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ON RECOMMENDING THE MAGAZINES.
"what can be done to obtain an increased circulation of the Magazines?" It must be allowed that the above is a very important question, and deserving of serious attention, especially as the season of the year approaches for soliciting Subscribers for another year. It must be obvious to all, that the circulation of a periodical amongst a body of Christians, constituted as the Association is, must, in a great measure, nay, almost entirely, depend upon the preachers.
"If the preachers interest themselves in its circulation, it will prosper; if they do not, it will either languish for want of support, or not prove half so effective as it otherwise might do."
It is a question, whether, as a body in general, or as preachers in particular, we feel that interest in the larger Magazine which we ought: whether we regard its influence, in a moral or religious point of view, as we are warranted in doing. If the Magazine is at all calculated to further the cause we have in view—to disseminate Scriptural knowledge—to build up believers on their most holy faith—to exert a moral influence wherever it is read—to lead the young to a knowledge of God,—ought not its circulation to be as extensive as possible? By this means, many will be made acquainted with the state of the Association, and thus be led to rejoice in its progress, and sympathize in its difficulties. Its precious biography will also prove a lasting blessing. Whilst thus encouraging its circulation in every possible way, we shall be doing good in our day and generation, and strengthening the weak bands, and confirming the feeble knees. The Magazine ought also to prove an auxiliary to the spread of the Gospel in a pecuniary point of view. But how can it, unless its circulation be extended?
Though it is a hackneyed phrase, that infidelity, under various forms, with all its attendant evils, is on the increase; yet still it is an awful truth; and the press is made to bear a part in this evil work. And what shall retard or stop its progress? The press, undoubtedly, in part. "This powerful engine, the press (says Dr. Pye Smith), is now worked most dreadfully on the side of error and wickedness; and the result is easy to be foreseen, if the friends of truth and righteousness will not be active in the same way. Surely, then, it is a duty solemnly incumbent upon all, to do what they can for the upholding and extension of this mode of usefulness. From such a conviction, I have for many years endeavoured to serve my country and mankind." Such is the language of a distinguished minister of Jesus Christ.
In Mr. Wesley's letter to a preacher (see February Magazine, 1842), he thus writes: "It gives me pleasure to hear that you are not weary in welldoing, but are diligent in advancing the cause of religion. There is one way of doing this, in which it will be worth your while to take some pains. I mean in recommending the Magazines. If you say of them, in every society, what you may say with truth, and say it with an air of earnestness, you will produce several new subscribers."
I believe the above has seldom failed. It is to be feared, that it is in thii as well as in other respects, that we have not, because we ask not. Any want of subscribers, must in a great measure be chargeable upon our preachers. The people want the subject to be brought before them, and to be urged, and recommended to take them.
Let the Children's Magazine be recommended in every Sunday School, and in every family where there are children; and the larger Magazine in every Society, and in families generally where it is likely to be taken. If the above be done, there will speedily be an increased circulation.
It must be obvious to all, that the circulation of the Magazines will be of essential service to the Association at large. We should also have more intelligent congregations. Knowledge would spread, and knowledge confers power. If we are desirous that wisdom and knowledge should be the stability of our times, we must make use of the means. Let those who have the ability, send suitable communications for insertion in the Magazines, and thus make the Magazines as effective as possible, and let preachers and people circulate them to the utmost of their power.
We live in eventful times I Diligent efforts are now making again to cover the earth with gross darkness. We must combat this darkness with light— the light of truth.
We live in eventful times! Many are saying, who will show us any good? The mind of man, particularly at the present moment, is restless. It needs food—spiritual and mental food—food of the right sort,—not the unsubstantial food of mysticism, or the tainted food of Romanism, but the " sincere milk of the Word, that it may grow thereby."
