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thing which could gladden a parent's heart.

Having finished his preparatory studies, he was entered as a student in Harvard University at the early age of fourteen years. Here he maintained the character of a good scholar, a pleasant companion and an amiable and virtuous youth. He received the honours of college with the class, which graduated in 1811, being then in his 19th year. From this period his friends saw in him a growing seriousness and manliness, which procured him the respect as well as the love of the wise and good, wherever he was known. He spent the first year, after the close of his collegiate life, in the office of instructer of youth in Brookline in this

state. Here it was that he first devoted himself to the ministry, and commenced his theological studies. In the autumn of the following year, he removed his residence to Cambridge, and engaged with much zeal and hon esty, and perseverance, in the various branches of study connected with the profession he had chosen.

It may be proper here to mention a circumstance which reflects much credit on the memmory of his excellent father. No sooner was he made acquainted with the resolution of his son to enter a profession, which he himself loved so well, than he took an early opportunity to impart to him his counsels and wishes. After other interesting remarks, to which the nature of the interview led, his father observed in words to this effect: "You know, my son, the views, which I have

long entertained of the great doctrines of Christianity. But I would not have you embrace them on my authority. It would indeed afford me pleasure to know that your views accorded with mine, on a subject of so vast concern; but I do not wish you to be influenced in the least by this consideration. Take the scriptures for your only guide. and endeavour, with humility and prayer, to discover their true meaning."

Nothing could have afforded Dr. Prentiss sincerer pleasure, than to see his son zealously engaged in preparation for the Christian ministry. And he saw him thus engaged; and the good man's heart was filled with joy and hope. But he was denied the privilege, with which we have been indulged, of witnessing the auspicious commencement of his pastoral life: For God removed him, in the ripeness of a good old age, while his son was still pursuing his studies with ardour and suecess. He died in February,

1814.

There is a propriety in the mention of this event, as it undoubtedly had no inconsiderable influence in forming the character of our friend. He was with him during his whole sickness, and saw with what composure and hope a Christian could die. The discipline of affliction he had scarcely ever experienced till now; and the effect of it was such as we could desire to

see.

In a letter written soon after this event, he unbosomed his whole soul. His heart was softened with grief, and he sought consolation in the sym

pathies of friendship and the hopes of religion. "Oh, my friend," he writes, " you who well knew my almost adored father, will not think my grief excessive, but will bear with my melancholy and dejected mind. But let us not be overcome with over-much sorrow,' as he told us during his sickness, my children, you are not willing that the Lord's will should be done." "

6

In_September of that year, Mr. Prentiss was approbated to preach by the Boston Association of Divines, and immediately entered upon his public labours. He was listened to, from the first, with great and very general satisfaction; and was almost constantly employed as a candidate till his final settlement at Charlestown in March last. During this interval, he applied himself with exemplary diligence to his theological studies, and acquired distinction among his fellow students by a general acquaintance with the best writers in divinity.

He was remarkably cool and deliberate in forming his opinions, and never was suspected of taking them upon trust. Sometimes indeed he has been thought to carry his caution to excess; but it should be remembered, that hasty judgements are frequently erroneous; while those, which have been formed slowly and calmly, in the love of truth, are likely to be correct. But though he was slow and cautious in forming his opinions, he was open and honest in declaring them; and, when he viewed them to be of sufficient importance, he gave

them his willing and warm support.

We shall always look back with interest and pleasure on this part of the life of our friend. It was now that his character was more fully developed, and his worth more generally appreciated. Those, who have not known him for the three last years of his life, can scarcely be said to have known him at all. During this period, we remarked in him, at least in a higher degree than before, an uncommon union of seriousness and cheerfulness, which endeared him to us as a most agreeable companion at all seasons and in ali places.

It was during this period also, that we saw and admired that prudence and practical good sense, which are so important to the success of the Christian minister, and of which he possessed a more than common share.

In these, and in several other traits of character, he bore a striking resemblance to his excellent father, which, to those who knew them both, was every day becoming more and more evident.

Mr. Prentiss was accustomed to look forward to his life as a minister with deep and lively interest. He entertained correct views of the holiness of the pastoral office, and never for a moment allowed himself to view it merely as the means of obtaining temporal support. While employed as a candidate in the several towns, where he was called to preach, he had opportunities of cultivating an acquaintance with mankind, which he studiously improved.

Perhaps few men of his years could have been consulted with so great advantage, on any of the prudential affairs of church or people. Men of the first respectability, who knew him during the few last months of his life, strongly testify, that they have seen him in various trying and perplexing scenes, and have never known him rash or unguarded, in word or deed.

sex.

He had formed and matured many plans for doing good, long before he entered the pastoral office. He joined with many other good men, in lamenting the very general neglect of christian ordinances which is observable especially among young people of our "Cannot something be done," he observes in a letter written several months previous to his settlement, "to take away this reproach? Or, rather let me say, to convince young men that they have an equal interest in this salvation, and that they may derive an equal benefit from an attendance on the holy supper, with persons of the other sex? It is a subject, which often passes through my mind, when I look forward to the ministry. It must be, to a minister, who is himself in earnest, a most painful sight, when at the close of the ordinary services, he sees families separating, and the mother with her daughters gathering round the sacred ta ble, to receive the consecrated elements, while the father with his sons turn their backs upon this most interesting rite" We We come now to the last and most interesting part of his life. Having, in Dec. 1816, received

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nearly an unanimous invitation from the third Congregational Society in Dorchester, which he felt it his duty to decline, he soon after had an unanimous call from the second Congregational Society in Charlestown; and, on the 26th of the following March, was duly introduced to the pastoral office in that place. We well recollect the interests and hopes excited by that solemn and impressive occasion. He had now reached the summit of his earthly ambition. Situated in the immediate vicinity of the capital and of our university, favoured with the friendship of learned and pious divines, with whom he might hope long to associate on the most intimate terms, surrounded by a kind and affectionate people, who testified their esteem by every mark of approbation, he felt, that his was a privileged lot. He also felt the obligation to evince his gratitude for these mercies, by zeal and engagedness in the work, to which he had devoted himself.

