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from attending my appointment through indisposition. Thirdly, we were favoured with a large increase of members ; five hundred were added in one year; of whose concern for salvation we had no doubt. We had also several happy deaths. Fourthly, myself and congregation were almost miraculously preserved at Bethel chapel, Gingerland, April 13th, 1813, when the floor gave way, plunging men, women, and children into a cellar below. Some, indeed, through alarm, jumped out of the windows; and all, through the goodness of God, escaped unhurt.”
I have heard Mr. Morgan remark, that the first thought which occurred to him in the midst of this disaster was, “These people, being slaves, are considered property; and if a limb is injured, their value is lessened. Perhaps the enemies of the Mtssion will gain some advantage over us.” It was therefore with peculiar gratitude he observed, that neither the people, nor the Mission, which he had always at heart, sustained any injury by this occurrence. “We found the society," says he,“ very kind, with the exception of a few, who were averse to our discipline, and manifested their displeasure. We left this people with aching hearts. Many followed us to the waterside ; and with tears we commended each other to God. May we all meet in the kingdom of our heavenly Father!”
In 1814 he was stationed in the island of Antigua. One of his ear. liest efforts, at this interesting station, was, the formation of a Sundayschool in St. John's. Institutions of this kind were not at that time common in the West Indies. “Some are of opinion,” Mr. Morgan writes, “the plan will not succeed, as it has been attempted before without effect. Lord, the work is thine : give it stability and prosperity, I beseech thee!” This prayer was heard ; and the St. John's Sundayschool grew and flourished, and its fruit remains.
Mr. Morgan was anxious to be useful in Antigua. On the anniversary of his birth-day, Nov. 30th, 1814, he thus writes :-"I have this day completed my thirty-fourth year. What a wonder am I to myself ! When I ponder the paths of my feet through the wilderness of this world, I feel humbled before God. O the greatness of my ingratitude ! Lord, pardon me. May I this day experience more powerfully the consolations of my God. I long to be holy and useful. I bless the Lord for my situation among the negroes. Their outward trials are many; but many of them can rejoice in tribulation. Slavery is a sore evil under the sun.”
During his continuance in Antigua he, conjointly with his colleagues, explained and enforced the discipline of Methodism; and the good effects of this appeared. When about to leave the island, at the expiration of two years, he had the pleasure of knowing that the Antigua Mission caused scarcely any expense to the Society at home.
He had often reflected with pleasure on the establishment of a Sunday-school in Antigua; and as he subsequently heard of conversions to God, of pious deportment, and of happy deaths, among the children, he
thanked God and took courage. The children of this school, in connexion with others in the island, had presented him on one occasion with several pounds currency, the result of their united savings, to be given to the poor, for whom they knew their Pastor cared. When about to leave the island he also received from these children a small sum, which they importuned him to accept, towards the formation of a Sunday-school on the island where he was about to labour. These interesting children regarded Mr. and Mrs. Morgan with all the strength of filial attachment; and now that they were to be deprived of the presence and counsels of their Minister, they wept, and refused to be comforted. Mr. Morgan thought he never witnessed sorrow so intense.
His next station was the island of St. Vincent. He entered upon this Mission under discouraging circumstances; but, instead of cherishing a desponding feeling, he remarked, “If the Lord spare our health, we shall soon surmount our difficulties.” Here, as at Antigua, Mr. Coul. tas, his colleague in both stations, remarks, “His judicious plans were successful; and temporal difficulties soon vanished away.”
