Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

8 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



THE LATE MR. GREENWAY, J.P.. PONTYPOOL. MEMORIAL SBRVrCE. | A deeply impressive service in memory of the I late Mf. R. G-reerrway. J.P., Pontypool, was held at the Wesleyan Chapel, High-street, on Sunday wreniag last. There was a crowded congregation ¡ present, included in which were representatives of the various interests with which the deceased gentleman had so long been identified and of all the churches in the town and district. The front of the pulpit was draped in black. The Rev. Richard Roberts, of London, one of Mr. Greenway's oldest and most intimate friends, conducted the solemn service, which commenced with the singing of the hymn, "Give me the wings of faith to rise." In his prayer, the rev. t gentleman referred to the loss the Wesleyan I Church in that place, and the circuit at large, A had been called upon to sustain by the death of •'•J their departed friend, and invoked the Divine [ blessing that the bereavement might be sancti- fy lied to the spiritual profit of all associated in [ Christian service in the circuit.—The hymn com- S mencing Brief life is here our portion," having '■ iieen sung, the reverend gentleman read as the lessen part of John xiv. Another hymn, What are these arrayed in white," was then sung, I after which The preacher said they were gathered together under a very dark cloud, as in the presence of death, and surrounded by the sad symbols of a great bereavement, Under those solemn circum- stances he felt he could not do better than direct their attention to the blessed condition of those who were at rest with Christ. Selecting as his text I. John iii. 3, We know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is," the reverend gentleman delivered an eloquent and exhaustive' discourse which was listened to with the closest attention. At the close of the sermon he read the follow- ing memoir :— „ death, and surrounded by the sad symbols of a great bereavement, Under those solemn circum- stances he felt he could not do better than direct their attention to the blessed condition of those who were at rest with Christ. Selecting M as his text I. John iii. 3, We know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is," the reverend gentleman delivered an eloquent and exhaustivê discourse M which was listened to with the closest attention. At the close of the sermon he read the follow- t ing mewoir I Our late brother and departed triend Richard Greenway, of Glantorvaen House, Pontvpool, was a native of Bristol, where he was 'born on the 6th day of April, 1820. When quite a lad he came over to P ont-ypool and entered the office of one of the solicitors Mien practising in the town. He was very steady ¥d industrious, and soon worked his way up to a more responsible position in the office. He was he subject of very early religious impressions, for which, under God's blessing, he was greatly udebted to his parents ancfespecially his mother. In the year 1837, when between 16 and 17 years old, he gave his heart to God and became, member of the Wesleyan Methodist Society, then worshipping in the old Crumlin-street Chapel. Among the principal s«p|K>^rs of the Wesleyan cause at that time were the lata Mr. • and Mrs. Thomas Legg, whose only daughter Mr. Greenway married, and who now survives to mourn the sad loss of her dearly beloved and affectionate husband. Mr. and Mrs. Greenway had but one child, a dear and promising boy, Whom God in his inscrutable but infinite wisdom saw best to take home to himself in his infancy. 84 "bereavement was felt very deeply by his sorrowing parents, who were passionately fond of children-indeed, Mr. Greenway, in allusion to this, has frequently been heard to say that for many years after his sou's death he felt |i si strong inclination to take up and kiss every If, "Child he met on the road, and on some occasions If, "Child he met on the road, and on some occasions did so. This affliction, however, it is Relieved, had a sanctifying effect in drawing Mr. jveenway's affections from earthly to heavenly By nature Mr. Greenway was possessed of a brilliant, humorous, and buoyant disposi- » *ttm, which undoubtedly has its dangers, especially "toine the period of youth and it has been thought that this early and sad bereavement may have savlod Mr. Greenway from spiritual ■declension, lioth Mr. and Mrs. Greenway at this early period took a warm interest in Sunday 'School work,an interest which our dear departed friend maintained to the last. During this early period Mr. Greenway was very much indebted in a religious point of view to the godly example and counsel of his father and-mother-in-law, with whom he then and for several years later resided, and especially to dear Mrs. Legg, whose attachment to theWesleyans was very great, and who was herself a thoroughly good and warm- hearted Christian as well as a strong-minded mother in Israel, and whose hospitality made her house for many years a weleome home for v both ministers and local preachers. In this re- spect it may well be said tha G St. Paul's blessing upon the house of Onesiphorus came upon Mr. and Mrs. Legg's house, for by this generous hospitality, Mr. Greenway was from his youth brought into close and loving relationship with very many earnest and godly ministers and otner Christian people, which had an undoubtedly salutory effect upon Mr. Greenway's subsequent character. In the year 1843, Mr. Greenway was articled in the legal profession, and in 1849 he was admitted in the Superior Courts as an and. solicitor. During this period and for some years later, Mr. Greenway's mind be- -came verv much occupied in his professional business, in which he was very successful, still he maintained to a great extent