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53

CHAPTER IV.
ANN GRIFFITHS.

As the song of Moses was seconded by the song of Miriam, so the song of Williams, Pantycelyn, and his contemporaries was seconded by a young prophetess of Christ.

This is ANN GRIFFITHS, a farmer's daughter, born in the year 1776, at Dolwar, near Llanfyllin, in the county of Montgomery. As a young woman, she was full of gay spirits, and used to speak very flippantly of the deepened religious earnestness of the age. She used to point to tha crowds of people which journeyed from all parts, of the country to the Association at Bala, and say--'See the pilgrims going to Mecca.' She was extremely fond of dance and merry song and rustic gaiety.

She had gone to attend one of these merrymaking festivals at Llanfyllin, when she was induced by an old servant of her father's to enter the Independent chapel. She did so without any afterthought whatever. But, like David Jones, of Cayo, she found a message waiting for her there. She did not stay for the festival, but went home 54 forthwith in a storm of troubled thought and dark questionings. She went to her parish clergyman: he met her heart-breaking distress with light jokes and most untimely jests. Taking hold of her hand, he said--'Let me see, Ann, if the veins of vanity have all gone out of thy hand.' She went away more distracted than ever. Her brother was already one of 'the pilgrims of Mecca.' She went with him to the chapel he frequented, and the message of dawning hope came to her there. An affinity of religious feelings led her soon afterwards to join the society, and she became a strong and shining influence in the quiet valleys around her home.

But she was only permitted to keep the lamp burning during the hours of a brief watch for her Lord. She died when twenty-nine years of age, after a married life of about ten months, and having led a Christian life of about eight years. And yet in another sense the lamp was never put out at all: for hymns and letters, unsurpassed for spiritual fervour, keep that brief life burning with quenchless light.

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