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give fixed attention to the regular ministrations of the sanctuary; or if they do, they are not able adequately to comprehend them. They need long-continued and systematic discipline. Some of them are diffident to an extreme, and will never become useful members of the “household of faith,” without particular care. Others are naturally self-confident, and will “run before they are sent." Others still, who may be numbered with the people of God, are in a fatal error; and it is the wisest course, on every account, that the error should be immediately detected. All of them need to be instructed in the great work of doing good. It is of unspeakable importance to the piety and extension of the church, and to the salvation of pagan nations, that all who assume the Christian profession should assume it “ in spirit and in truth ;” not regarding it as a sort of easy passport to heaven, but as the assumption of a great work. A judicious Christian education, under the care of the minister, will contribute to give intelligence and efficiency to their whole subsequent course. If their pastor wishes for their sincere affection and warm-hearted co-operation, he will become familiarly acquainted with them during the first months of their spiritual life. Then, if ever, they have a frank, winning, and generous disposition-a foundation on which the most delightful and permanent friendship may be laid. Those ministers, who resign the youthful disciples of Christ to an indefinite spiritual guardianship, or abandon them to the “ tender mercies” of the world, mistake the whole tenor of the New Testament. Nearly all the epistles in that volume are directed to those who were just enrolled in the number of the faithful, who needed “milk, and not strong meat.” The principal design of the commission given to apostles and prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, was for the “perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying
of the body of Christ," until believers should “ unto the measure of the stature of the fullness" of their Lord.
The preceding remarks are made because they are considered to be important in respect to the course which Mr. Cornelius adopted-a course which every man, in similar circumstances, would find of the highest advantage to pursue.
Such preaching and pastoral labor as the Tabernacle church now enjoyed, in connection with what they had previously been favored with from the instructions and prayers of a man eminent as Dr. Worcester was, in all ministerial endowments, could not fail of being attended with the blessing of the great Head of the church. The languid were awakened, the thoughtless professor was alarmed, the worldly-minded were rebuked, the brokenhearted penitent found rest in Jesus, and the established believer was enabled to know more of the riches of the love of Christ. Upon the congregation, the divine influence at one time rested in an extraordinary degree. The “preaching of the cross " became the “ wisdom and power of God unto many.” In consequence, about one hundred subsequently united with the church. Some of them have since “ slept in Jesus,” “witnessing a good confession,” in life and in death. The following letter relates to this dispensation of the Holy Spirit.
Salem, August 4, 1824. “My dear B.,
“I dare say you have by this time been ready to accuse me of great delinquency in not fulfilling my promise to write to you. But the urgency of my labors will plead some apology. After you left us, the attention to religion assumed and continued to wear a deeper interest than ever. At each inquiry-meeting we have found new instances of conviction and hopeful conversion, and I am happy to say that they are beginning to be more frequent among the males. Last evening thirtyeight attended the inquiry-meeting, and we have not before had more than twenty-seven. The evening was very unfavorable to invalids, and persons at a distance, yet one hundred and fifty males were present. I have been happy to hear of several instances of awakening on the evening you preached to the young people. The Lord has I think set his seal to the labors of that occasion. I am constantly holding neighborhood-meetings, and find the effect very happy. I have had at my vestry since you left us, over one hundred male non-professors of my congregation to hear a plain address which I designed exclusively for them. I have had one meeting at my house for young men, at which about twenty attended by invitation; and the last Sabbath evening I met fifteen or twenty of the most respectable men in my congregation, who are not professors, at a private house. I had a very solemn meeting. I have felt, and so have my brethren, that it is highly important to make greater effort for the men.”
Communion seasons in his church were observed every month, and it was rare that two in succession elapsed, without the admission of members.
It is not intended to represent the labors of Mr. Cornelius, or the condition of his church, as perfect. He was doubtless far from the mark of that high calling to which he aspired. It was by the “ grace of God that he labored not in vain.” His closet often, without doubt, bore witness to his confession, as well as to his thanksgiving and hope. To those discouragements with which all faithful ministers meet, he was not a stranger.
At the same time, his character and labors were not only appreciated, by his flock, but valued in a very high degree. One of the best fruits of his toil, was the spirit of enlarged charity which prevailed in his church and congregation. Indeed, they would have been signally in fault, had they not been “ready to distribute,” and “willing to communicate," having so often heard the appeals, and so long witnessed the disinterested benevolence of Dr. Worcester and Mr. Cornelius—pioneers as they were in modern American evangelism. One measure, which Mr. Cornelius adopted, in reference to this subject, was peculiar, in the degree at least to which he carried it. This was the circulation of religious papers and magazines. His journies, as a public agent, had been the means of convincing him that the wide dissemination of religious discussions and intelligence, was fundamental in respect to the universal diffusion of the gospel. Those excuses, by which many Christians exclude themselves from the benefits of religious reading, asserting that they have little time, or pecuniary means, for the purpose, he regarded as exceedingly futile, and as the cloak under which avarice and unbelief like to hide themselves.
Dr. Worcester's death, which took place at Brainerd, in the Cherokee nation, on the 7th of June, 1821, was a heavy aMiction to Mr. Cornelius. That event may perhaps be considered as an era in the growth of his religious character. He was left with the charge of a great people, nearly two thousand in number, at a prominent post, surrounded by opposers of evangelical religion. He prayed and studied more, and seemed habitually to feel the increased weight of his cares.
His intercourse with Dr. Worcester had been throughout delightful, and in the highest degree useful. He loved to sit at the feet of that revered man, and listen to the words of wisdom, which dropped as honey from his lips. He was accustomed to speak of him familiarly as a man of extraordinary Christian sagacity, who had deeply studied the motives of human action in connection with the arrangements of divine Providence. He regarded it as one of the chief blessings of his life, both in an intellectual and moral respect, that he had been brought into connection with him for so many years. We here copy some brief extracts from his letters to Dr. Worcester, who was then absent on a visit to the Indian missions.
“ Salem, February 26, 1821. “Rev. and very dear Sir,
“I can assure you it was far from my intention, when I wrote last, to allow so long a time to elapse, before I wrote again. But every day has brought its cares and duties in a manner which need not be explained to one so familiar with them as yourself. Let me say, however, not a day and scarcely an hour passes, without a remembrance of one, whose whole character is interwoven with almost every thought of my heart, and whose arm having so long been the support of myself and others, has not been removed without a very sensible privation on our part. God, I still trust, has been with us, as I doubt not he has been with you, and our prayers are continually offered to him for your entire restoration to health, and for your return to your people and labors in due time. Your letter, forwarded by sea, was a most seasonable and joyful relief to our minds. We knew you must have had a severe gale, and how you had withstood it, was a matter of deep concern to many hearts. Yet we had no expectation of hearing from you until your arrival in New Orleans, and supposed of course, we must be kept in painful suspense many weeks You can easily imagine, dear sir, what emotion your letter produced under such circumstances. It was read and inquired after with so much avidity, that I deemed it a duty to read extracts from it in public. Many eyes were suffused with tears,