1837 Clark

John A. Clark [1801-1843] was the Rector of St. Andrews church in Philadelphia. In his preface he gave his reason for writing this book. "For several years the author has been labouring under infirm health, and has found it necessary...to retire from the scene of his ministerial duties, and seek to recruit his wasted strength and enfeebled health amid the retirement of rural life, or the diversified scenes of travel and journeying. During these seasons of relaxation, the author desired still to be engaged in something that might at least indirectly promote the interests of religion." [p. lv]

In a few hours we were gliding over the surface of the beautiful St. Clair, and before evening, Detroit, with its nearly built streets, and its noble stream sweeping proudly by it, lay before us. It was with a grateful heart that I stepped on the shore, remembering the many mercies I had enjoyed, and anticipating much pleasure in the eight or ten days that I had purposed to spend in Michigan. I was not disappointed.

Detroit, is an interesting and beautiful town. The parted stream above the city, and the island around which it winds, as well as the view of Sandwich on the opposite side, with the improved country that stretches around it, are all points of interest upon which the eye loves to linger. The houses in Detroit are generally composed of wood, which are very neatly painted. Several streets running parallel with the river are exceedingly beautiful, especially Jefferson Avenue, which is the Broadway or Chesnut street of Detroit. The Episcopal Church is a very neat gothic building. A second Episcopal Church of a larger size is soon to be erected in another part of town. The churches and other public buildings in Detroit are certainly highly creditable to the place.

I met, soon after my arrival in Detroit, the Rev. Mr. R---, who had come to supply the pulpit of St. Paul's during the first Sunday of the Bishop's absence. It has always appeared to me that there was great wisdom in the views expressed some years since by our present presiding bishop - that every diocesan should have a parochial charge. His judgment, as delivered at the time to which I refer, was, that all our dioceses should be small, as they were in primitive times; that the mitre should have no worldly splendor or peculiar emoluments connected with it; that each bishop, like the rest of his clergy, should have his own parochial charge, to whom he should look for his maintenance. One reason assigned for this - and that is what I particularly refer to - was that as one of the great duties of a bishop is to preach the gospel, it is infinitely important that his heart should be burning with love for souls; and that he only who had a particular congregation, the charge of whose souls was on his hands, would ordinarily feel a ceaseless and ever wakeful solicitude for dying sinners; and if he did not feel this he would not preach with the power and unction that become an ambassador of Christ, and the chief pastor of the church.. . . In this department of labour the Bishop of Michigan has been pre-eminently blessed.

One could hardly desire a larger measure of popularity, either with his parish or in his own diocese, than Bishop McCoskry enjoys. Every where the highest testimony is borne to the loveliness and excellency of his character, and the faithfulness and evangelical spirit of his ministry. . . .

From: GLEANINGS BY THE WAY by Rev. John A. Clark, D.D. Philadelphia: W.J. & J.K. Simon, 1842: 128 - 130.