"Onward from fire to fire, as from hearth to hearth in his parish
Wandered the faithful priest, consoling and blessing and cheering,
Like unto shipwrecked Paul on Melita's desolate sea-shore."
THE year 1849 was destined to be devoted to almost unceasing locomotion.
The early portion was spent in Bermuda, and on Easter Tuesday the bishop delivered his Charge to the few clergy of the island; the document affords abundant evidence of its having been composed, for the benefit of so small an audience, with as much care as if it had been addressed to the clergy of the most important diocese in the world. The bishop was able throughout to congratulate the Bermudians on substantial progress, on larger confirmations, on improved churches, on the introduction, and in one case the restoration of a font of stone instead of unseemly basons, and on a growth in spiritual religion corresponding with these visible and material tokens of vigour. In one parish, indeed, a movement had occurred in the opposite direction. Some fanatic had removed from the altar-cloth a monogram surmounted by a cross which had been embroidered on its frontal: the bishop ruled that it was en act of trespass, but the offender is dealt with most tenderly through many pages of the Charge; patent and notorious as the offence was, the bishop gave no judgment, until he had conferred with the Bishops of London and Nova Scotia, and the Attorney-General of the Island, and although his judgment when pronounced was received with contemptuous defiance, he had no sterner words for his opponents than the following:--
"Something also might be said for him, to whom, however unworthy, is committed the oversight of the Church in this colony, and who may be supposed to know what are innovations, and to be ready to prevent them; and who would not be judged, without trial, unmindful of his duty or unwilling to perform it."
The bishop reached S. John's in May, not without great and unexpected danger from ice; and on June 28, after a farewell service and celebration of the Holy Communion, at which all the clergy and some twenty-six other persons--"whom God bless and preserve for their love and duty to me their unworthy shepherd," wrote the bishop--were present, the Hawk set forth on her way, not to return, as events proved, for sixteen weeks, during which time the whole of the island of Newfoundland was circumnavigated, and much of the Labrador shore was visited. On board were two young deacons, one of whom was to be the first resident clergyman on the Labrador: the bishop was conscious of the injustice both to the shepherds and the shepherded, of placing such young men in positions of so much trial, but these were the only persons who had offered. All the passengers suffered at the beginning of the voyage, so the bishop with his own hands made up their berths: the morrow, S. Peter's Day, found them still suffering, but the bishop said the service and preached, the sick men making their responses from their berths.
On reaching Sandy Point, on the anniversary of her visit four years before, the Church ship was brought up alongside the flag-ship of Lord Dundonald the Admiral of the station. His lordship visited the Hawk, to the great delight of the bishop, who made in his log the following entry:--
"This is the first visit ever paid by an admiral to Sandy Point. The juxtaposition of a seventy-four flagship, with an admiral, and that admiral Lord Dundonald, on board, and a tiny schooner, with a Missionary Bishop engaged in a Visitation, might afford matter for reflection."
The admiral seems to have been as much pleased as the bishop, and presented the Church ship with a new flag bearing the arms of the See.
The more remote the locality the more startling seems the infrequent news which reaches one: in the previous year on the most distant point of the Labrador Visitation, a chance ship had brought the tidings of the Revolution in Paris; now a small schooner came into Sandy Bay with English papers, whose contents led the bishop to write:---
"The Gauls, it seems, have again entered Rome; but upon what pretext, or what errand, they would be more puzzled than Brennus himself to declare. O! where are, the Scipios and Cincinnati? Truly she that had borne seven is waxed feeble. Wretched place, more wretched people! Unhappy Garibaldi, more unhappy Oudinot, most unhappy Pio Nono! Surely this, if not the last, must be the worst page of poor Rome."
No distance ever destroyed the freshness of the bishop's sympathy with the events either of the world or of the Church: doubtless too the interest with which he diligently read each work of importance as it came out was a counterpoise to the monotony of life amid frosts and fogs.
