Wednesday, August 31, 2011

"Charley Wesley is come to town"

Wed. 31 Aug 1743. I spoke severally with those of the society, who were about one hundred and twenty. Near an hundred of these had found peace with God. Such is the blessing of being persecuted for righteousness’ sake! As we were going to church at eleven, a large company at the market-place welcomed us with a loud huzza—wit as harmless as a ditty sung under my window (composed, one assured me, by a gentlewoman of their own town):
               Charley Wesley is come to town,
               To try if he can pull the churches down.
In the evening I explained ‘the promise of the Father’. After preaching, many began to be turbulent. But John Nelson went into the midst of them and spoke a little to the loudest, who answered not again but went quietly away.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Accept free forgiveness

Tue 30 Aug 1743: In the evening we reached St. Ives. About seven I invited all guilty, helpless sinners who were conscious they ‘had nothing to pay’, to accept of free forgiveness. The room was crowded both within and without. But all were quite and attentive. 

Monday, August 29, 2011

JW's cure for toothache

Mon 29 Aug 1757: We rode through vehement wind and many hard showers to Launceston. This gave me a violent fit of the toothache, which however did not hinder my preaching. Such a night I never remember to have passed before, but all is good which lies in the way to glory. On Tues we rode to Camelford, where my toothache was cured by rubbing treacle upon my cheek. At six I preached in the market-place. How are the lions in this town also become lambs!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

JW visits clergyman under death sentence for rape

Sun. 28 Aug 1743. I preached at seven to a handful of people. The sermon we heard at church was quite innocent of meaning; what that in the afternoon was, I know not; for I could not hear a single sentence. From church I went to the Castle, where were gathered together (as some imagined) half the grown persons in the city. It was an awful sight. So vast a congregation in that solemn amphitheatre! And all silent and still, while I explained at large and enforced that glorious truth, ‘Happy are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.’
I went thence to poor Mr. V [hanged at Exeter for rape], the clergyman, lying under sentence of death. He had for some time acted the lunatic; but I soon put him out of his play, and he appeared to have wit enough in his anger. I designed to close in with him immediately; but two cruelly-impertinent gentlemen would needs come into the room, so that I could say no more, but was obliged to leave him in their hands.
The lad who was to die the next day was quite of another spirit. He appeared deeply affected while we were speaking, and yet more during our prayer. And no sooner were we gone than he broke out into a bitter cry. Who knows but he might be heard by him that made him?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Can one who has fallen away be renewed?

Sat 27 Aug 1743: I reached Exeter in the afternoon; but as no one knew of my coming I did not preach that night, only to one poor sinner at the inn; who, after listening to our conversation for a while, looked earnestly at us and asked whether it was possible for one who had in some measure known ‘the powers of the world to come’ and was ‘fallen away’ (which she said was the case) to be ‘renewed again to repentance’. We besought God in her behalf and left her sorrowing; yet not without hope.

Friday, August 26, 2011

JW saves a critic from severe beating

Fri 26 Aug 1743: I set out for Cornwall. In the evening I preached at the cross in Taunton, on ‘The kingdom of God is not meats and drinks, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.’ A poor man had posted himself behind, in order to make some disturbance. But the time was not come. The zealous wretches who ‘deny the Lord that bought them’ had not yet stirred up the people. Many cried out, ‘Throw down that rascal there! Knock him down! Beat out his brains!’ So that I was obliged to entreat for him more than once, or he would have been but roughly handled.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Now the power of God is come indeed!

Thur. 25 Aug 1774. At eleven I preached within the walls of the old church at the Hay. Here and everywhere, I heard the same account of the proceedings at Llancrwys. The Jumpers (all who were there informed me) were first in the court, and afterwards in the house. Some of them leaped up many times, men and women, several feet from the ground; they clapped their hands with the utmost violence; they shook their heads; they distorted all their features; they threw their arms and legs to and fro in all variety of postures. They sung, roared, shouted, screamed with all their might to the no small terror of those that were near them. One gentlewoman told me she had not been herself since and did not know when she should. Meantime, the person of the house was delighted above measure and said, ‘Now the power of God is come indeed!’

