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we cannot, we dare not put one above the other. Both are important beyond all human competition.
But we are looking now at the home field. We cannot restrain the expression of our vehement desire that all our good brethren at the East, who wish to help us, and the cause of Christ here at the West, might see that there can be no other investment of their liberality so economical and productive as the investment in Home Missions, and the means of training for the field Home Missionaries. If this cause is adequately sustained, so that churches shall be planted every where, and furnished with a well trained ministry, the nation will be, under God, safe-otherwise its ruin is certain; how many other schemes soever of saving men it may set on foot, and with what zeal soever they may push them forward.
Correspondence of the A. H. M. S.
The past year has not been unproductive in many of the best influences of a stated ministry on the fields where the Society has assisted to sustain it. The external order of the house of God has been observed, increasing numbers have been brought to sit under the sound of the Gospel; an unusual impulse
has been given to the instruction of the youth, and to the outward reform of the intemperate and the profane. Still, however, conversions have been comparatively rare. Within a few weeks past, the hearts of the
Executive Committee have been cheered by From Rev. Erastus Colton, Michigan
the intelligence that on a few of the missionary fields, the gentle dews of grace are descending.
In communicating to you my first quarterly report, permit me to say that I
From Rev. R. K. McCoy, Clayton, Ill. regard my unforeseen destination to this
I rejoice that we are enabled to say, that the Lord has not entirely forsaken his people in this place. In a former report, I mentioned the hopeful conversion of some twelve or fifteen souls, and eight additions to our church. I think I can safely say that through the quarter that has just closed, there has been an increase of piety in the hearts of God's people, and a closer and more
place as to me an unspeakable favor of God. To Wisconsin or Illinois had I "devised my way;" "but the Lord directed my steps" to this city. Soon after my arrival in Chicago, in August last, my attention was turned to this place. I came, and commenced preaching, the Sabbath immediately following the one on which the late minister closed his labors, and after three weeks, received a call from the Congregational Church and Society, to become their pastor.
The call being accepted, I was installed the 20th November. During my first visit I called upon all the people who were connected with this body; and when, after a short absence, I returned to take my charge, I held personal conversation on experimental religion with as many of the church members as I could conveniently see, during the week immediately preceding that of my installation, at the close of which the church observed a fast.
After describing the progress of a season of protracted services, Mr. C. speaks as follows
of the results:
temporarily here, the one a backslider, the other impenitent, when our meeting commenced, are now going to their friends in the country to speak of the love of God shed abroad in their hearts. Pride, self-will, and even bitter opposition, have been brought to yield to the subduing power of a Savior's love. Some minds have embraced the overtures of mercy soon after conviction, others after a week or more delay, or rather, resistance of the Spirit. It was little expected that some persons would be converted, whom God has brought to bow: they are now like little children sitting at the feet of Christ: they are surprised at themselves, when they contrast their present feelings with those which Christians seem now to have a reli- they had some weeks ago, touching reli gion of deep-seated, all-pervading prin- gion, Christians, and meetings. There is ciple, not that of mere passionate ex- a range, in the conversions, from persons citement. So searched were they by of high standing and influence down to the truth and Spirit, that some of them an opposite grade. There is not a sinconcluded that they had never known gle adult colored person in the place, by experience what true religion was, (who was not before a Christian,) but or if they had known it, not so intelli- has recently been hopefully converted; gently, deeply and happily as now. Af-they are several in number. We think ter "the joys of God's salvation" became restored to the soul, the prayers and labors of Christians, in connection with those of the ministry, were expended in the behalf of impenitent sinners. By this time, so much of the atmosphere of heaven pervaded the church and filled The Methodists, and some indivieven the house of God, that sinners be-duals in other denominations, have came solemn and tender, especially when hearing the truth addressed to There continues to be a general sethem. By the proclaimed word, and by riousness in the community, such as personal appeals, many persons, through the inhabitants have never before seen; the Spirit, were brought to submit them-conversions are frequently taking place. selves as rebels to the disposal of a Many precious days, long to be rerighteous God, and to fall into the arms membered, of which the first in the new of bleeding mercy. The understand-year was one, have we spent in holy ing being addressed, the convictions were deep and thorough, and the conversions apparently genuine, and based on principle. Persons of various ages, from the man of gray hairs to the child of eight years, are now rejoicing in the service of the Lord: our Sabbath school, which is exceedingly well conducted, has shared in the salvation wrought.
we are safe in saying that 60 persons, in all, have within a few weeks been hopefully converted to God; while many others have, at different times, presented themselves as being on the Lord's side.
partaken of these spiritual blessings.
convocation. Heaven seemed to be let down to earth, and God to dwell among men. Brotherly love binds in union sweet kindred hearts of different denominations, and the power of this Christianity is felt by the world.
