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would rather go without his breakfast, than be too late. Whilst in school, his diligence soon enabled him to read well in the Bible. He was also a constant
attendant on the means of grace; and, when at home, · was particularly thoughtful and steady.
He appears to have been the subject of serious impressions for a considerable time ; and would frequently ask his father and mother very deep questions respecting God, and the soul of man. His employment being in the coal-pit, when an opportunity occurred, he was wont to retire from his companions, and converse on serious subjects with a pious old man, who took much delight in talking with him. When at home he would not unite with wicked children; but with a few of his young friends retired often into private to read the Bible, and other good books.
The circumstance which occasioned his death was truly affecting. The horse, of which he was the driver, drawing four waggons after it, ran away. He was thrown from his seat, and the whole of the waggons passed over his body. It was surprising that he was able to speak at all, after the accident. Medical aid was procured immediately; but without effect. He lived, however, so long as to testify that he was going to a better world. During this period, not a murmuring word was heard from his lips. When his medicine. was administered, he always asked the Lord to give his blessing with it. On the Saturday before his death, his old friend called to see him, to whom he said, “ I am very ill, but I hope you and I shall soon meet in heaven.” About midnight, he was very restless; but to the astonishment of all present, he engaged in fervent supplication, and prayed, not only for himself, but that the LORD would pour out his Spirit on all people. In the morning of the day on which he died, he inquired for his father, and requested that they might have a prayer-meeting by themselves; after which he said, “O father! I am going to heaven; the Lord has pardoned all my sins, through the merits of JESUS CHRIST.” Shortly after this he expired. May Sunday Scholars follow him, so far as he followed CHRIST. May Teachers never
become weary, in well doing ; but in the morning sow their seed, and in the evening not withhold their hand; for they know not which will prosper, this or that."
W. ALLAN, jun. 2. Mary Ann Foster, of Keighley, Yorkshire, died Sept. 25, 1821, aged 16. Her father gives the following account of her. She was a delicate, but lovely child. With paternal solicitude I watched the openings of her mind, and endeavoured, as soon as possible, to inform her of the being of a God, and of her obligation to love and fear him ; to which things she gave some attention. The indigence of our circumstances obliged us to send her early to the factory; but while thus employed, I taught her lessons, so that, when old enough, she was admitted into the Temple-Row Sunday-School, and in the second quarter obtained a place in the Bible-class. She now began more particularly to notice what she read and heard, frequently asking questions on the most important matters of religion, which I endeavoured to answer. From this time there was an evident change in her conduct, and she appeared most happy when she could do any thing that was pleasing to us. She had a great aversion to vain and trifling company. Her chief delight was at school, or at the lectures in the vestry. She was diligent in attending the means of grace; and often retired to read her Bible, her Hymn. Book, and other religious Publications ; in such engagements her most pleasing hours were spent. Though she was naturally of a warm temper, yet 1 saw that she strove to govern herself, at least in my presence. In the winter of 1817 she became the subject of much affliction ; yet she attended to her work and her books as usual. About a year ago, she ex. pressed to me a particular desire to be religious, and asked me the meaning of a 6 Class-Meeting :” | told her that class-meetings could not of themselves make people religious, but were designed to help such as wished to be so, and that they were often blessed to that purpose. I said, if she desired to be truly good, she must pray that God would give her to see and feel that she was by nature bad, and needed a
OBITUARY OF MARY ANN FOSTER.
change of heart. She was deeply attentive while I laid before her the verities of our Holy Religion, on which we conversed for a considerable time. I directed her to read the Bible, which teaches all things necessary for us to know, and to pray that God would explain and apply its truths to her mind. She promised to do so ; and I believe she did. She was increasingly attentive to what she read and heard, and also to the duty of prayer. Indeed for prayer she was always ready, when we approached the family altar; nor do I once remember her to have forgot her private prayers. On one occasion, perceiving that her mother and myself were in trouble, prompted by a tender affection, she came to me, and kneeling down, laid both her hands on my knee, and then repeated her prayers, after which she rose, and went away. This incident made a deep impression on our minds, and had a happy effect. On another occasion, when conversing on prayer, she said, that she was almost constantly praying. I asked, if she ever felt her mind' comforted, and her affections drawn to love Jesus Christ. She said, that she did. I told her that it was the Holy SPIRIT of God, who was at work with her soul, and that to his grace we are indebted for every thing good and happy. I encouraged her to hearken to his teachings, and to pray that he would lead her into all saving truth. Frequently she would come to my loom, when at work, to unbosom her mind to me on spiritual things, and to receive advice suited to her state.
