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At the commencement of the present year, our friends the Rev. E. E. ADAMS and Captain PRYNN, were deputed by the Board, to visit the principal sea-ports and towns in the north of England, with a view of more fully bringing before the public the character and condition of our seamen, and of urging the claims of the Society to renewed and enlarged support. In several places, the influence of local circumstances, and of the general depression of trade and commerce, operated unfavorably on their mission. Still they were kindly received, and their object, if not liberally, yet cordially supported. The following is an outline of their tour.
At HULL, where we were kindly and hospitably received by W. Gibson, Esq., we found the local Sailors' Society actively at work, and doing much good.
At SCARBRO', the ministers of various denominations cordially entered into
our arrangements. We spent a sabbath here, during which we preached three times; and on the Tuesday evening following, a public meeting was held in the spacious Town Hall, at which the mayor (Robert Tindale, Esq.) took the chair. The meeting was numerously attended, and was marked by deep and general interest. A Ladies' Association was formed in connexion with the parent Society, and several new subscribers obtained.
At WHITBY, we found that the Rev. Dr. Young (the staunch and attached friend of the seaman's cause) had made the necessary arrangements for five sermons and a public meeting. At the meeting, John Canpuri, Sen., Esq. (a very extensive ship-owner) presided, with all that promptness and kindness which marks his christian character; and the ministers of the respective congregations, rendered most efficient aid. At Whitby there is an auxiliary, which has been in successful operation for several years; and there are many influential friends who feel a lively interest in the more extended operations of the parent Society.
At ROBIN HOOD'S BAY and GUISBORO', sermons were preached and collections obtained.
At MIDDLESBORO', in addition to sermons preached, a public meeting was held in the Wesleyan chapel, which was well attended.
At STOCKTON, Sermons were preached in chapels connected with the various orthodox denominations; and a public meeting was held in the town hall, at which Thomas Walker, Esq., kindly presided. The excellent and estimable chairman, in his opening speech, ably advocated the claims of the Society. The meeting was one of deep interest.
At HARTLEPOOL, the first public meeting in connexion with the British and Foreign Sailors' Society, was held in the Wesleyan chapel, at which an association was formed to carry out its objects among seamen visiting that place. There are some pious friends there, who are desirous of exerting themselves in this good
At SUNDERLAND, a public meeting was held in Bethel chapel, during which, a spirit of holy excitement was produced in the minds of many. It is more than probable that some more enlarged and efficient plan will soon be adopted in reference to this important place.
At NORTH and SOUTH SHIELDS, sermons were preached, and collections obtained. At South Shields, a public meeting was held in the Rev. J. Lawson's chapel, at which that old and tried friend of seamen, Christopher Waune, Sen., Esq., took the chair, and most ably opened the business of the evening. The meeting, which was well attended, was forcibly addressed by several ministers. Several ladies took collecting cards; and it is hoped, that something efficient will be done.
At NORTH SHIELDS, the public meeting was held in the large Union Schoolroom, at which our highly esteemed friend, Robert Pow, Esq., took the chair; and in a lucid speech, very fully explained the objects of the society. This meeting was crowded to excess, and many could not obtain admittance. Here we look for much fruit.
At BLYTH, three sermons were preached, collections made, and a public
meeting held in the Methodist chapel, at which an association was formed, connecting Hartley and Seaton Sluice therewith. The public meeting was well attended, and the cause ably advocated by several resident ministers.
At NEWCASTLE and GATESHEAD, sermons were preached, and a public meeting held in the primitive Methodist chapel. Measures are now in progress for the establishment of a permanent agency in this port. It is in contemplation to have a chaplain wholly devoted to the seamen, and to the advocacy of their cause in the town and neighbourhood.
At WALLSEND, the first public meeting in connexion with the society was held in the Independent chapel, at which an association was formed to carry into effect the objects of the parent institution. And it is but justice to say, that we were most kindly and affectionately received by the christian friends in this place.
At DURHAM, circumstances prevented our doing any thing more than receiving the annual subscriptions.
