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no cause to be dissatisfied with his labours. He wishes he might be permitted to maintain his position without engaging in polemic discussions; but this he rather wishes than expects. In controversy, however, he engages to be, to the best of his knowledge, honest and impartial; not to enter into it where it can honourably be avoided, but having undertaken the task, to be faithful in the duties which it imposes.
Unremitting care will be taken to make the literary department of the Magazine what its readers expect. There are certain great religious principles which, when the application is required by the subject of the work, it is the Editor's duty to apply with fidelity, and to deliver judgment accordingly; but where these principles are not implicated, the opinion given of the work will be formed in reference to its general merits alone, without any reference whatever to the source whence it proceeds, or the author by whom it is written.
But whatever be the particular nature and specific object of separate articles, the careful endeavour of the Editor will be to make the Wesleyan Magazine an instrument of spreading the influence of principles which he would describe as orthodox, evangelical, and Protestant. And though, if necessary, these principles will be defended as well as asserted, it will be to the Editor a far more pleasing task to present them in connexion with what is often called, experimental and practical godliness, religion as experienced in the heart, and manifested in the life. In fact, on no parts of the labours of the year does the Editor look back with greater satisfaction than on those by which he has been enabled to present, in the form of Memoirs, Obituaries, and Recent Deaths, such striking exhibitions of the nature of religion in such numerous and varying cases, and of its great and unvarying power to form a character of living holiness, and to inspire peace, and joy, and even triumph in the hour of death.
Nor does the Editor attach less importance to the accounts with which he is each month favoured, of the progress of the Gospel on the Wesleyan Missionary stations. The reader will have observed that for the present year, the Missionary Notices have been given entire. The Editor has reason to believe that in the coming year this portion of each monthly Number will be more deeply interesting than ever. The arrangement which gives the whole Missionary Notice, it will be understood, is not temporary, but will be continued in future, as during the past year.
The Editor unaffectedly casts himself on the kindness and candour of his readers, not only for general support, but for the most favourable construction of all his proceedings. Earnestly does he desire that every reader may personally experience the full influence and benefit of the principles of religion which it is the object of the Wesleyan-Methodist Magazine to recommend.
November 22d, 1839.
FOR JANUARY, 1839.
MEMOIR OF THE REV. THOMAS ROGERSON:
BY HIS SON, THE REV. THOMAS ROGERSON, JUN, BIOGRAPHICAL Sketches of persons who have exemplified the power of religion through a number of years, and whose lives have been employed in the service of the church, are generally acknowledged to have a beneficial influence; and their usefulness is augmented when they relate to those who have yielded to the power of divine grace in the interesting season of youth, and have preferred the pleasures of piety to the gratifications of sense. To witness the progress of the Christian through years of exemplary holiness till the last victory is won, and God crowns a life of mercy with a triumphant end, is to witness that the divine mercy and faithfulness contain a sufficiency for all the trials to which we may be exposed, and the spectacle powerfully contributes to the establishment of our own faith and hope.
The readers of the following narrative will not forget that it is the narrative of a son. He wishes to divest himself, however, of all filial partiality, and to give a faithful representation of his father's conduct and character. He trusts that his object is, not to eulogize the dead, but to benefit the living, and to glorify God.
As my father left no journal of his religious experience, this memoir will be compiled principally from family reminiscences, assisted by the letters which from time to time he wrote to his various friends, and with many of which the writer has been favoured.
He was born at Lynn-regis, in the county of Norfolk, on the 19th of July, 1764. His parents, though not acquainted with the power of experimental religion, yet instructed him in divine things to the best of their knowledge; but they knew not how to direct him to seek for power over the carnal mind, nor for deliverance "from this present evil world." While, therefore, he was not altogether neglectful of the form of godliness, he had no idea of its power, and grew up giddy and heedless, ensnared by the vanities that surrounded him, a lover of pleasure more than a lover of God.
At the proper time he was apprenticed to a respectable tradesman in Lynn; but the love of pleasure and independence so increased with his years, that, resolutely bent to follow his own inclinations, before his period of servitude had expired, he entered a vessel bound to Norway, and it was only by the production of his indentures on the return of the vessel to England, that he was liberated from his new engagements. VOL. XVIII. Third Series. JANUARY, 1839.
He has said, in after-life, that, even at this time, he was any thing but comfortable; he felt that he was not doing right, and the anguish he endured from the condemnation of his own conscience was sometimes intolerable.
It was in the twentieth year of his age that his mind received a direction from which, by the mercy of God, he never afterwards swerved. The Methodists at Lynn were not very numerous, and had often to experience the same opposition which they met with in other places. They pursued their way, however, steadily and in the fear of God, and their religious services were attended with the divine blessing. They were accustomed to hold a meeting for prayer on the Sunday afternoon at the house of one of the members of the society; and my father, passing by the house at the time of the meeting, went to the door to listen. Overhearing some of the petitions, he was so im pressed that he opened the door, went into the room, and continued till the meeting was over. He was so affected, and light from heaven shone so clearly on his mind, discovering to him the sinfulness of that forgetfulness of God in which he had hitherto lived, that he could not refrain from crying aloud for mercy. He tasted the bitterness of sin, and resolved to flee from it, and to seek for the salvation of his soul without delay. He began now to attend on the ministry of the Methodist Preachers, and his convictions and resolutions were deepened and strengthened under the pointed and faithful ministry of the Rev. John Barber, who was at that time the Superintendent Preacher of the Circuit.