his religious integrity, and became more and more interested in the prosperity of God's cause. In the year 1853, now 38 years ago, Mr. Greenway was elected to the office of circuit steward, which he held up to the time of his decease. It was about this time that he conceived the idea and necessity of erecting a sanctuary more commodious and more worthy of Methodism. The holy and beautiful house where we are now assembled is a testimony to his devotion and liberality. In this undertaking, Mr. Greenway was for a time almost single-handed, and it is marvellous what a vast amount of zeal and perseverance he threw into the project, and which resulted in the erec- tion of this chapel in 1854. The occasion of the opening of this chapel was to Mr. Greenway far more than to any one a time of great joy and tbanksgiving .Amongst the ministers who took part in the opening services, we may mention the names of the Rev. J. Farrar, the then presi- dent of the Conference, Dr. Dixon, the Rev. George Macdonald, and Jthe Rev. Richard, Roberts. These services were crowned with great suceess and gave a new impetus to the ,cause, which began to flourish and prosper—the chapel, including the galleries, being for many years, and ur.til the declension in the iron and coal trade, well filled with attentive hearers. But,whilstMrGreenwav took so deep an interest in the house of God, he had not as yet taken any active part in the conduct of the puolic services of the sanctuary, preferring to leave these sacred duties to', persons twhom he considered better fitted to undertake them. For a time Mr. Green- way's talents for usefulness in church work lay idle, and, according to his own testimony, subse- quently, he for a period lost some ground in his religious life, and had to deplore some wander- ings from God. until about some 25 years ago, ■when it pleased G-ocl to visit him with a very severe and serious illness, which began with ,e spasmodic sthma, and from which he never thoroughly recovered. This affliction was greatly sanctified and blessed to Mr. Greenway, jvno was led more fully to" renounce the world, and to consecrate himself entirely to Gods service. He soon afterwards became a class leader, in which he was eminently successful, and from that time to the day of his death he hardly missed a single meeting (except while from home) during his leadership. For many years prior to this, Mr. Greenway had met in the class conducted by good Father Leonard, who is still .dive and in his 2Gth year, and it is only due to Mr. Greenway to say that it was with rery great reluctance that he permitted Mr. Leonard to retire in his favour. After the illness above referred to, Mr. Green- way also gave himself more fully to the work of the Sunday School, and began to occasionally undertake the sacred duty of a prayer-leader. For these duties, and especially as a leader in prayer, Mr. Greenway possessed a very high order of talents, both intellectually and spiritu- ally, which increased with his growth in the Divine life, until he seemed to live and dwell in the spirit of prayer and grace of supplication having both power with God and men and it has been well remarked that the public prayers of his later years will never be forgotten by those who were privileged to hear them. One of his best-loved means of grace was the Sunday morning prayer meeting, of which for many years he took the conduct both during winter and summer. Here Mr. Greenway often seemed to be consciously wrestling with the angel of the covenant, and gracious answers to his prayers richly descended on those, present. Among other bequests far the church, the school, and the world, Mr. Greenway of ten asked God to give them in the early Sunday moaning u a meal that would last all day," and this prayer was frequently both heard and answered. It is felt that it Is impos- sible within the compass of this sketch to even- touch upon a great deal of the useful and im- portant work and services which Mr. Greenway tendered to the cause of religion, as also to the progress and advancement of all that related to best interests of the town and neighbour- hood id which he lived. But it is right that we should refer to his unfailing love for, and in- terest in, the Foreign Wesleyan Methodist Mis- sionary Society. During the last 40 or 50 years he has given to this society by special contribu- aotis a. total sum of £ 1,100, m his ordinary gifts in public collections, and now he has given the missions a legacy of £ 500 under his will. He also contributed 100 guineas for himself and Mrs. Greenway to the Thanksgiving Vk i- ^ee<^ may truly be said that his uberaiity eTery good cause was proverbial; and 1Il this service as in other ways we devoutly thank God, who enabled him thus to shew his faith by his works. Another important feature in Mr. Greenway's character was his undeviating punc- tuality in his attendance at all the means of *rece. as well as in all his secular engagements. It will be within the recollection of most here present that in the year 1887 Mr Greenway attained his jubilee in connection with Wesleyan Methodism in this district. To commemorate this auspicious event Mr. Greenway most gene.r- ously extinguished the whole of the circuit debt then due to him, and which had accrued to a large sum during the depressed s :ate of trade and in recognition of this the whole circuit united in presenting Mr. Greenway with a mag- nificently illuminated address, most chastely finished, and enclosed in a beautiful frame of artistic design. After referring to the auspicious event of Mr. Greenway's jubilee, and thanking God for his goodness and Mr. Greenway for his generosity, the address proceeded as follows "As an earnest and exemplary member of the MethodistSociety; as a devoted class-leader; as a trustee in the