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‘ [281] good;’ and hence he was a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and was frequent in attendance at its meetings, and was also a conspicuous figure at nearly every public and private entertainment given in the city.

He was a man of great public spirit, lending his influence and presence to any and every measure instituted in the community for the advancement of good or the suppression of vice, and was ever ready with his talents, time and purse to contribute to the promotion of the public weal.

He thus, in earnest desire and in sympathetic contact, saw many phases of character, and could realize contingent want as might no other minister of the Gospel, who followed beaten paths.

And Dr. Hoge had the faculty of using these experiences in his sermons with marvelous tact and taste.

He was really a born leader of men. He knew how to harmonize and tranquilize the conflicting elements with which he was brought in contact, as well, if not better, than any other man I have ever known, and this characteristic may doubtless account, in a great degree, for a fact which he often referred to with pride and pleasure: That, in the more than fifty years pastorate of one church, there was never a disturbing element or wrangling of any kind in that church.

His taste of manner and expression was even more wonderful, if possible, than his tact in guiding and controlling men. I never heard him say or knew him to do anything in the pulpit that was not almost rigidly clerical, and his taste of expression far surpassed that of any speaker I ever heard.

I have heard this remarked on frequently by some of the best scholars and critics in this country, and it has been a common thing to hear it said of him that he always said the right thing, at the right time and in the right way. He had the best command of language of any man that I ever heard, and could express the most delicate shades of meaning with a fidelity and aptness that was simply wonderful.

I cannot better illustrate the impression made by his preaching on those who were competent to judge, than by relating what was told of himself by a distinguished preacher, in a distant city, who had invited Dr. Hoge to preach for him.

He said that when Dr. Hoge arose in the pulpit, and (as was his wont) looked over the congregation, looking first in front of him, then on one side and finally on the other, he thought to himself: ‘Jones, that man is sick; you will have to preach to-day.’ That

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Moses D. Hoge (3)
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