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Well behaved gentlemen

Wednesday 24 Aug 1774: Arrived in  Brecon. In the evening, I preached in the town hall to most of the gentry in the town. They behaved well though I used great plainness of speech in describing the ‘narrow way’.

JW on unconditional election; irresistible grace; final perseverance.

Tue. 23 Aug 1743. Having found for some time a strong desire to unite with Mr. Whitefield as far as possible to cut off needless dispute, I wrote down my sentiments, as plain as I could, in the following terms:
There are three points in debate: (1) unconditional election; (2) irresistible grace; (3) final perseverance.
With regard to the first, unconditional election, I believe,
That God, before the foundation of the world, did unconditionally elect certain persons to do certain works, as Paul to preach the gospel;
That he has unconditionally elected some nations to receive peculiar privileges, the Jewish nation in particular;
That he has unconditionally elected some nations to hear the gospel, as England and Scotland now, and many others in past ages;
That he has unconditionally elected some persons to many peculiar advantages, both with regard to temporal and spiritual things;
And I do not deny (though I cannot prove it is so),
That he has unconditionally elected some persons, thence eminently styled, the elect, to eternal glory.
But I cannot believe,
That all those who are not thus elected to glory must perish everlastingly; or
That there is one soul on earth who had not nor ever had a possibility of escaping eternal damnation.
With regard to the second, irresistible grace, I believe,
That the grace which brings faith, and thereby salvation into the soul, is irresistible at that moment;
That most believers may remember some time when God did irresistibly convince them of sin;
That most believers do at some other times find God irresistibly acting upon their souls;
Yet I believe that the grace of God both before and after those moments, may be, and hath been, resisted; and
That, in general, it does not act irresistibly, but we may comply therewith or may not.
And I do not deny,
That in those eminently styled ‘the elect’ (if such there be) the grace of God is so far irresistible that they cannot but believe and be finally saved.
But I cannot believe,
That all those must be damned in whom it does not thus irresistibly work; or,
That there is one soul on earth who has not, and never had, any other grace than such as does in fact increase his damnation, and was designed of God so to do.
With regard to the third, final perseverance, I incline to believe
That there is a state attainable in this life, from which a man cannot finally fall; and
That he has attained this who is, according to St. Paul’s account, ‘a new creature’; that is, who can say, ‘Old things are passed away; all things’ in me ‘are become new.’
And I do not deny,
That all those eminently styled the elect will infallibly persevere to the end.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A preacher cursing the Methodists is struck down and dies

Tue. 23 Aug 1743. I came to Kingswood in the afternoon, and in the evening preached at Bristol. Wed. 24. I made it my business to inquire concerning the truth of a strange relation which had been given me. And I found there was no possibility of doubting it. The plain fact was this.
The Rev. Mr. Weston (I use the words of a gentleman of Bristol, whose manuscript lies by me) preached at two or three churches on these words, ‘Having the form of godliness, but denying the power thereof’. After showing the different sorts of Dissenters from the Church of England, who (as he said) had only the form of godliness, he inveighed very much against the ‘novel sect’, the ‘upstart Methodists’ (as he termed them), which indeed he was accustomed to do, more or less, in almost all his sermons. ‘These are the men’, said he, ‘whom St. Paul foretold, who have the form, the outside show of holiness, but not the power; for they are ravening wolves, full of hypocrisy within.’ He then alleged many grievous things against them; but without all colour of truth; and warned his flock to ‘turn away from’ them, and not to bid them God speed, lest they should be partakers of their evil deeds.
Shortly after he was to preach at St. Nicholas Church. He had named the above-mentioned text twice, when he was suddenly seized with a rattling in his throat, attended with an hideous groaning. He fell backward against the door of the pulpit; burst it open, and would have fallen down the stairs but that some people caught him, and carried him away, as it seemed, dead, into the vestry. In two or three days he recovered his senses, and the Sunday following, died!
In the evening, the word of God was indeed quick and powerful. Afterwards I desired the men as well as women to meet. But I could not speak to them. The spirit of prayer was so poured upon us all that we could only speak to God.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Stop cursing and swearing