He was not satisfied with doing merely what was expected and required. The interests of his people lay near his heart, and he was iustant in season aud out of season, that he might make full proof of his ministry.

He devoted much of his time and thoughts to the younger part of his charge. He improved every opportunity, by familiar instructions on the Sabbath, and on other days of the week, to lead them to a knowledge of the doctrines and duties of religion, and to excite in them the love of God and of goodness. He was instrumental in introducing to their acquaintance

several books, well adapted to these ends; among which may be named Watson's Serious Address to Young Persons, and Mr. Colman's very valuable Catechisms for Children and Young Persons.

He

It was evident to all, who saw him during the last few months of his life, that his interest in his people was becoming stronger every day. spared no pains to excite and cherish in them the Christian temper, and lead them to make religion a personal concern. And his exertions, we believe, were duly appreciated, and attended with rather uncommon

success.

But he was taken from the midst of his labours and hopes, by a sudden and mysterious Providence. Ou Sabbath day, September 21st, not quite six months from the time of his ordination, he preached for the last time. On the following day, he was seized somewhat violently with a typhus fever, which soon prostrated his strength, and deprived him of the use of his reason. At times, however, he had lucid intervals, and was perfectly sensible of his situation. He seemed from the commencement of his disease, to have a strong pre-sentiment that he should never reeover. To a friend, who visited him on the third day of his illness, and before he was thought to be in danger, he communicated his views on this point. He was then able to speak with ease, and spent the whole evening in conversing on religious topics, and the concerns of his people. On the following morning, the symp

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toms of his disease were more alarming, and on Sunday threatened fatal termination. He now desired that his mother might be sent for, whom he was unwilling to alarm, till he was satisfied that his danger was imminent. From this time bis physicians saw but little chance for his recovery; although there were short seasous when his friends were encouraged to hope that the violence of his disease was abating. At every return of reason, he was anxious to converse upon his situation and prospects, and offered up many devout prayers to heaven for himself and his flock. He was willing to die ; but he felt that death would be the dissolution of the strongest and tenderest ties. He wished to live, if it were the will of God, for the sake of others, but not for his own. He was sup ported in the last trying hour, by strong, and we trust, well grounded hopes; and, in the imperfect glimmerings of rea son, with which he was indulged a short season before he expired, be poured out his soul in a most devout and impressive, though somewhat confused and incoherent, prayer, full of confidence, resignation, and hope.. He died on the morning of Lord's day, October 5th.

Thus lived and died this amiable and interesting young man. He is gone; and we shall see his face no more. The infant church mourns its youthful pas tor. The voices of an united people lament the shepherd, who so faithfully and tenderly guided his flock. He was not permitted to see the close of a year on which he entered with

such flattering hopes! He was removed from the office he loved, and from the people to whom his soul was bound, at a time, when his exertions were the greatest, and his life, to human view, most important, and desirable, and useful. But, it was God who removed him; and God's will be done. He was removed from a sphere of great and increasing usefulness. But it was God who issued his commands; and God is perfectly wise and good. He was taken away in the midst of his days. But it was God, who appointed the bounds, which he might not

pass; and his friends are calm and resigned. They believe, that he is gone to the bosom of his Father; and why should they lament, that he is made happy so soon? They hope to meet him again in a better world, where there is fulness of joy, and where the pains of separation are unknown. With this expectation they are able to support themselves under one of the severest trials which human nature is called to bear ; and they would not exchange their hopes, for the richest treasures which earth can bestow.

GOD A WISE AND TENDER FATHER.

If ye then being evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Father who is in heaven give good things to them that ask him ?-Matt. xii. 2.

It was the constant endeavour of our Saviour in all his instructions to give such views of the character and such assurances of the providence of God, as should excite our best affections and produce unreserved trust and confidence.

children to parents. The image which perpetually occurs throughout the Gospels, and under which our Saviour seems to have peculiarly delighted to represent the Supreme Being, is that of our Father,-our Father in heaven, tender and compassionate, who created the human family for their happiness, who is merciful even to those who repay his kindness with ingratitude, on whose arm universal nature leans for support; and without whose notice or permission no event takes place throughout this boundless universe; whose providential care extends to the most minute of his works, even to the numbering of the hairs of our heads and the support of a falling sparrow, whose power. enables

We are not oppressed by the chilling apprehension that we live in a fatherless and unprotected world; that the author of our being is indifferent or unconcerned for our happiness. Neither are we oppressed by the fear that we serve a merciless and unrelenting master who imposes burdens on his creatures which he knows they are unable to bear, and requires services which he intentionally made them incapable of performing.

We are taught to consider our

relation to God the same as him to satisfy the desires of

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