A Puritan’s Hope In Loss

FCC Sylvanus Conant was the fourth minister of the First Church of Christ in Middleboro Massachusetts (from 1745-1777). Sadly, small town preachers both past and present go unnoticed, but this was a man considered “an exemplary Christian”, and one well loved by his flock. His first wife died at the age of 28, the following is an extract from what he wrote upon her death.

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Extract of a Monody By Rev. S. Conant on the Death of His Wife

1. What voice is this I hear from yonder grave

that charms my listening ear — awakes my love?

Sure ’tis some heavenly guest, inviting me to rest

On my Redeemer’s breast, — come from above.

2. My willing soul attend without delay,

And th’ heavenly dove descend to point the way

To soft retire and shade, amidst some silent grade,

And be my light and aid, lest I should stray.

3. Welcome sweet solitude, now I’m alone,

Let nothing here intrude, no damp be thrown

To quench the heavenly fire of love that doth inspire

My heart with warm desire: Lord hear my groan.

4. To see thy lovely form is all my aim,

And meditate thy grace and charming name.

Oh! bless my longing eyes from yonder lofty skies

With light, that I may rise and sing thy fame.

5. My heart with sweet surprise is drawn away,

A captive to the skies, when I array

My ardent thanks to bring, unto my heavenly king,

Whose praise I long to sing in endless day.

6. One thing the muse implores before she goes

From those delightful bowers of soft repose;

Lord, guide me in the way through life to yonder day,

Where joy without decay, and pleasure flows.

(From the Book of the First church of Christ, In Middleborough, Plymouth County, Mass.  Boston: 1852)

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~ by TSL on April 20, 2013.

 
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