Mon. 22 Aug 1743. After a few of us had joined in prayer, about four I set out and rode softly to Snow Hill, where the saddle slipping quite upon my mare’s neck, I fell over her head, and she ran back into Smithfield. Some boys caught her and brought her to me again, cursing and swearing all the way. I spoke plainly to them, and they promised to amend. I was setting forward when a man cried, ‘Sir, you have lost your saddle-cloth.’ Two or three more would needs help me to put it on; but these two swore at almost every word. I turned to one and another and spoke in love. They all took it well and thanked me much. I gave them two or three little books, which they promised to read over carefully.
Before I reached Kensington I found my mare had lost a shoe. This gave me opportunity of talking closely for near half an hour, both to the smith and his servant. I mention these little circumstances to show how easy it is to redeem every fragment of time (if I may so speak) when we feel any love to those souls for which Christ died.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The power of the Lord was unusually present, both to wound and to heal.

Sun. 21 Aug 1774. At nine, I began the service at St. Daniel’s and concluded a little before twelve. It was a good time. ‘The power of the Lord was’ unusually ‘present’, both to wound and to heal. Many were constrained to cry, while others were filled with speechless awe and silent love. After dinner, I went over to Haverfordwest but could not preach abroad because of the rain. Both here and at Pembroke, I found the people in general to be in a cold, dead, languid state. And no wonder since there had been for several months a total neglect of discipline. I did all I could to awaken them once more and left them full of good resolutions.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Water scarce reaching above our horses’ knees

Fri. 19 Aug 1774. We rode on to Laugharne Ferry, and seeing a person just riding over the ford, we followed him with ease, the water scarce reaching above our horses’ knees. Between two and three, we came to Pembroke.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The great work of God, vulgarly called ‘Methodism’

Thur. 18 Aug 1785. I had a pleasant journey to Plymouth Dock, the rain having but just laid the dust. The late separation here seems to have done little hurt: a few turbulent men have left us, but men of a more quiet spirit are continually added in their stead. So that on the whole we are gainers by our loss. Such is the wisdom of God! Fri. 19. In the evening, I preached in the new house at Plymouth. This also was well filled. Sunday 21, I preached at the Dock at seven, and the house contained us pretty well. But in the evening, it was thought as many went away as got in. After preaching, I gave them a plain account of the beginning and progress of that great work of God, vulgarly called ‘Methodism’.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Work in Wales

Wed. 17 Aug 1774. At eleven I preached in the town hall at Cowbridge, the neatest place of the kind I have ever seen. Not only the floor, the walls, the ceiling, are kept exactly clean, but every pane of glass in the windows.
Hence I hasted on to Swansea and at seven preached in the castle to a large congregation. The next morning, I went on to Llanelli. But what a change was there! Sir Thomas Stepney, the father of the poor, was dead! Cut down in the strength of his years! So the family was broke up, and Wilfred Colley, his butler, the father of the society, obliged to remove. Soon after, John Deer, who was next in usefulness to him, was taken into Abraham’s bosom. But just then Col. St. Leger, in the neighbourhood, sent to Galway for Lieutenant Cook to come and put his house into repair and manage his estate. So another is brought, just in time, to supply the place of Wilfred Colley! I preached at five near Sister Deer’s door to a good company of plain, country people and then rode over to the old ruinous house, which Mr. Cook is making all haste to repair. It is not unlike old Mr. Gwynne’s house at Garth, having a few large handsome rooms. It is also situated much like that, only not quite so low. For it has the command of a well-cultivated vale and of the fruitful side of the opposite mountain.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Grand Jury appointed for Wesley's trial

