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extend the principles that we hold dear, especially by circulating the writings of our gifted fathers, such as Channing and Ware, and by sustaining more generously than hitherto the Association that has been continued with such usefulness amongst us.
The fourth resolution having been read, gave rise to remarks from Rev. Messrs. Pierpont of Troy, N. Y., and Thomas of Boston, Moses Grant, Esq., of Boston, and Rev. Mr. Bellows of New York, and was then passed :
Resolred, That whilst we value Christianity for the peculiar authority and sanctions of its revelations, we regard these, in connection with all its doctrines and institutions, as the means of cherishing practical religion and establishing the kingdom of God among men; and that the great indifference with which so large a portion of the Christian world treat the great social vices and oppressions of our time moves us to bear our testimony more earnestly than ever in behalf of the piety and humanity of the Gospel, and against the spirit of intemperance, warfare, slavery, general excess, and discord.
The Convention then, after prayer by Rev. Mr. Weiss of Watertown and the singing of a hymn, adjourned to the next morning, and the members repaired to Hamilton Hall, to partake again of the entertainment provided by their female friends. After enjoying the refreshment of tea and social converse, brief addresses were made by Hon. S. C. Phillips of Salem, Rev. Dr. Parkman of Boston, and Rev. Messrs. Stetson of Medford, Bellows of New York, and Osgood of Providence.
At 7 o'clock religious services were attended, as on the previous evening, at Mechanic Hall. Prayer was offered by Rev. Mr. Gannett of Boston, and a sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Briggs of Plymouth, from Luke xii. 13, on the method of Jesus in reference to the errors and sins of the world, as applicable to our day.
On Thursday the Convention met, at Af o'clock, in the Barton Square church. Prayer was offered by Rev. Mr. Hall of Providence. The fifth resolution prepared by the committee was read, and gave occasion to remarks from Rev. Messrs. Thomas of Boston, Lincoln of Fitchburg, Sanger of Dover, Bellows of New York, Palfrey of Barnstable, Muzzey of Cambridge, Stetson of Medford, and Osgood of Providence, and was then adopted : –
Resolved, That we regard the present pursuit of wealth and prominence of materialistic influences with solicitude, but not with despair; and that, in this our nineteenth century, we deem it to be peculiarly the mission of Christians to lift the minds of the people above the thraldom of second causes to the worship of the great First Cause, alike by an enlarged spiritual faith and an earnest practical devotion.
The next resolution was passed without debate, viz. : Resolved, That Rev. Messrs. Hill of Worcester, Thompson of Salem, Ellis of Charlestown, H. B. Rogers, Esq., of Boston, and C. 3. Daveis, Esq., of Portland, be the Committee of Arrangements for the next Autumnal Convention.
A resolution relating to the present war with Mexico, which had been offered by a member of the Convention at the close of the previous meeting, and was then referred to the committee of arrangements, was 1847.]
now reported by them in an amended form, and was discussed by Samuel Greele, Esq., and Rev. Messrs. Gannett and Clarke of Boston ; after which a motion to lay it on the table, as proposing action irrelevant to the purposes of the Convention, prevailed.
Some debate arising in regard to the place at which the next Convention should be held, it was voted that the selection of the place be left to the committee just chosen.
The seventh resolution proposed by the committee of arrangements having been read, its passage was advocated by Rev. Dr. Putnam of Roxbury, and it was adopted :
Resolved, That we regard the proceedings of this Convention as indicating and promoting a real harmony and efficient coöperation among the members, and throughout the Unitarian body.
The eighth resolution, being last in order, was read, and after appropriate remarks by Rev. Mr. Morison of Milton, was adopted by the members of the Convention, standing :
Resolded, That, recognizing with tender and solemn interest the decease of lamented brethren, Rev. Dr Peabody and others, we deeply sympathize with their bereaved families, and express our gratitude to Divine Providence for the power of their lives, and the treasure of their memories.
Rev. Mr. Thompson of Salem then, in a brief speech, expressed his thanks to the Convention for their attendance and the pleasure the various meetings had given to the people of Salem.
Rev. Mr. Osgood of Providence offered a resolution, which he sustained by a few remarks, and which, after a slight amendment, was passed as follows :
Resolved, That the thanks of this Convention be tendered to the brethren and sisters of Salem for the elegant hospitality to which its members have been welcomed, and for the happy hours which they have passed together.
Prayer was then offered by Rev. Dr. Putnam of Roxbury, and the Convention was dissolved.
American Unitarian Association. A special meeting of this body was held at the chapel in Bedford Street, Boston, October 21, 1847, “ for the choice of a Secretary, and the transaction of such other business as might legally come before it." After prayer by Rev. Mr. Ellis of Charlestown, a letter was read from Rev. William G. Eliot, in which, while he expressed a deep interest in the Association and a strong sense of the importance of the office of Secretary, to which he had been elected at the last annual meeting, he declined the appointment, from a conviction of duty growing out of his peculiar relations to the church in St. Louis. Various propositions were then submitted, in regard to the course which should be taken for filling the office, and an adjournment became necessary to the afternoon; when, after considerable discussion, it was voted to proceed to ballot for an election among several candidates whose names had been put upon a nomination list. After two unsuccessful attempts the balloting was suspended, and it was voted, “ that the whole subject of the election of Secretary be referred back to the Executive Committee, to take such action as they may think best.” Some inquiries were then made, and discussion arose in regard to the salary
of the present incumbent of the office, which resulted in a vote, “ that the Secretary pro tem. be paid at the rate of $ 2000 per annum up to the present time, and hereafter at the rate of $ 1500 per annum up to the time of the election of a Secretary and his acceptance of the office.” The meeting was then adjourned sine die.
Ordinations and Installations. - Rev. WILLIAM ROUNSEVILLE ALger of Boston, who lately graduated from the Divinity School at Cambridge, was ordained as Minister of the Mount Pleasant Congregational Society in Roxbury, Mass., September 8, 1847. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Lothrop of Boston, from 2 Corinthians ii. 16; the Prayer of Ordination was offered by Rev. Mr. Alger of Marlborough; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Peabody of Boston ; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Hale of Worcester ; the Address to the Society, by Rev. Dr. Putnam of Roxbury; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Huntington of Boston, Hall of Dorchester, and Thomas of Boston.
Rev. Thomas Wentworth HIGGINSON, a graduate of the last year from the Cambridge Divinity School, was ordained as Minister of the First Religious Society in NEWBURYPORT, Mass., September 15, 1847. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Channing of Boston, from Revelation ii. 7; the Ordaining Prayer was offered by Rev. Dr. Nichols of Portland, Me.; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Clarke of Boston ; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Stone of Salem ; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Fox of Boston; and the other services by Rev. Messrs. Clarke of Boston and Nichols of Saco, Me.
Rev. Frederick Newman KNAPP of Walpole, N. H., a graduate of the last class at the Cambridge Divinity School, was ordained over the First Congregational Church and Society in BROOKLINE, Mass., as Colleague Pastor with Rev. John Peirce, D. D., October 6, 1847. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Bellows of New York,
from Romans vii. 22 – 25 ; the Ordaining Prayer was offered by Rev. Dr. Puinam of Roxbury; the Charge was given by Rev. Dr. Pierce of Brookline; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Rev. Mr. Hill of Waltham; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Willis of Walpole, N. H., Whitney of Brighton, and Higginson of Newburyport.
Rev. George S. BALL of Leominster, Mass., who recently graduated from the Meadville Theological School, was ordained over the Unitarian Church and Society in Ware, Mass., October 13, 1847. The Sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Hill of Worcester, from Luke xxiii. 54 ; the Prayer of Ordination was offered by Rev. Mr. Wellington of Templeton; the Charge was given by Rev. Mr. Lincoln of Fitchburg ; the Right Hand of Fellowship, by Řev. Mr. Nightingale of Cabotville ; the Address to the People, by Rev. Mr. Greene of Brookfield; and the other services, by Rev. Messrs. Nute of Petersham, Loring of Andover, and Bond of Barre
OBITUARY. Rev. Mark A. H. Niles died at Belfast, Me., August 17, 1847, aged 41 years.
Mr. Niles had just returned to his native State and the scenes of his early life ; having been born at Deer Isle, from which place, however, he went in his youth to reside at Newburyport. Having finished his collegiate and professional studies, the former at Amherst, he accepted an appointment as Professor of Languages in Indiana College, and resided sometime at the West. Returning to New England, he became the pastor of a Trinitarian Congregational church in Marblehead, where he secured and continued to enjoy the affectionate and grateful regards of his people, till, in consequence of declining health, he left his pulpit, and became Agent of the American Seaman's Friend Society. While in this employment, his mind passed through a change of theological belief. He was soon after setiled as minister of the Second Unitarian society in Lowell, and in that position, while discharging a faithful ministry, won the esteem of all who knew him. Having received an invitation to Belfast, which opened to him, as he thought, prospects of greater usefulness, he resigned his charge at Lowell, and was installed over the First Congregational church and society in Belfast, on the 11th of last August. He was at that time suffering from a slow fever, induced by fatigue, and was able to be present during only a part of the services of installation. No one, however, apprehended a fatal termination of his illness, nor did there seem to be any occasion for anxiety, till a few moments before his death, when he quietly sank into that rest which brought freedom and bliss to his spirit.
Mr. Niles was a man of great worth, which he had shown under circumstances that put his character to the test. Meek, but firm ; faithful to his convictions, and faithful in his duties; a scholar, and a Christian; a warm friend, and a devoted minister; he merited the estimation in which he was held alike by those with whom his earlier and those with whom later religious associations connected him. The theological opinions which he had honestly held he relinquished as soon as he became convinced of their erroneous character, preserving, however, his mildness of temper and avoiding the asperity of feeling to which many are tempted by a transfer of their sectarian connections. His settlement at Belfast promised him a home of quiet labor with signal opportunities of usefulness, on which he was ready to enter with his whole heart. But it pleased Him whose love is wiser than our judgment to remove him at the moment when he seemed to have found the place which he could fill to the greatest advantage, and with the greatest satisfaction, on earth. Other services and more permanent enjoyment awaited him above; while to the congregation called to such a peculiar bereavement remain the consolations of trust in a perfect Providence, and to us all the counsels that may be drawn from such an unexpected destruction of mortal hopes.
BENJAMIN MERRILL, LL. D., died at Salem, Mass., July 30, 1847, aged 65 years.
Mr. Merrill was a native of Conway, N. H., a graduate of Harvard College, and for nearly forty years an inhabitant of Salem, engaged in a very large professional practice. As a man, universally esteemed for integrity of character and kindness of heart ; as a lawyer, widely consulted and implicitly trusted ; as a politician, acknowledged by all to be alike able and honest; as a friend, warmly beloved ; and as a Christian, observed for the interest he took in religious institutions and the example he set of personal faithfulness; he has left a name honorable to himself, and dear, not only to the circle within whose affections he was cherished, but to the community to whom his death must long be an occasion of grief. Mr. Merrill repeatedly declined those situations in public life which his fellow-citizens were anxious to bestow on him, nor did he ever form those domestic connections which give the greatest depth to personal influence; yet few men made themselves more felt in society, or held more responsible trusts. His death was unexpected, and took place when he was sitting alone, occupied with his usual studies.
Hon. Joseph Gowing KENDALL died at Worcester, Mass., October 2, 1847, aged 59 years.
A native of Leominster, Mass., a graduate of Harvard University, a tutor for five years in that institution, a practising lawyer in the place of his birth, a Senator of this Commonwealth, a Representative for two successive terms in Congress, and for fourteen years the clerk of the courts of the county of Worcester, in all these stations he discharged his duties with fidelity and won the confidence and affection of the community. Possessing a cultivated mind and refined intellectual tastes, he could fully appreciate whatever is beautiful in thought or expression. He had no great love for the dry forms of his profession, but was attracted more by productions of genius or the wonders and beauties of nature. He was especially interested in Biblical study, and welcomed with unabated delight the more expanded views which these studies never fail to impart. Gentlemanly in his deportment, unobtrusive in his manners, kind and considerate in his judgment, distrustful of himself, and gentle towards all men, his entire worth was concealed by his unaffected modesty; and was revealed only when that modesty could be no longer offended by human praise. But the trait which most distinguished Mr. Kendall was his unpretending goodness of heart, as seen in his readiness to do good wherever and whenever he might. While some men, who wish to do good, must do it in their own way, - as it falls in with their tastes, its, and chosen pursuits, — he was disposed to do good in any way and by any means. It was not in his view a condescension, but a great privilege, the truest work of a responsible and accountable being. For many years he was a teacher and superintendent in the Sunday school of the society to which he belonged ; faithful in his own religious culture, and always to be relied on for heart and hand in every project for social and religious improvement. At his death, besides making a liberal provision for a large circle of kindred and friends, as a testimony to his enlightened interest in the welfare of the community, he left a bequest of $ 1000 to the American Unitarian Association, and $ 4000 to the American Bible Society. He died after a short and painful illness, sustained by the religion which had guided him in life, peacefully, at last, passing away to the world for which his faith and devotion had been a constant preparation.