Northern Indiana is a fertile section of country, and is annually increasing in its population. The institutions of reThere are cases of conversion of pe- ligion are planted in the towns and some culiar interest: one young man was of the larger settlements; they are first impressed while at work alone. A greatly needed in a permanent form man and his wife came from the coun-at other points, that the foundations of try on a visit, and in a few days re- society may be laid in healthful moralturned, hopefully converted; two others ity and pure religion.
From Rev. R. N. Wright, Belvidere,
We have witnessed the wonderworking power of God's Spirit; and though the number of converts has not been large, yet the blessing is great, and one for which we shall have occasion for ever to be thankful.
As early as in October, an unusual earnestness in prayer was observable in our social meetings. Soon, some among the impenitent were known to be awakened. In November the indications of the presence of God were more apparent. The prayer-meetings of the females were spoken of as peculiarly refreshing seasons. The brethren began to visit from house to house to inquire after the spiritual welfare of the people, particularly of the church members. Meetings were multiplied, and for a considerable length of time there was preaching every evening Many of the members of the church seemed desirous to come up to the work, and were manifestly refreshed. The impression was sought to be made that no mere temporary effort was demanded, but a permanent state of holy living, or rather a continual advance in seeking after and exercising the gifts and graces of the Spirit, so that the path of the Christian, from that time to the hour of his final exit, might be indeed as the shining light that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.
In some instances members of the church appeared to be convicted of sin, humbled before God, and converted anew. Backsliders, who for years had neglected to perform christian duties, were reclaimed, and a number of others became the hopeful subjects of renewing grace.
On the first Sabbath in January the Lord's supper was administered in the presence of a large assembly. Eleven individuals were received, and entered into solemn covenant with God and this branch of the church, four of whom had never before sat down at the sacramental board, and another not for years, having strayed far away from the fold of Christ. A number of others, the fruits of this revival, may be expected to seek admission at the next commu
nion. Some have already united with other churches.
Results of four years' missionary aid.
In the review of God's dealings with us we find abundant cause for gratitude, and we all feel that not the least of his mercies is the favor shown us through Society. The results of support for the instrumentality of the A. H. M. Home Missions, even in this place, are such as are adapted to encourage the friends of that Society, and in other places the results are doubtless far greater. This church has received missionary aid for four years. Without this aid it could not have enjoyed the regular ministration of God's word and ordinances: with it, for four years, the Gospel has been preached in a new settlement. During this time eighty-five persons have been gathered into the church, their faith in Christ. Two precious twenty-nine of them on profession of seasons of revival have been enjoyed of inestimable value to the church and the world around, and whose happy results can be measured only in eternity. Besides this, a commodious church edifice of brick, thirty-six by forty-eight feet, has been built. A Sabbath school has been maintained, and the temperance cause advanced, tracts have been distributed, and tract volumes circulated. With the co-operation of others, the entire county has been twice explored, and every destitute family supplied with the Bible. The monthly concert, and other prayer-meetings, have been sustained, and contributions made in aid of Home and Foreign Missions, the Bible Society, and other benevolent objects. The sick have been visited, the careless invited to the house of God, newly arrived immigrants looked after, and efforts made to rekindle the dying spark of piety in the breast of many of them, who either well-nigh lost their religion by the way, or sought to bury their talent on their first arrival.
These labors are not mentioned by our missionary boastingly. They are a part of the ordinary work of all missionaries and ministers of the Gospel in new settlements. And without energetic laborers to supply this department and do this work, what society
would be in all our new settlements, it needs no prophet's tongue to disclose. The friends of Home Missions may well rejoice that the moulding of the new settlements is now in their hands. God has put it in their power. The success he has granted their incipient
laborers are few. May the Lord of the harvest send more laborers into his harvest!
Athens Co., O.
efforts shows on whom he has laid the respon- From Rev. L. C. Ford, Hocking City, sibility. Will they shrink from it, or be encouraged to go forward, and be the saviors of the nation, and the medium of blessings to mankind.
You will rejoice to learn, that God is with us. The silence of death, which
has so long reigned around us, has at length been broken by the song of salvation. The darkness and gloom which
From Rev. John McCutchan, West- have enshrouded us, have been dispel
led. God has caused his face to shine upon us, and we are enjoying a season of refreshing from his presence.
forehand to expect and receive a blessing. The Sabbath was "a day long to be remembered." We had anticipated the day with interest and anxiety. The people of God humbled themselves and cried mightily to him, and their prayers were heard and answered. Many souls were convicted of sin, and before the meeting closed, the next Thursday, eight were rejoicing in hope. But while the meeting was in progress at one place, a prayer-meeting was held at another every evening, by such as could not attend at the former; and several were converted here before the public meeting closed.