Tue. 16 Aug 1737. Mrs. Williamson swore to and signed an affidavit, insinuating much more than it asserted; but asserting that Mr. Wesley had many times proposed marriage to her, all which proposals she had rejected. Of this I desired a copy. Mr. Causton replied, ‘Sir, you may have one from any of the newspapers in America.’
On Thursday or Friday was delivered out a list of twenty-six men who were to meet as a grand jury on Monday the 22nd. But this list was called in the next day, and twenty-four names added to it. Of this grand jury (forty-four of whom only met), one was a Frenchman who did not understand English, one a Papist, one a professed infidel, three Baptists, sixteen or seventeen others, dissenters, and several others who had personal quarrels against me, and had openly vowed revenge.
To this grand jury, on Monday the 22nd, Mr. Causton gave a long and earnest charge ‘to beware of spiritual tyranny, and to oppose the new illegal authority which was usurped over their consciences’. Then Mrs. Williamson’s affidavit was read; after which Mr. Causton delivered to the grand jury a paper entitled, ‘A List of Grievances, presented by the Grand Jury for Savannah this ---- day of Aug. 1737.’ This the majority of the grand jury altered in some particulars and on Thursday, September 1, delivered it again to the court, under the form of two presentments, containing ten bills, which were then read to the people.
Herein they asserted, upon oath,
That John Wesley, Clerk, had ‘broken the laws of the realm, contrary to the peace of our sovereign lord the King, his crown and dignity’,
1. By speaking and writing to Mrs. Williamson, against her husband’s consent;
2. By repelling her from the Holy Communion;
3. By not declaring his adherence to the Church of England;
4. By dividing the morning service on Sundays;
5. By refusing to baptize Mr. Parker’s child otherwise than by dipping, except the parents would certify it was weak, and not able to bear it;
6. By repelling Wm. Gough from the Holy Communion;
7. By refusing to read the Burial Service over the body of Nathanael Polhill;
8. By calling himself ‘Ordinary’ of Savannah;
9. By refusing to receive Wm. Aglionby as a godfather, only because he was not a communicant;
10. By refusing Jacob Matthews for the same reason; and baptizing an Indian trader’s child with only two sponsors.
(This, I own, was wrong; for I ought at all hazards to have refused baptizing it till he had procured a third.)

Monday, August 15, 2011

A doctrine not very welcome to the inhabitants of palaces

Mon. 15 Aug 1774. I set out for Wales but did not reach Cardiff till near eight o’clock. As the congregation was waiting in the town hall, I went thither without delay. And many, I believe, did not regret the time they had waited there. Tue. 16. I preached about noon in the great hall at Llandaff on ‘It is appointed unto men once to die.’ Strange doctrine and not very welcome to the inhabitants of palaces!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Mr. Garden assisted me at the chapel

Sun. 14.Aug 1743: Mr. Garden assisted me at the chapel, one who had then a deep sense of the goodness of God, in lifting him up from the gates of death and delivering him out of all his troubles

Friday, August 12, 2011

Webb always kindles a fire

Fri. 12 Aug 1785. I preached at Winchester and, on Saturday 13, went on to Salisbury. As Captain Webb had just been there, I endeavoured to avail myself of the fire which he seldom fails to kindle. The congregation in the evening was very large and seemed to be deeply affected. So they did again at eight on Sunday morning. But I believe the greatest blessing was in the evening, particularly during the prayer, wherein God was pleased to move many in an uncommon manner.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

"Wesley repelled Sophy from Holy Communion out of revenge"

