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acceptance for twenty hours together. In the year 1760, she, along with her husband and a group of Palatines, set sail from Limerick for the New World. Among the number was Philip Embury, who had been, apparently, a Class Leader and Local Preacher, and who seems to have preserved his own piety among the temptations of New York. Nearly six years went by before any overt attempt was made to establish Methodism on the New Continent. Late in 1765 a vessel had arrived at New York, bringing over another band of Irish Palatines, some of them relatives of Embury, and others his former friends and neighbours. A few of these were Methodists. Mrs. Heck visited them frequently, one of the company, Paul Ruckle, being her brother. On one of these visits, she found some of the party engaged in a game of cards. There is no proof, either direct or indirect, that any of the individuals so occupied were Methodists, or connected with Embury. Her spirit, however, was roused, and, doubtless emboldened by her long and intimate acquaintance with them, she seized the cards, threw them into the fire, and most solemnly warned them of their danger and duty. Leaving them, she went immediately to the dwelling of Embury, in Barrack-street, now Park-place, and told him what she had seen and what she had done; adding, with great earnestness, " Philip, you must preach to us, or we shall all go to hell, and God will require our blood at your
hands." Embury replied, “How can I preach, as I have neither house nor congregation?”
Preach," said the noble woman, “in your own house, and to your own company." Having at length obtained the desired consent, she went out, and returned with three other persons, who, with herself, constituted the audience. After singing and prayer, Embury preached the first Methodist sermon in New York, and afterwards formed those present into a Class, which he continued to meet weekly.'
The seed was sown, and American Methodism is the result. The John-street Chapel was built in 1768, and was soon thronged with worshippers. In 1785, the Hecks' emigrated to Canada, where Barbara was still mindful of her Providential mission, and was still a pioneer of Methodism. She died in 1804, at the age of seventy. Her old German Bible, the guide of her youth in Ireland, her resource during the falling away of her people in New York, and her inseparable companion in all her wanderings, was her comfort and guide to the last. She was found sitting in her chair, dead, with the well-used and endeared volume open on her lap.'
A story of a very different type is that of Mrs. Mary Smyth. The daughter of a wealthy Dublin goldsmith, and, by marriage, closely related to a Bishop and an Archbishop of the Established Church, she might seem far removed from that sphere of spiritual influence .which touched the humble home of the Palatines. Shortly after her marriage it was announced that. David Garrick was about to give a series of rehearsals prior to his taking a final. leave of the stage. Mrs. Smyth, who was passionately devoted to the theatre, travelled from Dublin to London in order to hear the great actor. In London she stayed with the Duchess of Leeds, and sat in her box at the theatre.
* The Rev. William Romaine was at this period in the zenith of his popularity... Hearing of the immense crowds that attended his ministry, and the astonishing effects produced, Mrs. Smyth expressed a strong desire to hear him, though her new friends were unanimous in their reprobation of the man, and of the doctrines he preached.
In vain it was urged that he was a Methodist-an enthusiast-one whom it was improper for her to hear; and that to procure admittance to a place so crowded was utterly impracticable. The more Romaine was reprobated, and the greater the difficulty seemed of obtaining admission to the church, the more urgent was Mrs. Smyth in her wish to hear him; nothing could deter her, for go she would, in defiance of every remonstrance. Romaine preached from the words: “Who knoweth the power of Thine anger ? Even according to Thy fear, so is Tby wrath.” The word preached was applied by the Holy Spirit with power to her heart, leading her in humble penitence to the foot of the cross, and enabling her to lay hold on Christ as her Saviour.'
Mrs. Smyth's conversion, thus strangely brought about, was speedily followed by that of her husband, and for many years their house was a home for all who were eminent for piety. Mr. Wesley, the Fletchers, Adam Clarke, and others were among their honoured guests. Mrs. Smyth died, in extreme old age, in 1824.
Another honourable woman of that generation was Mrs. REBECCA RUTLEDGE She belonged to the Established Church; but, when young, hear the Methodist Preachers proclaim the glad tidings of salvation. When abont eighteen her heart was filled with the hope of glory, and she openly adopted the scandal of Methodism. When tirst married, her husband was a stranger to the saving grace of God, but he was afterwards truly converted, and they lived together during many happy years of prosperity. In 1798, during the Irish Rebellion, Mr. Rutledge and his oldest son felt it their duty to join the royal army. When they had departed for the camp, the brave woman commended them in prayer to God; for 'herself and the younger children, she rested on the Divine assurance, ' My presence shall
go with thee, and I will give thee rest.' When evening set in, she found it necessary, with her children, to leave her home, and for that night they found an asylum in a neighbouring house ; but on the following day they were compelled to seek shelter elsewhere, as the owner informed them that the house was marked on their account. Mrs. Rutledge entreated to be allowed to leave her daughter, lest she might fall into the hands of the brutal ruffians that swarmed around ; but this request was refused, and they departed under the cover of darkness, with no provision but a morsel of oaten bread. Thus slenderly provided, they proceeded to a wood on their own farm, having first to wade through a river and a bog, under the guidance of her little son, who knew the country well. Taking shelter under a bush, the children, wet and weary, soon fell asleep, while the afflicted mother spent the night, in prayer to
Him Whose watchful Providence is ever guarding, and Whose eyelids never slumber. When day returned, she saw that the rebels had taken possession of her house, and had destroyed everything in it. She removed, therefore, to a thicker part of the wood, and having ventured into the meadow, procured a quantity of hay, which supplied a bed.'
