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ready meditating a departure from this country to some distant, and as they hope, more congenial clime.
“ 3. ‘Are the Jesuits numerous ? and are they as dangerous as they generally are supposed to be?' I believe they are. They have several large establishments in this country, and are considered the most dextrous and influential branch of the Roman Catholic body; and it is vain to dream of their extirpation from this populous Popish country. They are fully capable of devising ways and means of evading any law that may be enacted against them.
* 4. • Will Messrs. O'Connell and Co. be quiet, or will they still keep in a state of agitation the public mind, at least, the Catholics?' Mr. O'Connell has already answered this question himself; when he said in the Association, We will take 12s. 6d. in the pound, if we can get no more, and having obtained this, contend for the remaining 78. 6d. Nothing less than twenty shillings in the pound, will satisfy; and many are of opinion that it will require twenty-one shillings to the pound, at least, to restore them to full • quiet.
5. “What influence will these changes have on Methodism in Ireland? on Bible Societies, and on Protestant Schools ?' With regard to Methodism, I cannot see what particular effect it may feel immediately, further than an increase of the spirit of emigration, by which we have been deprived of hundreds of our people annually for the last thirty years. And perhaps the same observation may apply to Bible and School Societies, provided that the Roman Catholic Legislators may not be able to procure enactments which will interfere with the operation of those societies, and that we are all protected by the law, as we have hitherto been.
Should the present Roman Catholic Relief Bill pass, as in all probability it will, there are extremely few of that body who will derive advantage from it in the least degree. The benefits of it will be confined to the individuals who may get into those places and offices which are thrown open to them by the provisions of this Bill, but cannot reach the peasantry, or great mass of the population : and the disfranchisement of the forty shilling freeholders will be felt by many of them a sore privation, as in cases of elections they usually sold their votes to
the highest and best bidder. £10. was the usual price; but in cases of critical competition, they have sometimes got £40. or £50. In many cases the Bribery Oath was not put, as bribery was carried on at both sides; and many, it is said, voted and got the boon, who had no freehold at all.
“The poor Roman Catholics of Ireland have uniformly preferred Protestant landlords, masters, and employers, to those of their own communion; and it does not appear to me that the present Bill will afford any relief to the poor Roman Catholics of Ireland, or add any thing to their ecclesiastical revenues or privileges;—so that the question of discontent will still lie open. And it is vain, utterly vain, to hope for quiet, whilst the poor Roman Catholics are obliged to support a church which they are all taught to consider heretical and damnable ; and their clergy will still keep the subject alive, until released from that cruel and unreasonable bondage. The Romish clergy have unbounded influence over their people.
“ I am very short-sighted, and an extremely bad politician; yet as you have asked, I have freely shewn my opinions, and the reasons on which they are founded, and you will weigh and judge. I have taken no part in any public discussions on this subject; but endeavoured to preserve our people in peace, and spread the matter before our gracious Lord and Master in humble, earnest prayer.
"Most respectfully and affectionately,
Yours in Christ Jesus,
« ******* *******"
Dublin, March 24, 1829."
A short time after the receipt of this letter, the Bill passed both Houses of Parliament, and received the Royal signature. My father thus records his feelings, in a letter to the biographer :
“So you see the Catholic Relief Bill has passed, and is now the law of the land. We must submit; but I feel as if part of my birth-right was gone. I hope this measure will be followed up by regulations to improve the condition of the Irish peasantry, and by increased exertions in all real Protestants in Ireland and England to diffuse Scriptural knowledge, and vital and practical religion. The sword of the Lord and of Gideon! Let us do all we can by wielding the sword of the Spirit,' to put down error and vice. “Truth is mighty, and will prevail.
In another letter written about the same time, he thus contrasts the ample leisure enjoyed by the Methodist preachers in former times for employments purely spiritual, with their present unceasing occupation :—"I had intented to write a long letter; but business, interruptions, and time-stealers have hindered. Amidst the multifarious extras,–Committees, &c.—which occupy the time of the preachers in these days, and often leave the mind barren, I look backward with regret to the times when all our work was spiritual workreading, study, prayer, preaching, and visiting the sick. Well, we must do the best we can, and endeavour to act for eternity.”
On Thursday, May 21st, an event is recorded which afforded Mr. E. the most lively satisfaction. His young. est son, Samuel, was unanimously recommended to the Conference by the Bristol District Meeting as a candidate for the Itinerant Ministry. At the examination, Mr. E. being the Chairman of the District, requested the brethren to act as if Samuel were not his son, and to allow his venerable friend, the late Rev. James Wood, to act in his place. They did so. Samuel passed the examination with great credit; and Mr. Wood drew up the character and signed it for the District Minutes and the Conference.
As the time drew nearer when according to the usages of the Connexion his labours in Bristol must necessarily terminate, he became more and more intensely desirous of being useful; and though the complaint already mentioned was perceptibly gaining ground, and he found a greater tendency than formerly to be excited by circumstances in a way that convinced him he must not be overworked, yet he continued in labours more abundant; for instance, in eight days he preached eleven times, and was on horseback almost every day. On one day, he rode twenty-two miles and preached three times, besides meeting classes. Besides which, he was much engaged in making all the necessary arrangements for the contemplated division of the circuit, which was carried into effect at the ensuing Conference. And yet so high was
the standard of ministerial diligence and devotedness he proposed to himself, that he could not contemplate bis own labours with any thing like self-complacency. In the review of the three years spent in this circuit, towards their close, he says :—"I have deeply to regret that I have seen so little fruit in the conversion of sinners, that I have been so deficient in zeal and holy diligence in public and in private. I have laboured with pleasure, and I believe with general acceptance and usefulness, and have received many tokens of the kind affection of the people; yet my heart aches while I recollect how often I have been wanting in holy fervour and strenuous efforts to do good; and now my opportunities are almost for ever gone. God be merciful to me a sinner! O God, help me to redeem time for the future.”
FROM THE CONFERENCE OF 1829 TO THAT OF 1831.
MR. ENTWISLE's next appointment was to the Bath Circuit, to which he removed on the 1st of September; the Rev. George Rowe and the compiler of this Memoir being his colleagues. His old friend, the Rev. Thomas Roberts, A.M. was also settled in Bath as a Supernumerary. It was great addition to his comfort that all his surviving sons were now so near, that he had more frequent opportunities of intercourse with them than at any former period. The eldest resided in the house with him as his colleague; the second was stationed with the Rev. John Newton, in the Bradford (Wilts.) Circuit, and lived at Trowbridge, only ten miles from Bath: and the youngest, who had just been placed on the President's List of Reserve, remained for the present at Bristol, with Mr. James Wood, Druggist. The Circuit, too, was highly agreeable: it comprehended indeed a number of small societies at considerable distances; but an arrangement was made by his colleagues, which relieved him of most of the country work, so that the labour was made easy to him; and his time was chiefly devoted to the city and its immediate neighbourhood, embracing a large population, and presenting a fine field of usefulness. The following is his own account of his feelings and prospects on commencing his ministerial labours in this beautiful city.
“Five weeks ago I entered upon my work in this circuit. I do not recollect at any time since I began to travel that I have had such an “entering in among the people, such a consciousness of the divine presence and assistance; and I may add, such evidence of serious, interested attention in the people. Our prospects are cheering. The congregations are large and attentive.