Thur. 11 Aug 1738. Mr. Causton came to my house, and among many other sharp words said, ‘Make an end of this matter. Thou hadst best. My niece to be used thus! I have drawn the sword, and I will never sheathe it till I have satisfaction.’
Soon after he added, ‘Give the reasons of your repelling her, before the whole congregation.’ I answered, ‘Sir, if you insist upon it, I will; and so you may be pleased to tell her.’ He said, ‘Write to her, and tell her so yourself.’ I said, ‘I will’; and after he went I wrote as follows:
To Mrs. Sophia Williamson.
At Mr. Causton’s request I write once more. The rules whereby I proceed are these:
‘So many as intend to be partakers of the Holy Communion shall signify their names to the Curate, at least some time the day before.’ This you did not do.
‘And if any of these . . . have done any wrong to his neighbours by word or deed, so that the congregation be thereby offended, the Curate . . . shall advertise him that in any wise he presume not to come to the Lord’s Table until he hath openly declared himself to have truly repented.’
If you offer yourself at the Lord’s Table on Sunday I will advertise you (as I have done more than once) wherein you ‘have done wrong’. And when you have ‘openly declared yourself to have truly repented’ I will administer to you the mysteries of God.
August 11, 1737                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     John Wesley

Mr. Delamotte carrying this, Mr. Causton said, among many other warm sayings, ‘I am the person that am injured. The affront is offered to me, and I will espouse the cause of my niece. I am ill used, and I will have satisfaction, if it be to be had in the world.’
Which way this satisfaction was to be had I did not yet conceive. But on Friday and Saturday it began to appear, Mr. Causton declaring to many persons that Mr. Wesley had repelled Sophy from the Holy Communion, purely out of revenge, because he had made proposals of marriage to her, which she rejected, and married Mr. Williamson.
I could not but observe the gracious providence of God in the course of Lessons all this week. On Monday evening God spake to us in these words: ‘Call to remembrance the former days, [. . .] in which you endured a great fight of afflictions; partly whilst ye were made a gazing-stock, both by reproaches and afflictions, and partly whilst ye became companions of them that were so used. . . . Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that after ye have done the will of God ye might receive the promise.’
The Evening Lesson on Tuesday was the eleventh of the Hebrews, in reading which I was more particularly encouraged by his example who ‘chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt.’
The Lesson on Wednesday began with these words: ‘Wherefore, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight . . . and run with patience the race that is set before us; looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’
In the Thursday Lesson were these comfortable words: ‘I will never leave thee nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.’
The words of St. James, read on Friday, were, ‘Blessed is the man that endureth temptation.’ And those on Saturday, ‘My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . with respect of persons.’
I was only afraid lest those who were weak should ‘be turned out of the way’; at least so far as to forsake the public ‘assembling of themselves together’. But I feared where no fear was. God took care of this also. So that on Sunday 14, more were present at the morning prayers than had been for some months before. Many of them observed those words in the First Lesson, ‘Set Naboth on high among the people; and set two men, sons of Belial, before him, to bear witness against him.’

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

JW in Court

Wed. 10 Aug 1737. Mr. Causton (‘from a just regard’, as his letter expressed it, ‘to the friendship which had subsisted between us till this affair’) required me to give the reasons in the court-house why I repelled Mrs. Williamson from the Holy Communion. I answered, ‘I apprehend many ill consequences may arise from so doing. Let the case be laid before the Trustees.’

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Warrant served on JW and bail demanded but refused

Tue. 9 Aug 1737: Mr. Jones, the constable, served the warrant, and carried me before Mr. Bailiff  Parker and Mr. Recorder. My answer to them was that the giving or refusing the Lord’s Supper being a matter purely ecclesiastical, I could not acknowledge their power to interrogate me upon it. Mr. Parker told me, ‘However, you must appear at the next court holden for Savannah.’ Mr.Williamson (who stood by) said, ‘Gentlemen, I desire Mr. Wesley may give bail for his appearance.’ But Mr. Parker immediately replied, ‘Sir, Mr. Wesley’s word is sufficient.’

Monday, August 8, 2011

"The people there are not men but devils."

Mon. 8. Aug 1743 Upon mention made of my design to preach here, a zealous woman warmly replied, ‘What! At Snowsfields! Will Mr. Wesley preach at Snowsfields? Surely he will not do it! Why, there is not such another place in all the town. The people there are not men but devils.’ However, I resolved to try if God was not stronger than them. So this evening I preached there on that Scripture, Jesus said, ‘They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. I came, not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.’