The Bay of Islands, which had been neglected, in the previous year, was now carefully visited. On Aug. 2 the bishop rowed nine miles in the ship's boat to visit an old patriarch, ninety years of age, whose bodily strength was nearly gone, though his mind was clear. He welcomed his visitors, and spoke with pleasure of Archdeacon Wix, whose visit more than twelve years before he still remembered. Very touching is the bishop's account of his interview:--
"I examined the poor old man as to his life, and heard him repeat the Lord's Prayer. He kissed my hand, and the hands of the other clergymen, at our departure. This is, I believe, the second time only in nearly seventy years that he has seen a clergyman, and in all probability this is the last time he will ever behold one. What will his Nunc dimittis be? I left him with feelings of sorrow and shame that I could do so little for his comfort or instruction."
Dreary work as such a Visitation must have been, the cordial welcome of the simple but ignorant people was very refreshing, and the harder the pastoral work the greater the happiness of the pastors. "This has been a holy day, if not in every sense a sabbath," was the memorandum made on a certain Sunday evening. "Two services on shore and two at sea on the same Sunday seldom fall to the lot of a bishop or any clergyman in these days, and I desire to be duly and truly thankful for such a privilege."
Much irregularity of life was of course brought to light as the bishop inquired into the habits of the people. One group of ne'er-do-weels came from a parish in Dorsetshire, and straightway the bishop's memory went back to the days of his inspectorship. He traces their present evil lives to the defective teaching of their youth. "Well do I remember examining, as inspector, the school in that parish and Mr. W------interposing to assure the children that they were not children of God except they were converted! Here was Puritanism and its fruit!"
Forteau, the future residence of the young deacon, was reached on August 8, six weeks from S. John's; the Labrador coast was now carefully and diligently visited, harbour by harbour. The bishop went to Blanc Sablon, and here he said, "I saw for the first time the end, or one end, of my diocese. Here the government of Newfoundland is divided from that of Canada by a small stream, and that stream is the Rubicon, which I may not, and happily have no temptation to pass. Brother Montreal has no reason to fear that I shall be forward to thrust my sickle into his harvest, or, to 'boast in another man's line, of things,' &c."
On August 17, the wind being fair, the time had come for the Rev. A. Gifford to be left at Forteau with the certainty of hearing nothing of the outer world for nine or ten months. The bishop's account of the parting is too full of tender sympathy to be omitted, but the reader will observe how, both here and on other occasions, while prone to give the utmost meed of praise to every generous deed, he seems to be entirely unconscious of the fact that the real leader in all these works was none other than himself:--
"Here Mr. Gifford was to be put on shore to commence alone and unfriended his ministerial and missionary work. It was no common event, no common trial to be left alone, among utter strangers, common fishermen, without house or home, on the coast of Labrador, and no probability of retreat or escape, no prospect of seeing a friend or even hearing by letter from one for nearly a year--what a contrast, in every point and circumstance to my 'first Curacy!' During our stay we had prevailed with a fisherman to put a board of partition across his sleeping-room and assign one moiety to Mr. Gifford, the other half being kept for himself and wife. The meals would be taken together in the little kitchen, a common apartment, and of course could consist only of fish and other Labrador fare; for my friend had nothing whatever but so much personal clothes as could be conveyed in a carpet bag, with his ministerial habit. The change even from the accommodation of the Church ship was enough to have made many not over-refined or delicate draw back, but the loss of society and companionship, of help and advice, in such new and delicate circumstances, and for so long a period, was, I believe, much more terrible. Nobly however did he endure the trial and mercifully was he supported.
On Friday, August 17, he was rowed off by two hands with his bundle, and so set on shore, and there stood alone, watching while the good Church ship got under way, and, I believe, till she was fairly out of sight. You will perhaps think that I have dwelt too long and minutely upon an event of such little interest as is the lauding of a clergyman in his mission, or, as the sailors roughly phrased it, 'shoving the gentleman on shore;' and I cannot expect others to view it with my feelings--but the place, the people, the purpose, the prospect, and all the other circumstances of the first missionary's visit to the Labrador, if duly weighed, do surely show signs of Christian daring and devotion not to be mistaken, not to be despised."
