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languishing Minister. He saw and felt her kindness, which continued till the hour of his departure. As their dwellings among the living were closely connected, so now, in neighbouring graves, they rest in hope of a glorious resurrection.
The meeting of the class at Radcliffe had cost her so much feeling, that, up to her removal to London, she was not again pressed into that work. But she was induced to renew it at Walworth. From the smallest beginning her class became, in less than twelve months, Jarge and in every respect inportant. With few exceptions, the members were new to the church.
In October, 1845, she went from London to Bradford, to see a dying brother. She had been much concerned about his soul; but, before leaving London, she was informed that he had obtained the favour of God. On arriving at his house, she stopped at the door of his room to hear him utter the language of new-born confidence. It greatly affected her. She entered his room, and wept over his weakened frame; but scarcely knew whether joy or sorrow more drew forth her tears. He “ died in faith ;" and she found relief in repeating his dying testimony.--The very next month she was called to the funeral of another brother. This “sorrow upon sorrow” greatly afflicted her. At the funeral she had the first of a series of attacks, which ended in consumption. The evening of March 1st following she spent at Lambeth chapel, where her husband conducted public worship, and administered the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper. During the latter service, it was observed that her countenance lighted up, and her mind and heart were thoroughly engaged. On her way home she had another attack, from which she never fully rallied. Before the close of the week she appeared to be on the brink of eternity. The following Sabbath, prayer was offered on her behalf in the principal chapels of the Circuit; and the sympathy of the people was extraordinary. No worldly connexions could have yielded the comfort and assistance, in suffering circumstances, which on that occasion resulted from an endeared connexion with the people of God. The kindness of friends in the Lambeth Circuit made an indelible impression on the surviver's heart. By the blessing of God she was so far restored as to be able to attend a service of the Wesleyan Missionary Society early in May. The same week she went, by medical advice, to Ventnor; as it was hoped, to complete her recovery. There her husband left her with her friend Mrs. Carley, who with affectionate solicitude attended her through a long affliction. On his return at the end of the week, he found that she had suffered much sickness and exhaustion.
A removal to Ryde was advised. On leaving Ventnor she looked upon the sea, and said, “ Former visits to its broad waters have done me good; but the hand of the Lord is now laid heavily upon me. His wiLL BE DONE !” No improvement occurred at Ryde, and she returned to Camberwell much weaker than when she left her home. Shortly after, she had a visit from her father. That meeting of the Christian parent with a pious and only daughter in deep affliction was tender and affecting; but both parties had real confidence in the wisdom and goodness of God, and in His hand they were willing to leave the event. With members of her class she had also, about this time, most touching interviews. What a loss do they suffer, who, in affliction, have no Christian sympathy and communion !-Her strength so rapidly declined after the return from the Isle of Wight, that early in June her medical attendant thought a few days would finish her course. It was resolved, however, to try the air of Norwood. With difficulty she was removed thither; and such was the effect of the change, that, at the end of a month, she was able to travel to Yorkshire, for the benefit of her native air. This favourable turn gave the impression that a suitable country-station would be among the means of prolonging her life; and her husband consulted her as to leaving London at the Conference then approaching. She ventured to hope that she might return to Camberwell, and was unwilling to withdraw her husband from a sphere of usefulness. “God has rendered me serviceable,” she meekly added, “to some precious people in that place. They are entwined round my heart. I cannot give them up at present.”
Little remained to her, however, in this world, but to suffer the will of God. This she did with exemplary patience and fortitude. In extreme feebleness she maintained a cheerful and grateful spirit. In paroxysms of suffering she glorified God by unimpaired confidence and submission. When life appeared expiring, and her friends in tears surrounded her, she would suddenly break out in the language of her favourite Christian Psalmist :
“ Thankful I take the cup from Thee,
Prepared and mingled by Thy skill :
Powerful the wounded soul to heal.” Now and then, in the alternations of her flattering disease, there appeared a prospect of returning health. Each remnant of vigour was eagerly spent in the service of God.