The year 1816 was a year of great persecution and trial to the Missionaries in many of the islands. This was especially the case at St. Vincent's. Several enemies of the Mission took advantage of an insurrection among the negroes in Barbadoes, to insinuate various falsehoods against the character of the Missionaries, and the result of their instructions. For a short time the enemies of Christian instruction appeared to triumph. A proclamation was issued in St. Vincent's, prohibiting the assembling of negroes, and even the opening of the chapels for worship, before sun-rise, or after sun-set. Mr. Morgan and his colleague had several interviews with the rulers of the island. They memorialized his Excellency, and forwarded to him a copy of the Rules of the Society, and of Myles's “ Chronological History of the Methodists.” Prejudice yielded ; and his Excellency, on one occasion, remarked, with reference to the Rules and History of Methodism, “ There is every thing here that is good, both for body and mind. I am sure there can be no objection to you.” Soon afterwards His Excellency gave authority to open the chapels. Some of the bitterest enemies became the warmest friends of the Mission; and the sorrow of the Missionaries and of their people was turned into joy. Mr. Morgan felt encouraged at this time by a letter he received from one of His Majesty's Counsel belonging to the island, who observed, speaking of the success which had crowned the labours of the Wesleyan Missionaries, “ Your doing away with that horrid idolatrous idea of Obia, which was so prevalent in this island, among not only slaves, but free coloured people, appears to have made more converts among those disaffected to your Missions than any other of your efforts. It gives me pleasure to learn from the general Report of your Missions, that in our little colony there are as many in the 80ciety as 2,940; and I cannot help thinking that if the like number had been in Barbadoes, instead of fifty-fouronly, there would have been no insurrection."
Shocks of earthquakes are common in the West Indies. Mr. Morgan writes, Dec. 23d, 1816, concerning one more than usually severe, “Last night, at twelve o'clock, we had the most violent earthquake ever known in this island. It lasted about two minutes. The noise awoke and alarmed me. What must be the ushering in of the last great day? I fully expected either to be swallowed up, or crushed to death by the falling of the house. I thank the Lord for his sparing mercy. May I always live in a state of preparation for his coming!”
While he was in St. Vincent's he had several attacks of malignant fever. When he and Mrs. Morgan were both suffering from fever, the friends hastened to minister to their comfort; their minds were graciously supported; and God was near to save them.
After experiencing many mercies in the West Indies, Mr. and Mrs. Morgan embarked for their native land, April 2d, 1818. Onthis occasion Mr. Morgan writes, “ We parted with our friends at St. Vincent's, not without tears, perhaps never to see each other again in the flesh. However, we can and do look forward to that state where all the friends of Jesus shall meet to part no more.”
He continued two years in England, and was successively appointed to the Bungay and Walsingham Circuits ; but he was not so comfortable in either of these stations as he had been while employed in the foreign work. The large congregations and growing spiritual prosperity of the churches in the West Indies, had often excited bis gratitude to God, and filled his heart with joy. It was his conviction that the talents he possessed might be employed more successfully abroad than at home. In accordance with this conviction, and remembering how often, in the time of danger, he had seen the salvation of the Lord, he offered himself a second time as a Missionary to the West Indies.
October 27th, 1820, he embarked for Antigua. “ Previous to our going on board,” he remarks, “ we had to attend, as usual, at the Alien Office, to have our names entered. May we never be alienated from God and his people; but in all our wanderings continue members of the household of faith, and of the family of heaven.”
About this time he writes, “I feel my unfitness for the great work of preaching Christ. Yet, from a prevailing desire to be a faithful, if not an able, Minister of the Gospel, I am encouraged to hope that the great Head of the Church will bear with my frailties, and make me a messenger of good to the people in those distant isles of the sea, which I am about to revisit. Give me and my fellow-labourers wisdom so to conduct ourselves before the passengers and ship's crew, that the Gospel be not blamed; and that our testimony among them may be the means of influencing their hearts to serve God, and their generation by his will."
On losing sight of England, he remarks, “ We are proceeding with rapidity towards our desired haven. We have lost sight of our native shores. May the blessing of the Lord rest upon England and her favoured inhabitants! May her civil and religious privileges be continued
and improved to the latest generations! May the honour of sending the Gospel into all lands be the lasting heritage of her sons and daughters !"
