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Wesley Goes North

1779. Monday, March 15.--I began my tour through England and Scotland; the lovely weather continuing, such as the oldest man alive has not seen before, for January, February, and half of March. In the evening I preached at Stroud; the next morning at Cloucester, designing to preach in Stanley at two, and at Tewkesbury in the evening. But the minister of Gratton (near Stanley) sending me word that I was welcome to the use of his church, I ordered notice to be given that the service would begin there at six o'clock. Stanley Chapel was thoroughly filled at two. It is eighteen years since I was there before; many of those whom I saw here then were now grey-headed, and many were gone to Abraham's bosom. May we follow them as they did Christ!

Thursday, 25.—I preached in the new house which Mr. Fletcher has built in Madeley Wood. The people here exactly resemble those at Kingswood, only they are more simple and teachable. But for want of discipline, the immense pains which he has taken with them has not done the good which might have been expected.

I preached at Shrewsbury in the evening and on Friday, 26, about noon, in the assembly room at Broseley. It was well we were in the shade, for the sun shone as hot as it usually does at midsummer. We walked from thence to Coalbrook Dale and took a view of the bridge which is shortly to be thrown over the Severn. It is one arch, a hundred feet broad, fifty-two high, and eighteen wide; all of cast-iron, weighing many hundred tons. I doubt whether the Colossus at Rhodes weighed much more.

Thursday, April 15.--l went to Halifax, where a little thing had lately occasioned great disturbance. An angel blowing a trumpet was placed on the sounding-board over the pulpit. Many were vehemently against this, others as vehemently for it; but a total end was soon put to the contest, for the angel vanished away. The congregations, morning and evening, were very large; and the work of God seems to increase in depth as well as extent.

Sunday, May 2.--Dr. Kershaw, the vicar of Leeds, desired me to assist him at the sacrament. It was a solemn season. We were ten clergymen and seven or eight hundred communicants. Mr. Atkinson desired me to preach in the afternoon. Such a congregation had been seldom seen there, but I preached to a much larger in our own house at five; and I found no want of strength.

Monday, June 28.--I preached in the new preaching-house, at Robin Hood's Bay and then went on to Scarborough. Tuesday, 29, I spent agreeably and profitably with my old friends; and on my way to Bridlington, Wednesday, 30, took a view of Flamborough Head. It is a huge rock, rising perpendicularly from the sea to an immense height and giving shelter to an innumerable multitude of sea fowl of various kinds. I preached in the evening at Bridlington, and afterward heard a very uncommon instance of paternal affection: A gentleman of the town had a favorite daughter, whom he set up in a milliner's shop. Sometime after she had a concern for her soul and believed it her duty to enter into the society. Upon this her good father forbade her his house, demanding all the money he had laid out; and requiring her instantly to sell all her goods in order to make the payment!

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