Here she remained for some time, and had several remarkable deliverances from danger. On one occasion, 'her servant boy, a Papist, who had joined the rebels, passed close to the spot where they were concealed, accompanied by her own dog. The animal entered their retreat, but—as if Providence had restrained its ordinary sagacityappeared to have forgotten them, and passed on another way, leading the servant, who was searching for them, altogether away from the spot.
"After a time, she succeeded in getting a small supply of food from a neighbour, at whose door she ventured to call at midnight. Then at length the long-looked-for deliverance arrived. The rebels, with their foreign allies, being completely defeated, Mr. Rutledge returned
more to his family, and though they found their goods destroyed, and their house nearly in ruins, gratitude filled their hearts, as they united in acknowledging the continued care of a loving Providence.'
George Fox relates that when he was under conviction of sin, the clergyman of the parish exhorted him to take part in various profane amusements; MRS. GAYER met with an equally wise spiritual guide. She was passionately fond of dancing, was a charming singer, and entered with enthusiasm into all the gaieties and frivolities of the times. 6 But, some time after her marriage, she became very deeply concerned about the salvation of her soul. In her anxiety she consulted a clergyman concerning her state, and what she should do to obtain relief of conscience. He told her that her spirits had become depressed, and that she should travel, go more into society, and engage more frequently in fashionable amusements. She followed his advice ; and, not finding rest of soul, she then endeavoured at once to raise her spirits and satisfy her conscience by a strange compromiseentering heartily into the world, yet faithfully attending to her religious duties. This she carried so far that on one occasion, when she went to a ball at Dublin Castle, she took her prayer-book with her, and after each dance retired and read a portion of it. But being still unhappy, she went about to establish a righteousness of her own. By a good Providence, a regimental surgeon, named Crumlin, called upon her husband, and by his devout conversation she was led to exercise simple faith in Christ. Mrs. Gayer's conversion was followed by that of her daughter and aer husband. The story of her husband's
conversion presents us with an interesting anecdote of Mr. Wesley. In 1773 Mrs. Gayer heard and was introduced to the Father of Methodism, and he promised to call upon her. Knowing the strong feeling Mr. Gayer had against Methodism, and fearing the reception Mr. Wesley would receive from him, she, with her daughter, made it a subject of special prayer during most of that night, that the Lord would dispose the heart of her husband to receive the servant of God graciously. On the following day Mr. Wesley walked out to Derryaghy from Lisburn, and met Mr. Gayer in the avenue leading to his residence. Mr. Wesley enquired if Mrs. Gayer lived in that house. He replied, “ Yes, she is my wife,” and entered into conversation with Mr. Wesley, not knowing who he was. Mr. Gayer was much impressed with the culture and gentlemanly deportment of the stranger, felt drawn towards him at once, and invited him to dinner. Thus his prejudices were completely removed, and arrangements were made for regular preaching at Derryaghy; which, being commenced by Mr. Wesley on that very day before a large congregation, was subsequently continued in a place fitted up for the purpose by Mr. Gayer at his own expense.'
The life of MARGARET Davidson shows the power of Divine grace amid circumstances of unusual depression. When quite an infant, she was blinded by small-pox, and was also so sadly disfigured that even her mother hoped for her death. Yet her sight was taken away that her inner eyes might be flooded with that light which never was on sea or shore ; and even in early childhood she showed a special thirst for religious instruction. Gradually she learnt that it is possible to have the assurance of the Divine favour, and resolved never to rest till this blessing was received. “When almost about to give up in despair, she says,
“Jesus came to my rescue; I was enabled to stretch forth the withered hand, and spiritually to touch the hem of His garment. The disorder of my soul was instantly cured; I found the virtue of Christ's blood cancelling my iniquity, and His love as a mighty stream rushing into my soul.” Her joy was rapturous, and continued for days and nights, taking away all desire for either rest or nourishment.' Her conversion was followed by much persecution. All her relatives concluded that she had gone mad; and her Minister advised them to read diverting books to her, and to send for a doctor. While thus surrounded by unsympathetic friends, she heard rumours of the Methodist Preachers, and resolved to hear them for herself. After many obstacles, she succeeded. • The Preacher was Mr. James Oddie, and the first words the poor sightless and weary girl heard were :
“Ye blind, behold your Saviour come;
And leap, ye lame, for joy."