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THE past year is, to all intents and purposes, lost to us, and numbered among the dead. It is gone to join the multitudes of years that have died before it..... The principal events that have befallen us in it should be recollected, and the requisite improvements be raised from them severally by meditation. What preservations from dangers spiritual and temporal have been vouchasfed; what new blessings granted, or old ones continued, to me and mine, to my friends, my neighbours, my church, my country; and how have I expressed, in word and in deed, my gratitude and thankfulness for them? . . . Do we really and truly find any pleasure in our devotions? or are we dragged unwillingly to them as a task, and, consequently, rejoice with all our hearts when they are over? For years together, perhaps, we have turned our backs on the communion table. Is it in our intention to give that holy ordinance a more frequent attendance in future? Do we hear a sermon with a determined resolution to carry what is said into practice? : . . Does the current of our thoughts flow in any degree more pure?. . Is our conversation more innocent? Are our actions more and more directed by the rule of justice and charity? one word, as we grow older, do we graw better.-Bishop Horne.
The waste of time; the prodigality of being; the strange inconsistency of lamenting the shortness of life, and yet suffering many of its moments to pass. without obtaining from them any service, is more or less chargeable upon every one of our race. . Let us look back upon the year that is gone and see how much of it we have to redeem. How have we improved the blessing we have enjoyed, and the dispensations of providence we have witnessed? The services of the sanctuary, the sacraments of the Church, and all the means of grace, whereby our merciful Creator would renew us after his own image, and fit us for his own presence-have we availed ourselves of them, and been made better by them? Has the new year found us fitter for heaven than the old one did; stronger in faith, more free from vice, nearer to God, and having less wasted time to redeem?
GOD grant that it may be to you, my brethren, a year of blessings, in your families, in your church, and in the concerns of your common country.-Bishop Dehon.
Under the protection and blessing of the Divine Spirit, the Church, in her militant state, is now as formerly to be known and preserved, to be propagated and improved, by the word, the sacraments, and the ministry. Happy state! if ministers and people thus, in their distinct spheres, co-operated with each others It has pleased God to grant us our Christian vocation in a church, whose rites and ordinances are of primitive origin, and the authority of whose ministry has never been questioned. On our conduct may depend the religious advantages of our posterity. We may be instrumental by our own zeal and fidelity, in preserving to our country, even for successive generations, the precious blessings of the Gospel; or by our coldness, corruptions, and depravity, may provoke the Almighty to take them away-be induced by a regard for the souls of others, as well as a concern for your own, to cherish for the Church and its institutions, a holy affection and respect. -Bishop Dehon.
LIFE OF RIGHT REV. THEODORE DEHON, D.D., LATE BISHOP OF SOUTH
. THE father of Theodore Dehon was a French emigrant, who settled in Boston before the American revolution. His loyalty was so ardent, that he is said to have lost his senses, on hearing of the murder of his proper sovereign, the "amiable Louis." He was a Protestant, and decided in his attachment to Episcopacy. He died in 1796, leaving six daughters and four sons. Theodore, the eighth child, was born Dec. 8, 1776. His mother was a woman of many and rare virtues. Formed for excellence in every department of life, she secured the obedience, affection, and respect of her children; and by her constant attendance with them at public worship, and public catechizing, and carefully instructing them in the evening after Lord's day, she brought them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and in attachment to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the Church. This valuable mother was spared until the year 1804, and lived to see her son a Minister of the Gospel, the bias to which had been promoted, if it had not been created, by her early pious solicitude.
At the proper age he received from Bishop Seabury the holy rite of confirmation; an ordinance of whose favourable influence on the rising generation he always entertained the highest opinion. The distinguishing characteristics of his childhood are said to have been sedateness, steadiness, amiableness, gentleness, filial and paternal affection, patience, perseverance, application, love of books, love of public worship, undeviating integrity and sobriety. During seven years at Boston Grammar School he was always at the head of his class; and his master, Mr. Hunt, always remarked that he was born for eminence. "I always (said he) marked him for a great man. The same distinction, still meekly borne, attended him at Harvard Univer'sity, which he entered at fifteen, and where he graduated at nineteen, in the year 1795.
