Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

she had chosen to be her guide, to be her support. There were hopes which she was forced to relinquish, and friends whom she was 'here to love no more. Still her bright hope-her eternal friend, was always near-when comforts were failing around her. As the progress of her illness became daily more rapid, her soul seemed more and more exalted; so that she appeared to have unfastened all the cords which connected her with the world, before death had come to rend them asunder. When, indeed, her last hour arrived, it brought with it (as if a messenger from a brighter world) a holy calm, which seemed to be transforming the soul into an angel of light : and when all was over, and she had drawn her last breath, there lived still a smile of triumph, a silent eloquence, which seemed to say, “O grave, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting ?” It was a death which proved the value of that religion which she only lived to inculcate, and feel, and adorn. It was a consistent close to a life of love and holiness; and would make Christianity lovely even to its enemies.

at Baltimore, Maryland, on the 24th of January, Mr. David YERKIES, in the 65th year of his age, for many years a respectable inhabitant of that city. Mr. Yerkies was a native of Pennsylvania, and was bred in the Calvinistic faith ; but was among the first in this country to receive the Heavenly Doctrines of the New Jerusalem, which through life vivified his faith, by a deportment the most amiable and inoffensive. If to die without leaving an enemy behind, be evidence of worth, such may truly be said of Mr. Yerkies; and his friends were as numerous as his acquaintances.

TO READERS AND CORRESPONDENTS. Our friends are reminded not “to bury the talent," and that even modesty is not to be recognised as a virtue, where it prevents us from the performance of useful services. They ought to recollect that it is the duty of every one to “cast of his wealth into the treasury.A few members cannot be expected to encounter the labour and difficulty of conducting and constantly furnishing with matter, so arduous a work as the Repository, without assist. ance, when it is well known that other members of the Church are able to supply their full proportion. Communications are therefore earnestly requested, from distant friends as well as from those in Philadelphia.

Those of our friends in Great Britain and Ireland, who may be disposed to favour this work with communications for publication, are affectionately invited to transmit them, free of expense, to G. R. Robinson, Coal Excbange. No. 19, London, secretary of the London printing society, or to William Hutchinson, Manchester, secretary of the Manchester society, who will con. fer a great obligation by putting up such communications, when received, with the parcels sent to the American society at Philadelphia. This Repository will be carefully and regularly sent to Great Britain, and may be es. pected to arrive there within five or six weeks after its publication in America, communications by sea between the two countries being now so free quent, as to afford opportunities of transmitting parcels almost weekly.

[blocks in formation]

EXTRACTS FROM THE JOURNAL of the Proceedings of the Second General Convention of the

Receivers of the Doctrines of the New Jerusalem Church, from different parts of the United States, held on Thursday, the 30th day of April, being Ascension Day, and continued until Saturday, the 2d day of May, A. D. 1818=62, at the New Jerusalem Temple, in the City of Baltimore. .

THE morning service having been performed by the Reverend Mr. Hargrove, and a sermon delivered by the Reverend Mr. Carll, the convention was organized, by the appointment of the former as president, the latter as vice-president, and Mr. C. Ra. guet as secretary.

The minutes of the first general convention were then read, as also a number of communications and letters; whereupon, it was, on motion,

Resolved, That the same be referred to a committee, who shall make report upon such parts thereof, and upon such other matters, as they shall deem it expedient to lay before the present convention.

Adjourned Meeting, Friday, May 1. The convention met, agreeably to adjournment, and the following report was read :

The committee appointed yesterday to prepare business for the convention, report, VOL. I.

3 E

That they have examined the various communications referred to them, and now present, for the consideration of the convention, such subjects as appear to them to merit present consideration.

