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inform you, that after all you have already suffered, our most arduous endeavours for the happy settlement of your congregation have once more proved abortive, to the universal grief of ministers and spectators, by the unaccountable keenness of the country elders to humble metropolitan congregations, as they are termed ; in spite of the plain, manly, and honest declaration made by the worthy object of your regard, that, owing to deaths, and other alterations which had taken place since he was settled in Newtown, he was willing to be removed. The Synod, in testimony of their sincere sympathy, are to send up the Rev. Mr. Dick, of Queensferry, with all convenient speed; and have also appointed some members to write to you.”
Matters could not continue for any length of time in such a dubious and painful state, and there was every ground to expect Mr. Waugh's speedy translation from Newtown. The congregation of Wells Street had set their hearts most ardently and unanimously on obtaining him for their pastor, and steadfastly persevered, notwithstanding the great discouragements they had experienced, in prosecuting their claims before the Synod. A third call from this congregation was laid before the Presbytery and sustained on the 19th March, 1782. At the same time, a call to him from the congregation of Bristo Street, Edinburgh, was also brought forward ; but when the two calls came before the Synod, some mismanagement or informality prevented their being brought into direct and open competition; and that of Bristo Street was ultimately withdrawn, after sundry discussions, chiefly on points of form, in which the generality of our readers could take but little interest. In the meanwhile, the question was finally discussed in Synod, whether Mr. Waugh should be translated to London or continued in Newtown; and the commissioners on each side, and also Mr. Waugh, having previously been fully heard, “ after prayer for the Lord's direction and overruling of the decision to his own glory and the good of all concerned,” the votes were taken, when it was carried in favour of Wells Street; and the Presbytery of Edinburgh was appointed to admit him, as speedily as possible, to the charge of the said church. This decision was accordingly carried into effect at Dalkeith on 30th May, 1782; on which occasion the Rev. Mr. Lowe, of Biggar, being moderator, preached from Psalm lxxi. 16, “ I will go in the strength of the Lord God.”
There can be no doubt whatever, that the subject of this memoir, with a mind constituted like his, by being translated to London, was raised to a sphere where his exertions have been far more extensively influential in advancing the general interests of the kingdom of Christ, than they could have been had he presided over any church in Scotland, however respectable or numerous.
He preached at Newtown for the last time on May 5, 1782, the Sabbath preceding the meeting of Synod at which he was translated to Wells Street: his text was in 1 John, iv. 8. And on 19th May he preached at Stitchell; and it being
understood that he would not again preach in the country prior to his departure for London, a great number of his old congregation attended, though it was about twelve miles distant. His text that day was from Eph. v. 2.
After the lapse of nearly half a century, it is pleasant to find that his memory is still cherished with grateful recollections, and that his name is never mentioned at Newtown, or in the adjacent country, but in terms of high esteem and regard, though few of his congregation, who were at that period church members, now survive. A pious and very aged woman gives the following simple narrative :
“I was under great distress of mind on account of my husband's death, who was suddenly taken from me by a fever, and left me with three helpless children. I went to hear Mr. Waugh, who was then minister of the Burgher congregation of Newtown. He preached on the words : · These are they that have come out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. The sermon had such a powerful effect on my mind, that it disburdened it of that sadness and gloom which had hung over me since my husband's death : I then became a constant hearer at his meeting-house. His ministrations were greatly blessed at that place. He once preached a very alarming sermon on that text: ‘But they made light of it.' These were some of his expressions: 'I take witnesses this day, the stones and the timber of this house, that I have made offer to you of the great salva
tion purchased for you by Jesus Christ. If it should be asked me on the great day, Did you make offer to these poor sinners of the great salvation of the Gospel ? I shall be constrained to say, Yes, Lord; but they made light of it. The last sermon he preached at Newtown was on these words : • God is love.' He once used an expression in prayer about the love of Christ, which,” said she, weeping, “ I have never fora gotten: 'It is deep as the grave in which he lay, high as the heaven to which he ascended, ancient as eternity, and lasting as the interests of your immortal souls.'”
A respectable member of the congregation, now residing in Peebles, has also favoured us with a few notices regarding his ministrations at Newtown:-“During the time Mr. Waugh remained there, the church was always full. Many respectable individuals in the neighbourhood, belonging to the established church, regularly attended his ministry, and would have become connected with the Secession bad he continued. There was a general impression on the minds of the people, that he would not be permitted to remain long with them. Each Sabbath he had a new text; and always finished his subject, not only to the admiration of those who heard it at the time, but even at this distant period his method of preaching is spoken of with delight by those of his hearers who still survive. The Lord's Supper was only dispensed once during his ministry at Newtown: it was attended by a great multitude, from the surrounding congregations of Selkirk, Stow, Stitchell, Kelso, and Jedburgh. His action sermon was on Ephesians, i. 7, and made a very deep impression on all who heard it. His directions after the table services were greatly admired. The individual who furnishes this information was one of the hearers, and distinctly recollects the introduction to the address, which was in the following words: ‘My brethren, is there a reality in religion? Yes, there is : but supposing there were no reality, still we, the professors of it, have the advantage of others. It makes us better meinbers of society, better husbands, better wives, better parents and better children, better servants and better masters, and happier in all our relations in life. He then entered into a proof and illustration of religion, as revealed in the Gospel, and confirmed by the glory of the Lamb in heaven; and concluded that part of the service in a manner never before witnessed in so young a person. Mr. Coventry, of Stitchell, under whom he was brought up, was assisting at the sacrament, and present when that address was given; and on retiring to take refreshment, he said to some individuals that were with him, “O what lofty expressions! what exalted views of the perfections of the Almighty! O what a bright star this young man promises to be !