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1776.] OF THE PRESBYTERY OF EDINBURGH.
this city and suburbs, with whom he has joined in ministerial communion; and to those who attend at the chapel, having preached to them during the space of three months last year, and as many this year; to whom his ministrations are so acceptable that they have expressed their earnest desire of his continuance among them as their pastor, which it is my intention to comply with, that, besides the preaching of the word, they may enjoy the comfort and benefit of the other ordinances of religion, which are dispensed to their brethren of the same communion in their parish churches. I beg you will do me the favour to communicate this letter to the Reverend Presbytery at their first meeting, with my respectful compliments, which will oblige, Rev. Sir, your most obedient and most humble servant,
To this letter Lady Glenorchy received the subjoined reply
To the Right Honourable Lady Glenorchy.
"Madam,-Your Ladyship's letter was laid before us; and although we continue to approve of your pious intentions in establishing the new congregation within our bounds, we cannot give countenance to any person's being admitted minister thereof, until we have satisfying evidence of his having been regularly licensed and ordained, of his loyalty to Government, and of his conformity to our standards. We have the honour to be your Ladyship's most obedient most humble serH. MONCRIEFF WELLWOOD, Moderator."
1776.-Mr Grove was a gentleman of some landed property, of good address and talents, and of pleasant
He was one of the six young men, who, in the year 1768, were expelled from the University of Oxford, for praying extempore in a private house; but was by his severe judges acknowledged to be the least exceptionable of them in every respect: and although with great humility and earnestness he petitioned for restoration, and the Vice-Chancellor admitted that his case was very hard, his application, notwithstanding, was refused. This harsh treatment made Mr Grove a decided
dissenter in his own country, and gave him a distaste to national religious establishments in general; and as he found Lady Glenorchy determined not to separate her Chapel from the Church of Scotland, of which she was a member, and with which her oldest, ablest, and best friends were connected, he determined, but not without much reluctance, to return to England.
This event occasioned Lady Glenorchy considerable perplexity; and the suspicion, and clamour, and evil speaking to which it gave rise, hurt her so much, that she seriously meditated a plan of selling her estate, and leaving Scotland altogether. This resolution both alarmed and distressed her friends, who did not fail to remonstrate against her intentions in very strong terms: among these was Lady Henrietta Hope, who wrote to her, on the 18th of January, in the following manner :—
"I did not receive your's, my dear Madam, till this morning; and then, I must own, I felt sensations which your ever welcome letters have not been used to excite. So little am I reconciled to the plan you have eventually formed, that the determined manner in which you write of it as if really to take place, was more than I could bear unmoved; and I know not how long the damp it threw on my spirits would have
continued, had it not been brought to my rem embrance, that you might propose, but that God would dispose, and surely overrule all things for his glory. To me it appears next to impossible, that by such an event this great end shall be advanced; but, as your Ladyship seems at present to be absolutely fixed in your determination, I shall not trouble you more on the subject, till some better occasion offer to remonstrate more strongly."
The circumstances of Mr Grove's family would not admit of his immediate return to England. He therefore remained, and no objection being made to it, preached in the chapel till the end of February, when it again was supplied by the ministers and probationers of the city and neighbourhood.
When Mr Grove finally left Edinburgh, Lady Glenorchy consulted her friends with respect to the most eligible mode of conducting and settling her chapel. She herself was of opinion, that the best way to prevent all suspicions and jealousies with respect to her objects and designs, would be to invite a minister from the church, of whose ecclesiastical views no doubt could be entertained, either by the Presbytery or the public; and having fixed upon the mode of management, her mind became tranquil and easy, as will appear from her Diary.
Sunday, January 14.-The Lord has seen meet to afford me some glimmerings of light on the path of duty. I have seen it right to give up my own plans and wishes concerning the settlement of the chapel, and simply to follow whatever seems most likely to promote faith, peace, and love, in the Church of Christ.
WITH LADY GLENORCHY'S APPROBATION. [1776. I have permitted Mr Grove to return to England, as he was not willing to sign the formula, and I did not find myself at liberty to separate from the Established Church. I now think of procuring a minister from among ourselves, for stated pastor, who will consent to the occasional visits of preachers from England. My mind is more composed since this was settled. I now wait for light whom to choose, and how to proceed. But my soul is still at a distance from God. Strong temptations assault me in prayer; so that I cannot continue many minutes in it. My thoughts are unfixed; my body threatened with a painful dangerous malady. I have no great fears of death: I seem more afraid to live to dishonour God. I almost look on an early death as a privilege; and should rejoice to think it near, were my soul as comfortable as in times past.
Sunday, January 28.—The Lord has been graciously pleased to loosen my bonds, and permitted me to pray with some degree of faith, to commit my way unto him, and to give up myself wholly to him for time and eternity. I found sweet composure of mind, and power to rest on his word this forenoon in secret. I was however disappointed in public worship, my mind wandered, and I got no benefit, and returned home ashamed and confounded at the deep and unutterable depravity of my nature, yet thankful for the ground I have to hope for deliverance through the Lord Jesus Christ.
Sunday, February 10.-The Lord hath permitted me this day to sit down at his table, and partake of the symbols of his broken body and shed blood, with some degree of faith. Blessed be his name for creat
ing in me a hunger and thirst for spiritual blessings, and for letting me feel my wants.
He has also restored, in a measure, my health, delivered me from the fear of an incurable and painful disease, and relieved my mind from many other heavy weights: he enables me to cast my care upon him, and to believe that he careth for me. The 103d Psalm was sweet to my soul this morning,-I could praise the Lord in the language of the Psalmist, believing that he had indeed forgiven mine iniquities, and pardoned my sin;-that as a father pitieth his child, so did he pity my helplessness and my infirmities.
This evening I have felt like the workings of true repentance and godly sorrow for backslidings, vain thoughts, short-comings, and backwardness to duty. My soul longeth after holiness and conformity to the image of Christ. I have, I think, from the bottom of my heart, asked the Holy Spirit to abide in me, and sit as a refiner's fire, to purify me from all my dross, to sanctify every power and faculty of my soul.
March 17.-Since writing the above, it pleased God to send a severe illness upon me, which has reduced my body very low, and I have seldom had any sensible life or joy in my soul. But, blessed be his name, my hope concerning the life to come has never failed; my sweetest moments have been those when death appeared near. This day I have had the privilege of sitting down at the Lord's table. My body was very weak, and I could not get to a lively frame of spirit; but I was enabled to receive the tokens of his unspeakable love with a thankful heart, and to bless the Father for giving the Son, the Son for giving himself up to the death for us, and the Holy Ghost for applying the benefits of his death, and opening my understanding