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the apostle, when he said, “ The love of Christ constraineth us,” I was enabled to leave the result in his hands, who for the encouragement of his ministers has said, “ Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world,” and looked up to him for direction. I went forward, and was agreeably surprised at the welcome given to my visit. After stating my object, a general search was commenced for a Bible, but not one was to be found !
Having procured one from a friend in the neighbourhood, the service, which certainly was a very novel one, commenced by reading and prayer, and the text chosen for the occasion was, 1 Tim. i, 15. “ This is a faithful saying, &c.” Many listened very attentively, while some would not remain, but went to another part of the house, being determined to reject the counsel of God against themselves. Having concluded the service by reading an extract from the Pilot and a few words in prayer, I retired. The landlady of the house and those who were attentive, expressed their thankfulness for the opportunity. Let us unite in prayer that the work of God among seamen may make much more progress than it has yet done.
[Arrangements are now made to supply Loan Libraries to the boarding houses for sailors.-Editor.]
Second Thames Station.—Mr. Barclay reports, The meetings during the past month have been of a more interesting nature, than for a considerable time previously. A greater attention has been observable among the men; a readiness to listen to the message of salvation, and much gratitude manifested by them for the privileges they have enjoyed.
I have observed among the vessels in which meetings have been held, two which we have been accustomed to hold meetings in for some years, and which are still allowed for the same purpose by captains who have very recently taken the command, showing that there is an increased desire for the means of grace
It has been gratifying to witness, in some instances, large assemblies of seamen listening to the voice of mercy, and while thus engaged to observe the tears stealing in quick succession down their hardy cheeks. And although conscious that these impressions are often like the “ early dew," I have been led to hope that the word may prove to them the power of God to salvation.
Many seamen complain (and perhaps justly so) that their brethren on shore do not sympathize with them, so
as to remember them at a throne of grace, when deprived of the ordinary means of grace. Could those, who enjoy statedly such privileges, witness the eagerness of pious seamen to attend Bethel meetings, surely they would sympathize with them, and endeavour in every possible way to furnish them with those means which the Almighty has promised to bless.
Fourth Thames Station.-Mr. Edwards reports, this station five meetings have been held. We have had three disappointments, and two masters have displayed our Bethel flag at the mast-head for the first time. Although we have not many praying men in this part of the river, yet the general attendance is good, and from their marked attention to the word, there is reason to hope that fruit will be found to the glory of God.”
Mr. Abbot reports, “One new ship has been added to the Bethel list; the captain and mate of which express their gratitude for the services, and their willingness to open their cabins when we can pay them a visit.”
Fifth Thames Station.—Mr. Maddox reports, meetings in this station have been marked by encouraging circumstances. I felt much pleasure in holding a religious service on board the “ Raikes ;' the pious owner thus proving his veneration for the benevolent founder of Sabbath schools.
“ I have been quite astonished, on beholding the progress the · Temperance' and ` Abstinence Societies are making among our colliers. One pious master was particularly zealous in recommending his “ water' and 'oatmeal,' as an excellent substitute for malt liquor. He declared he had enjoyed better health since he had adopted the system, and felt no wish for ale or porter again.
" The mate also of the Robert and A-, an active pious young man, declared he could now endure more fatigue and hard work, than when he was accustomed to drink malt liquors.
“ The meetings have been well attended. Many earnest prayers have been offered up.
"Your agent has supplied once during the month at the Sailors' Chapel, Shadwell.” Fifth Thames Station.—Mr. Edwards reports,
“ Here I have attended seven services, at which two masters, two mates, and eight men, took part in the exercises, pouring forth the holy breathings of their souls before God, hum
bly thanking him for providential and spiritual mercies received, and earnestly entreating future blessings.
“ And while they were thus offering praise and thanksgiving to Him who hears and answers prayer for themselves, they did not forget your agents, and the Society under whose auspices we were assembled, blessing and praising the Almighty for his kindness in thus inclining your hearts to communicate unto them the knowledge of salvation through a precious Redeemer.” Mr. Waldon reports,
The cause of God is going on steadily among the sailors in the Lower Pool.
“ One sailor, in declining to pray at a Meeting, said he had never done such a thing; but that,' said he, 'is no reason I never should ; still I do not think I shall attempt it to night.
I will help you to sing, for I am a Cornish man, and we are generally good singers.' After I had closed the meeting by prayer, one of the sailors said, “ Sir, I thank you for doing that for me which I could not do for myself, and may the Lord bless you.'
“ After another meeting, the captain informed me he had been now nine years a commander, and this is the first time of my hoisting the Bethel Flag; but,' added he, ' I hope it will not be the last by many, if my life should be spared : you shall always be welcome to my ship, for we greatly need your exertions.'