management of all the trust pro- perty in the circur as a punctual and efficient Sunday School superintendent; as a circuit steward for over 33 years successively, joking this your jubilee year memorable by pay the large circuit debt as a and^careful chapel steward for manj- yeais., as the t^ and liberal supporter ot the Missionary Society as one of the lay representatives to the first mived Conference, held in Bradford in the yeai 1873, being the highest office and honour that Methodism can bestow on its laity a generous and liberal supporter of all nexional funds as well as every circuit scneme, we glorify the grace of God in you, by. J all these important relationshi]>s to iiis v_,nurcn you have been found faithful and ready to every good woris." Indeed, iot only was Mr. ,7 way honoured in the church, but m the various local governing bodies an public Boards he held a seat as a me?V ej. some instances the chairmanship, an positions his services ^re^eaftjPi^ the spring of last year Mr. Greenway was honoured by being appointed »on?, f Majesty's justices of the peace for the county of Monmouth, the duties of which he most ably discharged. As to his personal appearance I need say nothing. He was well known to you all and throughout the district of Pontypool He had a rm I noble physique, a commanding presence. A was in him a beautiful blending of digJiity wi benevolence, of authority w'th kindiin love for all that was beautiful in "^e, and especially for flowers and ferns, amounted to a passion, and was most refined ana XQ ■ did not exhibit his floral productions in public, or otherwise he might have carried off many a prize, but he grew them for the love ot them. A genuine love of flowers indicates an instinctive refinement of nature. During his last illness, which was very brief, he greatly enjoyed the visit and prayers of the Rev. Robinson Lang, one of his ministers, the superintendent minister being away from home. The Rev. Robinson Lang writes:—"I saw Mr. Greenway on the Saturday and on the Monday before he died. We had a conversation together upon certain matters affecting the circuit. On the Monday I was somewhat apprehensive of serious results, and I ventured to speak of this to him in the gentlest way I could. I was then satisfied that the thought was also present in his own mind, and had been for some time, that the end was not very far off, though neither of us thought it so near. The thought of death made him tender and gentle as a child. He was desirous to live for the sake of his dear wife but he was leaning upon the Divine Word, and seeking for the pre- paredness and resignation to God's will whichhe fc-it could only be given him by God. His tender solicitation for the comfort of those around him was very marked at this time. When we parted he shook hands very fervently with me, and was so pleased to have seen me once again. But what is of great satisfaction to me now in the memory of our last conversation is the deep interest and concern he shewed in the gracious work which has been going on for some time at Garndiffaith and one or two other places. How eagerly he listened to the information I gave him of sinners seeking Jesus and the great num- bers of young people who have been brought into church-fellowship with us during this revival. How fervently he thanked "God for it, prayed that it might go on, and that the whole circuit might be visited with the same blessing. Nothing that I could tell him seemed to be so enjoyable as the account of God's gracious out- pouring of His spirit upon our no doubt in my own mind that he was upheld by God in the days of his last sickness, and that the sweet comfort of the faith in which he bad lived for so many years wai a real consolation to him on his death-bed. IJesaid" Good-bye" that Monday, but I did not think it was for the last time. Thank God it is not for ever—we shall see our brother again. 'The dead in Christ are alive for everm»re." On tLe day before he died he asked his old partner and friend, Mr. Byth- way,'to engage in prayer with him. While kneel- ing at the Bedside, there came <|t>wn upon the sappliant the spirit of prayer in:a rich degree the room became a Bethel, while the hearty and earnest responses of our dear departed friend made it a time never to be forgotten. On the following day, the 2nd December instant, Mr. Greenway continued to progress to the satis- faction of his doctor late in the evening, when a sudden change -for the wot-se ftt in. Everything was done, that1,could be but it was found that life was rapidly ebbing out, and early in the following morning he peacefully and quietly breathed his last without the slightest struggle or expression of pain. Seldom has the announcement of any death startled and shocked a wider circle of admiring friends or awakened more general emotions of profound sorrow and regret. We feel quite sure that in this town and neighbourhood there are many families over which his death will throw a deep shadow, and who will feel his removal to be that of a dear personal friend. His kindly interest in the wel- fare of others, his unselfish and cheerful disposi- tion, his earnest sympathy with every good work, and his Christian urbanity and frankness of spirit secured for him the loving admiration of all who had the privilege of his acquaintance. Nothing has been more remarkable in his charac- ter than the warm and earnest practical interest he took in every good enterprise, whether in his own church or out of it, and though an ardent lover of Methodism and greatly honomred in the church of his choice, he nevertheless enter- tained feelings of tlie most cordial brotherhood t.o all other sections of the Church of Christ. Among the numerous letters of condolence and regret that have been received since his death we may give