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of Judge Story, this particular Association had its highest claim to favor, not as a powerful means of diffusing a certain set of religious opinions, but as an instrument for maintaining the rights of conscience, freedom of inquiry, and the common principles of Protestantism.
Upon a call from the Secretary, the meeting was also addressed by Mr Saltonstall of Salem, who represented the necessity and advantages of association, cooperation and sympathy among Unitarians above all others; by Dr. Nichols of Portland, who made an eloquent appeal, in behalf of Christianity in India, where she had been misrepresented, and whence she called upon us to redeem her character; and by Rev. Mr Colman of Salem, who thought this Association would be a powerful check upon the increase of infidelity, a barrier against the encroachments of spiritual tyranny, and a means of paralyzing the efforts of persecution.
T he resolutions were unanimously adopted, and a vote of thanks passed to the Executive Committee, which, in behalf of that committee, were reciprocated by the Secretary, Rev. Mr Gannett, and the meeting adjourned till the next day for the choice of officers. At the adjourned meeting, the officers of the last year were re-elected, and the number of Vice Presidents completed. *
Unitarian Christianity in India. On Sunday evening the 7th of May, a meeting of persons interested in this subject was held at the Vestry in Berry Street. It was addressed by several gentlemen, and the remarks and statements of one of them, Dr Tuckerman, the Secretary of the Society for Obtaining Information respecting the State of Religion in India, have since been published in the Christian Register for May 13. We wish we had room and time to lay an abstract of them before our readers. On motion of Dr Tuckerman, however, it was unanimously resolved that, ' It is expedient, that means should now be devised by us, and, as soon as may be, carried into execution, for the advancement of Christianity in India.' The same gentleman made inquiry whether 'the scheme'* which is proposed by the Unitarian Committee of Calcutta, be the best that can be adopted for this purpose; or, shall other means be devised by us for the accomplishment of this object?' A Committee was appointed to take this question into consideration and report on the 14th inst. at the Pantheon Hall, where all Unitarians interested in the subject were invited to attend.
The adjourned meeting was a full one. Prayers were offered by Rev. Dr Ware of Cambridge, and the Committee just men
* See the last Number of the Christian Examiner, p. 16.
tioned, reported ' that upon examination of this ' scheme,' it appears to them that a more simple plan, as far at least as our agency is required for the attainment of this object, will be more readily received among us, and more easily executed ;' * * * and that in their belief, 'the amount required of American Unitarians, —that is, $7,500,—will more cheerfully be contributed as a gift than as a loan; and that a far more preferable mode of obtaining this amount will be, a widely extended subscription, which will allow all who are interested in the object, to contribute to it according to their ability, than one which will comprehend only the comparatively small number, who can, or may be disposed to give largely to the cause. It is thought also, that while we have entire confidence in the integrity, and the judgment of the gentlemen, who are proposed in the scheme, as ' trustees for the appropriation of donations, and of the subscriptions of shareholders,' greater general satisfaction will be felt, if the subscribers to the fund among ourselves shall have a voice in the question as to the manner in which their funds shall be invested and applied. On these grounds, your Committee would propose the following resolutions, viz.
'1. That funds be forthwith raised, by subscription, for the purpose of promoting Christianity in India.
'2. That a Committee be now appointed to obtain subscriptions for this fund, who shall be authorized to call a meeting of the subscribers, to determine upon the method of its investment and appropriation.'
An animated discussion ensued, which evinced the deep interest of the speakers and the assembly in the subject, the general respect and confidence felt in regard to Mr Adam and his associates, and a determination to take active measures for their aid. We would gladly publish the minutes of this discussion, which we have before us; but we must again regret our want of room. The resolutions were unanimously adopted and a committee, consisting of the several ministers, and one layman from each of the Unitarian societies of Boston, was appointed for carrying them into effect. They have not yet reported their,success.
Died in Boston, on the 17th of April last, Miss Harriet Otis, daughter of the late Alyne Otis, Esq.
The character of this lady is one, upon which all who knew any thing of ber will long delight to dwell. It is a character, which, even if roughly sketched, and exhibited in any of the attitudes in which it may be contemplated, we are persuaded will not be unwelcome to our readers; for there
waa n.ot a line in it, which every christian parent would not wish to see in the character of his daughter; nor one, which every young lady should not most earnestly desire may also be in her own.
We are aware, indeed, and would not forget while we are indulging this recollection of one whom we have greatly loved, that no one thought less of notoriety than she did; and that no one would more instinctively have shrunk back from the gaze of public observation. But without offence to the living or the dead, we may devote a page or two of our work to a record of her great worth; both that we may ourselves occasionally turn our eye to it, as we would to the profile of one who has been much endeared to us, and who has gone, and that others who may chance to glance at it, may perceive what they ought to be, and what they may be, as disciples of Jesus.
