Interesting religious News from the soldiers.
We have been permitted to see some of the letters addressed to the Baptist Colportage Board located in this city, by their olporetenrs among the soldiers, from which we extract a few interesting sentences.
Rev. C. F. Fry
writes from the Greenbrier
"I have visited most of the encampments in the Valley
and could have sold more than $100 worth of books a month, if my assortment had been larger, especially if I could have had a good supply of Testaments.
A captain said to me, 'I am a sinner, and wish you to select some books to suit my case.' I did so; and at night he called his men into line and asked me to pray for them.
Another captain seemed much interested on the subject of religion.--I tried to explain to him the way to be saved, and in a few days I heard of his fighting bravely at Manassas
I have prayer and exhortation meetings frequently, which are well attended, and often tears flow from eyes unused to weep, while I point them to the Lamb of God."
Mr. J. C. Clopton
has been spending all his time among the sick and wounded in and around Charlottesville
"This is a most inviting field, as hundreds are here on beds of suffering, and consequently disposed to consider the things that make for their peace.
The deepest feeling is often manifested; they listen to what I say, and read with great eagerness the tracts and books I give them."
Rev. R. W. Cridlin
, after having visited all the encampments between Aquia Creek
and Matthias Point, has been transferred to Norfolk city, where he is selling some sixty dollars worth of books a month, besides giving away one-half that amount.
"I visited Craney Island
last Saturday; Col. Smith
, who has charge of the forces there, is a pious man, and has prayers with his men every night.
He seemed glad to have me labor among his command, and will doubtless render me any aid I may need."
Mr. M. D. Anderson
writes from Aquia Creek
"I have gone nearly through the regiments stationed between Fredericksburg
and the Creek
The soldiers are eager for religious reading; and frequently, when they have seen me coming, they have even run to meet me, exclaiming--'Have you any Testaments?' Much of my time has been spent with the sick, in the hospitals, where, often times my heart was made to rejoice, at witnessing the sustaining power of Christianity, in those who were struggling with the last enemy.
One, with whom I had often conversed on personal religion, was sick — nigh unto death; I stood by him, but doubted the propriety of speaking at last he fixed his eyes upon me, and said--'Talk to me about Jesus.' I asked if the Lord
was with him, and he replied--'yes, with me, and that to bless.
I know that my Redeemer liveth, ' &c. Another remarked to me that, at home, he had been a prominent member of the church; but that since he had been in camp he had wandered off and brought reproach upon his profession, but that this sickness, from which he was then suffering, had been blessed to his soul, and that he should, with Divine help, live a new life, and consecrate himself to the cause of God.
I have been able to supply many with the Bible
, especially as the President
of the Christian Association in Fredericksburg
had given me a fine lot of Bibles."
The above is a specimen of the interesting letters from those who labor for the souls of soldiers.
Never were there collected, on this earth, men who would so likely be influenced for good by such pious labors as the men who now defend Virginia
Trained from their infancy to believe the Bible
, fresh from the pure influences of the domestic circle, the family altar, the Sabbath school, the prayer meeting, and the sanctuary, they present a most inviting field for Christian effort — a field into which, we rejoice to know, the men of God are entering that they may gather sheaves unto eternal life.