the following extract from a letter written by Mr. Richard Cosslett, of Clifton, to Mr. Thomas Williams :—"The late Mr. Green- way was an old friend of my father's, and for upwards of 28 years they sat on the same form together at class meeting;and when at Pontypool a short time ago in speaking to Mr. Greenway of old times, he remarked to me that he hoped I should leave behind me as good an influence as my father, who took a great interest in Sunday School work; and, as I think, the best way of doing good is to do it in a practical manner,I beg to enclose a cheque for Cli) for your Sunday the late Mr. Greenway was a friend or the Pontypool Sunday Schools, I thought that this was the best way of bringing the matter be- fore the congregation in the hope that it may in- duce others to follow my example, and to shew that the seeds sown upwards of 50 years by old faithful teachers have not been sown in vain." I have also been desired td give an extract from another letter from a very dear old friend who writes :—" We might with reason have expected that a life so gentle, so faultless, and so valuable would have been prolonged for a great number of years, and that our dear friend's removal from amongst us would have been so gradual as to have spared us the bittergrief which this sudden event cannot fail to awaken. Our only consola- tion is to reflect on his unsullied character, his enlarged usefulness, his devotion to everything that was good, and the blessed memory he has left behind. I have never known any man for iwhom I entertained a greater love, and I shall never cease to think of him save with feelings of the most affectionate respect. Much as we could have wished that our departed friend had been contipued to us, we rejoice to reflect that he has entered into the fruition of eternal joys in those blest realms where "eternity is the measure, felicity the state, angels are the company, and God is the portion of the blessed," or, to use the seraphic words of Charles Wesley, Far from a world of grief and sin With God eternally shut in." In addition to the numerous letters above referred to from private friends, letters of condolence have also been received' from the many public bodies with which Mr. Greenway was connected and amongst these we y mention the following:— The Pontypool Local Board, The Aoorsychan Local Board, The Chairman and Clerk to the Pontypool Union, The Chairman of Pontypool Magistrates, The Pontypool Gas and Water Company. The Hanbury Assembly Rooms Com- pany, The Trevethin School Board, The President of the Conference, and The Chairman of the Cardiff and SwaDsea distrtbt of the Wesleyan Methodist Church. Dr. T. B. Stephen- son, the President of the Conference, writes to our dear departed friend's, widow "I have heard with much concern of the decease of your husband, so long and honourably connected with the activities of our church. Though I had not the pleasure of his personal acquaintance, I know so much of his character and work, that I am sure your feeling of desolation must be grievous indeed, and I am confident the loss to the church and community at lajgQ must be very great, I am touched also in remembering that one of the last public engagements he had made was to preside at a meeting on behalf of this work. I beg you therefore to receive my very sincere expression of sympathy. I pray that the grace of God may abound to yon in all consola- tion." In concluding, we cannot forbear reference to the following striking incident. On the night before he (tied Mr. Greenway suddenly rose in k bed as if iiv a dream or vision,«,nd gazing upward with a. fixed eye, and with a countenance brightened as if withthe radiant dawn of another world, his old and faithful attendant caught the words Oh, so bright, oh so bright." The visions and voices which fall on dying saints are often a reality. They are not always the dreams of a diseased imagination or a disordered fancy, but great and precious realities. Why should they not be? The dying one is just trembling on the. threshold of two worlds in his ascent the spirit has already left the valley, and pitchei his tent for a moment on Pisgali's heights, where the whole stretch of Immanuel's land may be seen, the veil is thinning, and no wonder if visions of the better land people his swimming eyes and celestial harmonies come sweeping down on the ear that is just being tuned to heavenly melodies. We believe there. j was a reality when,our brother exclaimed, "Oh, so bÓght r: He was.ready. It was not a readiness acquired on the deathbed. It was the fruit of many years of demotion, watching, praying, and faith in his Divine Saviour. Heaven will be to him the perpetuation only in a far higher degree of that communion with his Lord which he so much enjoyed on earth. Truly we may be per- mitted to give expression to those touching Words which fell from the lips of King David— Know ye hot that there is a prinee and a great muu fallen this day in Israel." May the Gdd of all consolation comfort the hearts of the sorrowing -Jwidow and relatives^. He (the preacher) referred in touching language and deep emotion to the occasion of his visit in August; last,and the impression that he then bad that it would be their l ist meeting on earth. As Mr. Greenway booked Mr. Robert's engagement for next year he looked up and said, My friend, who knows what will occur before then," and at the train on parting both of them gave vent to tears at the thought that it might be tfleir last parting. The concluding hymn was selected from the Wesleyan Sunday School Hymn Book, and was that commencing, There is a better world, oh so bright!" After Mr. Roberts had, offered prayer, the organist (Mr. W. H. V. Bythway) played the Dead March" in- Syul as the con- cluding Voluntary aa-ine congregation dispersed.