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THE RELIEF OF THE WIDOWS OF GOSPEL MINISTERS
OP DIFFERENT DENOMINATIONS.
TRUSTEES AND STATED CONTRIBUTORS: Rev. T. Adkins, Southampton.
Rev. T. Lewis, Islington. W. L. Alexander, D.D., Edinburgh.
J. Morison, D.D., LL.D., Brompton. J. Alexander, Norwich.
C. Morris, London. J. Arundel, London.
J. Parsons, York. J. Bennett, D.D, London.
J. Paterson, D.D., Edinburgh. T. Binney, London.
G. Payne, LL.D., Plymouth.
J. Raban, Bethnal-green.
T. Raffles, D.D., LL.D., Liverpool.
G. Redford, LL D., Worcester. J. Clayton, A.M., Tunbridge Wells.
A. Reed, D.D., London. G. Clayton, Walworth.
J. Reynolds, Halstead. T. Craig, Bocking.
W. Rooker, London. S. Curwen, Reading.
H. J. Roper, Bristol. T. East, Birmingham.
J. Sherman, Surrey Chapel. R. Elliott, Devizes.
J. Smart, M.A., Leith. W. Ellis, Hoddesdon.
J.P Smith, D.D., LL.D., P.R S., Homerton. J. Ely, Leeds.
G. Smith, Poplar. R. Fletcher, Manchester.
C. F. Steinkopff, D.D., London. J.J. Freeman, London,
W. H. Stowell, Rotherham. J. Gilbert, Nottingham.
J. Stratten, Paddington. R. Halley, D.D., Manchester.
T. Stratten, Hull. J. N. Goulty, Brighton.
J. Styles, D.D., Foleshill. J. Harris, D.D., Cheshunt College.
s. Thodey, Cambridge. E. Henderson, D.D., Highbury.
P. Thomson, M.A., Chatham. J. Hunt, Brixton.
A. Tidman, London. J. A. James, Birmingham.
H. Townley, London, W. Jay, Bath.
W. Urwick, D.D., Dublin. J. Jefferson, Stoke Newington.
R. Vaughan, D.D., Lancashire College. T. W. Jenkyn, D.D., Coward College.
R. Wardlaw, D.D., Glasgow. R Knill, Wotton-under-Edge.
A. Wells, Clapton. W. Legge, B.A., Reading.
M. Wilks, Paris. J. Leifchild, D.D., London.
J. Young, A.M., London.
VOL. XXV. NEW SERIES.
It is now Fifty-four years and a half since the first number of the Evangelical Magazine was issued from the Press. It commanded, at once, a numerous circle of Readers; and was hailed by thousands of devout and catholic men as an omen for good to the Christian cause.
In their Preface for 1793, the Founders of the Work justly observed, that “Thousands read a Magazine, who have neither money to purchase, nor leisure to peruse, large volumes,” and since that period, the growing demand for periodical literature has abundantly confirmed the truth of their remark, and proved that they clearly discerned “the signs of the times” upon which Divine Providence had cast their lot. To the public spirit which they evinced, in originating and establishing a Religious Periodical which drew around it the generous sympathies of enlightened and fervent Christians throughout the world, we are indebted for a large portion of that zeal and energy which has since been infused into the periodical literature of the age. They demonstrated the problem, that a Magazine fearlessly devoted to the interests of vital godliness and Catholic Christianity, might be made to outstrip in circulation, the then existing organs of High Church bigotry, Socinian Heresy, and unblushing Infidelity. The example has been pregnant with benefit to mankind; and every day affords fresh evidence of the fact, that a cheap and well-regulated Periodical Press is a mighty engine for the advancement of society, the counteraction of error and ungodlinese, and the progress of pure and primitive Christianity.
Amidst the competitions which we have in some measure aided to create, we are thankful to feel assured, after the lapse of half a century, that we stand as well with the Religious Public as at any former period in our history. Our extensive Correspondence leaves us no reason to doubt as to the hold we retain of some of the best portions of the great Christian community of this country. We hope we may say, without presumption, that we have steadily aimed to deserve well of the wise and the good. We can point to our pages as evidence of our continued watchfulness over the hallowed interests of truth, and holiness, and charity. And if we do not greatly mistake, we may refer to them with equal confidence, in proof of the intellectual vigour which distinguishes many of our Essays, Reviews, and articles of Religious Intelligence. As the Work circulates largely among the humbler classes in society, we are constrained to avoid all that is abstruse, elaborate, and, in the strict sense of the term, critical; but we make our appeal to the Number which we now introduce to our Readers, and ask, without misgiving, whether it will not bear an honourable comparison with any of the cheap Magazines of the month?
When we reflect on the great benefits which have accrued to the cause of Religion and Humanity from the circulation of the Evangelical Magazine, we cannot but feel that its claim for support, on all the friends of the Gospel, is peculiarly strong. Its conductors have endeavoured to serve them all in turn, with as little of sectarian bias as comported with a due regard to integrity and transparency of conduct; and if, at times, they have been compelled to enter the field of controversy with any of their brethren, it has been by the stern and resistless dictates of duty and conscience. They have no delight in the antagonism of religious strife and debate ; but as they are “set for the defence of the Gospel,” they have felt that they were bound “to contend earnestly for the faith once delivered unto the saints," and generally to uphold the vital interests of truth and righteousness.