« PreviousContinue »
CHARTERED FUND: Address of the Trustees to the General Conference, exhibiting the
state of the Fund. RESPECTED FATHERS AND BRETHREN, The Trustees of the chartered fund beg leg leave respectfully to lay before you in conformity to the 10th Article of the charter) a statement of the fund under their superintendence, from the first of January, 1820, to the first of January, 1824, which is exhibited in the schedule* accompanying this.
It is cause of deep regret to us, that for the last four years there has been added to this fund no more than $606 51, notwithstanding we have not ceased to urge upon your attention this object of vital importance to our itinerant ministry, among whom there are never wanting objects abundant that cry loudly for benevolence from some source. There are now amongst our superannuated and worn-out preachers, some that are blind, and others with broken constitutions, and to accumulate their sorrows, are destitute of adequate means to procure food and raiment for themselves and their children, and thus bowed down, under weight of years, sorrow, and loss of health, disappointed of aid from their spiritual children, who received the bread of life through their labours, are looking to death's more kind hand to terninate their woes.
There are widows and orphan children, whose husbands and fathers have fallen in the field of labour, leaving to them the legacy of poverty, though in the midst of a numerous and highly favoured church, whose pulpits sound with the doctrine, that
pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father, is this, to visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction."
We have not failed on our part, to exhibit these things to you, though they be not hidden from your personal observation, and have called your attention to the accumulation of this fund as the only certain hope of relief to the objects of its care, and yet it would seem to us, that if only $606 51, is the whole increase of four
years, our calls on you, and the cries of the widow and fatherJess are unheard. We have not been wanting to urge this object on some of our brethren, the ministers, individually, and have sometimes been answered, that any general attempt to aid the fund, would injuriously affect their own resources; though this has been an objection, we hope it may never again be repeated.
We have hitherto presented plans, amongst others, the Asbury Mite Societies, from which the most of the last increase arose. The adoption of these Societies was so partial, that we could not solicit their continuance, and they have ceased.
* See Vol. VI. p. 227 of the Magazine. As what is there published contains further information respecting the origin, progess, usefulness and present state" of this Institution, than is exhibited in the schedule referred to, bringing the account down to January 1, 1823, it is thought unnecessary to republish it here.
We have also suggested, that our preachers should remember this fund in cases where wealthy persons among us are finally settling their worldly affairs. This we still recommend, and, as a last endeavour, would add, that every itinerant minister, having charge of a circuit or station, should annually collect from each mernber under his pastoral care, TEN CENTS, and remit it to the Treasurer, or produce it at his annual conference, to be remitted by the Bishop, or some other person. A donation of this amount we think could not be refused by any, but those who are totally destitute, and sinall as it appears, its annual product would be at least twenty thousand dollars! which, in a few years, would amply relieve the distresses of our superannuated and worn-out preachers, and would dry up the tears of their orphans, and make their widows' hearts to sing for joy. And shall this relief, so perfectly within the reach of our endeavours, and for an object of such moment as this fund has in view, be disregarded ? we hope not, lest He, who is the widows' Husband, and the orphans' Father, should charge their sorrows to us.
Then let it be an order os your Conference, directing every minister having a charge or circuit, that it shall be his duty to make collection and remittance; and in a new edition of our discipline, be ranked in the list of his duties. And that it shall be enjoined on the Class Leaders to aid him; and moreover, that the Bishops be requested to press the necessity of the measure on the preachers at every annual conference.
We have the painful duty to inform you of the death of our much respected fellow member of this trust, Henry Foxall, who was well satisfied of the usefulness of this fund, and has testified it in his usual benevolence, by a legacy of five thousand dollars, which we expect shortly to receive of his executors.
In consequence of the vacancy we beg leave to present herewith a nomination to fill the same, agreeably to the 3d Article of the act of incorporation.*
Having performed our duty, as Trustees, in making this our quadrenvial communication, we accompany it with our prayers, that you may be favoured in your deliberations with the divine influence of the Head of the Church, and that it may direct you to the happiest issues, and that a continuation of those extraordiDary favours which have long crowned the ministerial labours of our Zion, may go down to our children's children for many generations, when you and we “have rested from our labours, and our works do follow us." And to God shall all the glory be. Signed by order, and in bekalf of the Trustees of the Chartered Fund.
THOMAS SARGENT, President.
Joseph L. IngLis, Secretary. Philadelphia, April 12, 1824.
* Mr. Thomas JACKSON, of Philadelphia, was elected to all the vacancy.
N. B. Any legacies to this Fund should be left in the following terms, viz.;
“I give and bequeath to the Trustees of the Fund for the re. lief and support of the Itinerant, superannuated and worn-out ministers and preachers of the Methodist Episcopal Church, in the United States of America, their wives and children, widows and orphans, and their successors for ever, the sum of
Donations may be remitted to the Treasurer, Joseph L. INGLIS, Philadelphia.
From the American, Moral and Sentimental Magazine. SINGULAR ADVENTURE OF COUNT GENERAL SAXE. The nobleman this adventure happened to, was well known at the French Court, under the name of the Count Beaumont. Having intended to pass the winter at one of his country seats he set out about the month of October, which was very rainy that year. As soon as he reached the frontiers, he assumed the priva ileges of his rank and title. His harbinger always set out some hours before him, to see his lodging, and fit it for the arrival of his master.
One day, when the rains had so spoiled the roads that the coach and equipage of the Count could not reach the town he had promised to lodge in, his Marshal stopped at a little beggarly village, situated at the bottom of a valley, almost desert, and always full of water; and appointed the Count's lodging at the Curate's, who was very poor. The poverty of this house was the same as in the other houses, excepting that it was something less inconvenient; but there was scarce any shelter from the wind and rain.
