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4 October 1861, Phillip Lee Catesby Jones to Alice Harrison
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October th 4 1861
Dear Ms. Harrison
Your interesting letter did not [reach?] me, [until?] yesterday, or it would have been more prompmtly answered, as it is ever my [purpose?] to afford [?] but in the [slightes?] degree consolation to the Bereaved. I am sure my being with our greatly lamented [Mr. Carter H.?] Harrison that solemn, memorable, night, to his last moments, (Thursday July the 18th 1861 was Providential, for my feelings and [anxieties?] for him were intense, not like as to a Stranger, but as a Brother. Indeed the solumn [... or Divine ?] influences which seem present there gave me to realise, that with him, there "was one who sticketh nearer than a Brother". [proverbs 18:24] [This?] I felt assured as I was not absent from him to the very last [moments?], [not ten minutes?], neither did I want to be absent, nor eat nor slept, nor was in want of Either, as the Room was obliged to be kept perfectly quiet with every human means which the earthly [physician?] could command. The wound seemed to me, to be mortal, yet all human instrumentalities, were made use of for the restoration of your dear Husband, and our sorely lamented Major Harrison, now fervently did hope and desire that it might have been my privilege to have written that he was convalescent, but as [...] Divinde Master hath ordained other wise, we must submit [...] yield "as the clay in the hands of the potter". [Jeremiah 18:6] Oh! That we could feel like [this?] language implies, "I was dumb I opened" not my mouth, because thou didst it." [Psalm 39:9]
Marvelous are his ways, and purposes with his devoted humble followers - our fallible reasoning is unavailable - yet we do desire consolation under the heaviest bereavements under the heaviest afflictions from our Divinely Inspired writings, in which we are tough and maybe assured that these afflictions will be sanctified, that all, all, that befalls us here on Earth will be yet,- seen and felt to have been requisite for our spiritual advantage our growth in grace, tending to wean our too ardent attachment for any thing in this brief uncertain life... As our blessed Lord said "What I do, thou knowest not now, but shalt know hereafter, when we shall see eye to eye." [John 13:7] that [all however?] heartrending at the present, shall work for the best and everlasting advantage of al who walk uprightly."
The Apostle too consoles us, as to our dear departed Friebnds, "saying I would not have you Bretheren, to be ignorant concerning those who are asleep, that you sorrow not as those without a hope, and hope maketh not ashame because the love of god is shed [abraid?] in your heart.