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Page 24 - 27, Obituaries.
Peter Spargo, Wendron, Falmouth Circuit.
Abraham Stephens, Coldnorthcott, parish of St. Cleather, Week St. Mary Circuit.
Henry Williams, Brea, Falmouth Circuit. [Cornwall]


1. Died March 26th, 1839, at Carnkie, in the parish of Wendron, in the Falmouth Circuit, Peter SPARGO, aged 49, after a long and painful affliction of about one year and nine months, leaving a wife and four children to lament his loss. He was brought to the Lord among the Methodists, and continued a consistent member with them for about fifteen or sixteen years. About this time our preachers visited Carnkie, and Friend SPARGO attended to hear, and felt greatly blessed under the word. He saw that we needed help, and finding that we held the same doctrines as he did, and believing it to be the will of God that he should do so, he cast in his lot with us as a people, and became a leader of a class at Carnkie, which office he faithfully filled for eight years. His house was a home for the preachers, free of any expense, for about eleven years. He was greatly respected by those who knew him. As a Christian, "he was a burning and shining light" an "Israelite indeed." He took an active part in building Bethesda Chapel, both as it respects money and labour; and as a Superintendent of the Sunday School, he was much respected, and his removal by death is greatly lamented. He was a kind father, a tender husband, and a good neighbour; beloved in life, lamented in death. As a visitor of the sick, he was very useful, until it pleased the lord to afflict him with a lingering decline. He was confined to his bed eleven weeks, and on the day he took to his bed, the Lord sanctified him body, soul and spirit. He was so abundantly filled with the Spirit, that notwithstanding his extreme weakness, he leaped and shouted aloud for joy, saying, "I have now obtained the blessing I have so long sought for; and now I have nothing to do but die, and go to glory."
During his illness, he was visited by both preachers and people, and all were satisfied with his state. He was every moment filled with "peace and joy through believing" in Jesus. His chamber was indeed a little Bethel. He spent most of his time in singing, and exhorting those around him to give their hearts to God. Glory was his theme constantly, while he continued to breathe; and just before he died, he said he saw angels, and heard melodious singing; adding, "they are come to take me home." He then took farewell of those around him, and ceased to live on earth, to live with God in heaven. The Chapel not being large enough to contain the people who attended to hear the funeral sermon on occasion of his death, I stood near the coffin which was placed at the Chapel door, and preached to a very large and attentive congregation in the open air. W. BAILEY

2. Died, August, 1839, at Coldnorthcott, in the parish of St. Cleather, in the Week St. Mary Circuit, Faithful Abraham STEPHENS. He was not so grossly immoral as many are in his youthful days; but like all the sons of fallen Adam, he needed a divine change, although at that time he was not aware of it. A few months after he was married, he was afflicted in his eyes, and in two years after, in spite of the medical assistance he procured, he became totally blind. It was not till after he had lost the sight of his eyes, that his mind became enlightened. He was particularly wrought upon a sermon preached by J. PARKYN, at Threehammers, and his distress of mind on account of his sins was so deep and distressing, that he could not rest until God spoke peace to his soul, which inestimable blessing he obtained the same night. Coldnorthcott had been a very dark neighbourhood previous to this time, as to spiritual things; but now light sprung up: and from that time it has gradually increased, and particularly so since the death of Brother STEPHENS.

