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that, even now, the Dissenters will forgive all I have done, if I will only engage to abstain for the future from all active and offensive warfare. My answer has been very short ; I merely desired her to stay amongst her friends till further orders, “ for I could not think of receiving her at home for a long time to come -if ever I could bring myself to take a schismatic to my bosom." Jane's letter occupied three sheets closely written, so that I only here mention the heads of her discourse. You may well suppose how greatly I am distressed by this wretched business, but I forbear to add more at present, for I have to record my public calamities.

The Dissenting chapels have been crowded of late-Mervyn's chapel particularly so; for the conspicuous part he has taken in opposing me has made him an especial favourite with the people. His Deacons, (Deacons, forsooth! not ordained by a Bishop!) finding the chapel far too small, have proposed to enlarge the building, by opening a side recess or aisle, capable, with a gallery, of holding three hundred persons. The plan has met with general approbation; the building is nearly complete, and is to be opened next Tuesday with sermons for collections to defray the expenses. J- ' of Birmingham, and Dr. B-t, are ex

-t pected to preach on this occasion; and the people, I understand, are determined to pay off every farthing of the debt before the day closes, “to show the advocates of force what the voluntary

mon

principle can do.” Where will all these things end ? I begin to feel doubts arising in my mind, and am sometimes disposed to give up all further exertions for the Church, to let things take their course, and to leave the victory with these execrable schismatics. But my hopes with the Bishop of L buoy me up; if it were not for this consideration, and for the honour of L. S. E., I believe I should retire from the field.

Dr. Birch has been pressing me much to make a diversion in the enemy's camp, by joining com

cause with the Wesleyan Methodists. He has said so much on this subject, and has urged me with so much earnestness follow up the advice of the Bishop of Exeter, that I have at last written a letter of good will to Drance, the Wesleyan superintendent, assuring him that I never meant to include the Methodists in my animadversions on Dissenters—that I consider them allies and friends of the Established Church, and that it is my hearty wish to enter into bonds of closer union with them. I must confess it has against the grain to write this letter, for I never could understand how the Methodists are to be considered better friends of the Establishment now - than they were at the first ; if they were pelted then, why should they. be praised now? if we hunted them down like vermin at first, why should we coax and flatter them now? if Lavington, Bishop of Exeter, wrote a most savage book against these

gone much

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creatures when they first left the egg-shell, why should Philpotts, Bishop of Exeter, seek in these days to take them under his wing? It seems to me nothing more nor less than an acknowledgment of weakness on our part, and, if they are but half as shrewd as I take them to be, they must perceive it. But Birch

says,

if we can gain them over to our side, or persuade them to keep a strict neutrality, it does not matter what they may say or think on the business—the wisest maxim with politicians is “ divide et impera.” So I have written the letter, and am waiting an answer.

We are to have a meeting next week for a Church-rate. We shall carry it by a small majority, and we cannot get on without it: the roof of the church, and the organ, are sadly out of repair, and many things must be done in various parts of the edifice if we wish the fabric to hold together.

My next will give you a further account of our proceedings.

&c. &c. &c.

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LETTER XXXI.

FROM ELISHA DRANCE, Wesleyan Superin

tendent, to the Reverend RABSHAKEH GA

THERCOAL.

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REVEREND Sir,

I HAVE duly received your letter, and, if I have not answered it sooner, you must attribute the delay to the difficulty I have felt in making a proper reply. I had not expected the honour of any communication from the Vicar of Tuddington, by whose published sermon the Wesleyan Methodists are necessarily included in the company of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram : for, as we have manifestly declined Episcopal jurisdiction; as we have our own form of Church government, and have made such arrangements, that as our people are virtually lost to the Established Church, it is clear we can put in no claim to exception from the ban of excommunication pronounced against Non-conformists by the Vicar of Tuddington and the Letters of L. S. E.

To prevent the continuance of this correspondence, I am anxious, Sir; to make you understand, in the clearest manner possible, that there is not the slightest hope of your bringing back the Wes

leyan Methodists to the Church of England. We understand our interests too well ever to hearken to such a scheme; and we are fully aware that the proposal originates in the alarm of your Bishops and their adherents, who, finding the Dissenters too strong for them, and taking alarm at the spirit of the age, have, in the hour of danger, bethought themselves of sending down to us for assistance, which we certainly must decline affording them. All that we can promise your party is, that we do not intend, as a body, to take any

part in the separation of Church and State ; the Conference is determined to keep aloof from that question, and that for various reasons : 1. Our aid is not wanted in accelerating the spirit of the times ; the activity of the Dissenters, and the unpopularity of the Clergy, render our exertions unnecessary. 2. We wish before all things to keep in view the interests of Wesleyan Methodism, which is best done by steering clear of all political movements. 3. We expect, in due time, to take that position in the kingdom which the Church of England now occupies, (saving the union of Church and State) and the prospect of such an event warns us of the impolicy of joining your party. 4. We believe the Church of England to be so much opposed to the popular liberty, and so adverse to all reform, that we fear it may ultimately be destroyed with great violence, in which case, if we were to unite our in

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