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PUBLIC LIBRARY

12892A

ASTOR, LENOX AND
TILDEN FOUNDATIONS
R
1921

L

Southern District of New York, ss. BE IT REMEMBERED, that on the twenty-ninth day of December, in the fortyfifth year of the Independence of the United States of America, the Rev. Willis Harris, hath deposited in this office the title of a book, the right whereof he claims as Proprietor, in the words following, to wit: “ Sermons on Important Subjects. By the late Rev. Fletcher Harris, an Itinerant

Minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church in America. To which is prefixed, a Memoir of the Author's Life."

“ He being dead, yet speaketh."

He was a burning and a shining light.", In conformity to the Act of the Congress of the United States, entitled “an Act for the encourageinent of Learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the time therein mentioned.” And also to an Act, entitled “an Act, supplementary to an Act, entitled an Act for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned, and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of designing, engraving, and etching historical and other prints."

G. L. THOMPSON,
Clerk of the Southern District of New-York.

PREFACE.

HAD the publisher been the author of the following work, he would not have troubled the public with any apology for it, nor would he have felt himself justifiable in asking the indulgence of his readers; whose attention and patronage he could only have expected on the ground of its own intrinsie merit.

The following discourses were written, some before and some after they were delivered: and it is probable without any expectation, on the part of the author, that they would ever be printed. And certainly it never was intended to publish them in their present form. Under such circumstances the publisher asks the forbearance of the critic, and hopes the main design of the author will be kept in view; which was to correct the morals of the profligate and unthinking and comfort and establish the followers of Christ.

Had the author lived and published for himself, he would, no doubt, have paid more particular attention to the following sermons: they might have been differently arranged: and considerable

MEMOIRS

OF THE

REV. FLETCHER HARRIS.

MR. Fletcher Harris was born on the 30th of April, in the year of our Lord 1790, in Granville County, North-Carolina. His parents, who are still living, have been acceptable members of the Methodist Episcopal Church for near fifty years. As they feared the contamination of his morals, which is too often the consequence of youthful association in public schools, and being in but moderate circumstances, they could only furnish him with an English education, and that mostly at home.

At a very early period of his life he had impressions of a religious nature, which were never erased from his mind during his life; and though he made no profession of religion until he arrived at mature age, yet, in justice to his memory we must say, that even in his youth his conduct was such, as most plainly to manifest his great reverence of it.

At the age of 20 he was more deeply impressed with the necessity of regeneration. He sought it with unremitting ardour for about eight weeks, when it pleased God to give him the witness of the Spirit, at a camp-meeting, in the month of September, 1811. It was here he felt the Lord gracious, and was enabled to shout aloud the wonders of redeeming grace and dying love. He began immediately to exhort those about him to fly to the arms of divine mercy. From this time e began to feel an increasing desire for the salvation of lost sinners. So great was his concern for his fellow-creatures, that he soon forsook his father's house in quest of them, and accompanying the circuit preachers in their rounds, exhorted and prayed with the people : and such was his godly deportment, zeal, and eloquence, that most who knew him marked him for extensive usefulness in the church of God.

In the year 1813 he joined the itinerancy, and was appointed to labour in the Terrel circuit. This appointment required the exercise of selfdenial, and that resignation which was a prominent feature in his Christian character. He had now to exchange the company of his affectionate parents and brethren, for the society of persons with whom he had no acquaintance; and the salubrious atmosphere of his native uplands for swamps and miry roads, to which he had till now been a stranger; and in addition to this, he had also to sustain the charge of the circuit. But whatever were the difficulties he had to contend with, or the privations he had to endure, the fervour of his zeal excited him to unremitting exertion in the great work to which he had devoted himself. Engaged in the awful work of the Christian ministry, and having

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