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CHAPTER VII

parochial duties in English; and your established character, and old friendships, open a door for extensive service and usefulness among us, above any other whatever, * * * * You know the unfeigned affection I have long had for you, and, therefore, you may with propriety consider me as an interested advocate in the present business: and, indeed, I acknowledge it: I feel myself greatly interested. I have long desired to have you for a colleague; and, notwithstanding the discouragements you have given me, I now have hope that the time is come when I shall call you by that confidential name. I wish to have you for many reasons but I cheerfully leave you with the Lord. Bring the matter to him and, after weighing the whole, I hope you will see it to be your duty to give us a favourable answer." In a postscript to the affectionate letter from which these extracts are made, he says "My health, as I wrote you some time since, has been much on the decline. I found it necessary to move out of the city, and have come over to Long Island, at Flatbush. This change of air, and necessary exercise, have been much blessed to me. I am better than I was; but am still distressed with pains in my breast. I cannot preach so often as I have hitherto done in the large churches in the city. The gentlemen who study theology have followed me to Flatbush. It is here cheaper for them than

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in the city; they have more leisure, and better opportunities for study, and I have more time also to instruct them * *. I feel bound, in conscience, to attend to the duties of the professorate, especially when I see my health also requires it * *. I wish to see you, and converse with you. I shall be happy, very happy to have you near me as a colleague given of the Lord. If your mind is clear upon the subject of our call, I think you need not postpone the acceptance: the sooner you come, the greater will be the proof of your affection."

In another, dated Flatbush, 29th of August, 1786, he observes "The answer you sent to the Consistory, after receiving the call, was yesterday read in full Consistory. It gave us great satisfaction to find that you referred the whole business to the sovereign will of God, and with a determination to seek counsel at the Throne of Grace, had resolved to follow what appeared to be duty. We cheerfully join with you in our prayers, and, as it is his glory and the prosperity of his Church, which is our great object, we desire to look up to him alone, and trust he will, incline your heart, with full conviction of his will, to accept of our call. It is a great grief to us, that our wants should interfere with others, and our gain involve the loss of others; but we are confident that, notwithstanding the strong ties and






        
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