, from the nature of the case, be men of highly cultivated minds, phycommunicated to you. Yet as these ef sicians, lawyers, teachers, mechanics, forts have been nade in connection with merchants, all delving in the bowels of the earth, with the fond hope of Christ may advance, and that where "striking a lead," and making them iniquity has abounded, grace may much selves independent. Some of them are more abound. children of pious parents, deacons, elders, ministers of the Gospel, who are ignorant of their fate, and not unfrequently remain in ignorance until they

class of men

A strange thing. are successful in mining, or die in the

Is it not humiliating to the Church of fruitless search.

Christ, that such a case as the following

should be spoken of as peculiar ! Church formed in a Bowling Alley.

Let me say something concernEarly in the spring, we removed ing our deacon, whose conduct has from our inconvenient log cabin to an been unlike that of any other professor unfinished frame house in “the Dig- ' of our denomination here, or that of gings," and there commenced a pro- most professors at the West. On his tracted meeting. Soon the room was removal to this place, and his first attoo small for us, and we removed to the tendance on my preaching, he an. “ Bowling Alley," which was fitted upinounced to me the fact of bis being a for the occasion with rough boards for member of an eastern Congregational seats. Here standing on the spot de- church, and desired me to visit his voted to the “ nine pins," and with a family, two of which, besides himself, I gaming table for a pulpit, we preached found to be members also. It is a the Gospel for seven evenings in suc- deeply painful fact, that many former cession. The Holy Spirit was evident professed disciples of Christ now withly present, and good was accomplished. hold their co-operation, and that too In this same bowling alley our church without any justifiable grounds. Inwas formed, containing 14 members. stead of coming spontaneously to the Since then 4 more have united, making work of their Master, attracted by spiin all 18, our present number. A church ritual affinity to his people, they need edifice, 26 by 36, has been erected, which his compulsory arm, with a wbip of is now completed, though not quite paid cords to scourge them on to duty. for. The moral aspect of the community has so much changed, as to be a frequent subject of remark among impenitent men. The Sabbath is much

From Rev. R. R. Snow, Troy, Wis. more regarded, the stores are nominally closed, though we fear some back doors

First efforts. are still kept open. A temperance society has been organized, which now Since receiving my commission, by contains more than one hundred mem- the favor of a kind Providence, I have bers. This, indeed, is only a small por- enjoyed a prosperous journey and introtion of our population, but it is a good duction to my field of labor. I arrived beginning, and the reform is going for- in the territory about the middle of Ocward. Fighting is much more rare. A tober, and by the invitation of the physician told me a few days since that church in this place, and the approbait was now a rare thing for him to be tion of your agent here, commenced called to bind up a broken head. In my labors among this people on the seshort, we are becoming quite a moral, cond Sabbath in November. My efforts respectable community, and wiping off' have consisted principally in preaching, the stain which has long attached itself attending prayer-meetings in different to our town. I have received a request parts of the town, visiting from house to preach here every Sabbath, and a to house, especially among the sick and subscription of $200 towards my sup-dying, of whom there have been many port has been raised. The way is now since my residence here-looking up open for doing great good. Let us ask professors of religion who bad not“joisin addition to your benefactions, your ed any body of Christians since coming most earnest prayers that the cause of west-visiting schools, lecturing on

temperance, &c., all which have been | tesies of a man, much more of those attended with some obvious, and in that ought to pertain to a Christian, and some cases encouraging success. a christian minister.

The state of religion, on coming I have not preached on the subject of here, I found low and feeble, and there ministerial support. This is a hetestill remains much to be done, both by regeneous community, and I thought it minister and church, before we may feel might do more hurt than good. The like rejoicing in our spiritual prospe- people have been preached almost to rity; yet there has been some advance- death by Universalists, Mormons, Bapment in the spirit and action of Chris- tists, Episcopal and Wesleyan Methotians, and in the general interests of re- i dists, and nameless exhorters. All ligion; meetings on the Sabbath are these, except the Baptist, have sought well attended, the Gospel is listened to to leave the impression that it was not with attention and candor, and many money, “like other denominations," are praying for a special outpouring of|(meaning ours,) but the “ love of God the Spirit's influences.

and truth," that caused them to preach. The society here took early mea-'I do not know what is best to do in re. Bures, on my coming among them, to ference to these things. When I secure my continuance in the place. preach I have a good audience and atThey have raised by subscription the tentive hearers. sum of two hundred and fifty dollars, and express the hope that in another year they shall be able to increase the

Pilgrim's day. amount, and the church and society have unanimously concurred in extend.

On the 22d of December I preached ing to me recently a call to settle with on the subject of “our Puritan ancesthem as their pastor. This kind of ac- tors” to large and deeply attentive tion I regard as indicating favorably on

audiences. I endeavored to trace their the part of the people, and it affords me character; the influence which they exgreat encouragement to persevere in erted (especially in this land) on relimy labors among them. The monthly gion, education, and civil government, concert is regularly attended, and a

and the causes which combined to make growing interest in its object is mani- them what they were. Among these I fested.

endeavored to make it appear that the exile of so many English Puritans, the residence of some of them at Geneva,

and their acquaintance with Calvin, A successor of the apostles!

and his principles of religious and civil The community is in a ferment, oc

freedom, were prominent means in the casioned by the measures and efforts of ordering of Providence, in preparing

them to be the founders of a purer a pretended "successor of the apostles.” He endeavors to monopolize the whole church, and a republican government

in this new world. ground, utterly disregarding the privi. leges and righis of all others. He has

Missionary colportage. crowded himself into, and claims the right of occupying, our district school. During the last quarter I have also house (just finished) to his heart's con performed some colporteur labors. One tent, thus excluding our church, some excursion in particular I will relate. of whom have paid a heavy amount to- Having procured a quantity of Testawards building it, unless we contend for ments, tracts, and volumes of the Ameour rights and have another commotion rican Tract Society's publications, I in the community. At he has proceeded to , a newly settled knowingly taken the place and time, and town in the south-west corner of this preached to the congregation assembled county. I devoted Saturday to visiting to hear brother P., by getting into the and religious conversation, selling and desk a few minutes before he arrived. giving away Testaments and books, and I hesitate not to say that I regard this distributing tracts. I found a few proman as destitute of the common cour- I fessors of the Seventh Day Baptist, VOL, XVII.

24

« PreviousContinue »