At S. Francis Harbour his hosts of the preceding year, Mr. and Mrs. Saunders, cordially welcomed the bishop, the latter none the less cheerful for having passed a winter in the tiny tilt which the bishop had seen on his first visit. Both parents were gratified that their infant, the first child of an English lady born on the Labrador, should be baptized by episcopal hands. Two Esquimaux boys were made Christians at the same time, and plans were adopted for the erection of a wooden church which should be a model of its kind: altogether in this unpromising spot things were especially promising, and the grateful bishop entered in his diary:--
"God be praised for the blessings of this day! they were sufficient recompense not merely for a journey extended from Battle Harbour to this place, but for an entire and separate voyage from Newfoundland. So deems a bishop refreshed in spirit."
August was now nearly over, and the bishop was longing to be back in S. John's where his presence was much needed; the dangers of the preceding September were in his memory, as was the advice of Hesiod which he wished to follow but could not:--
Speudein d' otti tacista palin oikonde neestqai
Mhde menein onion tw neon kai opwrinon ombron
Dh tote pantoiwn anemwn quousin ahtai
for the whole of the eastern shore had to be visited harbour by harbour; and it was not until October 16 that the last tack was made, and friends came on board and greetings were exchanged. The bishop's log fitly ends with the following passage:--
"The whole party joined us in prayer and thanksgiving, and then partook of our ship's breakfast, which was in good keeping, having neither soft bread, nor milk, nor fresh butter,--nothing but tea and sugar, pork, biscuit, and salt butter; but I trow none complained or thought of the viands--we were satisfied for the nonce with each other's company and discourse. Soon after nine o'clock, we went on shore straight to S. Thomas' Church, where, with my companions, I returned humble and hearty thanks for our safe return. My greetings to the children of the schools were conveyed in the way of a holiday--and, altogether, it seemed a day of rejoicing and praise. Thus ends my fourth missionary trip, in the Church ship, of sixteen weeks, save two days. Praise be to God! "
The cost of this year's voyage was very nearly 400l., for which the bishop alone was responsible; nothing was spent in luxury, and the mention made above of the provisions kept on board is only one of the many scattered up and down the several journals of the bishop's Visitations, which incidentally bring to light the hardships which these Visitations involved. The usual Newfoundland fare of tea and biscuit is frequently mentioned as the ordinary hospitality extended to visitors; in one journal there occurs the following passage:--"We sent some flour to be baked by one of the fishermen's wives, which is our usual mode of obtaining occasional supplies of soft bread. We have been more than a week at one time with only biscuit; and it is now a month since we have tasted fresh meat, and only once in that interval a little (goats') milk. Vegetables have been equally scarce, i.e. we have tasted none at all, of this year's growth, since we left Forteau. Fish and bread serve for every kind of food to every kind of creature on the Labrador, at least in the fishing season." In another an agreeable change is thus described:--"Our eyes and noses were much refreshed by the sight and smell of hay-making in a decently-fenced field near the Rectory. I was further and more pleased to find the inhabitants all in good health, and prepared to welcome and entertain us with many comforts which we had for several weeks been almost wholly deprived of, as fresh meat, butter, milk, vegetables, soft bread, &c."
On another voyage the luxury of fresh food was purchased at a sacrifice of feelings which the fishermen themselves declined to make, but which seems to have been no sacrifice to the bishop. "I tasted, or rather dined, more than once on the flesh and heart of bottle-nosed whales and found them tender and nice meat, better than the whale I had tasted and relished in Bermuda. Unfortunately the people are prejudiced against the flesh, or much of it might be salted down for winter use, and be of immense benefit. How blessed and seasonable the supply, when the fishery had proved an almost entire failure!"