About Easter, 1820, her health began to decline fast. She one day took my hand, and put it on her forehead, that I might feel what a cold sweat rested on it. Wishing not to discourage her, I endeavoured to change the subject, when she cast such a look on me, as I shall never forget. It was such a sorrowful smile as seemed to say,
“ I hear a voice, you cannot hear,
Which cries, I must not stay;
Which beckons me away.”
ANN, I know not whether you will get better or not ; it is of great importance to be ready.” “O father," said she, “ I had rather die than live. I asked, 66 What are your reasons for saying so ?” She replied, " If I die, I shall go to heaven.” I said, “On what grounds do you think so ?” She replied, “ I have read, that Christ died for sinners, and I believe he died for me, and I know I shall go to heaven." I said, “ And can you look up to God as your reconciled Father through Christ ?” She replied, " I can.” I exhorted her to rejoice in CHRIST JESUS, and in nothing else. She smiled, and said no more at that time. She possessed a lamb-like patience, during the remaining period of her affliction, which at last was very heavy. In the evening of the day on which she died, she said to me, while raising her a little in bed, “O father, I am very ill." I said, “My dear, look unto the LORD, and he will enable you to bear it.” She said, “ I will.” I said, “Heaven wilt be a recompense for all you suffer, if you are going there;” to which she replied, “ Yes.” These were the last words she uttered, before her spirit took its flight to the palace of angels and of God.
3. Died, Dec. 11, 1821, aged 21, Miss MARTHA REYNOLDS, daughter of the Rey. JOHN REYNOLDS, of Deptford. From her earliest youth, she was remarkable for her amiable and affectionate disposition, and other domestic virtues. Since she arrived at years of discretion, her parents can recollect no one instance of undutiful conduct; nor her brothers and sisters one in which she preferred her own pleasure or advantage to theirs. Indeed her neglect of self was carried too far; it often led her to exertions beyond her strength, and made her much too careless of her health. This she lamented in her last illness, and even looked upon it as a sin. She always said too little upon her religious experience, yielding, it is to be feared, to those suggestions of the Tempter, by which he often persuades young beginners in religion to hide the goodness of the Lord. But her increased seriousness, her diligent peruşal of pious books, (the most remarkable parts of some of which she committed to memory,)
OBITUARY OF MISS MARTHA REYNOLDS.
and her views on religious subjects, as disclosed, especially, in her letters to a friend for whose spiritual interest she was deeply concerned, all concur to prove that the Spirit of God had effectually touched her heart. Her experience, however, was not marked by those keen and distressing apprehensions on account of sin, emphatically termed the wounds of the sword of the SPIRIT; for it pleased Him who best knows how to deal with his creatures, to draw her by the cords of his love.
About the middle of Nov. 1821, in consequence of a cold, the symptoms of a former severe illness, from which she had never fully recovered, returned with increased malignity; and it was soon too evident, that she was in a rapid decline. She was removed to her brother's house at Stoke-Newington, when it was hoped that the aid of medicine, and change of air, might afford at least a temporary relief. These expectations at first appeared to be realized. There was every symptom of returning health ;-but, alas! the dispersing clouds had but unveiled the face of the setting sun, which brightened the hopes of her friends for a moment, and then sunk beneath the horizon. Although she had not any presentiment of her approaching dissolution, she seemed to be quite detached from all earthly things. She earnestly exhorted the servant who attended upon her, to beware of slackness in religion ; and lamented that her own life had not been more entirely devoted to God, adding, “ If I get better, I hope I shall be useful to the cause of Christ.”.
The drowsiness which had from the first attended her disorder, much increased during the last days of her life ; so that she said but little : in ill her waking intervals, however, the motion of her hands and lips indicated that she was engaged in fervent prayer. She several times repeated that verse of her favourite hymn, which begins thus,
“ In suffering, be thy love my peace," &c.; and often said, with more energy than could have been expected from her extreme weakness,
“O may we never parted be,
Till I become one spirit with thee.”