“ After the service, your agent was informed that two sailors had recently been drowned in the river, one of them a mate, who had been sleeping on the taff-rail : the boy had been trying to wake him, but in vain : the captain shook him, and received some indistinct answer, but he turned round, and in an instant he heard a plunge: he saw it was the mate, who rose no more ; this occurred while the ship was off Deptford. The other was a cook, who was in the act of drawing a bucket of water, and fell overboard between the ships, and was seen no more.
One sailor remarked to me, · We know not, Sir, whose turn it will be next; there is a long winter before us, and there is nothing like having religion in the heart; then come what will, we shall always be ready.'
“ Your agent improved this solemn event to sailors, watermen, and their families, at a little chapel in connection with the church in High Street, Deptford.
“On my returning home from a meeting, a lighterman addressed me, saying, “Sir, I am happy to see you interest
yourself so much for the good of sailors. I will relate to you a pleasing circumstance regarding a young sailor not long ago, which came under my own notice.
I had an occasion to go to a Southseaman with provision, when this young sailor came into my barge, and while at work he swore in a most awful manner. I said, “ Young man, if you cannot do your work without swearing, 1 desire you to
shall see how I can do the work with the greatest ease without an oath.” My reproof had the desired effect; he continued to work, and I did not hear an oath afterwards. The ship drifted down to Gravesend, and I went there on business. I took some tracts with me for him, and he received them very thankfully. The ship has safely returned. The young man came to see me, to express his gratitude for my reproof, and for the tracts. He added, although the sea had separated them so long, yet he had him always in remembrance, especially that saying, If you cannot work without swearing, I can !
• Now I can assure you an oath has not escaped my lips since. I can now go alongside a whale, lifting up my heart unto God for his protection. In the midst of storms and dangers I can sing his praises, in those very hymns which my honoured parent taught me in the Sunday school, in which he was teacher. These have refreshed my soul while looking out from the mast-head for the whale, and on the yard-arm, in the midst of the thunders roaring and lightnings flashing around my guilty head. Now it is I find the Bible to be precious, and the house of God delightful.””
Mr. Joyce reports, that his labours have, during the past month, been chiefly confined to the sailors' chapel, at Lower Shadwell, where the meetings were generally well attended : and that he had also preached to the sixty-two unhappy inmates of the Maritime Penitent Female Refuge.
Sixth Thames Station.--Capt. Prynn reports, “Some most delightful and encouraging meetings have taken place on this station during the past month; the numbers of sailors in attendance have greatly increased, and several of our pious captains with their crews having arrived from the Baltic and other ports, have made our meetings on this station peculiarly interesting. Two meetings held on board the N., Capt. B., from Petersburgh, were so attended that many had to remain on deck, there not being room below, although on one occasion we had seventy-six in the cabin, steerage, state-room, &c., and at another time sixty-nine. Our hearts were much gladdened on these occasions by meeting many of our dear brother sailors, on their return from their respective voyages. As soon as they arrive I am apprized of it, either by a message or a call, as early as possible. Jo this way a captain and mate, from Petersburgh, called in a few hours after their arrival, and expressed themselves thus:-“Sir, we are safely returned once more, and have taken the earliest opportunity of calling on you. We have had to encounter many storms and tempests since we left you, but the Lord has most wonderfully preserved us; and not a day has passed wherein we have not, in accordance with our promise before we sailed, brought you, your family, and the cause in which you are engaged, to a throne of grace.” Many pleasing interviews of this nature have taken place within the past month. At one of my meetings a captain and a mate of a ship for the first time in public engaged in prayer; the captain expressed himself in this manner:-'0 Lord, I bless thy name that ever I attended this prayer meeting, and that here for the first time thou hast enabled me publicly to call upon thy name. The mate, in prayer, said
- Thank God that my captain has made this public confession, and opened his mouth in this congregation; hereby I am encouraged to go forward. May the Lord strengthen and support us both to walk before him in love,' &c. &c. I was much cheered at the close of this meeting, because a sense of the Divine presence was mightily felt, and many tears were shed amongst the sailors present. We could not close this meeting until half-past nine P.M.
Ten meetings have been beld on this station during the past month ; and 312 vessels have been visited on the river Thames, in the London and St. Katherine Docks, and the Regent's Canal.
Seventh Thames Station.-Greenwich, Limehouse, and Deptford, have been visited the past month ; and about seventy vessels supplied with tracts and magazines, and tracts distributed to the College-men and others at Greenwich, which were received with thankfulness. Two meetings have been held on this station during the past month.
Visitation of Shipping. Although I haye not visited 80 many ships during the past month on the river, in consequence of the unfavourable state of the weather, yet I have been enabled to visit a great number at the London