The voyaging of this year was not yet over, for in the month of November another Visitation was made in Conception Bay. The bishop thus detailed his year's wanderings when he found himself resting for a time in a little cottage at Portugal Cove, which had been lent to him as a winter residence by a kindly merchant:--
"This, I presume, will be my last journey in this year of journeys, in which what a variety of place and people has been presented to me! First to Bermuda, with its fruits and flowers, in the month of January, after being detained a fortnight at Halifax, in Nova Scotia, the ground there all covered with snow, and the thermometer below zero. In Bermuda, I ministered to the mixed population of whites and blacks, gave Confirmation, and celebrated the Lord's Supper in every church in the colony, and consecrated two churches and churchyards. Then my return to Newfoundland, by way of Halifax, and that strange encounter with the ice in the month of May, which prevented our reaching, in the steamer, within fifty miles of S. John's. My walk that distance, and, after a short rest (of body) in S. John's, my voyage of Visitation to the straits of Belle Isle and Labrador, and round the whole island of Newfoundland, which kept me afloat in the Church ship very nearly four months, and brought me to the Esquimaux Indians, among icebergs, in the month of August; and, lastly, this journey round Conception Bay, partly on foot, partly by ponies, partly in boats;--and all this long and varied travel without any serious loss, accident, or hindrance to myself or any of my belongings; and without disappointment to myself or others, in respect of any duty I had to perform."
From this winter retreat the bishop wrote the following letter to the Rev. E. Coleridge:--
"In sitting down to address you after so long an interval of silence, I cannot divest my mind of the uncomfortable thought and apprehension, that you will say, on opening my letter, 'What does the Bishop of Newfoundland want now? I suppose he is in some difficulty, or he would not think it worth while to write to me. It would be as well if colonial bishops would sometimes write to their friends, when matters are more or less prosperous and comfortable, and lot us know the results or effects of our former exertions or contributions.' Conscience makes cowards of us all. I should not fear such complaints and accusations if I did not know how natural and just they are. I might say indeed in my excuse, 'Why should I trouble you, or other kind friends, with my letters, when so much is printed and published of those my proceedings and projects in which you take an interest, and which sufficiently exhibit the state and progress of the church in this diocese?' or more particularly, why should I trouble you, when I cannot but know the many claims upon your interest and affection in other colonies, and claims so much stronger and closer than any I can pretend to advance? But such excuses would be unworthy and unreal, for I have abundant cause to be satisfied that you have room and a place in your heart for my poor diocese, and that you can and do sympathize with me in my personal concerns and trials--can rejoice with me in my welfare and success, and weep with me in my many failures and disappointments; and, what is more needed and desired, can pray for me in both--both my frequent failures, and more rare but more dangerous success. I fully know and acknowledge your kind feelings towards me and mine and whether it be my fault or not, it is certainly my misfortune that I do not more frequently call them into action. But as I acquit myself to myself, I persuade myself that I am not altogether without excuse; so I hope you will believe, and pity rather than blame me, when I profess and declare I cannot find or make time for any correspondence, except in reference to subjects both present and pressing. I am so little at home, or rather so little in one place for any time (home I have none, not even a hired house), that my correspondence accumulates to such a degree as to be quite unmanageable, and I hardly get through the mere demands of business and duty. This is really the excuse I make to myself, and therefore I have confidence in making it to you, for neglecting, and seeming to forget, many kind friends, (whose sympathy is always dear and valuable) till some want or trouble drives me to seek aid and consolation.
