previous next
[p. 80]

In 1846 a rupture occurred in the second congregational parish, and Galen James again led a colony to a new church home. The causes of disagreement were more personal and perhaps more bitter than in 1823. Conference after conference was held in private, trying to adjust matters, at some of which neighboring clergymen were present, but none of these were public or reported on the records of the churches. It has been said that the slavery question was at the root of this withdrawal, but one of the few remaining original members of the Mystic Church whose father was a strong antislavery man does not give that reason, and I am informed of strong abolitionists who remained in the old church and of one rabid pro-slavery man who was a prominent member of the new one. The church building was too small for the growing congregation if all the members attended service there, but many were growing dissatisfied, joining other denominations, and withdrawing their support. Deacon James, a Trinitarian through and through, desiring the growth of his denomination in Medford, and thinking that the town could support two churches of the seating capacity of the first, conceived the idea of forming a new parish. This was carried out, and a new building completed in 1849.

To this new fold came many who had been wandering in other pastures, and the unyielding but pacific deacon saw his second church-child grow and flourish.

Upon Deacon James were hurled many anathemas. He was called ‘Pope James,’ and his associates ‘come-outers,’ and friendships were strained between old neighbors and life-long friends. The animosity was fostered by those outside the churches who were enemies of Mr. James on account of his total abstinence and anti-slavery principles. But in a few years the pastors of the two churches were exchanging pulpits, the two congregations were worshiping together during the summer, first in one church and then in the other, and the founder of both lived to see them united again and the old sores healed.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Galen James (5)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1849 AD (1)
1846 AD (1)
1823 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: