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Experiences of a Backwoods Preacher
Chapter XV. Remembered Kindness

IT may be difficult to tell whether acts of kindness or deeds of injury imprint themselves more indelibly upon the memory, but it is not hard to settle the question as to which of the two should exert the greater influence on our actions. To cherish the remembrance of past injuries so as to influence our actions only tends to harden the heart and warp the character; so that in doing this we harm ourselves and only make matters worse. We thereby sustain a double injury—first, by the harmful act, and secondly, by remembering the act in such a way as to produce in us a sort of moral deformity. Thus we magnify into a life-long injury what should have been only a temporary grievance or a short-lived vexation. We may remember those who have wilfully and spitefully injured us as we would remember a rock that had once upset our boat—not with the intention of using dynamite, but with a desire to keep at a safe distance from it.

We must cherish feelings toward those who have injured us that will prompt us to help them if we can, and do them good when we can; but that does not mean that we must hug them to our hearts. But the grateful remembrance of acts of kindness has a softening influence upon the heart, and it exerts an elevating tendency of character. There is nothing low or degrading in cherishing the remembrance of kindly deeds, and there is nothing in the acknowledging of them that is either dishonourable or humiliating ; but it is only doing simple justice to the performers of kindly actions to let them know that the recipients of those kindnesses are neither forgetful nor ungrateful.

With these views and for these reasons I shall, in this chapter, speak of the many acts of kindness shown to me and mine during the thirty years since I entered the Christian ministry. Many of these acts were unexpected, and most of them were either entirely unmerited or only partially deserved.

As I have intimated elsewhere, when I went on the backwoods missions I had some means of my own, the results of hard work by myself and wife; but we also had a number of children to which three more were added within a few years after commencing our itinerant life. The country at the time was new, the people were mostly poor, and the Church members were few. Every family had their own difficulties to grapple with, and the minister had to take his full share of the burdens that always settle down on the shoulders of pioneers ; and the lengthened period that I had to face these difficulties makes my case an exceptional one.

Other men were sent into the new parts of the work.

They would be left there a few years, and then be brought out to the front. But for some reason I was kept there from first to last. There was not another instance in the Church that I belonged to where a man was kept on one District through twenty-two years of active service, and that District the hardest one in the Connexion, in more ways than one. If there was such another case, I never heard of it.

After our own means were gone, if it had not been for the kindness shown' to us from time to time by church members and others, we should have suffered more than we did. I might almost as well undertake to number the hairs left on my head as to recount all the kindly deeds done to us. I shall have to content myself by giving a few details.

A Generous Irishman.

I use the term Irishman simply to indicate a man who came from Ireland. The man I speak of was a Protestant, an Orangeman, and a Methodist local preacher. At the time I speak of he resided in the township of Hawick, and was a member of the Official Board on the Teeswater mission, on which I was stationed. His name was William Ekins.

When our first Quarterly Meeting came on he was present at the business meeting on Saturday. That was the year of the hard summer, that the older people still talk about in the back townships when the Government had to send provisions to hundreds of families to keep them from starvation. Not being a taxpayer, I was not in a position to ask for help in that way. The result was that we were one month without a bit of bread in the house. We had a very little johnny cake. But we had plenty of greens, consisting of cooked “cow cabbage.” We also had a good supply of speckled trout, when we could catch them, and butter was to be had at reasonable figures.

Mr. Ekins came to our place for dinner. Two of our children were bad with cholera-infantum, induced, as was supposed, by the diet they were forced to live on. My friend brought with him one-half of a good sized veal, which he carried on horseback a long distance. He said when he came in with it, “I heard that you were trying to live on cattle feed, so I thought I would bring you a piece of one of them. I see that these little fellows of yours don’t take to that sort of diet very readily.”

On Monday morning, before he started, he said to me, “I do not see how you are to get along with all these children without milk. We have more cows than we need, and you may just as well have one of them as not; send the two boys home with me, and I will send a cow, and a boy to help drive it home, to-morrow.” We took his offer without much pressing. The cow was brought and proved to be a good one. I offered to pay him for her, but he would take nothing, saying that when he gave a thing he never would take pay for it. We kept that cow for five or six years, and then she got poisoned in some way and died.

Our First Surprise Party.

We had been presented with donations at different places and in various ways. But the first real genuine “surprise party” that paid us a visit was in Meaford. We were living there, but my work was, at the time, on the District as Presiding Elder.

