Imatges de pÓgina


In the early part of 1832, the writer of the following memorial translated from the

Semeur,” a short biographical account of Felix Neff. That account was inserted in the Congregational Magazine for April; and having excited considerable interest, he at once formed the design of collecting materials for a more extended memoir.

Before Mr. Gilly's work on the same subject appeared, he had actually announced his intention, and made a rough sketch of the greater part of the following pages. The publication of that volume, however, rather added decision to his design than otherwise, inasmuch as it appeared to him extremely defective, not merely with regard to some of the important occurrences in the life of Neff, but more especially as to those views of theology, to the influence of which, there

can be no doubt, we owe much of that ardent zeal, and those various and incessant labours, by which the pastor of the Higher Alps was so eminently distinguished.

Mr. Gilly's account of the early religious history of Neff appeared short and unsatisfactory; and the very extensive revival, of which he was the highly honoured instrument, he found, was spoken of as a mere improvement; whilst the numerous meetings for prayer and mutual exhortation established by him, and of whose importance he was, to the last hour of his existence, a most decided advocate, were condemned, or, at most, spoken of in the language of doubt and suspicion. Besides other circumstances, which acted as a stimulus to the present undertaking, but which it is unnecessary to enumerate, the dying experience of Neff, and the influence of religion upon his mind at that most trying period of human exist: ence, appeared to occupy a much too contracted space.

The writer of the present volume wishes particularly to express his obligations to Messrs. Bost and Guers, of Geneva, for the readiness with which they communicated

« AnteriorContinua »