We live in eventful times! And would adopt in conclusion, the words of a well known writer, " Look at the state of the world: the whole of society in motion, and multitudes rising from their slumbers in all lands. Millions upon millions are looking out for the clear light of truth; and in consequence of the little that is done for the plenteous diffusion of that light, multitudes are losing themselves in darkness, and others see nothing clearly. We have it in our power, by the blessing of God, in some measure, to supply the called for light, and to communicate life and joy to thousands. We have the opportunity of pushing forward society at large in the way of religious improvement, and hastening the universal salvation of mankind. By a wise and liberal use of the press, we may do all these things; and shall we not have the heart to do them?"
OPENING OF A NEW CHAPEL,
Mr. Editor,—It will no doubt afford great pleasure to many of your readers to find that the cause of God in connexion with the Wesleyan Methodist Association, is at present gaining ground, and taking root in several parts of the Principality; through the blessing of God on the indefatigable labours of your Missionaries, a society has lately been established at Holywell, under very favourable auspices; as will appear from the following brief statement.
On the 4th of August, 1841, one of your Missionaries, J. Griffiths, visited this town, and preached in the open air from Prov. xxiii. 26, not less than 1500 persons then listened to him. On the 13th of the same month he paid us a second visit, and was favoured with the use of the Independent chapel;
where he preached to a respectable assembly from Matthew xxv. 34. At this time a labouring man, (Hugh Williams) voluntarily offered the use of his house for Sabbath day preaching, which was accepted, and preaching regular on the Lord's day was established at the hours of two and six. This was a happy circumstance, and with it may be connected the beneficial results that followed. About this time, the writer, with a few others, members of the Methodist Society, attended the afternoon service, when the Rev. R. Richards, (Missionary) preached from Isa. lxiii. 1. The discourse was affecting, and many shed tears of joy whilst listening to the heart-felt recital of our Saviour's sufferings, and ultimate victory over his enemies. The following sabbath, brother T. Roberts of Wrexham, preached from 1 Pet. i. 19. By this time great excitement prevailed with regard to the principles
and objects of the Association; and in course of the following week, an interview took place between the writer, W. Williams, class leader and local preacher, and W. Roberts, also a member of the Conference body; when after some deliberation, and in consideration of several Methodistic grievances, they determined upon casting in their lot with the Association. In the afternoon and evening of the following Sabbath, It. Gabriel of Trenddyn, preached from Jer. viii. 22, and from Cant. iv. 16. After the evening sermon the preacher invited as many as were seriously inclined to remain, for the purpose of Christian fellowship, when seven remained. Brother Gabriel gave an edifying exhortation,and encouraged us with the assurance that when the Missionary arrived he would enroll our names, and form us into a Society, and that every attention would be paid to our spiritual and eternal welfare. It was a blessed hour, and never while memory holds her seat shall we forget the intense interest, and the heartthrilling emotions we mutually felt on the occasion. Next morning, brother Williams, waited on myself and T. Roberts. We then agreed to rent a spacious room, connected with the Coach and Horses Inn, Whitford-street, (in which the Calvinistic Methodists first commenced preaching in this town) at £6 Os. per annum; we also, on our own responsibility repaired and fitted up the place with pulpit, forms, out-door entrance,&c. incurring thereby an expenditure of not less than £12. There was something providential in all this; by the time the Missionary arrived on Saturday the room was completed, and the bellman had announced the opening service. The same evening brother Williams attended the Conference leaders' meeting, and there, amidst the expostulations and general regret of all present, gave up his class books, and resigned his membership. The next day was fraught with blessings,brother Richards preached in the afternoon from Rev. vi. 17, and in the evening from Job xix. 25, 26, 27. The discourses were impressive and edifying. Collections were made after each service, and the
contributions exceeded our most sanguine expectations. Fifteen persons remained behind, and were enrolled as members of the Association; some of whom had never met in Christian fellowship before.