Bishop Smith, principal of Charleston College, offered him the situation. of Head Master of that institution: but honourable and profitable as the situation would have been, he declined it, chiefly, it is believed, because it might interfere with his preparation for the sacred office. But as a temporary expedient, although he declined a large school, or any permanent engagement, he employed himself in tuition for a short time; and, about a year after leaving the University, entered on the service of the Church as a layreader. The lay-readers at that time sometimes delivered sermons written by themselves, the Canon prohibiting it not having passed until 1804; and there is still extant a sermon so delivered at Cambridge (U.S.) by Mr. Dehon in Dec. 1795, on a thanksgiving occasion, from Matt. vi. 13, some very striking extracts from which are given by Dr. Gadsden, as well as from another at Newport, Rhode Island, on Rom. i. 16. The plan of the last is valuable. After remarking that religion distinguishes man from other creatures, and that Christianity is superior to any other system, he first shows its excellence in, 1. Its origin-2. Its nature-3. Its end; and secondly, exemplifies the corrupt principles from which a shame of it generally proceed, viz.
* From an Essay on his life, by C. E. Gadsden, D.D., Rector of St. Philip's, Charleston, (1833) now Bishop of South-Carolina.
A fear of the remarks of the world-2. Inconsideration-3. The pride of the human mind-4. The unsubdued strength of vice.
The theological studies were at this time directed by Dr. Parker, then Rector of Trinity Church, Boston, and afterwards Bishop; whose memory he affectionately cherished; and who seems, indeed, from Dr. Gadsden's account of him, to have been a very superior person, to whose firmness, when most of the Episcopal Clergy had fled from the dangers which menaced them in 1776, the Episcopal Church at Boston owed its preservation from extinction.
Mr. Dehon was ordained a deacon by Bishop Baas, at Newburyport, Massachusetts, Dec. 24, 1797, and was soon after elected Rector of Trinity Church, Newport, Rhode Island; and when he entered on his charge he preached from Phil. ii, 2 ; and no text could have been more appropriate, for through life he looked to the exercise of the ministry as the chief source of his joy.' Differences had prevailed, which had disturbed the peace, and interrupted the prosperity of the Church at Newport: but he was enabled to restore and preserve a happy state of unity and peace. He was ordained Priest by Bishop Baas, Oct. 9, 1800. His labours were greatly successful. His sermons, still equally correct and elegant, 'showed more and more the ripeness of his Christian faith, so that Dr. Gadsden, after remarking that "a highly cultivated taste sometimes interferes with the simplicity of the Gospel," proceeds to state that "those great truths, the corruption of the heart, the atonement by Christ the son of God, the sanctification by the Holy Ghost, which, in the view of the Protestant Episcopal Church, are at the foundation of the christian system, grew daily in his estimation, and had the most decided approbation of his soberest and maturest judgment." Nor was he inattentive to matters of Church order. The revival of the custom of public Baptism before the congregation was one of the most valuable parts of his early efforts; and also the observance of the several fasts and festivals, which he considered happily calculated to promote religious sensibility and knowledge.
His slender constitution, which was much affected by the keen air and fogs of Rhode Island, made the assistance of a colleague very desirable; and his affectionate flock hesitated not to provide him with one. But although relieved from some of the duties, injurious to one threatened with pulmonary disorder, he did not relax his parochial visits or his divinity studies. He was particularly fond of the old authors of the Church of England.
In the winter of 1802-3, he was under the necessity of retiring to a more southern climate: and his considerate flock voted " that his salary be continued and paid, as though he were present, during his absence; most earnestly praying Almighty God to preserve his life, and to restore him. again, in his own good time, to his anxious flock. "He visited Charleston, and was soon after requested to become assistant Minister of Saint Philip's Church; but he declined the offer, and returned to Newport. On the death of Mr. Frost, the Rector, in 1804, the Vestry of St. Philip's sought Dr. Dehon as his successor, but he again declined the offer. At length, in 1809, he finally removed to Charleston, succeeding Mr. Bowen in the Rectory of St. Michael's. In the following October the College of New-Jersey conferred on him the degree of D.D. He was one of the founders of the Protestant Episcopal Society for the advancement of Christianity in South