One evening I was sitting quietly by the stove planning a new round of quarterly meetings, when a rap came to the door. On opening it, in answer to the call, an old minister of the New Connexion Methodists came in. His name was Hamilton, and he lived only a few doors from where I did. The old man sat down, and made himself quite at home— a thing he had never done before. We sat and talked for an hour or more. At last a loud rap at the front door called me up again. As I was going to the door Mr. Hamilton said, very soberly, “Don’t be frightened, Brother Hilts ; I am sure no harm is intended.” I could not understand what he meant until I opened the door and looked out. Then I began to see through the old man’s little ruse. The yard was full of people. They made a simultaneous rush for the front and side doors, and in less than two minutes the house was full of as merry a talking, laughing and stamping multitude as ever carried their good nature and their baskets into a quiet, inoffensive man’s dwelling. And for the next hour or two it was hard to conjecture what they were about, For upstairs, and downstairs, and indoor and out. Their hands and their feet and their tongues were all going, And one must be smart to know what they were doing.

But after awhile, when things quieted down, They declared they had come from all parts of the town, to present a small gift to the preacher and wife, And to wish them success in the journey of life.

The gift was about forty dollars in cash, and any amount of good wishes, and some other things, all of which were highly appreciated, not more for the value of the gifts than for the generous, kindly spirit in which they were presented.

My friends in Meaford became very well posted in the matter of getting up these surprises to the ministers. I think I was subjected to four or five of them myself, but I managed to live through all of them, and never once said, “Don’t do it again.” I was present at one that was given to Brother Watts. He was taken completely by surprise. I never saw Watts so much confused before or since.    .

A Thoughtful Friend.

The question has sometimes been asked, “Does the Lord influence the kindly deeds of unconverted people?” I believe that He does. He tries to get men to do right: in doing so He touches the noblest impulses of the heart, and the loftiest faculties of the mind. He does not attempt to prompt a man to virtuous action by stimulating the lowest and meanest of his passions. These He holds in check while, through the potency of the Holy Spirit acting upon the higher nature of the man, God lifts him out of darkness into light, and places him on a higher plane of action than he occupied before. But where am I drifting to?

At the commencement of my long affliction in Meaford, of which mention is made elsewhere, a little occurrence took place which I will venture to relate.

I had only been on the circuit one month and no returns had yet come in. Our supplies at the time were very limited and my purse was nearly empty. I had been worried some about the matter. One day Mr. John Raymond called to see me. After sitting a short time he got up to go. Then turning to me he said:

“You are laid up. You have had no time to gather supplies since Conference. Perhaps a little help now would be worth as much to you as it would be at any time in the year.” With this he handed me a sum of money. I would never have believed that the reception of a few dollars could make so sudden a change in a person’s feelings and prospects, if I had not experienced it. I received it, not only as a kind and thoughtful act on the part of my friend, but I took it as coming from the Lord. I looked upon it as a pledge that, whether my sickness was of a short or long duration, the supplies would be forthcoming. And so it was. Though for five months, to a great extent, I was disabled, jret we were as fully and to all appearance as cheerfully provided for as if I was doing all that needed to be done. Mr. Raymond was not a professor of religion. His wife, however, was a member of the Church.

A Pleasant Send-Off.

There is no time, it seems to me, when friends are more highly valued than when we are about to be separated from them. I found this to be the case when I was ordered by the Church authorities to leave Meaford.

I had lived in that beautiful town for seven years out of the last ten. According to the discipline and usage of the Church I could have stayed longer, but the Stationing Committee, listening to the few instead of the many, resolved to send me to another place. In doing this they acted in opposition to a petition bearing nearly three hundred signatures of members and adherents living on the circuit. But this is an unpleasant theme, and I do not like to dwell upon it.

When it was decided that I was to go away to another place, a meeting was called to be held in the church. This was largely attended by a mixed company, representing nearly every church in the town. After a number of short speeches from those who wished to speak, a purse containing sixty dollars was handed to me to pay, as they said, my moving expenses.

This was the third special favour bestowed on me by the friends in that community, during that year of heavy burdens and severe afflictions.

When I look back to that year, it appears to me like an April day, when sunshine and shadows chase each other over the fields. Sometimes the shadows deepened until the light seemed almost gone, and then the sunshine would make things bright and cheerful again. I should have said that the Conference met in Meaford that year, and the petition above referred to was presented by officials of the church in person. I may say, in respect to the town of Meaford, that if all gifts and donations were to be added to medical attendance, for which no charge was made, the sum total could not be less that $400.