After a pleasant voyage, he landed in Antigua, December 1st, 1820. He continued in Antigua several weeks, and was cheered by the nume. rous marks of kindness he received from those among whom he had formerly laboured. His gratification was increased by observing the judicious management of the Sabbath-school at St. John's. He found many of the scholars converted to God, and united to the church; and he especially rejoiced that the religious prospects of this institution were increasingly bright. At the close of the District-Meeting in February, 1821, Mr. Morgan proceeded to St. Christopher's. In this island he remained five years, principally on account of the erection of a large and commodious chapel at Basseterre. For three years this chapel was a source of anxiety and labour to him. He has been known to return frequently at the dawn of day from distant country places, where he had preached on the previous evening, that he might be on the spot to superintend the work as soon as the labourers' day commenced. For months he exposed himself to the scorching rays of a tropical sun, while the stones were quarried, and materials were collected and employed. All his habits of economy and industry were at this time put forth, that the building might be suita. ble and capacious; and that, as far as possible, the money raised on the spot, or afforded by the Mission fund, might be faithfully applied. In this work he was cheered by his own reflections, that the building, thus erected, would be sacred to the glory of God, echo with the voice of rejoicing and salvation, and be the spiritual birth-place of thousands. He was also encouraged by the willing contributions of some among all classes of the community; and especially the children of the daily school, who contrived to bring a stone in their hands, twice a week, towards the erection. Some of the children, thus employed, were not more than five years old; and Mr. Morgan prayed that all these little labourers might become living stones, and be built up an habitation for God through the Spirit. On this occasion respectable females also gave up their ornaments of gold, &c., towards the building of this temple for the Lord. Mr. Morgan and his worthy colleagues did the full Missionary work in this island. They visited every estate to which they could gain access; and they sought access where it had not been afforded. They established Sunday and daily schools, and in every way fulfilled the instructions they had received from the Committee by whom they were sent, making full proof of their ministry. Some among their hearers were brought to God each year, and many went out of the "great tribulation” of West Indian slavery to stand before the throne of God. On one occasion Mr. Morgan wrote, “ O, if the Committee and friends in England had witnessed a large concourse of persons, unable to get into one of our chapels at a love-feast, and obliged, in several instances, to get near the windows from the outside to declare to those within the walls
what God had done for their souls, they would surely have procured us a larger chapel without delay!”
While he laboured in St. Christopher's he had frequent proofs of the can. dour and liberality of his Excellency the Governor. Amid various attempts to heap obloquy on the Wesleyan Missionaries, proceeding frequently from sources whence better things might have been expected, the Missionaries ever found his Excellency ready to receive their explanations, and free to express his opinion that their character, work, and success were alike entitled to decided approbation.
On January 1st, 1824, Mr. Morgan rendered grateful acknowledgments to God, who had delivered him in a recent affliction. His remarks are, “ I was taken ill of fever, November 26th, and very little hope was entertained of my recovery. On one occasion I thought my sickness was unto death. But I remembered that many prayers were daily offered for my restoration, and felt an impression that God would raise me up, and add to my days. My mind was kept in peace during my sickness. I was enabled to leave myself in the hands of God my Saviour, and felt something like perfect resignation to the will of my heavenly Father. I feel my affliction sanctified in a blessed degree. May my life henceforth be the Lord's ”
At the commencement of the year 1825, Wesley chapel, Basseterre, was dedicated to the service of Almighty God. Mr. Morgan felt amply compensated on this occasion for all his anxiety and labour. After describing the various religious services of that interesting occasion, he remarks, “ Thus hath the Lord brought me through all the toils of building the house of the Lord, and permitted me to behold its dedication. Lord, I have endeavoured to give myself afresh to thy service this day. May I follow thee fully; and when my work on earth is accomplished, may I enter that rest which remaineth for the faithful !”
In 1826 he was appointed to Dominica. The District-Meeting was held that year in the island of St. Christopher, where Mr. Morgan bad laboured five years, and where his services were duly appreciated. Se. veral of the societies in the island (and others would have done the same, bad they not been prevented by himself) forwarded a respectful address to the Preachers assembled, declaring their high sense of the worth of their Pastor, and their deep regret that he was about to be severed from them. In the review of his labours at St. Christopher's, Ms. Morgan says, “ Our efforts were marked with special blessings. God be praised, that we have left that affectionate people in improved circumstances. Nor can I forget to record, to the honour of Him who is over all, that I have left among the ornaments of that church some few spiritual children, who, I trust, will continue to shine as lights in the world.”
Mr. Morgan had scarcely commenced his labours in Dominica when one of the most calamitous events in the annals of Missionary effort occurred; namely, the wreck of the Maria mail-boat, by which five Missionaries, with the wives of two of them, and four children, were lost, -only one