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[p. 14] While on another visit to Ireland, Wesley married the young man to ‘the fine young woman to whom he was engaged’ and gave them his own copy of the Sacred Book, writing a presentation clause above his own name, already written on the fly-leaf. Through all their lives those young people prized their wedding gift and after the widow's death it passed on to her two nieces. Then the question came up, which should be its possessor? After consideration, one said,‘Give me that leaf with Wesley's autograph and you can have the Bible,’ and it was so decided. The young woman that had the Bible married a Methodist man and with him came to America, finding a home in Milford. Years had rolled away, and in 1857, she, then advanced in years, still had John Wesley's Bible, but what became of the detached leaf and autograph writing no one could tell. The good old lady did well when she gave that book to her pastor in whose face and voice she recognized a countryman. During fifty-eight years he carefully guarded it, using it from time to time, telling of its story, pondering in his own mind of its disposition and at last found a solution of his problem. After his retirement he attended the public worship at Malden center church, where Rev. Lauress J. Birney was pastor, and to whom the presence of ‘Father Best’ was always helpful. While Dr. Birney was Dean of the School of Theology, Boston University, he was in 1920 elected to the Episcopacy. Before departing to his distant field of work (Shanghai, China) he called to pay his respects to the venerable brother in the ministry. While there ‘Father’ Best placed in his hands the old timeworn copy of the Holy Book he had cherished for nearly sixty years. Can we imagine the bishop's feelings on receiving such a token? Probably much the same as the giver's long years before, when he received it and heard its story. John Wesley is credited with the saying, ‘The ’
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