What No One Expected.

When we went to Thornbury to live, the prospects were anything but encouraging. The church that I represented was weak in the village, and by no means strong in the country appointments. We went there as a sort of forlorn hope to try to rally a failing cause, but I was encouraged by the fact that there were a few grand men on the mission. When the Financial Committee met they promised me four hundred dollars and a house, the house-rent to be raised by a tea-meeting, and the surplus, if any, to be given as a donation. After the amount was voted, the next question was, Where is it to come from? This was met by a proposal to see how much could be pledged there and then. In response to this John Loree put down $30; his brother William, $20; Dean Carscadden, $20; Peter Stoutenburgh, $20; James Maguire, $12; William Housten, $15; Jesse Could, $15; Nelson Hurd, $12. When they added these sums together they found that they had almost three-fifths of the amount they needed, besides the grant from the Mission Fund. But these men made up nearly the whole male membership on the mission. But we were all encouraged to do the best we could. During the year we had two revivals. That was the first time in my ministry that I received all that was voted me. But that year I got every cent promised. To be sure it was a small salary on which to support a family of seven. But we managed to get through.

On Christmas Day they had their tea-meeting. They got it up on the old-fashioned plan of collecting provisions and cooking them, and then paying for the privilege of eating them. When it was over and we came to count results, between a surplus of edibles collected and not cooked and money on hand, it amounted to the nice sum of $130. This was $70 more than was needed to pay house-rent.

Who would not work, and suffer too, if need be, for such a people ? During my three years on that charge I did a good deal of hard work. But I was encouraged by much kindness shown me by the people. Brother Joseph Parkinson, who came to the mission during my second year, always seemed to know just what was needed and to bring it just when it was needed. Sister Wilson, of Heathcote, had a quiet and unpretentious way of showing kindness that was as amusing as it was thoughtful. She would never ask any questions, but watch her chance, and when no one was looking, slip a piece of meat, a roll of butter, a pound of yarn, or something else of use in a family under the seat of the buggy or cutter. For many years her house was the home of the preachers at the Heathcote appointment. I became so well acquainted with that good sister’s way of doing that I always looked under the seat when I got home, if I had been at her place. She is in glory now.

William James Kennedy and Joseph Bell, two young men who were not then professors of religion, spent one of the stormiest days of winter in gathering up something for the preacher. They came to our house in a blinding snowstorm, with a load of supplies, just when we had cut the last loaf of bread and cooked the last piece of meat. Mr. Adam Goodfellow and his wife, although they were Presbyterians, showed me a great deal of kindness. Mrs. B. J. Marsh used to come and pay her dividend herself, if for any cause the steward failed to call on her for it.

No one knows how to appreciate actions of this kind better than the itinerant in the new country, where a little help at the right time does so much to strengthen and encourage him in his work. By dwelling so long on one circuit, I find that I am using up my paper faster than I am exhausting my subject. I fear I shall be obliged, for want of space, to pass unmentioned very many kindly acts that would be worthy of notice; but they are recorded on more enduring pages than those of my little book.

It was while I was travelling the District that I realized fully what Christian hospitality really means. Five days out of six the year round, I was away from my own home, and the most of this time I was dependent for entertainment for myself and horse upon the members and friends of the Church; but in all the homes I visited during these four years, I was not once made to feel that I was not welcome. I think I realized a literal fulfilment of our Lord’s promise of a hundred homes for one that is relinquished in His service. I never counted them, but I am confident that I had more than a hundred homes on the Huron District.

I will find room for the names of the more prominent owners of these homes, and I am sorry that I cannot make room for all. Commencing with Eramosa Circuit, the first name that occurs to me is Rev. F. M. Smith and family; then come J. Caspell, E. Loree, Wm. Hodgkinson, J. Copland, Geo. Copland, Bro. Rud-dell, J. Leslie, Jno. Greasley, B. Rossel, two brothers Morris and old Father Scarrow.

Garafraxa Circuit—Morris Cook, W. Neal, Jas. Loree, Wm. Woods, Wm. Cotton, Jno. Cowan, H. Scarrow, Jno. Mitchel, Rev. R. L. Tindall, Mrs. D. Kyle, Mrs. Burns, W. Felker, J. Felker, A Felker, A. Ferrier, D. Ferrier, Jas. Kennedy and R. Eviligh.