When unable to walk any distance, she often, by means of a cab, made a religious call, or collected some Missionary subscription which other parties were less likely to secure. Her exertions to be present at public Sabbath worship often rendered her worse for days following. How earnestly and considerately she strove to appear better on the morning of the sacred day, that her husband might leave home in good spirits for his pulpit duty, he has only learned subsequently to her death.
On removing to Sheffield, she found in her new house and situation everything that could be desired ; and, for a time, she appeared to gain strength. But the insidious disease was constantly advancing. An attack of influenza was too much for her weakened frame. She had often rallied, indeed, from what appeared to be greater weakness; but her end was now nigh. Among her last expressions were the following:
“ The Lord will sustain me: He does sustain me.” “ Mine
eyes shall behold the Lamb.” “My Maker and my Friend !"
While her husband and two of his colleagues were praying for her in a room below, they were suddenly called to witness her departure. Her spirit immediately took its flight to the world “where the weary are at rest.” She died December 6th, 1847, aged forty-one years. She was interred at Eastbrook chapel, Bradford, where she had worshipped during a fourth of her married life. It will be readily allowed, that, among all who have been there numbered with the dead, there are few for whom the living had a larger amount of Christian admiration and affection.
The friends at Walworth requested that a funeral-sermon should be preached on the occasion in their chapel; and the Rev. Alfred Barrett, who had known her well, kindly undertook the service. “We had a gracious and very solemn season," writes Mr. Barrett. “Deep sympathy pervaded the crowded audience. Text, John xvii. 24. The account of the departed was listened to with breathless silence and tearful interest, and all seemed as though they had lost a common and endeared friend." In another communication the same Minister says : “When we think upon the distinctive features of the character of the departed, --her humility, disinterestedness, sweet retiring piety, and beautiful simplicity,--we feel that we too have suffered loss, and that the circle of our most interesting friendships is narrowing.” The reader may see in her life no points of brilliancy; but it was full of goodness. For the well-being of the community, the earth contains enough of intellect ; but it is perishing for want of that pure and self-denying concern for the welfare of others which filled her heart.
MEMOIR OF SAMUEL BERGER, JUN., ESQ.,
BY THE REV. WILLIAM ILLINGWORTH,
SAMUEL Berger was born at Stamford-Hill, in the county of Middlesex, in May, 1811, of highly-respected and wealthy parents. Up to the age of twenty-one, he lived according to the course of this world, and was a stranger to spiritual religion.
The death of a young cousin, with whom he had been intimately acquainted, was among the first means of arresting his mind, and leading him to think seriously of eternal things. Under the influence of reflections produced by this event, he resolved to live a new life; aware that the pursuit of earthly vanities would cause him to “mourn at the last,” and involve him in the pains of the second death. For some time he maintained his purpose of reformation ; but at length the power of various temptation impaired the influence of his serious impressions. But, indeed, (as one of his surviving friends well observes,) "he was not at this time the subject of godly sorrow for past transgressions. Like people in general, he had utterly inadequate views of the evil of sin, and of the greatness of the boon of pardon. He therefore indulged the false hope, that to forsake sin for the future would be a sufficient reason why God should pardon the past. As yet, he knew not the only way of salvation, by faith in the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ ; nor did he conceive the possibility, in this life, of knowing his sins forgiven." Shortly after, a dear and pious aunt was led, alike by affection and a conviction of duty, to speak pointedly and faithfully to him on the importance and blessedness of true religion, and on the necessity of yielding his heart to God in the days of youth, as the only means of obtaining true peace in this life, and endless felicity in the world to come. The Divine blessing attended this faithful appeal. After counting the cost, Mr. Berger resolved to make the surrender. He gave himself to God and to His people, and became a member of the Wesleyan Society. He was accustomed to refer to this occasion with great tenderness of spirit, and devout gratitude to God. His convictions of sin increased, as his perceptions of the spirituality, extent, and reasonableness of the Divine law became clearer and stronger. The holy Scriptures were now read with prayerful attention, and searched with trembling awe, in order to an acquaintance with the mind of God concerning him. By the teaching of the Holy Spirit, he clearly saw that “the commandment is holy, just, and good ;" while he felt himself a transgressor of its righteous precepts, and liable to its fearful penalty. He groaned under “the sentence of condemnation within him," and painfully discovered that there was no hope of deliverance for him in the law; that it could not, either in whole or in part, bring redemption to bis soul, or adjudge eternal life to any transgressor. He was now led anxiously to consider the provisions of infinite mercy, as revealed in the Gospel of Christ, for the recovery of a lost world to the favour and image of God. There he saw that, “what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
The doctrine of the forgiveness of sins, through faith in the atoning death of the incarnate God, he found to be not a lofty speculation, which men may admire, without adopting ; but truth of everlasting moment,--truth essential to happiness, and indispensable to the release of a sinner from obligation to punishment. He deeply felt his need of Divine mercy, and earnestly sought it. Burdened and heavy-laden, he went from place to place seeking rest; sowing in tears the precious seed, which he afterwards reaped with abundant joy.
