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fails to afford. But considering the distance of our situations, and the variety and multiplicity of our respec. tive engagements, &c. &c. these communications cannot reasonably be expected, to be as frequent, as friendship and affection would wish. We are, I am confident, respectively, sincerely disposed to do much more, and better, in this case, as well as in many other instances, than we find ourselves able actually to per. forin. May it not then sufice, as a kind of general, standing apology, for those delays which occur between the receipt and the ansrer of a letter; that these we would not allow, if they could be well as oided ?
Three weeks have now passed, since your favour, abore noticed, came to band. It bad been long espect. ed; and though not in itself short, yet it seemed to be much too soon read through, and through again. Sot. withstanding, what I have hinted on the subject of apol. ogiring, I feel as if I could not help telling you, that I have been prevented, fron attempting an earlier acknowledgment of it, partly by a pressure of business, which is generally the case, in a more than usual degree, about the commencement of the year; and parily hr indisposition; but for ttese circonstances, I should, kong ere this, hare undertaken to thank you, for your kong and excellent letter; and to reproach you for your unlimress in wikkeiding it so long from us; though,
.0 sure that my do na: dexrre a Ford of rebake on des voors. Friends in borerer, usealls expecting toe maach, pour des for self mars disappointments; avelthen feels a carious kind of stee: rererge, in blanabout the hon i mast tender's leres for infic:ing the ruins which it suders from its own facies and follies.
During the long intervals, which take place between the periods of writing and receiving letters, our spirits are often with yours, participating in the remembrance of seasons past, in the feeling of present circumstances, and in realizing the prospect which the light of heaven presents to christian faith, not only through the checkered, contracted landscape of this mortal life, but into the boundless scenes of eternity, of a blessed and glorious immortality. What a privilege and satisfaction, that, though far absent in body, we may yet be present in spirit, beholding and sharing each other's state and interests, temporal, spiritual, and eternal ! and that, esa: pecially, we may in the name, and through the mediation of our common Lord and Saviour, meet at the throne of grace, and there seek and obtain mercy and grace for each other, as well as for ourselves, according to our several circumstances of want, of duty, and of trial, in the course of our pilgrimage towards that rest, which remaineth for the people of God; into which no sin, or sorrow shall follow them; and in the enjoyınent of which, all their capacities and desires, shall be filled with all the fulness of God! That we may meet you and others, who have been and are most dear to you, in that blessed world, to review, in the light of glory, the scenes of earth and time, of provi. dence and grace, and to rejoice and triumph together, in the perfections, the works, and the praises, of God our Saviour for ever. Pray for us, with the peculiar tenderness and fervor of christian love; and pray for us, without ceasing. I
Your description of the solemn and interesting scene of Mr. P's ordination to the gospel ministry, in order to his becoming connected, in the pastoral relation, with
the curci, atul E ate mor by und fear husband, or 3 minner si mars, esercsai S Dairy s faut stilz mi senosi", s Jonoraul" o use:f, and sa siseruly is us jennie, and ran ile adeurs oi such he has been senarai o he qy i us Lord is worthy of yvir ieart, ad ii suur jea; ni las excited in the hearts of yur rends lert. no. ons of mengalir, veri6ux md fendier in heir talire, sumertar direspondeni, toner, a :heir depule par de nuca nierior, to y ox1. I set it al morning, if suci a slemnity and haze heen, it aucz, “ Jieasant aad mourarial is fone mi." Eamin i pie:y and senzibs.ity ake your ad cremmed as you were, borh the piezaat zadle roura, il in gres :100s natural. ly produced by the seasin, must base deen deeply fer indse); were conaua 11. ca le see had, the Esitzbé poisile ses and hoges, te rich se terea red charca va k 13 restore; 21 .90 ile erber sand, Čxellag oo the at:cag reelectia ci past events, which had caud sees aad gee te reira together. Play the sare blessed Lord aed Sasior, ubo, when he calls bode ese and spe:ber of Es fa thíıl servants, that they has esta isto bis joy, stil provide for his cborch a succession of pastors aed teachers, be still found by you, the hostand of the sidos, and the fat ber of poor fatherless children, and by bis gracious pres. ence and abundant consolations, £!l the great void, which his holy bereasing band, with the wisest desigas and for the most salatary parposes, has made in your affectionate heart, and in your dearest social comforts!
Vain wish! yet I cannot belp Fishing, that I had en present, to see a bat you saw, and to hear what
you heard, on that solemn and tender occasion. Such an assemblage of the worthy and pious ministers of Christ, and of devout worshippers, and engaged spectators and hearers ; such serious and interesting transactions, such instructive, impressive discourses, and such excellent, affecting, elevating psalmody, as you describe, would I am sure, have afforded a very peculiar gratification to my feelings, and might, I hope, have contributed something to my spiritual improvement. So many people, thronging the courts of the Lord's house, and engaging in the exercises of his worship, with attentive minds, and so many of the cordial friends of Zion, and especially of the faithful brethren in the gospel ministry, uniting with christian love and zeal, and harmony in their efforts to promote each other's edification, and to build up the church of Christ, and advance its peace and prosperity; how pleasing, how animating the scene, to every heart which loves the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, and which prefers the success of his cause, the triumphs of his cross, to its chiefest earthly joy! There are, I trust, many hearts here, which would rejoice in witnessing such a scene, in all its solemn delightful circumstances, if Providence should furnish the peculiar occasion ; and, in beholding, on more ordinary occasions, the like evidences and fruits of brotherly love, and of the communion of churches, as well as of individual christians. But for such affectionate, profitable and sweet fellowship in the gospel, even in proportion to the smaller number of ministers and christians here, we seem, at present, rather left to sigh and pray, than to hope with any high degree of cheering anticipation. Oh, happy families, societies, and churches, and associations of ministers, with whom the God of love and peace, condescends to dwell! And since he appears so evidently to have honored your branch of his church with the distinguishing tokens of his favour, and manifestations of his presence, especial. ly while engaged in so eminently serious and interest. ing a transaction, as that of forming a connexion with a pastor, whose ministrations, may most deeply and extensively affect their spiritual and eternal concerns; with what consoling reflections, and animating hope, should you all now adopt, and sing to his praise, the words which his own spirit bas indited for you! “ For a small moment, have I forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee. In a little wrath I hid my face from thee, for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I bave mercy on thee, saith the Lord thy Redeemer.”* May the endearing union that has now taken place between the worthy pasa tor and the worthy people of his charge, be long continued, with mutual affection and satisfaction, and be still, and more and more, crowned with the smiles and the blessings of the adorable and gracious Head of the church, to the glory of his own name, and to the present great benefit and comfort, and the future, everlasting joy, of all concerned! It is truly pleasing to hear of the appearances of "a solemnity on the minds of some of the dear youth among you, and of some of them har. ing recently embraced religion.” Such appearances, are, alas ! rarely indeed seen anong us, at present; although we have reason siil to be tbankful for some consoling tokens, that our Lord has not yet forsaken this part of his Zion. A few, and but a few indeed, compared with some former seasons, have, during the summer and fall past, been added to our church. We