After such an exordium, you will be prepared to expect some great cry or complaint, and I think right therefore so far to relieve your mind by stating at once, that I am not writing from jail neither have the walls of our new church yet given way, neither has the 'Mons Sacer' (to the best of my knowledge) removed from Harbour Briton. [Rev. J. G. Mountain.] My clergy are at their posts, thank God, and in good health and tolerable spirits. The winter has been the mildest known for many years, and the prospects of seal fishery (our first harvest) are not discouraging. The vessels which at this time last year were imprisoned in the ice upwards of a fortnight within sight of S. John's, have all got well away to the northward, without any delay; and in another week or ten days we look for some of them to return with their precious stinking freight, their wealth literally oozing out and overflowing from their decks and sides. These are no trifling and unimportant considerations to the Church in a country where the tithe commutation depends not upon the average prices of wheat, barley and oats, but upon the quantity of blubber and fish, and nothing else. When a vessel arrives from the seal fishery (or from the ice, as the technical phrase is,) the first inquiry is, how many seals has she taken (the number in a successful season ranges from 3,000 to 8,000,) and then to whom she belongs; and the clergyman then proceeds either to the owner, or directly to the vessel, and asks for the members of his congregation, and requires them and each of them to subscribe to his church and clergy according to his catch and other means. The average value of a seal may be about 10s., and there are generally from thirty-five to forty men on board each vessel, who may clear, after paying the expenses of their outfit, from 10l. to 30l. each. The clergy are contented if they obtain from each man, on an average, a dollar--at least our clergy are, or try to be contented, but I imagine the Roman Catholic clergy obtain considerably more. From them (the R. C. clergy) we have been taught this way of getting the dollars from the seal-catchers, as soon as they have completed their dangerous voyages. In the fall of the year comes the great harvest and the great tithes, when the clergy have to follow the people to their flakes and stages to obtain payment in kind, i.e. in fish, which they send off by boat or otherwise to the merchant in S. John's, who pays its value to the treasurers of the Church Society in cash. Of course the merchants themselves and mechanics also pay their dues in cash, or what we can get from them instead of dues, for there is no rule or law in the matter. Such is the system we are obliged to pursue to obtain a small remuneration or acknowledgment from the people; and I need hardly say how strange and novel it is to all English clergymen. But there is no remedy, and indeed I should be unwilling to drop it if the Church were ever so richly endowed. I feel satisfied that it is one of the several causes of the pride and affection manifested by the Roman Catholics towards their Church. I do not know what has led me into the subject of ways and means--anything but an interesting one, and particularly to those who are not in practice concerned with it. Let me proceed without further delay to the matter which is the immediate cause of my now addressing you. My last short visit to Eton is very strongly impressed on my memory and heart. I recall all the words and deeds of kindness and comfort with mi-diminished interest and gratitude. One hoon has been fully realized in the person and presence of my clear brother and fellow-labourer Mountain. His friends will be glad to hear that his bodily health has greatly improved since he came to Newfoundland; he seems capable of immense exertions, and as those exertions all are made, and cheerfully made, for the glory of God and the good of souls, we may hope and believe that his spiritual health and strength have not deteriorated, but, on the contrary, have received an advancement and increase. He is, as you said, 'a real treasure,' and my journey, not only to Eton from London, but to London from Newfoundland, would have been worth the time and expense if I had gained nothing else.
Our hope and expectation is, if it please God still to prosper the work, to consecrate and forthwith to use the portion of the church now nearly finished, in the month of September next. Oh that some, that all of my kind friends at Eton, could be present in person as well as in spirit, to assist as well as to advise--to rejoice with and for me. But what right have I to think or to expect that you will be present with me, in this poor despised mart of fish and oil, even in spirit? Do I not see too plainly that the thoughts and affections as well as the persons of missionaries and the friends of missionaries are all directed to that Mutton-California, where the good bishop is able to say 'there are really no privations?' Well for me and for my poor diocese that no newspapers get into our out-harbours for six months in the year, or how could I expect that my brethren, famishing on fish and biscuit, could resist stalactites of ham and the poultry running about with knives and forks on their backs, to say nothing of the ever-flowing rivers and ever-green meadows and fields:--
'Reddit ubi CErerem tellus inarata,' &c &c.
