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forgiveness of all my former follies and transgressions ; for although I have been abandoned and disobedient to your commands, I am now in great hopes that you will have the pleasure of saying by me, as the Prodigal's father said by him, for this my child was dead, and is alive ; she was loft and is found.
I am now almost ready to think with the Psalmist, that it is good for me that I have been in trouble, that I may learn the statutes of my Creator ; for in this blessed Asylum, I have the best opportunity I ever had of improving myself in the principles of religion, which is an advantage of a moft weighty importance. We have in this manfion two sermons preached every Sunday, and prayers twice a day in the week, besides private prayers read every night by our most worthy matron and governess, whose good example and æconomy have been of infinite service both to me and others; and I make no doubt but that her conduct will prove to be of great help towards the conversion of many of us unhappy women. Here is in this house upwards of 130 unfortunate young women, the greatest part of which, since they have been here, have had the good success of obtaining the pardon and reconciliation of their friends : but, for my part, I am quite forlorn and forsaken by you and all my relations ; though indeed, when I look back on my past ill-spent life, I cannot help reflecting greatly on my own misconduct, and I almost despair of ever been admitted any more into your favour. But when I consider that you are my father, it gives me encouragement to hope, that you will exert that affection to me, which is due from a parent to a child, tho’I own I am unworthy of the least of your favours, by reason that I have offended you in several
respects in the worst manner that a child could do ; and I am fincerely sorry for the same, and I should be glad if it was in my power to call the time back, which is paft; but that is an impo libility : therefore, all that re. mains now in my power to do, is to bewail my follies, and to be penitent and sorrowful for my fins; which I am, from my very heart ; and there is nothing wanting to compleat my happiness, but your pardon and forgivenels, without which I shall be the most unhappy creature in the world : therefore I entreat you, my dear father, to take my case into consideration, as you are sensible how uncertain a thing life is : think with yourself what a melancholy thing it would be if it should please God to take either of us out of the world before we are reconciled to each other; for I am very sensible, that was I to hear of your death, it would prove of fatal consequence to me. I should not have refrained so long from writing to you, but that about three months ago Mr.
- was here to see me, and told me that he would write to you, and that he would call of me again as soon as he had received an answer from you : but I have not seen or heard any thing of him since, which has given me an inexpressible concern and uneasiness ; therefore I hope you will excuse my long filence, and not ftile me ungrateful in not writing to you sooner. Pray be fo good as to communicate the contents of this letter to my Jear aunt į and at the same time inform her, that these are the true sentiments of a reformed and contrite heart : and I conclude with my prayers to the Almighty to instil into your heart a sincere pardon and forgivenefs for all my former misduings and offences; which Pardon, when once obtained, will be the means of compleating my happiness in this world, and of giving me a satisfactory and quiet mind to prepare myself for the
world to come. I should be extremely glad if you would send some person of reputation to see me, and to inspect into my character ; and I hope my present and future behaviour will encourage you once more to contract a correspondence with your only child. And I remain between hopes and despair, with my most submissive duty to you and my aunt,
Your much reformed, truly penitent
And dutiful daughter. P.S. I hope you will not make any delay in writing to me, as I shall not be easy until I have heard from you.
E Mboldened by the kind notice you was pleased to
take of me, when Mrs.
favoured me last with a visit, I venture to attempt a task I am much unworthy to perform, that of paying my respects to you, When I reflect how great the contrast between the person wrote to, and the unworthy writer, it fills me with horror ; I could wish to bury in everlasting oblivion my paft unhappy year, and dedicate my future to atone, if poffible, for the ills my unhappy conduct has occafioned in my family, in giving so much pain unto my near and dear relatives ; which is the resolution of a heart truly sensible (I hope I may fay) of my past errors. But words are too faint to express the praise the Gentleman de serves who was the first author of this retirement, for protection of the unhappy. I have a great favour to
which is to intercede for me to calm the angry brow of that friend to whose care my dear child is intrufted, and beg it as the greatest boon they can grant me, to suffer me to be acquainted, by your means, how the dear little innocent does; that would greatly C4
add to my content in this voluntary retirement ; I know, dear Madam, one of your good sense is not at a loss to judge of the tender ties of nature ; therefore, oh madam, think what I must feel in my recollected hour !- But I must quit this subject, finding myself unequal to the task, and all the unhappy mother is rising in my heart. It is you must speak my sentiments, and breathe for me my fighs, in hopes to soften. I hope, dear Madam, you will favour me with an answer ; but I don't dare to dispute your goodness, and beg you will accept me as one who will, with God's grace, ftudy to be all you can wish me to be in my future conduct, and beg leave to subscribe myself,
Your most obedient and
Obliged humble Servant, L E T TER VI. Prom M. - ta the Treasurer, on her dismiffion, being ra.
ceived home by her Niother, Honoured Sir,
Aving frequently experienced your good nature, I
Aatter myself you'll pardon this intrusion, when I affure you, it is with the highest sense of gratitude I return you my most sincere thanks for the many favours I have received through your exemplary goodness, and the kind indulgence of all my worthy benefactors, during tyo years seclusion from the world ; which has been the happy means of bringing me to a reconciliation with my ever honoured Mother, and to a just state of mind, and a true sense of my duty to my too much offended God, for which I am at a loss for words to pay back the grati. tude I owe you,
All I can say is, may the all gracious God grant you a long continuance of happy years, and when you quit the stage of this mortal life, may your soul enter into a happy blissful eternity: which will always be the constant prayers of, honoured Sir,
Your inuch obliged, and ever dutifuļ
L Ε Τ Τ Ε R VII.
From the Brother of one of the Women.
Magdalen-House in Goadman's Fields.
addrefled. THanks are the only return he can make you, and
prayers for your present and everlasting felicity ; these, so long as he lives, will be offered to, and for you. You have been, I humbly trust, the beneficent inftruments of preserving a Sister of mine from eternal ruin ; I dwell not upon the deplorable situation she was reduced to, with regard to this life, tho' when she solicited the favour of your protection, nothing surely could be more miseraðle ; pardon a brother's silence on that head, whore foul once covered with shame, now rejoices, that by your goodness, Gentlemen, and the care, pains and tenderness of you, Madam, he can view a fifter with such delight, as did the father his distrest returning prodigal : she is now restored (I pray heaven the conviction may be real, and its influence lasting) to a sense of her past misery, a thankfulness of heart to you and heaven, to the affection of her friends, and may, thro' divine grace, become an useful member of society, an honour to that inftitution, by which she has been reclaimed, and (God grant it) an inhabitant of heaven. I am, with the deepeft sense of gratitude, Gentlemen and Madam,
Your most obliged and
most obedient servant. L E T TE VIII.
From to her Husband. THE HE task I am going to attempt is so difficult, that
with trembling heart and pen I begin, well knowing how justly I have deserved your displeasure ; but