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Church of England Magazine.
MEMOIR OF THE REV. CHARLES JOHN PATERSON.
Precious in the sight of the Lord will best appreciate the value of is the death of his saints; and it is those qualities, when directed by therefore, doubtless, well pleasing the guiding influence of a divine in his sight to collect and retain hand, and controlled by a very such memorials of his departed remarkable and rapid growth in servants as may stimulate others the gifts of divine grace. to follow them as they followed The education and habits of Mr. Christ. In this point of view, the Paterson were such as are common following brief Memoir of a pious to those who live in affluence; and and excellent minister, recently de- it was not till he had been some parted, is especially deserving of time a resident at college, that he attention. It is extracted chiefly was apprised of the fact, that, from a small volume recently pub- through the sudden depression of lished by the Rev. Charles James West India affairs, he had been Hoare, M.A. entitled, Remains deprived of the independent forof the late Rev.Charles John Pater- tune which he had been taught to son, B.A. Vicar of West Hoathley, expect; and that his personal exSussex ; consisting of a Memoir; ertions had become a matter no with Correspondence and Sermons. less of necessity than of duty. He
Charles John Paterson was born tbus became, we may say, under March 11, 1800. His father was
the unforeseen strokes of Proviof highly respectable Scotch pa- dence, a child of early vicissitude rentage;
his mother was the daugh- and trial; with the gracious purter of Thomas Vardon, Esq. of pose, we may hope, of making Battersea. The early death of his him a monument of peculiar mercy, father, when he was but three and an instructive example to many years old, and of his mother when a member of Christ's suffering flock, he was twenty-two, were events, in a common scene of earthly prowhich, though in different ways, bation. must greatly have affected the Mr. Paterson was educated at scenes and circumstances of his Putney, under Dr. Carmult, where opening life. Among their off- he attained the highest place in spring, six in number, Charles the school, and possessed the con John, the fifth, early discovered fidence of his instructors. Soon very high constitutional sensibili- after his mother, was induced to ties; and to these was added a remove him from school, and renative strength of character which tain him under her own roof at is not rarely their accompaniment; Brighton; from this time his edubut they who knew him longest cation appears to have been very OCTOBER 1838.
much neglected, though his mind his feelings on delivering his last was actively employed in natural sermon at East Grinstead. history, mineralogy, &c. In 1819, July 4, 1826.
Finished my Mr. P. was removed to Caius and last farewell sermon
“ Woe is Gonville College, Cambridge, me if I preach not the gospel.” where he continued till he took Large congregation. Administered his degree, and at Easter 1824, the blessed cup with much tenderwas ordained by the then Bishop ness and affection to many, who of Chester, and appointed to the seemed to feel it was the last time. curacy of East Grinstead, Sus- The thought struck me, I “ shall
drink no more of the fruit of the Hitherto Mr. Paterson does not vine,” &c. What a solemn, awful appears to have attended seriously reАection. Shall I, shall those to religion. The period of ordi- souls, ever taste of that new wine? nation, says his biographer, had Had almost resolved, twice or nearly arrived, and a course of thrice, to give up the afternoon theological study commenced, when farewell, but was enabled to withmarks of distrust in himself became stand the temptation, strengthened manifest. Evangelical truth was and supported in a manner astoat this time laid before him by one nishing. Indeed, indeed, Lord, who, in prayer and watchfulness, thou art true; thou hast never sought opportunity to enter upon failed thy servant.
“ As thy day points of vital interest with him; is, thy strength shall be.” Never but these were met with an irri- before needed help so much ; never tated feeling, if not direct oppo- so experienced thy power; I felt sition. Books were presented, the minister of Christ, and indeed silently, as it were, to solicit his with boldness delivered his message attention; some were looked at, for the last time to my first flock. but outwardly disregarded. At My address was not satisfactory length, however, it pleased God to me; and indeed I should never effectually to separate this soul have been satisfied, feeling the for himself. The loss of his sur- extreme delicacy and difficulty of viving parent was sanctified to my circumstances. To spare produce in him an important to forget self, to comfort the faithchange. The messenger of death ful, to alarm the unconverted, to seemed to him the bearer of expostulate with the opposed, to life; and as he followed to the leave a parting testimony to the grave his beloved and sainted truth without offending, I felt to parent, doubtless the bright choirs be, on such an occasion, imposof heaven redoubled their rejoic- sible. God is good, how good! ing over the regained son and Blessed them affectionately, comthe redeemed mother. Slow, how- mended them ardently to his love ever, and gradual was his reception and protection in Jesus, and was of evangelical truth :- first one enabled to bid a tender and coropinion, then one practice, was dial farewell. A great part of the surrendered ; all held with tena- congregation in tears. The remark city, till proved to be wrong. is, that they left the church as
In the year 1826, Mr. P. re- returning from a funeral. Oh, may moved from East Grinstead, and they soon forget the minister, the entered on the curacy of Hasle- word never ! Jesus, I implore mere in Surrey. He had some thee bless- bless my last attempt time before adopted the practice in thy name! Thou hast indeed of recording his views and feel
strengthened me: oh convert, comings in a private journal; which fort, and strengthen thy people as contains the following account of they stand in need! Give power and efficacy to the message--thine had given much satisfaction to the own, I hope and trust. Renewed congregation of that place. This my covenant with my Master, ear- pleasing task, however, did not nestly imploring Him to take me interfere with his prior duties at wholly, and devote my every
East Grinstead, where he thought thought, desire, faculty, and talent it right to increase his labours by to His service.'