If I should live to see my church consecrated, my next care and desire will be to put my collegiate and scholastic establishments on a better and sounder plan. I have already applied 3,000l. to the purchase of premises for my College and Collegiate School for Boys, but the buildings are insufficient and there is no endowment. I have further opened a School for Girls, which gives satisfaction and nearly pays its own expenses, but I rent for them a miserably cold and comfortless house at 100l. per annum--liable continually to be swept away by fire, for it is entirely of wood. I should be thankful indeed to provide for them a stone or brick house, which might afford accommodation also (if that be not too bold a thought for a Bishop of Newfoundland) for some Sisters, servants of the Church, whose hearts would not be chilled by the mercury below zero, and who, as to fish instead of meat, would not be frightened at a Lent which extended nearly throughout the year. . . .
We are fighting the battle of Education in our small but not insignificant way in this colony, and the Church (as between Romanists and Dissenters is usually the case) is jostled out of her rights. We are also additionally hampered by a Society in England which chooses to call itself 'The Church of England School Society for Newfoundland and the Colonies,' and is under the patronage or advocacy of the Record. Verbum sat."
The agents of the Society here mentioned, and it may be added, still more their employers and Committee in London, gave the Bishop much annoyance, and continually thwarted his action and his wishes. There is a certain grimness of humour in the appeal for instruction which he made to a friend in England, and the passage shows how injurious to the proper and natural development of the colonial Church may be the action of an irresponsible Committee of almost unknown persons in London.
"Feb. 15, 1850.
"Unhappily I cannot act with the Newfoundland School Society, for they will tolerate only 'Evangelical' men, and they have decided, I know not by what marks, that I am not one. What is the meaning, or their meaning, of the word I have asked them, and they would not tell me; so how can I tell whether I am now, or, if not, how I should become, Evangelical?"
In June of this year the Rev. H. P. Disney volunteered to give up his living in Ireland and to plant the Church at S. Francis Harbour on the Labrador. He spent only a week in S. John's after his arrival, and, a favourable opportunity offering, he started at once for his station. The bishop was delighted at receiving such a man into his diocese, and thus reported his departure:--
"June 4, 1850.
"Mr. Disney left us in good spirits, and surely we ought to rejoice with and for him, that he is in the sure road to preferment if there be any truth in the promise that they who leave father or mother or brethren or sisters, for Christ's sake and the Gospel's, shall receive a hundredfold."
There was no sort of hyperbole or exaggeration in these words: the feeling was that with which the bishop always regarded his own position, which he was wont to speak of as "my opportunities of service."
On Sept. 21 of this year (the Festival of S. Matthew) the cathedral was consecrated; but this event and all connected with the diocese in the autumn of 1850, are described by the bishop's own pen in the following letter to the Rev. E. Coleridge:--
""THE MERLIN,' Oct. 10, 1850.
"My dear Friend--I am taking advantage (as usual) of the cessation of external interruption (which I have only on board ship) to apply myself to epistolary dues and duties, and to discharge an instalment of my large debts to yourself and many other kind friends. Unfortunately a screw steamer with a rolling sea affords a very uncomfortable study, and we have the additional misery, in the present case, of a most fetid atmosphere from the bilge-water (as frequently happens in a new vessel); so that it requires some steadiness of person as well as of purpose to continue below, and continue writing. I was quite unable before my departure from S. John's to answer your very welcome letter; but in requesting Mountain to acknowledge it, I hoped I should do what, was acceptable to you, though not entirely satisfactory to myself. I mean, that while it would have pleased me better to have written myself (as in duty bound), I hoped it would please you as well, or perhaps better, to receive my acknowledgments through your justly valued pupil and friend.