When the Count arrived, he was received and complimented by the good Curate, who displayed all his eloquence to thank him for the honour he did him, in coming to lodge in his humble hut, and in his way, made an hundred excuses that his cottage was so ill provided to entertain so great a man.
The Count, who was unacquainted with the place thanked him for his speech, and after having assured him that he would not incommode him, ordered his postillion to proceed. The Curate, whọ perhaps wished no better, thought it his duty to use soine entreaties to stop him, assuring him, that, as poor as his house was, it was the most convenient in the village.
The Marshal returned in the midst of these ceremonies and joined his entreaties to those of the Curate, protesting that he had visited all the houses, one by one, and had found none comparable to this —"Very well (says the Count,) but why may not I lodge in that castle which I see there, at the other end of the village ? whoever lives there, I suppose won't refuse me a chamber: go thither in my name; I'll alight here, and wait for an answer.
o What are
"My Lord, (says the Curate,) that castle is not inhabited: this land has been for sale many years; most of the apartments are without doors; however, soine rooms are still neat enough, and there are some old moveables." “I don't want so much (says the Count,) it is at least a shelter, and there I'll have my bed made." "I would have done it before, my Lord, (said the Marshall,) if I had not been told that you would have been in danger there, because this castle is possessed by spirits and hobgoblins, who make a horrid din there every night. They told me but this very minute, that the witches held their last meeting there, and that the master of it, who is in some foreign country, has let his house to the devil.”
you drunk?” says the Count in anger : "you talk like a fool-have done with this stuff; I'll lie in the castle ; get my bed ready immediately, and in the mean time I'll sup with Monsieur the Curate."-They were forced to obey.
During this interval, the Count desired his company, and an account whence those foolish reports took their rise: The Curate was a good little man, but as ignorant as possible, and extremely credulous. He had every fabulous circumstance by heart, and recited tales of apparitions of every kind, in order to divert the Count from going to the castle. The valet too made his remonstrances in vain-they made no impression. He threw himself at his master's feet to beg him not to expose himself; but dissuasion only confirmed his resolves of going to the castle. He set out, and his valet lighted him with a link. The poor fellow, who was naturally credulous, had his head full of stories, which he had picked up in the town; for every one had his tale, and the whole village attested the truth of them: so that he went with his master as if it had been to an execution.
His fears increased as he approached the castle. It was an old building, moated round, adorned with several ruinous turrets, which made the place disagreeable enough in itself; and its appearance was adapted to inspire that secret horror which generally attends the view of magnificent ruins. Besides by the desertion of its mastser, this old pile was become the retreat of bats and screech-owls. The cries and flutter of these nocturnal animals so terrified the poor fellow, that he thought he had a thousand spirits at his elbow already. But the Count encouraging him by his reasons and example, they came to the chanuber where the bed was prepared. Though it was the neatest and noblest apartment, the door could not be shut on the inside. The Count undressed; but before he lay down, he tied bis pistols to his belt, and hung his arins over the bolster. He ordered too lighted candles to be placed in the chimney, and kept two by his bed-side. After these precautions, he went to bed, not quite undressed; and his man lay on a mattress brought thither on purpose.
The Count notwithstanding his bravery, could not sleep: a certain restlessness, consistent with the truest valour, threw him involuntarily into melancholy reflections on the hazards which he perhaps unnecessarily exposed himself to. He had passed two hours thus uneasily, and was going to compose himself, when, about midnight, he fancied he heard a harsh and hollow noise in the further part of the castle, and it was too distant to be distinct. He conceived that this noise must be made by something alive, because, as well as he could follow it by his ear, it went round the castle. He thought it at first to be some beast grazing thereabout, with a bell at its neck, but soon changed his
opinion : the noise cleared it up as it came near. The Count heard distinctly the steps of one marching gravely, and the rattling of a chain pretty heavy, as he judged by the noise it made on the pavement. This frightful noise entering the apartments, seemed to tend directly to the Count's chamber. He then thought he ought to stand upon his guard, and slipping on his gown and slippers, he threw his belt over his shoulders, and returned into bed, ready for all events.
In the mean time, the noise redoubling upon the stair-case, awaked the valet, who, to drown his fears, had gorged himself with wine over-night. The Count could scarce keep him from crying out; for, notwithstanding his drunkenness, he was still sensible of fear: but the Count threatening to break his head with his pistol, if he cried out, he lay still.
The hobgoblin continuing his walks, went through the neighbouring rooms; and having made his tour, groaning most lamentably, he went up two pair of stairs, where the dragging of his chains made a terrible din. This horrible noise, far from intimidating the Count, made him suspect some trick; for he was not at all credulous. Says he to himself, “ If they want to murder me, these ceremonies are needless : to be sure, then, they want to frighten me; for I sha!l never believe that the devil, or any inhabitant of the other world, is come hither purposely to carry on this farce. Let us see then (continues he) the conclusion of this comedy.'
The moment he made this reflection, the spirit pushed the door violontly, and entered the chamber. His figure was hideous; he seemed all hairy, like a bear, and loaded with chains, which he struck against the walls with horrible groans. He advanced solemnly towards the mattress where the servant lay. The fellow not daring to cry out, for fear of angering his master, had wrapped himself in his great coat, thinking death unavoidable, either from his master, or from the ghost : which last lifting up the chains, rattled them at the poor wretch's ear, and frightened him into a swoon. The Count having observed this procedure through his curtains, and hearing his man cry out, thought the spectre had