Why people seem smaller today than in the past

Mon. 8 Aug 1757. I took a walk in the Charterhouse. I wondered that all the squares and buildings, and especially the schoolboys, looked so little. But this is easily accounted for. I was little myself when I was at school, and measured all about me by myself. Accordingly the upper boys, being then bigger than myself, seemed to me very big and tall—quite contrary to what they appear now, when I am taller and bigger than them. I question if this is not the real ground of the common imagination that our forefathers, and in general men in past ages, were much larger than now—an imagination current in the world eighteen hundred years ago. So Virgil supposes his warrior to throw a stone that could scarce be wielded by twelve men. Qualia nunc hominum producit corpora tellus
So Homer long before: Oioi nu'n brotoi" ejisi. Whereas in reality men have been, at least ever since the Deluge, very nearly the same as we find them now, both for stature and understanding.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

JW refuses Mrs. Williamson (Sophy Hopkey) Holy Communion.

Sunday 7 Aug 1737: I repelled Mrs. Williamson from the Holy Communion. And Monday 8, Mr. Recorder of Savannah issued out the warrant following:
Georgia, Savannah Ss.
To all Constables, Tithingmen, and others, whom these may concern:
You, and each of you, are hereby required to take the body of John Wesley, Clerk;
And bring him before one of the bailiffs of the said town, to answer the complaint of William Williamson and Sophia his wife, for defaming the said Sophia, and refusing to administer to her the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, in a public congregation, without cause; by which the said William Williamson is damaged one thousand pounds sterling. And for so doing this is your warrant, certifying what you are to do in the premises.
Given under my hand and seal the 8th day of Aug. Anno Dom. 1737.
Tho. Christie

Friday, August 5, 2011

The room where poor Richard II was murdered

Sat. 6 Aug 1774. I walked from Newport to Berkeley Castle. It is a beautiful, though very ancient building, and every part of it kept in good repair except the lumber-room and the chapel, the latter of which, having been of no use for many years, is now dirty enough. I particularly admired the fine situation and the garden on the top of the house. In one corner of the castle is the room where poor Richard II was murdered. His effigy is still preserved, said to be taken before his death. If he was like this, he had an open, manly countenance, though with a cast of melancholy. In the afternoon, we went on to Bristol.
The Conference, begun and ended in love, fully employed me on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. And we observed Friday 12 as a day of fasting and prayer for the success of the gospel.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

John Wesley and Sophy Hopkey (1)

March 7, 1735/36-December 16, 1737

‘The Lord knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are but vain’ .

‘O give me not up unto mine own heart’s lust, neither let me follow my own imagination’.

It was not my desire, but the desire of the Trustees, disappointed of another minister, which induced me to take charge of Savannah till I could pursue my first design. And the very day I entered on this charge I told you that offences would come; indeed I expected greater, long before this day.

At my first coming to Savannah, in the beginning of March 1736, I was determined to have no intimacy with any woman in America. Notwithstanding which, by the advice of my friends, and in pursuance of my resolution to speak once a week at least to every communicant apart from the congregation, on March the 13th, I spoke to Miss Sophy Hopkey, who had communicated the Sunday before, and endeavoured to explain to her the nature and necessity of inward holiness. On the same subject I continued to speak to her once a week, but generally in the open air, and never alone, always in the presence of Miss Fawset.

I had a good hope that herein I acted with a single eye to the glory of God and the good of her soul, both because I did not act by my own judgment and because, though I approved of Miss Sophy’s constant attendance both at the morning and evening service, and at the Holy Communion, yet I had a particular dislike to her person, and a still greater to her common behaviour, which was reserved, I thought, even to affectation.

Soon after, being at Mr. Causton’s house, Mrs. Causton, when I sent out of the room, said, ‘There goes a husband for my Phiky’ (her common title for Miss Hopkey). And in June following she told me, ‘Sir, you want a woman to take care of your house.’ I said, ‘But women, madam, are scarce in Georgia. Where shall I get one?’ She answered, ‘I have two here. Take either of them. Here, take Miss Fawset.’ I said, ‘Nay, madam, we shan’t agree. She is too merry for me.’ She replied, ‘Then take Phiky; she is serious enough.’ I said, ‘You are not in earnest, madam!’ She said, ‘Indeed sir, I am; take her to you, and do what you will with her.’