There was in the character of this lady, a very rare combination of the qualities, which, even where they are singly possessed, are most admired and valued. She was in the first class of her sex among us, in all that constitutes mental superiority. Her mind was disciplined to the habit of patient thinking, and she reasoned clearly, calmly, and strongly, on the subjects which engaged her attention. And her imagination, as free from excess and extravagance as this faculty can well be in any one, imparted even to her ordinary conversation, a charm, which the dullest could scarcely fail to feel and acknowledge. But she had also such simplicity, and singleness of feeling and of purpose, such unvaried sweetness of temper, such sensibility to all that concerned the joys and sorrows of those around her, and such untired readiness for every office of affection, that even little children, when first introduced to her, seemed almost immediately to feel that they had found a friend. Hers was indeed a character, at once of such vivacity, of such benevolence, and of such perfect truth, that every one, in intercourse with her, felt the security of perfect confidence, and obtained an excitement as nearly allied to virtue, as it was to happiness. Fitted, however, as she waa by her natural talents, and by her acquirements, to adorn any station, she yet preferred the walks of the most modest and unobtrusive usefulness; and, with an energy that retreated from no difficulty, and a zeal that was as calm as it was active, she sought and found her highest indulgences, in promoting the improvement and comfort of the destitute and wretched. The elements of her character were in truth the peculiar principles of christianity. She lived, as it seemed to those who knew her best, for all to whom she might be instrumental of imparting any good. But it was her delight,
'To seek out misery in its bashful paths, And do her utmost every wound to heal.' It was impossible, therefore, that she should not have been widely known, and strange indeed would it have been, if she had not also been widely loved amongst us. Yet so unostentatious and noiseless was her course, that the extent to which her influence was felt, was realized only by the sensation that was occasioned by her death. And what a sensation was that which followed her death! We fear not contradiction when we say, that at least for some years past, the death of no unmarried lady in our city has caused so general a sorrow, as was felt and expressed at the death of Miss Otis.
But the secret of that charm, which drew to her the hearts of all around her, was in excellences far higher than those either of intellect, or of fancy. There was in her a living principle of christian piety and of all christian duty, which seemed to have extended a controlling power over every faculty of her soul, and every action of her life. In her religious character, there was indeed nothing of parade; and yet she seemed never to have forgotten, that she had taken on herself the obligations of a christian. Her piety was manifested, as occasions offered every day and hour for its manifestation, in the thousand and nameless circumstances, which are constantly affecting temper, conversation, and conduct; and they who knew her best, and have seen her in the greatest change and variety of circumstances, by which character is developed and proved, will pause in doubt upon the question, by which of the characteristics of a christian she was most distinguished. As a daughter, a sister, a friend, and a companion of equals, she was all that could be desired in woman. But it was to religion, as a vital principle in her heart, that wo are to ascribe her ceaseless activity, the uniform and beautiful cheerfulness of her mind, her readiness for every service in which she might minister to the gratification or to the good of others, and her apparent utter freedom from every selfish interest and feeling. Yes, Miss Otis was, most emphatically, a christian; and the general sorrow which was felt, and expressed at her death, was a tribute paid less to an individual, than to our religion. To a remarkable extent, as we think, the purposes of christianity were accomplished in her. And yet, in truth, it effected nothing in her, which it will not also effect in every one, who is faithful to its principles and objects.
Miss Otis went but occasionally into the circles of fashion. She had neither leisure for this dissipation of time, nor had she a taste for pleasures, which are not to be obtained but at an expense of those spirits, which are demanded for the infinitely higher interests of life. But she could be in the fashionable world, and yet not of that world. She had deliberately chosen for herself a sphere of action, a course of duties, with which frequent fashionable intercourse would have been utterly incompatible. She had marked out, as her great objects, self-improvement, the greatest possible comfort of a revered mother and a beloved sister, the best contributions she could make to the happiness of the greatly endeared friends, with whom providence had immediately connected her, and the relief, as widely as it could be extended by her efforts, of the wants and sufferings of the poor. These were the objects of her daily cares and daily interests, and these were the sources of her daily pleasures. Her agency in the House of Industry will not be forgotten, while that institution shall exist; and long will she be considered there, as a model of what a manager of such an institution should be. And the Female Asylum feels in her loss, not only that of a Treasurer, who was deserving of entire confidence, but of a friend whose heart was in the cause of serving, and of blessing the orphan. In proportion as there are moral elements in a community, the influence of such a character will be felt in it. May all who knew, and loved her, be prompted by her example to go and do likewise!
The death of Miss Otis was most affectingly sudden. In the full vigor of her faculties, and in the hour of her greatest usefulness and enjoyment, she was attacked by the disease, which, in a very few days, brought her to the tomb. But, with her, as we doubt not, it is well. May God bring home to us, whom she has left to mourn, the lesson, Be ye also ready! Sweet, modest, unassuming, and most exemplary woman, we bless God that we have known thee, nor is there a virtue which we have seen in thee, nor a principle of piety by which we have known thee to be actuated, in which we do not now rejoice, as a pledge of thine exaltation and happiness! May God raise up many among us, who shall be like thee, for the unutterable joy of their parents; for the wider extension of the richest pleasures of friendship, for the best refinement of life, and for the accomplishment of his benevolent purposes towards the poor, the ignorant, and the wretched! And, where thou now art, with God, with Christ, and with holy spirits, may we also be, heirs in an inheritance, which will fill the measure of our desires, and be immortal!
Vol. III.] July and August, 1826. [No. IV.
THIRD LETTER ON MISSIONS AND UNITARIAN RESOURCES
TO THE EDITOR OF THE CHRISTIAN EXAMINER.
As I am told that some attention has been drawn toward the Letters on Missions, which were published in your two last numbers, and that a considerable difference of opinion is entertained with regard to their character and tendency, I take the liberty of troubling you with a few remarks in explanation of some statements and sentiments contained in them.
In the first place, it seems that the editors of a number of orthodox newspapers have done me the honor to make copious extracts from that part of my first letter, in which an account is given of Unitarian resources, and an enumeration attempted of Unitarian churches, in the United States. Of course, my thanks for this notice would have been warmer, if their intentions in bestowing it had been more kind. But still I thank them. They thought, no doubt, and indeed several of them said as much, that by presenting the meagre catalogue to their readers, the public would be satisfied, that Unitarianism was declining, that it was a poor, cold concern, that it was breathing its last gasps, and that its end was near. Sharpsighted men! They did not perceive, that, small as the number of Unitarian societies now is, or was represented to be, it was a year or two ago much smaller, and a year or two before smaller still, and must therefore have increased, by all the rules of common sense and simple arithmetic. They did not perceive, that they
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