adding an afternoon sermon; for His sense of weakness is followed which gratuitous service the flock up, as it will always be when at this latter place thought proper springing from a godly humility, to raise amongst themselves a sepawith a sense of demerit. The same rate purse, and to present it as a period, therefore, proceeds with token of their esteem to their diliwhat I am allowed to transcribe gent and beloved curate. Mr. further from the journal, as fol- Paterson was always very unwillows:
ling to accept any such remunera• How devoted, how zealous, tion for services, which he was yet how faithful should I have been always most ready to perform. found; and what have I done? The appointment to West HoathO God, enter not into judgment ! ley was a matter of honest, though Pardon, for Jesu's sake, pardon sanctified joy to Mr. Paterson, as my lukewarmness and neglect ! well as of sincere congratulation to May a bright and burning star his friends. It is thus noticed in speedily be established in my his journal : May 29, 1827. (Sunroom! Thy ways are inscrutable, day.) Letter from Lord ColchesO Lord; clouds and darkness are ter, which I concluded contained round about thee; but righteous- unfavourable tidings, but opened ness and judgment are the habita- it not. This was a trial. How tion of thy seat. All things shall earthly our hearts! After service work together for good to thy I opened the letter, which conpeople. We need not fear to trust tained notice of the Chancellor's them to thy hand.
prepare for my presentahumble me, below the dust. For- tion to Hoathley. Struck with an give, for Jesu's sake, my cruel astonishing sense of humble and want of love and zeal.'
self-annihilating gratitude to God. After a short residence at Hasle- Praised and prayed incoherently ; mere, efforts were made on the filled with peace, life, and activity. part of friends to bring him back What principle so prompt as love? again to his former neighbourhood. Told of my appointment to three Amongst these friends, the late of my flock: they seemed to dread Lord Colchester, penetrating with the idea of a change of pastor, and a keen eye the sterling value of his confessed their obligation, under character, took a very prominent God, to poor me. Father, forgive part: and their aim was accom- me, if I have felt more delight plished by Mr. Paterson's being than I should have done on such presented, through his lordship's an occasion, or than is consistent influence, to the small living of with self-examination. West Hoathley, Sussex; a piece may bless, yea, will bless thee, for of preferment in the gift of the so eminently distinguishing us, as Lord Chancellor, and recorded in to give us souls for our hire! What the parliamentary returns at 1501. wages like these!' per annum. During Mr. Pater- He laboured most assiduously, son's residence at East Grinstead, says an intimate friend in his parhe had frequently officiated at West ish of West Hoathley, in his Hoathley, (chiefly by means of an study, and reminded me more of occasional evening service) and
the character of some of our old
divines, of almost ascetic habits, importance, and only engaged in as if they belonged not to this because, like food, it was essential world, except to enlighten it by to the movements of life. Everytheir lives and writings, than of thing shewed that increasing spiria young minister, in the prime of tuality and serenity of mind, - the life, when the natural buoyancy of peace that passeth not away, was feeling seems almost incompatible his abiding portion. Comparing with habitual gravity and serious. his mind in later years with what
He was affectionately inte- it was when I first knew him, I rested in the state of his own could not but be struck with the family; and, at the risk of being wonderful change. And how enthought too serious, never ceased couraging the reflection, that a few to urge the pressing importance of short years may, when blessed in the entire devotedness of the heart the use, elevate all and each of us to God. Indeed this unceasing from earth to heaven, from sin to and unswerving aim to promote holiness; from corruption, to honspiritual growth in himself and
our, glory, and eternal life; from others, seemed almost prophetic of
sinful dust and ashes, to be parthe shortness of his career. He takers of the divine nature ! certainly did not put off duty from The following remarks on Dr. day to day; and I believe none
Chalmers and Mrs. More appear will ever be able to accuse him of in his journal, and deserve attenhaving thrown away any opportu
tion : nity of calling their attention to
"I could reflect upon the subject the one thing needful. .... He of Chalmers' Sermons, his style, considered home as a post, which &c., and perhaps should venture a he was not permitted to quit for a little word of caution and jealousy, moment longer than was necessary. did you express a much larger It was in vain to urge him. Even measure of enthusiastic admiration. considerations of health could not He is very captivating and powertouch him; he believed he had ful; I know nothing like him. strength for exertion, and in that But we want something else, and belief he was carried through something more, dearest friend, fatigues and studies, which would than novel and affecting illustraotherwise have been too great for tions, or even new ideas, in readhim. Latterly he combined with ing for spiritual improvement. My his own business that of his par- own natural taste carried me forishioners. He made purchases formerly so fearfully far in such matthe poor of bis village where it ters, that I find it prudent, if not could be done with the greatest needful, to deny a somewhat periladvantage, and charged himself ous appetite, which seeks rather a with the trouble of the transfer of feast for the imagination than solid what he bought. In these matters food for the heart, and which less he was, I believe, as humble and invigorates and enlarges, than exas pains-taking as the celebrated cites the devotional affections. In Fenelon, who cheerfully went in spite of this solemn admonition, I search of a cow, which constituted think, if I possessed this striking all the property of one of his poor author's works, I should accept parishioners, and bad been driven
your agreeable challenge of partiaway by the military. I believe cipating your daily intellectual our dear friend thought all service delight.' honourable, which in any way ex- I have given, I believe, some hibited the love of his Master. hours to Mrs. More Letters to-day. But all was done as by a mind, to Thanks to the silken cord which which business was of secondary marked the best of the volumes :