I had once the gratification of hearing him refer very explicitly at a lovefeast to this important period of his life. He remarked that he was returning home from the Sabbath-evening preaching, his mind heavily burdened with the guilt of his sin. It was a beautiful moonlight night. He regarded the moon and the stars, and thought on their glorious Creator. He reflected on the divine wisdom and power; but as he meditated, an awful sense of the holiness of God seemed to take possession of his mind, and he almost unconsciously exclaimed, "And what am I? A sinner; a guilty, hell-deserving sinner." He said he had such a view of the sinfulness of sin, that he wondered the earth did not swallow him up. He saw plainly that there was in him no good thing, and that he could only be saved by the grace of 'He did not God through the redemption that was in Jesus Christ.
at this time receive the forgiveness of sins, but the views which were thus afforded him increased his determination to seek till he should find, and to knock till the door should be opened to him. It was about two months afterwards, when attending the weekly meeting of the class which he had joined, being in very deep distress, and praying earnestly for deliverance, that he obtained the blessing he had for some time importunately sought. He had a clear spiritual discovery of the mercy of God in Christ, and was enabled to rest his soul in the merits
of his Saviour. He felt that he could believe in Christ with the heart unto righteousness; and when his Class-Leader soon afterwards asked him concerning the state of his mind, he replied, (referring to the language of the Apostle,) "I have redemption in the blood of Christ, the forgiveness of all my sins;" adding, in language that his fellow-worshippers well understood,—
"Exults my rising soul,
Disburden'd of her load,
And swells unutterably full
Like many other Christian believers, being converted himself, he desired to strengthen his brethren, and for this purpose engaged in various plans of usefulness. He met in band with the Rev. John Woodrow, (who still survives him,) and was soon appointed the Leader of a class. He was, however, impressed very seriously by the conviction that it was his duty to call sinners to repentance; and, after much prayer to God for direction, was put upon the Local Preachers' Plan, and for some time laboured acceptably and usefully on the Sabbath-day, fulfilling the various appointments that he received at the adjacent villages.
In the year 1787 Mr. Bramwell was appointed to the Lynn Circuit, but being prevented from going by some family circumstances, my father was requested by Mr. Gaulter, the Superintendent, to assist him in the work of the Circuit till a regular Preacher could be obtained. I have heard him say, in reference to this occurrence, “With much fear and trembling I complied, and continued assisting Mr. Gaulter till Mr. Wesley sent Mr. William Green into the Circuit; and I then retired to my usual occupation, till the Conference of 1788, when I was appointed to the Colchester Circuit with Mr. Joseph Harpur and Mr. Thomas Broadbent."
It will not be necessary that I should enter into a circumstantial narrative of my father's life in the various Circuits in which he laboured. It was the usual life of a Methodist Preacher; and, I may be permitted to say, that he was respected and useful to the very last. In common with the rest of his brethren, he had his trials and difficulties, but he had the presence of God with him both as a Minister and a man; and he held on his course, humbly labouring for God, and waiting for the rest which remaineth for the people of God. In the antunin of 1792 he entered into the marriage state with Miss Sarah Garner, of Thetford, who was a valuable help-meet for him; a most affectionate wife, and an indulgent but watchful mother. She was a plain, humble, and truly devoted Christian woman. She lived all her days in the enjoyment of the favour of God, and was very useful as a Class-Leader, and Visiter of the sick, and in advising the young of her: own sex; looking well, at the same time, to the ways of her own house
hold; and at last finished her course with joy, dying very happy in God, at Chesterfield, October 17th, 1833.
I have nothing particular to relate of my father's ministry for many years, other than that it was blessed of God to the conversion of sinners; nor of his religious experience, concerning which he has left no documents. He lived to God, maintained his Christian character, and faithfully discharged the laborious duties of a Methodist Preacher. The circle of his acquaintance was not extensive, but he was most respected where he was best known. It may truly be said of him that
"Along the cool sequester'd vale of life,
being only careful that it should be in agreement with the will of God.
When he was stationed at Horncastle, in 1817, on the night of February 14th, while returning home from his appointment in a heavy storm, he took a severe cold, which brought on vertigo, and a considerable degree of deafness. By bleeding and blistering the vertigo was removed, but the deafness continued, accompanied without intermission by a noisy sound in the ears, to the end of his life. This was a painful trial to him. It not only severed him from many social and domestic enjoyments, but materially interfered with the discharge of many of the duties which he was called to perform. He felt the trial acutely; but his uniform language was, "The will of the Lord be done." In a letter to his friend Mr. Broadbent, at Lynn, dated Alford, October 20th, 1819, he thus expresses himself: "Since the Lord has deprived me of my hearing, and permitted me to be afflicted with a constant noise in the head, I feel myself more dead to the things of time and sense than I did before; and I only wish that I felt more of the life and power of religion than I do. May the Lord increase it within my soul! My mind is often much cast down on account of my many infirmities; but I bless the Lord that hitherto he has proportioned my strength to my day, , and I am persuaded that he will be my helper through life, and that when I fail on earth he will receive me to heaven. I esteem it no small mercy, my dear brother Broadbent, to be preserved from murmuring and repining; and though I cannot always exult and triumph, yet my blessed Lord enables me to go on, casting all my care upon him, and he abundantly sustains me."
He was appointed to Driffield in 1833, and became a Supernumerary the following year. I find him thus alluding to the event in one of his letters: My deafness being so much increased, and finding myself compassed about with so many infirmities, the Conference has thought that it would be for my comfort to retire from the regular work, and become a Supernumerary. I felt very much on the subject; but still I believed it to be my duty to acquiesce." MOUSE DHE Dip 267 911 I was then residing at Chesterfield, having been apprenticed to a