As the committee, appointed at the convention held in 1817, “ to inquire whether it be expedient to establish any, and, if any, what, general regulations for the ordination of ministers in the New Church," is not yet prepared to report, it is recommended to the convention to continue the said committee, with instruc- . tions to report at the next general convention. In the mean time, however, in order to guard, as far as possible, against the introduction into the ministry of persons who do not possess sufficient qualifications to render the sacred office of the priesthood respected, it is strongly recommended to the convention to express it as their desire, that, until some other regulations shall be established upon the subject, no person shall be ordained to the ministry, under the sanction of the Church at Baltimore, or at Philadelphia, without the concurrence and approbation of the ministers of both those Churches. This subject necessarily leads your committee to another, upon which they feel it incumbent upon them to express an opinion. In the present infant state of the Church in America, it cannot be expected that the same orderly system in the ministration of the Word, and the sacred ordinances of the Church, will obtain, as at a more advanced period. In places distant from an established ministry, laymen will fre. quently be called upon to officiate as leaders of societies; and it were very much to be desired, that, as far as possible, they would confine their labours to the reading of the Word, the Lord's Prayer, the writings of the Herald of the New Dispensation, and such prayers, sermons, and hymns, as are known to contain the orthodox sentiments of the Church. The influx which produces illumination and illustration in the minds of the clergy, is not received in the same measure, or with the same power, into the minds of the laity, as will be evident from a reference to “ The True Christian Religion,” No. 146, and to “ The Arcana Cælestia,” No. 6822, in which the following passage occurs : “ None ought to teach truths but ministers appointed to teach, for if otherwise, then the church is disturbed with heresies, and rent asunder.” Whilst your committee thus suggests a caution against the delusive tendency of extempore preaching by the laity, they

think it their duty to protest against the practice, which they have heard somewhere to have existed, of the administration of the holy sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper by laymen. They conceive this to be a dangerous precedent, which is fraught with more injury to the cause than may readily be imagined ; and they trust that the good sense of the members of the Church, wherever they may be dispersed, will lead them to discountenance this deviation from order, whenever it may be introduced.

One of the documents referred to your committee contained a correspondence between a member of the Church resident in Pennsylvania, and a bookseller in Baltimore, upon the subject of publishing an abridgment of “ The True Christian Religion,” in one octavo volume, now in contemplation by the former. Your committee are of opinion, that the publication of such a work is not at this time expedient. The sale of New Church books is limited ; and, as most of the receivers of the doctrines, who can afford to purchase, are already in possession of the work entire, or can procure it at an expense little exceeding the stipulated price of the abridgment, they cannot see that the expenses of publication would ever be reimbursed. In addition, however, to pecuniary considerations, your committee have another objection to the publication of the volume in question, which, whilst they highly approve of the zeal which has prompted the gentleman alJuded to, they think will have weight with the convention. It is, that they have understood it to be the intention of the editor to omit all the memorable relations, which, your committee conceive, would be omitting a part of the work that serves to confirm the truth of the doctrines advanced by Emanuel Swedenborg, and fully establishes the fact of his divine mission. The memorabilia have no doubt been, and will continue to be, stumbling blocks to many : but how much better is it, that men should find matter of offence in them, than that they should receive mere abstract truths into the understanding, and yet deny, or call in question, the reality of those heavenly and spiritual communications, with which the enlightened Herald of the New Church was favoured, for its edification, and the general good of mankind !

A second paper referred to your committee, was a letter dated Frankfort, Kentucky, March 25, 1818, from Thomas H. Roberts to the Rev. Mr. Hargrove, announcing that there are five families in that vicinity who are receivers of the doctrines ; and

that a system of worship has lately been established, at which many strangers attend, who are desirous of inquiring into the truths of the New Dispensation. Mr. Roberts himself performs the service, according to the printed Liturgy of Mr. Proud, and reads the sermons of some of the most approved New Church ministers. Such a proceeding your committee highly applaud ; and cannot but express their wish, that the labours of Mr. Roberts, as a reader of the New Jerusalem Church, may be crowned with success, and that his example may be followed, wherever opportunities are presented to gentlemen qualified for the undertaking:

Among the letters referred to your committee, was one from a member of the Church, urging the propriety of instilling into the minds of children, at an early age, sentiments of piety, founded upon the principles of the New Church. Your committee, aware of the importance of such a measure, recommend to the convention the appointment of a committee, to prepare and publish a catechism for the use of children, with a view of establishing an uniformity of instruction in the leading doctrines of the Church.

Your committee is gratified in being able to state, that, although no detailed reports have been handed in, relative to the progress of the doctrines, information received within the last year, from the various parts of the United States, represents the Church as every where gaining friends; and there can be but little doubt, but that a few years will bring about in America an accession of members that could scarcely have been anticipated by the most sanguine recipient, who recollects the wilderness state of three or four years ago.

The said report having been read, amended, and approved, it was, on motion,

Resolved, That the recommendations contained therein be severally adopted ; and that the Rev. Messrs. Hargrove, Carll, and Beers be the committee for preparing and publishing the catechism.

Resolved, That Messrs. Carll, Condy, and Raguet be a committee, to select from the journals of this convention, for publication in the Repository, such parts thereof as they may deem proper.

The convention then adjourned, to meet at nine o'clock, A.M. to-morrow, the 2d of May.

« PoprzedniaDalej »