Orangeville—James Johnston, Jas. Putellow, G. Moot, A. Hughson, Jas. Hughson, Wm. Hall, A. Wilcox, G. Wilcox, Rev. R. Large, M. Bacon, Wm. Bacon, Wm. Morris, Jas. McEcknie and Bro. Shields.

Horning’s Mills—Mr. Silk, Wm. Blair, Thompson Brothers, Mrs. Watts, Mr. Hulbert, Bro. Scruten, John Silk, G. Broderick, Mr. Tupling and Mr. Siddell.

Creemore—Jno. Shields, Jas. Connor, Mr. Sinclair, Rev. W. M. Pomeroy, Mr. Casey, and others whose names I have forgotten.

Collingwood Circuit—Rev. J. F. Durkee, Jos. Parkinson, D. Carscadden, Jos. Conn, Jesse Gould, P. Stoutenburgh, Mr. Wagg, Wm. Housten, Wm, Kennedy, A. Goodfellow, Jno. Irwin, T. Carefoot, G. Wilson, R. Phillips, L. Prentice, J. Prentice, N. Devens, Jno. Conn, Mrs. Perrett.

Meaford South—R. Gilray, Jas. Thurston, Wm. Purdy, R. M’L. Purdy, Jas. Curry, R. Hopkins, Rev. C. Taylor, Rev. J. Foster, J. Cook, Geo. Reid and A. Gould.

Meaford North—Jos. Briggs, Wm. Raven, S. L. Wilcox, N. Lefler, S. Kirvin, E. Kerr, H. Kerr, Jas. Lemon, and Rev. R. Sanderson. My home being in Meaford, I did not require the hospitalities of the people in town; their kindness was shown in other ways.

Osprey Mission—Ben Smith, Mr. Ferguson, Mr. Gordon, Air. Little, Jas. Alister, Rev. A. Cooper and Rev. T. Reid.

Mount Forest—Rev. R. Carson, Jno. Boos, Thos. Reid, A. Bissell, E. Boosley, T. Smith, Mrs. Buchan, Mr. Shilton, H. Bennett, Jno. Dixon, Jos. Dickson, Jno. Dickson and G. Stinson.

Listowel—Rev. John W. Moore, G. Maynard, Thos. Maynard, M. Tremain, H. Barber, Rev. Jas. Vines, R. Vines, H. Leopard, Wm. Kellington, Chas. Cousens, H. Cousens, C. Switzer, J. Rossell, D. Collins, C. Zeron.

Teeswater—Rev. W. F. Ferrier, P. Brown, G. Parr, R. Parr, Thos. Fairbairn, R. Dowse, R. Copland, R. Barber, Jas. Williamson, Wm. Cross, J. Snider, J. Gilroy, J. Crowsten, Jas. Crowsten, Wm. Bradley, G. McKibbon.

Invermay—J. W. Sanderson. J. W. Dunn, S. Cummer, J. Cummer, B. Talbot, Wm. Scarrow, Jas. Scarrow,

Wm. Carry, D. Clemens, Thos. Clemens, A. Clemens, S. Winch, S. Bricker, R. Zimmerman and Thos. Thompson.

Kincardine—Rev. G. Clark, E. Fisher, S. Fisher, Jas. Ballantine, R. Hunter, Henry Daniels, Thos. Robinson, A. Robinson, J. Browning, Jos. Shier, J. Shier, W. Arnold, Jno. Harrison, N. Pennell, Mr. Cole and Jno. Hodgins.

Hanover—Rev. J. Lynch, Wm. Martin, G. Harrison, J. W. Yickers, R. Reid, Mr. Rea, Air. Rumley, U. Curtis, J. Hillis, Dr. Halstead, Sam. Hillis and J. Wilson.

This long list of names includes the families with whom I took up my abode more or less during my District work. When I commenced my term, the Rev. H. Dockham said to me, “If you try to play the pastor over all that large District, you will be played out before your four years are past.” Although I visited many families not named here, I never felt that I was doing any more than the duties of the office demanded. I received many acts of kindness both from the people and ministerial brethren during these four years. These were crowned by the presentation of a “purse” at conference at the conclusion of the term.

Help When Needed.