I sit down with pleasure to tell you what the Lord has done for us since my Assisted by Brother Edwards of Bellast report. When I last wrote, we pre, we held a series of meetings, in conwere laboring to get one room of our nection with our sacrament, on the 3rd church ready for use. It was so far Sabbath of January. The church apfinished that we held our weekly pray-peared in some measure prepared beer meeting in it on New-Year's night, and worshipped publicly in it the first Sabbath in January. The stated meeting of our Presbytery was held at our place on Tuesday, Jan. 21. The Lord was evidently with us. Every meeting appeared to produce saving effects on the people. The Presbytery closed its session on Thursday night; but the good work, then begun, gradually went forward. The Sabbath was very solemn. The roads became so muddy, and the nights so dark, that we thought it best not to continue our meetings. But the work has been regularly progressing. Every thing is still and solemn -no excitement whatever. We had a communion season yesterday, when we received 13 on examination. Seven united by letter when the Presbytery met; in all twenty, since our last report-so that if we had two more, our little church would be just doubled since New-Year. We think the good work is still on the advance. May it not cease until every house becomes a Among those, who, we hope, are conhouse of prayer, and every heart a tem-verted, are many heads of families, some ple for the Holy Spirit!
Several new family altars have been erected within a few weeks. There is more or less attention to the subject all around us, and I have no doubt that, with proper labor there might be a great harvest gathered in this region.
Truly, the harvest is great, but the
The work has been steadily advancing until the present time. The congregations have been good. Between 30 and 40 have expressed a hope in the two places. More than 50 in this place have attended our meetings for inquiry. The interest is extending, and I expect to see many more brought into the fold of the Redeemer.
far advanced in life, and those who have for many years been endeavoring to satisfy themselves with Universalism. In several houses, the altar of prayer has for the first time been set up. I trust, that what we have already witnessed, will be but the beginning of a general work in this desolate region.
From J. G. Kanouse, Saline, Mich.
Jehovah, in his abounding goodness, has in some degree broken in upon the slumbers of this church, and given us a small degree of the spirit of repentance. In fact, there has been a more general engagedness in the things of religion in this church than ever before; and in one neighborhood, where I have spent my time for two weeks, some 20 souls have been inquiring what they shall do to be saved. A number of them have expressed hope in the pardoning mercy of the Gospel,-others of them will, I trust, be conducted by the divine Spirit to the "Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world." With one exception, this work has been confined to heads of families, and in a 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 we "faint not in well-doing.”
From Rev. D. Jones, Keokuk, Iowa.
The good done by a missionary in a community like this, is not to be measured by the number immediately gathered into the church. Nothing short of an actual residence where there is such a state of society, can give our eastern friends any just idea of the counteracting influences with which we have to contend. Our congregations are fluctuating. It is rarely, if ever the case, that our morning and evening audience is composed of the same persons, but if it is a little unpleasant, or there are other attractions, our meetings will be thinly attended. The people will at one time be at preaching with a degree of regularity, and at other times they are absent for many weeks together. From this cause my meetings last summer were large, but during the fall, from sickness and indifference, they were for a time discouraging, but now there is again a more promising state of things. The same unsteadiness is seen in other things. While any thing has the charm
of novelty it may excite attention, but it requires persevering effort to keep alive any enterprise that has nothing to commend it but its own native excellence. From this whole community I have at all times received the most respectful treatment, but it is painful to witness the indifference which they manifest in regard to the things that concern their best interests, for time and eternity. Within a short time a door of usefulness has been opened at Montrose, a village directly opposite the city of Nauvoo. Till very recently it has been entirely under a strong Mormon influence, but there are now some Presbyterian families there, and I preach there once in three weeks. Brother Clark, from Fort Madison, also occasionally visits them.
From Rev. W. A. Thompson, Fox P. O., Davis Co.
In making this, my first report in the new year, I would commence by recording my gratitude to Almighty God, and under him to your Society, for their generous aid in supporting the Gospel in this remote part of our common country. It was under the auspices of your Society that the only church of our order in the territory west of the Des Moins was organized some two or three years ago, and had it not been for the fostering hand of the same Society, it must have remained until this time destitute of the regular ministration of the word. Owing to the great number of sects, and to the sectarian feeling that prevails, ny congregations are usually small. The majority of professors are members of the Methodist Church, and but few of them are seen at our meetings. They have their class-meetings at the same hour that I preach. The Mormons have meetings occasionally, there being one family of them two miles distant. They have but little influence as a sect in this vicinity. The Campbellites hold their meetings less frequently in this neighborhood. Their principal preacher in this county having held meetings for some time near one