|Stewart, Frances to Rev. Robert Taylor, 1847
|Revisiting Our Forest Home_The immigrant letters of Frances Stewart [J. L. Aoki]
|Douro Township, Newcsatle District, Upper Canada
|Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
|Rev. Robert Taylor
|1847: September 2020
To Reverend Robert J.C. Taylor, Peterborough, Ontario
My dear Mr. Taylor
I am so desirous & impatient to remove from your mind an impression
which has caused me much sorrow & weighed on my mind so heavily
that I can no longer defer writing you a few lines of explanation in hopes
of proving to you that you were misinformed on some points & I am
deeply grieved to-find you could allowed your mind self to be so much
thus influenced misled by a report or misrepresentation.
On your last visit to my lamented husband on the Friday evening
your agitated manner & some expressions you made use of about
"intruding" puzzled us all & grieved & vexed the dear invalid deeply. He
could not understand how the visit of a clergyman at such a time or at
any time could be considered an intrusion but he was too weak then to
seek an explanation & you made your visit in so hurried a manner there
was no time for it. A few days after your note to me confirmed me in the
most painful certainty that you considered you had been slighted by us &
some other clergyman preferred and summoned to attend the death bed
of our venerable & beloved friend.
Dear Mr. Taylor, do believe me this was not the case. On the contrary
it was always the nearest wish of his heart to consider & to find you, our
Spiritual pastor, advisor and friend, and his, in truth, greatest & constant source of regret was that you never came to visited us in this character.
On the Sunday afternoon when you came here along with Mr.
Ferguson you saw how very ill he was. He was then under the influence
of fever, restless & uneasy in body & confused in mind. Still to his latest
hour here below his most earnest & first concern was for the Salvation of
his immortal Soul & the Souls of all Mankind. His earnest desire & prayer
to God was indeed that all might be saved & his anxiety sincere & fervent
prayers were also most particularly offered for you my valued friend as
our clergyman & as a minister of the Gospel of Christ our Saviour. You said in your note to me that another clergyman had notice
of his illness or had offered assistance and you hinted that advice &
assistance had been sought for from some other clergyman. This was
nnt the case. You were the first who heard of his illness & came to
his bedside & he felt happy at seeing you & he & all of us would have
been grateful if you could have come more frequently & given him the
comforts of Prayer, Scripture reading or Serious conversation which
he constantly & urgently cried for during the two or three last days of
Mr. Rogers was not in Peterboro till a few days before his death.
When Anne Reid called in & asked her uncle if he would like to see him
he answered, "Oh yes!' — surely." He always had a sincere regard for Mr.
Rogers as a Christian minister & friend & enjoyed his society & conversation most particularly as it generally turned upon serious subjects
which for the last year interested him more than any other. Mr. Rogers
did come on Thursday I think but the dear subject of this letter was so
restless & ill that he could not benefit much by his visit. These are times
when the heart seems open to receive the only true & solid consolation
that can be given & naturally withdrawn as much as possible from the
trifling vexations of life & believe me my ever dear friend that it never
occurred to us that you could feel hurt at any of us for receiving a visit so kindly paid & so kindly meant & at such a time.
You were well acquainted with the universal benevolence of his
heart & his wish to promote union & unity amongst Christians of all
denominations. He admired Mr. Rogers as a Christian & for this reason
he bespoke a pew in addition lately made to the Scotch Church but he
never intended to leave our own church where he found its devotions as
he said, those of the Catholic Christian Church of England. I think he
said this to you about the last time he spoke distinctly to you just as you
left his bedside. He called it out loud.
Forgive me my dear Mr. Taylor if I have encroached too far on your
time or attention but it was a subject too near my heart to be touched
I regret to hear that you are suffering so much from hurting your
leg & that your family are like my own, still afflicted with this tedious & obstinate fever. We have now four invalids though none of them are very.
seriously ill & I hope all in both houses may soon be quite well.
I shall be sincerely happy to see you or my dear Mrs. Taylor whenever
you can come up but I know how difficult it is for either her or you
to leave home.
With every feeling of sincere regard & affection for you & dear Mrs.
Taylor & your family, Believe me dear Mr. Taylor
Yours E Stewart