In the town of Kincardine our circumstances at one time were very trying. I was lying entirely helpless. For four weeks I could not so much as feed myself or lift my head off the pillow, and the last one of our daughters lay in another room dying with consumption. She had been an invalid for nearly three years, and the end was now coming very near. I had, some time before, bought a little home, and had invested in it every dollar that I could muster. Now, when the extra expenses of sickness and death had to be met, we were very ill prepared to do so. When the people of the town learned of our sore affliction there seemed to be a disposition on the part of all classes, irrespective of creed or party, to render assistance.

The Presbyterians and Canada Methodists, following the examples of their respective ministers—the Rev. J. L. Murray and Rev. A. Andrews—came forward with their sympathy and help. Others, prompted by their own generous impulses, did their share in trj'ing to lighten our heavy burdens. But I cannot speak of the many acts of kindness shown us b}r individuals for want of space.

Rev. Dr. Aylesworth, the presiding elder, came to the Quarterly Meeting, and when he saw how we were situated he of his own accord sent a short note to the Canada Christian Advocate, stating our case and asking the prayers of the Church. I suppose the praying was done, but that was not all that was done. A number of letters came to hand, containing sums ranging from one to fifteen dollars. One letter came from near Ottawa from a lady that I had never heard of. It contained a contribution of two sisters-in-law who saw the note in the paper. I am sorry that I cannot recall their names. Another letter came from a Sab-bath-school in the township of Euphrasia, at a place where I formerly preached. The superintendent, Mr. Milson, told the school about our trouble and took up a collection amounting to thirteen dollars. From every circuit on the Huron District, except two or three, more or less money came, and also from people on other Districts. One letter, containing a bill of paper money, came from Eugenia Falls, from a sickly man with a large family and not very much means. I valued that contribution very highly, knowing as I did the sacrifice that it required on the part of the generous donor to send even a small amount. I estimated that gift not by the amount that it was worth to the receiver, but by what I knew it cost the sender.

A Christmas Box.

At Christmas time one evening, while I was away from home, two men came to our door and handed my wife a letter. When I opened it I found that it contained a sum of money and a note asking me to accept a “Christmas box” from a few of my friends in the Presbyterian congregation worshipping in Knox’s Church, Kincardine. Two or three days after Christmas, as I was walking down the street, Mr. John McLeod, a merchant and a Presbyterian, called me into his store and presented me with an overcoat worth fourteen dollars.

Another Surprise.

Then in February of that same winter came the greatest surprise of all. One day the Bruce Reporter was left at our house. In glancing over it I saw a notice to the effect that on a certain evening a lecture would be given in the Town Hall, at which time the friends of Mr. Hilts would present him with an address and a parse. I could hardly believe my eyes, as that was the first intimation I received that anything of the kind was in contemplation. When I read the extract over to my wife, she said she had heard something about a surprise, but she knew but little about it. When the time came the Rev. William Henderson gave an interesting lecture on the Holy Land to a fair audience. Mr. Baird, then reeve, afterwards mayor, of the town, filled the chair. After the lecture a purse containing one hundred and sixty-eight dollars was presented to me by Mr. E. Leslie, who was a Canada Methodist; and Mr. Paul Mclnnis, a Presbyterian, read the following address:—

Complimentary Address

Presented to Rev. J. H. Hilts by a number of Christian friends and well-wishers.

Rev. and Dear Sir,—It is with pleasure we embrace the present opportunity of expressing to you the high esteem in which you are held by ourselves and the community generally. You have been amongst us for a number of years, making your presence felt in a social, municipal and ministerial character, and in all these respects you have won the profound regard and confidence of your fellow-citizens of whatever party or creed. Your manly independence as a thinker and speaker, your fearless denunciation of popular wrongs, your kindly consideration and sympathy for those in distress, and your uniform readiness to rise above narrow sectarianism, and to assist your brethren of every denomination in the work of our common Lord, have greatly endeared you to Christians of every name and have secured for you a place in the hearts of the general public to which few can expect to attain. As a token of the estimation in which you are held, you will please accept this purse, which is the spontaneous gift of a number of your fellow-citizens who desire to make this public recognition of their sense of your personal worth, and which but very feebly expresses their admiration for your many excellences of head and heart. Signed on behalf of contributing friends.

Paul McInnis.
Edward Leslie

Kincardine, Feb. 13th, 1883.

