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A Circuit Rider's Wife   By: (1869-1935)

Book cover

First Page:

A CIRCUIT RIDER'S WIFE

by

CORRA HARRIS

With Illustrations by William H. Everett

[Frontispiece: The old, burly country doctor bending above me.]

Philadelphia Henry Altemus Company

Copyright, 1910, by the Curtis Publishing Company Copyright, 1910, by Howard E. Altemus

TO THE MEMORY OF

WILLIAM

CONTENTS

CHAPTER

I. I AM CHOSEN INSTEAD OF THE PRAYER MEETING VIRGIN II. I BUILD FOR MYSELF A MONUMENT MORE ENDURING THAN BRASS III. THE REVIVAL AT REDWINE IV. WILLIAM AS A LEADER OF FORLORN HOPE V. GOD'S ANNUALS VI. WILLIAM ENTERS HIS WORLDLY MIND VII. THE LITTLE ITINERANT AND OTHERS VIII. I HOLD THE STAGE IX. WILLIAM AND THE FEMININE SOUL X. WILLIAM BECOMES A PRODIGAL XI. FINANCES AND FASHIONS XII. THE CHEERFUL LITTLE DOG THAT LED THE BLIND MAN XIII. WILLIAM WRESTLING WITH TRAVELING ANGELS XIV. CURIOUS FACTS ABOUT THE NATURE OF A PRIEST XV. SKELETONS IN WILLIAM'S DOCTRINAL CLOSET XVI. IN THE LITTLE GRAVEYARD BEHIND REDWINE CHURCH XVII. BACK AGAIN TO THE WORLD XVIII. CONSCIENTIOUS SCRUPLES ABOUT THE CHURCH

ILLUSTRATIONS

The Old, Burly Country Doctor Bending Above Me . . . . . Frontispiece

Brother Tom Pratt, a Prominent Member, Had Backslided

With Such Sad Hunger in Their Faces

"I'll Pay You, Parson. I'll Pay as Soon as I'm Able"

I Heard Him in His Study Singing

"It's Going to Be an Awful Night, Don't Go She Is Not a Member of Your Church"

Then He Took Up with Job in the Scriptures

Not So Much for Him as for Fear He Would Not Understand

CHAPTER I

I AM CHOSEN INSTEAD OF THE PRAYER MEETING VIRGIN

If you will look back over the files of the "Southern Christian Advocate," published at the time in Macon, Georgia, you will find the following notice by a singular coincidence on the page devoted to "obituaries": "Married Mary Elizabeth Eden to William Asbury Thompson. The bride is the daughter of Colonel and Mrs. Eden, of Edenton; the groom is the son of the late Reverend Dr. and Mrs. Asbury Thompson, and is serving his first year in the itinerancy on the Redwine Circuit. We wish the young people happiness and success in their chosen field."

"Chosen field" had reference to the itinerancy, not matrimony. And that was my "obituary" if I had only known it. For after that, if I was not dead to the world, I only saw it through the keyhole of the Methodist Discipline, or lifted and transfigured by William's sermons a straight and narrow path that led from the church door to the grave.

But now, after an absence of thirty years, I am addressing this series of letters to the people of the world concerning life and conditions in another, removed from this one by the length of long country roads, by the thickness of church doors, and by the plate glass surface of the religious mind. They will record some experiences of two Methodist itinerants and whatever I think besides, for they are written more particularly to relieve my mind of a very great burden of opinions. For William has been promoted. He has received his LL. D. in the Kingdom of Heaven by this time if there are any degrees or giving of degrees there, along with Moses and Elijah, and I doubt if there is a more respected saint in that great company. We buried him a year ago in the graveyard behind Redwine Church.

I was born in Edenton, a little white and blue town in Middle Georgia, and my name was recorded in the third generation of Edens on the baptismal registry of St. John's Church there. William was born somewhere in a Methodist parsonage, and his name is probably written on the first page of the oldest predestination volume in Heaven. In Edenton the "best families" attended the Episcopal Church. It was a St. John's, of course, though why this denomination should be so partial to that apostle is a mystery, for his autobiography, as recorded in the New Testament, reads more like that of a campmeeting Methodist than any other disciple's... Continue reading book >>




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