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worship. I am persuaded that an interest may be imparted in this manner to family devotion, which it too often needs, and that even quite young children may have their attention fixed, and their serious regards attracted, who otherwise would be listless, and perhaps troublesome. The Prayers in these Services, together with the Petitions and Thanksgivings which accompany them, are from various sources. Some are abridged from printed prayers, and some are, wholly or in part, my own composition.
The Hymns, which close the book, will, I hope, approve themselves to the lovers of devotional poetry, and contribute to make the volume acceptable and useful. Some of them are not of a strictly domestic, or strictly private character, and might be used in the church, as well as in the dwelling-house. The greater part of them, however, could not properly be sung in the church, as they are either too private or too didactic. A hymn often becomes a private or domestic one, by expressing certain states of the mind and heart in a highly impassioned manner, a manner which may be to an individual or a small assembly delightful, inspiring, and affecting, but which would be felt to be out of place in a large and miscellaneous congregation. A hymn may be also too descriptive, or, if I may so speak, too poetical, that is, too much adorned with the usual figures and turns of expression of common poetry, to be employed fitly in the public worship of
God, and yet not too much so for private or domestic use. It is more difficult to point out the distinguishing marks of such hymns, than to perceive them when exhibited in the hymns themselves.
It is my desire, as I have before intimated, that this volume may be found worthy to become a Manual of Devotion; to be taken by the worshipper to church, and back to his house again; to go with the traveller on his journey, and the sailor on the sea; and it is my prayer that it may everywhere be accompanied by the gracious blessing of God. F. W. P. G.
BOSTON, Nov. 1, 1831..
It is not intended that the minister should be confined to the
The appointed Lessons from the New Testament are to be
Proper Psalms for particular days are to be found by referring