Transcription of Journal Extracts published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine
SAFFRON WALDEN MISSON.
—Dear Editor,—Gladly I furnish you with the following brief sketch of the work of God on this mission. Recently we have held two protracted meetings, one at Weston Colville, and the other at Hempstead; a heavenly influence attended both, and the spiritual edification and quickening of our own members, and the conversion of sinners, were realised. Yes, sir, more than thirty souls were rescued from the powers of darkness, and translated into the kingdom of God’s dear Son; and the good work is still progressing. Last Sunday, while at one of the places, six persons were delivered from spiritual bondage, and others inquired for salvation.
On the Monday evening I preached at Carlton, (a village recently missioned by us,) in a large wagon-shade belonging to a respectable farmer, himself and family being present. The front of the shade was covered with canvass for the occasion; a numerous and attentive congregation assembled; I felt happy while dispensing the word of life, and had reason to believe that much good was done.
On Tuesday evening I preached to an overflowing and deeply-attentive congregation at Colville, and “the power of the Lord was present to heal.” One man, who had come from the village where we had been on the previous evening, was converted: and he said, “I prayed under the hedge, as I came along, that God would meet me here, and he has met me, bless his name, bless his name.” A kind gentleman promised me 25/- towards the erection of a chapel in the village; and we intend soon to commence building it.
God is opening our way in this country in a remarkable manner. Such a spiritual awakening as we now have, it has not been my happiness to witness since I entered the itinerancy; the country seems under deep religious impression, — “the fields are white already to harvest.” It would do you good, sir, to see the people coming to hear the word of life, especially when you knew that many of them had come several miles.
Powerful as the work is, we have considerable opposition from parties who ought rather to help us. The cl—gy—n have greatly exerted themselves to stop our progress, and prevent our access to the people; but the great “Head of the church” is really overruling their opposition to the furtherance of the gospel. And I am convinced that, while the Lord’s cause is ours, and we commit ourselves to him, he will prosper the work of our hands. May the conversion of sinners — work of the highest importance — increase amongst us here, and spread rapidly and extensively through every part of our Connexion.
March 20, 1847.
James was born on 8 March 1815 at Malton, Yorkshire, to parents James and Eleanor. He was baptised on 12 march 1815 at Malton.
He married Christiana Wilkinson (1815-1897) on 3 August 1842 at St Helier, Jersey. Census returns identify four children.
- Ellen Jersey (1843-1879) – married George Brace, a corn factor, in 1869
- James Ebenezer (1844-1930) – a provision dealer (1881); later an estate agent (1911)
- Theophilus Walden (1847-1931) – a hotel proprietor (1901)
- Phinehas Thanet (abt1851-1923) – a hotel manager (1891) – he simplified his name to Philip Thanet in census returns after 1871
James died in the spring of 1895 at Hornchurch, Essex.
- 1841 Scotter
- 1842 Jersey
- 1843 Southampton
- 1844 Isle of Wight
- 1846 Saffron Walden
- 1849 Ramsgate
- 1851 Hammersmith
- 1854 Bedford
- 1855 Bedford (S)
- 1863 Deal & Dover (Ac)
- 1867 Leeds III
- 1871 Leeds III (Sup)
- 1874 Dover
- 1875 Wallingford
- 1880 Liverpool I
- 1881 London III
- 1882 Stepney Green
- 1895 disappears
Primitive Methodist Magazine 1847/307
J Petty, The History of the Primitive Methodist Connexion, 1880, p434
W Leary, Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits, 1990
Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers