« AnteriorContinuar »
Although no man's sentiments are more opposed to any kind of restraint upon religious principles than mine are, yet I must confess, that I am not amongst the number of those, who are so much alarmed at the thought of making people pay, towards the support of that which they profess, if of the denomination of Christians, Jews, Mahometans, or otherwise, and thereby obtain proper relief.
(2.) THE CHRISTIAN MINISTRY.
He encouraged and strengthened the hands of the clergy.
DAVID RAMSAY, M. D.
I have often been told by Colonel Ben Temple, (of King William county, Virginia,) who was one of his aids in the French and Indian war, that he has frequently known Washington, on the Sabbath, read the Scriptures, and pray with his regiment, in the absence of the Chaplain. Rev. M. L. WEEMS, 1808.
The want of a Chaplain, I humbly conceive, reflects dishonor on the regiment, as all other officers are allowed.
The gentlemen of the corps are sensible of the want of a Chaplain, and proposed to support one, at their private expense. But I think it would have a more graceful appearance, were he appointed as oth
The last Assembly, in their Supply Bill, provided for a Chaplain to our regiment.
On this subject I had often, without any success, applied to Governor Dinwiddie. I now flatter myself that your Honor will be pleased to appoint a sober, serious man, for this duty.
Common decency, sir, in a camp, calls for the services of a divine, which ought not to be dispensed with, although the world should be so uncharitable as to think us void of religion, and incapable of good instructions.
The honorable Continental Congress having been pleased to allow a Chaplain to each regiment, with the pay of thirty-three dollars and one-third per month, the Colonels or commanding officers of each regiment are directed to procure Chaplains accordingly; persons of good characters and exemplary lives; and to see, that all inferior officers and soldiers pay them a suitable respect.
The blessing and protection of Heaven are, at all times, necessary; but, especially so, in times of public distress and danger.
*The President of the Council.
Having heard that it is doubtful, whether the Reverend Mr. Leonard, from your colony, will have it in his power to continue as Chaplain, I cannot but express some concern, as I think his departure will
be a loss.
His general conduct has been exemplary and praiseworthy; in discharging the duties of his office, active and industrious. He has discovered himself to be a warm and steady friend to his country, and taken great pains to animate the soldiers, and impress them with a knowledge of the important rights they are contending for. Upon the late desertion of the troops, he gave a sensible and judicious discourse, holding forth the necessity of courage and bravery, and, at the same time, of obedience and subordination to those in command.
In justice to the merits of this gentleman, I thought it only right, to give you this testimonial of my opinion of him, and to mention him to you, as a person worthy of your esteem and that of the public.
The Reverend Mr. Kirkland,† having been introduced to the honorable Congress, can need no particular recommendation from me. But as he now
* Governor Trumbull.
The Rev. Samuel Kirkland, for more than forty years the spiritual friend and teacher of the Oneida Indians. He was the father of the Rev. Dr. Kirkland, President of Harvard University. He died in the year 1808.
wishes to have the affairs of his mission and public employ put upon some suitable footing, I cannot but intimate my sense of the importance of his station, and the great advantages which may result to the United Colonies, from his situation being made respectable.
All accounts agree, that much of the favorable disposition shown by the Indians, may be ascribed to his labor and influence. He has accompanied a chief of the Oneidas to this camp, which I have endeavored to make agreeable to him, both by civility, and some small presents. Mr. Kirkland also being in some necessity for money, to bear his travelling expenses, I have supplied him with thirty-two pounds lawful money.
I have long had it on my mind, to mention to Congress, that frequent applications have been made to me, respecting the chaplains' pay, which is too small to encourage men of abilities. Some of them, who have left their flocks, are obliged to pay the parson acting for them more than they receive. I need not point out the great utility of gentlemen, whose lives and conversation are unexceptionable, being employed for that service in this army.
There are two ways of making it worth the attention of such. One is, an advancement of their pay ; the other, that one chaplain be appointed to two regiments. This last, I think, may be done without inconvenience. I beg leave to recommend this mat
ter to Congress, whose sentiments hereon I shall impatiently expect.
(3.) PUBLIC AND PRIVATE WORSHIP.
It was Washington's custom, to have prayers in the camp, while (1754) at Fort Necessity. JARED SPARKS.
He with constancy attended public worship. During the war, he not unfrequently rode ten or twelve miles from camp, to attend public worship. AARON BANCROFT, D. D.
I never knew so constant an attendant on Church, as Washington. And his behavior in the House of God was, ever, so deeply reverential, that it produced the happiest effect on my congregation. Rev. LEE MASSEY,
Rector of Pohick Church, of which Washington was an active Vestryman.
The General requires and expects of all officers and soldiers, not engaged on actual duty, a punctual attendance on divine service, to implore the blessings of Heaven upon the means used for our safety and defence.
The Continental Congress having ordered Friday, the 17th instant,* to be observed as a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer, humbly to supplicate the mercy of Almighty God, that it would please him to pardon our manifold sins and transgressions, and to prosper the arms of the United Colonies, and finally