After he found the Lord to his soul's satisfaction, he was very anxious that his neighbours should find him also; and felt it to be his duty to visit, talk to, and to pray with and for them; and it was not all in vain. A Prayer-meeting was commenced here, by our friends, SPETTIGUE, and BRIDGMAN from Warbstow, and after the ark had been removed from place to place, it rested in the house of the deceased, where it remained till he was called to his reward. His widow still regards it as a great blessing, to have the gospel preached under her roof. After preaching was established, a society of eight persons were united in church fellowship, and our departed friend was one of them; and having tasted that the Lord was gracious, he felt a love to his ministering servants, and was ready to make any sacrifice that was in his power to assist them in their work. Being unwilling to be idle in the Lord's vineyard, and being persuaded that he had something for him to do, he soon began publicly to exhort his fellow-creatures to repent and be converted; and it was thought proper to admit his name on the Preachers' plan. A person in the neighbourhood accompanied him as a guide; and if there was no person to give out the hymns, he supplied that deficiency by reciting such as he could remember. He did not feel that degree of fear and timidity which is often felt by young speakers; perhaps this was partly owing to his being blind. On one occasion he was appointed at Burrowgate, Warbstow, about three miles from his home, and he could get no person to go with him; being unwilling that the people should be disappointed, he started off alone. The road being across a large open Down or Common, he lost his way for some time, but fortunately he reached the place in time and held the meeting. He was generally favoured with a larger congregation than some others of his brethren; perhaps through its being rather singular to hear a blind man preach. He was very partial to the people among who he was brought to the knowledge of the truth; and although that party united with us in the year 1835, and the little society at Coldnorthcott also, yet when there was an attempt made by some dissatisfied persons to draw away the unwary by improper means, which effected a division in some places, the deceased was disposed to unite with them. One of the local brethren went personally, and talked seriously and affectionately to him, on the subject of separating from us. Soon after he was afflicted, and those dissatisfied persons not succeeding as they wished, gave up the contest, and the church has enjoyed rest from that time. During his severe affliction and poverty, (for he was supported by the parish and the union from the commencement of his blindness,) he manifested nothing unbecoming the christian character. He was ill for eight months, and enjoyed much of the divine presence, and seemed confident that the Lord would remember his wife and children after he was gone. He often laboured to encourage his weeping partner, and felt that to die was gain. It may be said of him, that he died in the triumph of Faith. He has left a widow and five daughters to encounter the storms of this evil world. May the Lord be their friend here and hereafter. Amen.

His death was improved by Brother J. BARNDEN to a large congregation. Since his death a blessed change has taken place in many of his neighbours, the society has been considerably enlarged, and the preaching house has been found to be too small to contain the people comfortably. A little chapel there would be very serviceable, but as the friends are mostly poor, it is not at present very likely that one will be erected. May the Lord ride on "conquering and to conquer," Amen.

A. MORRIS

3. Died, February 24th, 1840, at Brea, in the Falmouth Circuit, Henry WILLIAMS, aged 23. His parents were honest and industrious. When he was about five years of age, he was taken to our Sunday School at Brea Chapel, where he very soon learned to read, and was remarkable for his constant attendance at School. He also became very moral in his conduct, and would never attempt to retire to rest, after he became a Sunday Scholar, without prayer. After continuing some years as a Scholar, he became a teacher in the same school, and was very active and diligent in that capacity.

When about 21 years of age, he left his native land for America, where he continued about twelve months, and then returned to Brea, and cheerfully resumed his former engagements in the School, in which he was much beloved, both by teachers and scholars.

In the beginning of March, 1839, a gracious revival of religion took place in Brea; many souls were converted to God, and among the number, Henry WILLIAMS became deeply affected. Brother William BENNETTS observed him in great distress of mind, and with some more to the friends united in fervent prayer in his behalf. He was led from the bitterness of his soul to cry aloud for mercy, and that night the Lord set his soul at liberty. He joined our Society at Brea, became an ornament to his profession, and bid fair to become very useful in this place. He soon became a useful prayer-leader, and enjoyed much of the presence of God. About a fortnight after he received the witness pardon, he was enabled to testify that God for Christ's sake had cleansed him form all sin, and he continued to enjoy the blessing of sanctification all through the remaining part of his short pilgrimage on earth. It might be said of him, "Behold and Israelite indeed; in whom there is no guile."

The Lord whose ways are past finding out, saw fit to afflict him with a slow, intermitting fever, which terminated in a decline. His language was "Not my will; but thine, O Lord! be don." It was manifest to all around him, that his soul was ripening for glory. He was very frequently visited by his leader and class-mates, who testify that they always found him rejoicing in God his Saviour. He frequently exclaimed, "Oh! what a Captain I have chose." A day or two before he died, an imposthume burst in his chest; he called his father and brother to him, and earnestly intreated them to met him in heaven. He often repeated the following lines, which were expressive of his state;-

"How happy believers who die,

In possession of Jesus's love."

And when he could at all clear his mouth from the blood, his language was "Glory, glory, glory." About half an hour before he died, he shouted, "Victory, victory! glory, glory," so loud, that he might be heard at considerable distance. The last words he was heard to say were "Victory, victory!" Thus died Henry WILLIAMS, one of our Sunday Scholars. He was in Brea Sunday School as a scholar and teacher about sixteen years.

E. BAILEY


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