lint now, Sir, we had a fiery ordeal to pass through; the unkind insinuations of a bigoted and interested faction, the revilings of our late brethren, and the upbraidings of those of our own households, conspired to make our position any thing but agreeable to flesh and blood; but Sir, our position was sacred, we had principles to stand by, and were resolved to keep our conscience void of offence.—
The fiercer the blast,
In all our most trying circumstances the Divine presence was recognized amongst us, and the hand of God was with us, and He prospered the work of our hands. I shall now pass over a period of about ten months, during which, notwithstanding the wrong feelings of our opponents, we prospered; our families became reconciled, and we had rest and were edified—and walkin- in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied. Our members having now reached to about forty, we became anxious for a chapel, but the idea bore a very formidable aspect; however. Providence opened the door, and through the unwearied exertions of brother Williams, we succeeded in erecting a very neat chapel in Wellstreet, capable of holding from 300 to 400 people.
On Sunday morning, August 21, 1842, the new chapel was opened: at seven o'clock, a prayer-meeting was held for the special out-pouring of the Holy Spirit. Several friends from different parts of the circuit were present, and united in supplicating the throne of Divine Grace. A more delightful season we never enjoyed; indeed such grateful acknowledgments of mercies received, such aspirations of praise to the Giver of all good, and such importunate entreaties for the Divine blessing on the place we were setting apart for the worship of the Almighty God, we have seldom heard. At ten o'clock we re-assembled, when our venerable fathers in Christ, the Revs. T. Jones of Liverpool, and R. Blunt, from Harwood, preached; the one was from John viii. 10, 11, the other from Matthew vi. 21. At two o'clock in the afternoon we again met, when Mr. Jones of Liverpool, supplicated the throne of grace; and the Rev. J. Griffiths (Missionary) preached with his usual ability from Rev. vi. 2. The chapel was densely crowded, and numbers were obliged to return home unable to obtain admittance. At six o'clock in the evening, brother Griffiths again preached from Jer. xxiii. 5, and after him, Mr. Jones of Liverpool, from Rev. vi. 17. The discourses were both powerful and searching, and three penitents were led to cry for mercy.
Monday morning at seven o'clock, the brethren met again for prayer; the Divine presence appeared amongst us, and never was the sentiment of the Poet more happily realized, than at that time:
Prayer ardent opens heav'n, lets down
a stream Of glory on the consecrated hour, Of man in audience with the Deity.
At ten o'clock brother Griffiths from Baugor, preached from John iii. 16, afterwards Mr. H.Mitchell from Joshxxii. 23. The chapel was well rilled, and the congregation respectable. In the afternoon at two o'clock, brother Michael commenced with reading and prayer, and Messrs. Griffiths, and J. Harris of Bangor, preached two most excellent discourses, the former from 2 Thess. i. 7, the latter from 1 Cor. vii. 30, 31. The congregation was very large. At six o'clock in the evening, brother Jones opened the meeting, and brothers Harris and Michael preached; the former delivered a most elaborate discourse from Heb. i. 1.; the latter preached a very judicious sermon from Psalm xvi. 10, 11. The chapel during this service was crowded to excess, and completely surrounded by a dense multitude. And may we not hope that the word of life thus powerfully preached, and so anxiously listened to
by many hundreds of perishing sinners, may be as bread cast on the waters to be seen after many days.
Tuesday morning at nine o'clock, a public meeting, previously announced by placards through the town, was held; when lectures were delivered on the Constitution of a Church, and the nature and extent of Christian liberty; and our reasons for seceding from the Conference connexion were then stated. The meeting, though held at an inconvenient hour, was numerously attended; and it is hoped it will have a beneficial effect: indeed, the present state of intellect in Wales is such as to warrant us in the conclusion that the reign of ecclesiastical misrule is drawing to a close; and that the tree of Christian liberty shall ere long spread its broad branches throughout the length and breadth of this land. Were 1 requested to point out the most striking features of the Principality, I would not speak of the wooded glen that echoes the sounding cataract, or the blue lake that chequers the mountain scenery ; I would mention none of nature's beauties,—I would fix my finger on a bold and intelligent peasantry, who abhor the very idea of slavery, in whatever form or aspect it may appear. 1 would refer to the fearless spirit of enquiry which pervades the people, a spirit which accounts no subject too sacred for its investigation, but undauntedly requires the why and the wherefore of the laws, customs, and institutions of society. It avails not with them that we plead the usage of former times, to prove that our fathers thought and acted in this manner; these arguments have but little weight in the mind of an enlightened Welshman; the reason of the practice is demanded, and its obligation on the conscience must be proved.
Judging from the present aspect of society, the success which has hitherto attended our labours, and the calls which are continually made by the adjacent towns and neighbourhoods, I feel justified in asserting that any exertion made by the Association, in promoting the cause of God in Wales, will be attended with beneficial results: the slate of the cause in Holywell is a sufficient demonstration, being entirely the fruit of Missionary labour.
We have to express our unfeigned thanks to those friends who have so promptly assisted us on this memorable occasion; especially to those of different denominations who have so cordially entertained our strangers, and contributed to our funds. Through the active labours of our brethren, and the liberal contributions of our friends in general, together with the economy exercised in the building, the whole of the debt remaining on this neat and commodious edifice will not exceed £100.
The advantages of this chapel over the late room will appear from our having had £6. per annum rent to pay by special quarterly subscriptions. Whilst in the new chapel, which is more conveniently situated, we have twice the room, together with eighteen family pews to rent, a great part of which are already taken, and also a large space in the body of the chapel appropriated to free sittings.
In conclusion we have to record our heart-felt thanks to Almighty God, for the signal marks of His favour in all our undertakings, and we pray Him to grant that the place thus erected, and set apart for His glory, may be recognized as the birth-place of many immortal souls. Amen.
At Ashton, on the 25th of Sept., was re-opened, after undergoing considerable repairs, the Wesleyau Methodist Association Chapel, when three most excellent and useful sermons were delivered. That in the morning at half-past ten, by Mr. Hichens, of Illogan, from Is. xxv. 6,7, 8. In the afternoon by the Rev. E. Wright, from Gal. vi. 10.; in the evening, by the Rev. W. Jackson, from Acts xiii. 38, 39. The congregations were exceedingly good the whole of the day, and in the evening many were compelled to go awsry unable to obtain admission. The Divine presence delightfully hal
lowed the whole of the services, and the collections far exceeded general expectation.
The chapel has been made a third longer, besides the erection of an end gallery, and the walls raised much higher, with the addition of circular headed windows. It stands in the midst of a dense and increasing population; is decidedly one of the neatest chapels in the circuit, and gives additional interest to the appearance of the village. The prospects of the Church there are exceedingly cheering. May their hopes be more than realized in the salvation of hundreds of souls. Amen. J. Edgar.
On Monday, the 10th inst., we commenced a protracted meeting in our new chapel in Oldfield Road, and continued it through the week. It was conducted as follows :—Sermons were preached, on Monday, by Rev. James Molineux; on Tuesday, by Rev. Samuel Lambrick; on Wednesday, by Rev. A. Weston; on Thursday, by Rev. T. Ellery; and on Friday, by Rev. H. Breedon ;—and a public band meeting was held on Saturday.
As soon as the sermons, which were edifying, impressive, and well suited to the occasion, were delivered, a prayer meeting was commenced, and continued as long as circumstances rendered it expedient. All the services were exceedingly well attended; an overwhelming influence rested upon the people; and the end for which they were held was answered—sinners were saved, backsliders reclaimed; and believers built up " upon their most holy faith." To God be all the glory. Could not our friends in other parts of the Connexion follow our example?
OPENING OP THE WESLEVAN METHODIST ASSOCIATION NEW CHAPEL.
The erection of places for the public worship of Almighty God is, to minds