I forwarded to you by the last mail a colonial newspaper, which contained a notice of our 'two good days,' (1) of the Consecration of our Cathedral, and (2) of the first general Ordination in it. If I were to say much of defects or deficiencies, it might seem that I was ungrateful; but I could not but regret that none of the generous friends who promoted, or rather performed, the good and great work (for it was wholly built by and through English bounty), I could not but regret that none of them could be present to see the noble fruit of their liberality. I will only add, that all the seats are free, and the consequence has been hitherto that all have been full. I felt it due both to the character of the cathedral itself, and to the desire of the friends who had supplied the funds, to resist any appropriation to the wealthy citizens (who would wladly have paid for pews, or appropriated seats), though we can ill spare a means of raising an income where there is no endowment. The differentia of a cathedral, I presume, consists in having the bishop's chair, and it is well in our case that this will suffice--for of the usual and perhaps more important properties of a Cathedral Church (the Dean and Chapter, Choir, &c.) we can have none. Daily Service and weekly Communion are, I trust, in my power; but the regular staff (in my absence) consists of two clergymen, the Rector and his Curate.
I need not say, the state of the Church, at home, is an occasion of deep distress and alarm. Every mail brings intelligence of some fresh loss or disorder, but we must not trust in men; that, I fear, has been our mistake, our sin; and our sin has found us out. I quite agree with you in thinking that these external insults and injuries, for surely they are yet but external (I allude to decisions of the. Judicial Committee, and the refusal of the Government to allow the Convocation to meet for the transaction of business), can be no just plea or excuse for desertion. Surely, with every manly and generous mind, these injuries are but so many appeals and calls to union among ourselves, and prayers to God. I did in my Charge to my clergy enter my feeble but earnest protest against the monstrous position taken by the Judicial Committee, but I still more earnestly protested against division or disunion on that plea. But it is a sad, sad business. God deliver us.
I read with great interest the letters you kindly sent me by my gifted brother, New Zealand. On the circumstances of our dioceses, or at least on one circumstance, that of frequent journeys by sea, we more nearly agree than perhaps any other colonial bishops. I am surprised, however, that he should require or desire so large a vessel.
My Church ship is only fifty-six tons, and I sometimes wish she were smaller. I have been twice across the Atlantic in her, and in dreadful weather, so that for safety even at sea she is large enough. She will accommodate eight passengers, and I have had a congregation of sixty-three in the cabin. Every additional ton of measure increases the expense of purchase, of wear and tear, of navigating; and what is of more importance, the difficulty of getting in and out of harbours, and generally of coasting. The expense of navigating my little schooner is so great, that I sometimes fear I must abandon it. It costs, with the wear and tear, insurance, pilotage, &c., at least 100l. a month, that is, from 300l. to 400l. a year, for every year that I make a Visitation; and an increase of size would, as I said, increase the expense and really increase the difficulty and danger of a coasting voyage, particularly in our bays and among our icebergs. But I doubt not Brother New Zealand knows his own difficulties and resources. I can say most sincerely, that I rejoice with him and for him, at the noble succour you afford him, and would not desire to withdraw a farthing from the means you place at his disposal. May they be, as they will be, twice blessed. I could write much more (notwithstanding the shake and the stench), for it is a great pleasure to talk with men like-minded even across the Atlantic, but I must think of other creditors. I will only then beg of you, and all who, with you, help and pray for me, to accept my thanks and my blessing; and believe me, on land or at sea,
Your faithful and affectionate brother and grateful friend,
I had almost forgotten to say, that I am on my way to Bermuda, where I expect to remain till January, and then return to the ice and snow, the frost and cold, of Newfoundland.
P.S.--You gladden my heart by the mention of a candidate for missionary honours on the coast of Labrador. It was my wish and intention to establish three Missions, and place three Missionaries on that desolate coast. Two Missions are already filled, and I hope and believe well filled, by men who take great interest in their work. One spent last winter in his mission, and would be there again next winter if it were possible; the other commenced his labours in June, and he also fully purposed and desired to have passed the ensuing winter among his scattered sheep,; but having come to S. John's to attend the Visitation, they find there is no means of returning before next June. The third and most distant Mission I have been induced, or rather constrained to abandon, by the refusal of the merchants to co-operate, without which it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to proceed. Nevertheless, a candidate for that Mission, or for one of the existing Missions (should either become vacant), would be welcomed by me most cordially and gratefully, and I could immediately find him missionary work of a kindred character, saving that he would not be sent among the Esquimaux."