It is not egotism that prompts me to insert this address. It is too late in life for me to be much affected by what people may think or say about me, so that I am not seeking for notoriety. I never was a hunter after popularity. But I feel that justice to others warrants the publication of the address in this chapter of remembered kindness.

The article, I am informed, was written by Rev. J. L. Murray, a Presbyterian minister, and the money was collected by men outside of my own denomination. The circumstance goes to show that our religion can carry people over the dividing lines of denominational differences and cause them to recognize a brother wherever they find a Christian.

A Birthday Present.

The day that I was sixty years old some of the members of the Ontario Conference of the late M. M Church, along with other friends, presented me with a purse containing some S50, as a birthday gift. This was a very unexpected expression of brotherly kindness and Christian generosity, which afforded me much pleasure, and bound me still closer to my brethern of the Conference.

A Reluctant Removal.

In the spring of 1884 we left Kincardine and came to Streetsville. I very much regretted that I had to leave that town, where so many pleasant associations had been formed. But to all appearance my health was permanently broken up. My family thought that we could better our condition by making the change. When we came to this place we found ourselves once more among strangers. With the exception of two of our sons, who were employed here at the time, we only knew the Scruten family, with whom I had been acquainted at Horning’s Mills, and Mrs. Dr. Thom, whom we had known as a young girl years ago in the township of Garafraxa.

In the fall of 1885 I had a very severe affliction, elsewhere spoken of. When I found myself compelled to give up, and take to my bed, I felt very much disheartened. I said to my wife, as she was fixing a place for me to lie down: “I am afraid that we are in for a hard time. The boys are gone and we are here among strangers. If we were in the back counties among our many friends, I would feel safer and better.”

Her answer was, “We will not suffer here any more than we would anywhere else.”

The boys had to leave to find employment, the business with which they had been connected having been discontinued. Well, it turned out as my wife said. When the doctor came to see me, after an examination he asked why he had not been called sooner.

I told him that I hesitated to send for him because I could not see how I was to pay him for his trouble. He said: “I am afraid you have put it off too long. But pay or no pay, I shall do the best I can for you.” And he did as he said. Dr. Ockley is spoken of in another chapter.

After an absence from the prayer-meeting for ten weeks, the first time that I went I met with a great surprise. After the meeting was ended, the pastor, Rev. G. M. Brown, invited me to the platform, and after a few words of explanation, he handed me an envelope which, he said, contained some contributions by friends on the circuit to help us bear the financial part of our recent afflictions.

When I got home and opened the envelope, I found the amount in it to be $80. To this over $20 was added by individuals who came in person with their Christian, kindly help.

I have been told the wife of the pastor, with Mrs. J. Gradon, Mrs. Banin,, and the junior minister, Rev. R. R Bowles, had something to do with getting this timely help for us. Among those others may be named Mr. G. Anderson, Mr. A. Sibbald, Mr. Redman, Mr. Dracas, Mrs. Hardy, and Rev. J. A. Murray, of Streetsville, and Mr. Wm. Falconer, and Mr. and Mrs. H. Shaver, of Cooksville Circuit. Before passing on, it is only right to say that we have received many acts of kindness from Mrs. and Miss Franklin, also from Barber Brothers, of Toronto township.

Owen Sound Conference.

With one more instance I must close this chapter. The first Conference of the united Church that I attended was held in the town of Owen Sound in 1885. At that session I asked for permission to commute my claim on the Superannuation Fund. The reason that I wished to do so was because of the difficulty I found in meeting the requirements of the “Basis of Union” in the matter of “levelling up.” I stated my case fully and without reserve to my brethren. The request was granted, but I was strongly advised not to commute.

As I went out on the street at the rising of Conference, I was accosted by the mayor of the town, Mr. Rutherford. He said:

"I was pleased with your straightforward manner of presenting your case. What I want to know is this: Will you accept some help if it is ollered by friends who would like to assist you?”

1 said to him, “I am not above receiving a favour when it is kindly offered, nor am I slow to confer a favour when in my power to do so.”

I heard no more about it until the last day of Conference. Then I was told that some parties outside wished to see me. When I went out I met Mr. Rutherford, Mr. J. W. Vickers, from Durham, and Rev. J. W. Sanderson. They handed me a roll of bills amounting to $60.

That met my pressing demands at the time, and somehow, it seems to me that a blessing followed that gift, as I have got along to the present without commuting, and with no very serious difficulty.

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