At Darlington, preached in the Wesleyan chapel, and obtained a collection, -visited the annual subscribers, and obtained several donations.
At YORK, preached two sermons with collections, and held a public meeting in the Merchant's Hall, at which Esq., a worthy alderman of the city, took the chair; and with much energy urged the object of the meeting on the minds of the auditory. Here is a field for much good.
At SHEFFIELD, sermons were preached and a public meeting held in the town hall. Many new subscribers were obtained. Here the cause may be permanently established.
At LEEDS and DERBY nothing could be done for the present, but promises were given for the ensuing year.
To the various ministers, congregations, and friends in these different localities, the Directors offer their best thanks for the kindness and support extended to the deputation; and hope that no means will be neglected to keep alive the feeling of interest and solicitude which has been awakened in so many bosoms.
Printed by J. W. Maddox, Dockhead, Bermondsey.
[The Substance of a Second Sermon to Sailors after a storm.*]
"Then the whole multitude of the country of the Gadarenes round about, besought him to depart from them."-Luke viii. 37.
WE turned your attention, last sabbath, to the remarkable interference which Christ made in behalf of his disciples, on the sea of Tiberias, during a storm; and of the cure of the demoniac of Gadara, both of which prove the divinity of Christ, and his power to save the souls and bodies of men! The effect which it produced upon the disciples, and the man who had been possessed of the devils, now clothed and in his right mind, was also noticed. At this time we are to refer to the impression made upon the Gadarenes, who were fully acquainted with all the circumstances, from the testimony of eye-witnesses; "for they also which saw it, told them by what means he that was possessed of the devil was healed." Out of curiosity the men of Gadara came to see Jesus; but their covetousness made them anxious to get rid of him; it prompted them to beseech him to depart out of their coast, and thus to imitate the address of the devils, "what have we to do with thee?" The cunning of the serpent appears in the whole of the policy of these emissaries of hell; they wished admission into the swine, that the people might suppose that Christ had drowned them. The devil seduced our first parents, by possessing them with hard thoughts of God; and his agents kept the Gadarenes from Christ, by suggesting that he came to
destroy their cattle. Would not the presence of Christ do more hurt to them than good? Though he had cured two men who were a terror to the community, yet he had drowned two thousand swine. He continues to sow tares among the wheat-does mischief in the christian church, and then blames men for it. * It were easy to excite your indignation against the Gadarenes ; to cry shame, when your hearts are deeply impressed with the love, and compassion, and power of Christ, to save a suffering fellow creature; but it will be much more profitable to bring the subject home to ourselves, to produce those feelings within, which agitated the heart of David, when Nathan said to him," Thou art the man." And this may be done, by showing how we virtually reject Christ, when we are animated by the motives, and act on the principles, though we do not literally imitate the example of the men of Gadara; "then the whole multitude of the countryof the Gadarenes round about, besought him to depart from them."
We beseech Christ to depart out of our coasts, when we give ourselves up to grovelling employments, abandoned sins, and loathsome vices. Christ cannot remain, where such persons dwell, neither can they endure the presence of the Saviour. Like the devils they cry out, "art thou come hither to torment us before the time?" The character and exercises of disciples are also a reflection upon the openly wicked. And this perhaps holds most truly of backsliders and hypocritical professors. The very name of a prayer meeting, the sight of a BETHEL FLAG, as it floats in the breeze-the voice of psalms in the family, the reading of the scriptures, the going to and returning from the house of God-the sobriety, veracity, industry, perseverance, success, and cheerfulness of those who enjoy religion-are so many tormentors to the abandoned and profane. And because the people of God, who bear the image of Christ, will not give them any countenance-will not run with them to the same excess in riotthey beseech them to depart out of their coasts. The worst of vices are loved more than the presence of Christ and the blessings of his salvation. Woe, and sorrow, and wounds without cause, and redness of eyes, and poverty, and wretchedness, are preferred to the joy, and peace, and composure of the people of God. This is so clear, that there can be no room for doubt. Such openly profane
* See Matthew Henry- the Prince of Commentators.'