--The Methodist Conference of Virginia
assembled at Alexandria
on Wednesday morning, Bishop Paine
We extract the following from a report of its proceedings:
The Conference agreed to sit with open doors during the examinations, which were accordingly proceeded with, as follows:
D. S. Doggett, D. D.
, Presiding Elder of the Richmond District
.--Within his district extensive revivals of religion had taken place, and all the enterprises of the Church
had met with average success.
The city of Richmond
was, he thought, decidedly advanced, and promised to become second to few cities in the South
Two elegant Southern Methodist Churches had recently been erected there, making in all five first-class stations in the city.
He regretted a falling off in the class meeting system, which he thought in an almost hopelessly declining condition.
He regretted this state of things, for he felt that upon these instrumentalities depended, to a great degree, the vitality and peculiarity of the Church
He knew of no remedy, and desired, in opening, to express the wish that the Presiding Elders
would speak especially upon this subject.
Rev. Mr. Cowles
asked if it was not the duty of Presiding Elders to lead class meetings in their Districts?.
Rev. Dr. Doggett
did not think it was. He thought that the duties of the different classes of the ministers of the Church
were well defined, and he believed that the great ends of the Church
could be best obtained by each one doing his whole duty within the limits of his work.
Rev. Mr. Cowles
thought that Wesley and Asbury
had lead class meetings, and that it would be well for all preachers to follow their example.
Rev. Dr. Doggett
said that he had held class many times as pastor, but never as Presiding Elder.
Rev. Mr. Bennett
bore testimony of the zeal, ability, and efficiency of Dr. Doggett
as Presiding Elder of his District.
He believed he had injured his health by devotion to duty.
Rev. James A. Duncan
also remarked upon the exceeding acceptability with which Dr. Doggett
had discharged the duties of his office Dr. Doggett
's character was passed.
As the name of each of the following preachers was called, testimony was borne of their usefulness, as follows:
Rev. W. H. Wheelwright
--during the past year had suffered much affliction; was an estimable man. During the year there had been no revival of religion in his charge, but he is much endeared to the people among whom he has been laboring — passed.
Geo. W. Nolley
— done good service during the past year in his charge — passed.
J. R. Waggoner
, J. M. Saunders
, and S. I. Moorman
— all labored well, and passed — the latter as a supernumerary.
John D. Blackwell
— notwithstanding great discouragements, has labored well; a man of fine attainments, who has done his duty faithfully — passed.
H. W. Bellman
— received in the Conference last year — sent to Wesley Chapel
He preached until April, during which month he was taken sick, and after a few weeks spent to recuperate, returned again to his labor, and died at his post, as a Christian man should die. Rev. Robert B. Beadles
paid a tribute to the memory of the deceased.
After an inquiry as to the support of two children left behind by the deceased minister, the examination of character was resumed as follows:
James A. Duncan
— has built a new church--ranks among the first preachers of the city of Richmond
, labors very acceptably and has done much good — passed.
Rev. W. W. Bennett
--labored most acceptably and been the recipient of a Bible from his congregation at the close of his pastorship, and his labors have been blessed.
, now in Europe
A letter from him was read, stating that he felt it necessary to remain in Europe
until May next.
As a Southern preacher, he had met with but little sympathy, except among his own relatives.--He had, however, taken occasion to disabuse the minds of many persons in relation to slavery, and had not been without good results following his preaching.
Leave was granted Mr. Bailey
to remain in Europe
until the 1st of May.
said he had much less time to preach than he desired.
He had, however, expressed the great desire within him to prosecute at all times the work of the ministry.--Passed.
E. P. Wilson
, suffering under disease of the throat, and had been advised to remove to Florida
And after a short recess, to allow a meeting of the Conference Missionary Society
, the Conference, at 1 o'clock, adjourned.