After the lapse of several weeks, He who brought deliverance to Hagar weeping in the wilderness, mercifully manifested Himself to Mr. Berger, as the God of pardoning love. “The spirit of bondage unto fear” was exchanged for “the Spirit of adoption," bearing witness with his spirit that he was a child of God. He now rejoiced in the removal of his guilt, and in that renewal of his nature wbich accompanied the Divine persuasion of his acceptance in the Beloved. The mighty change, thus wrought, proved itself of Divine origin : it was altogether distinguished from everything indefinite and transient. “The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, kept his heart and mind through Christ Jesus ;” and, from the commencement to the close of his Christian course, he gave ample evidence of “ life" which was “hid with Christ in God.”
He inherited from nature qualities which, in circumstances favourable to their development, would not have allowed him to pass through life unnoticed and inefficient. But it is with his moral characteristics and religious experience that we are now chiefly concerned. He had a clear understanding of great religious truths. His views of the character of God were scriptural. The Divine perfections formed a principal subject of his frequent and devout meditation ; for he believed that “this is life eternal,” to “know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent." His mind always appeared to be deeply impressed with the holiness of God, as manifested in the doctrines and precepts of His word, indicated in the events of His providence, and illustrated in the obedience and sufferings of Christ, and the work of the Holy Spirit upon the heart. These contemplations prompted his desires, and encouraged his hopes, while he earnestly sought to be pure in heart, as He is pure. His conceptions of the Divine justice, wisdom, and mercy, were equally clear and exalted. On the other hand, his views of the depravity of the human heart were truly scriptural, and his acquaintance with its “ deceitfulness” was extensive. He adored the Holy Spirit as the Source of all spiritual light and life, purity and comfort ; and Christ, as the only foundation of a sinner's hope. His sentiments on the duties and obligations of Christians to God, to the church, and to society, were correspondingly accurate. He regarded Jesus as his pattern ; and, while he rested exclusively upon the atonement, once offered, for his justification with God, it was his daily prayer and endeavour to obey his Redeemer's will in all things, and to follow His bright example.
A striking trait in the character of Mr. Berger was spirituality of mind. Being “risen with Christ,” he sought "those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.” He “set” his “affections on things above, not on things on the earth.” His experience exemplified the sacred maxim, that “to be spirituallyminded is life and peace.” His heart seemed to be continually “inditing a good matter;" and out of its abundance his mouth spake. All this was sustained by his devotional habits. Three portions of each day were sacred to the reading of the holy Scriptures, meditation, and prayer; and from these holy and refreshing exercises he derived that energy which enabled him to discharge, with diligence, efficiency, and zeal, the secular and the more public duties of his life.
Mr. Berger was equally remarkable for his humility. His whole spirit and deportment proved that he had learned of Him who was “meek and lowly in heart ;” and it was easy to perceive that his humbleness of mind partook, in no ordinary degree, of a spiritual character, and asserted a heavenly origin. He was sometimes so