In April, by the advice of Mr. Delamotte, who thought common civility required it, after we had been walking some time, I asked her and her companion Miss Fawset to step in and breakfast with me. Immediately after breakfast they went. Though I hope my eye was single in this too, yet I doubt whether it was not a step too far, as tending to a familiarity which was not needful.

From the middle of May till the end of June, I was at Frederica. After I was returned to Savannah, in the beginning of July, Mrs. Causton earnestly expressed with many tears] desired me to talk to Sophy by herself, who (she said) was utterly ruined, being in love with and resolved to marry a notorious villain, one Mellichamp, then in prison at Charleston for forgery. She added, ‘Sophy minds nobody but you; if you will be so good as to step into the garden, I will send her to you.’ I went, and soon after, Miss Sophy came, all in tears, and with all the signs of such a distress as I had never seen. She seemed to have lost both comfort and hope. I stayed with her about an hour. At the end of which she said she was resolved to seek comfort in God only, and through his help to tear from her heart an inclination which she knew did not tend to his glory.

I was deeply affected with her distress, which I saw was beyond all utterance; and yet more with the manner in which she bore it, betraying no kind of impatience, making no complaint, saying nothing weak or womanish, taking the whole blame upon herself, owning the providence of God in all, and acknowledging the goodness as well as justice of that providence.

My friends believed it was now my duty to see her more frequently than before; in compliance with whose advice I accordingly talked with her once in two or three days often alone. In all those conversations I was careful to speak only on things pertaining to God. But on July [23?], after I had talked with her for some time, I took her by the hand and, before we parted, kissed her. And from this time I fear there was a mixture in my intention, though I was not soon sensible of it.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Warrant Issued for the Arrest of John Wesley

Wed. 3 Aug 1737. We returned to Savannah. Sunday 7, I repelled Mrs. Williamson from the Holy Communion. And Monday 8, Mr. Recorder of Savannah issued out the warrant following:
Georgia, Savannah Ss.
To all Constables, Tithingmen, and others, whom these may concern:
You, and each of you, are hereby required to take the body of John Wesley, Clerk;
And bring him before one of the bailiffs of the said town, to answer the complaint of William Williamson and Sophia his wife, for defaming the said Sophia, and refusing to administer to her the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, in a public congregation, without cause; by which the said William Williamson is damaged one thousand pounds sterling. And for so doing this is your warrant, certifying what you are to do in the premises.
Given under my hand and seal the 8th day of Aug. Anno Dom. 1737.
Tho. Christie

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Preached in a meadow under a tall oak.

Tue, 2 August, 1774. I preached at ten in the town hall at Evesham and rode on to Broad Marston. Thursday 4, I crossed over to Tewkesbury and preached at noon in a meadow near the town under a tall oak. I went thence to Cheltenham. As it was the high season for drinking the waters, the town was full of gentry. So I preached near the market-place in the evening to the largest congregation that was ever seen there. Some of the footmen, at first, made a little disturbance. But I turned to them, and they stood reproved.

Monday, August 1, 2011

JW sends preachers to Scotland

Monday, August 1, 1785. Having with a few select friends, weighed the matter thoroughly, I yielded to their judgment and set apart three of our well-tried preachers, John Pawson, Thomas Hanby, and Joseph Taylor, to minister in Scotland. And I trust God will bless their ministrations and show that he has sent them. Wednesday 3, our peaceful Conference ended, the God of power having presided over all our consultations.

One of the liveliest places in England

Monday, August 1, 1774. I preached at Bewdley in an open place at the head of the town, and in the evening at Worcester, which still continues one of the liveliest places in England. Here I talked with some who believe God has lately delivered them from the root of sin. Their account was simple, clear, and scriptural, so that I saw no reason to doubt of their testimony.