December 26, 1819 – Sabbath. – We have entered the Southern Temperate zone, in which Christianity prevails to a very limited extent. As appropriate to the Sabbath succeeding Christmas and suited to follow the discourse on our Saviours birth, a sermon was preached by B. Bingham from I Tim. 1.14. “this is a faithful saying & c”, showing, 1st that we are great sinners,- 2nd, That Christ Jesus came to save great sinners, 3rd, That this doctrine is worthy of all acceptation.” We find by happy experience that the Sabbath of our Lord can be pleasant and interesting and we believe profitable at sea as well as in the dear Christian land of our fathers. The smiles of Providence as to the skies above, the waves beneath, the winds around, and health and peace and means of grace within our floating sanctuary, call forth our gratitude, cheer our prospects of usefulness, and cherish our hopes of glory. (Thaddeus Journal)
Dec. 26th. A pleasant sabbath. Preaching on deck, Mr. B— addressed us from these words, “It is a faithful saying, etc.” It is good to witness, from sabbath to sabbath, these immortals listening to truths, which, without this Mission accompanying them, would not, for a long time, sound in their ears. 0, that the holy Spirit would apply them I How unavailing unless the Lord command his blessing I Yesterday was noticed by us as the Anniversary of the blessed Saviour’s birth. Mr. B— preached from Luke 2, 14th. He enlarged upon the prominent ideas presented to our view in the passage. 1st. The birth of a Saviour is an event worthy of the most grateful and joyful commemoration. 2nd. A wide difference observed between the feelings of infidels and scoffers, and those of angels, in view of a Saviour’s birth. 3rd. To propagate the gospel is the most desirable employment this side heaven. It was peculiarly adapted both to the dsy and the circumstances of most of the hearers,—on our way, as we are, with the glorious news of this most glorious event, to heathen sinners. I would there was some strength imparted by it, to go with more alacrity.
The hymns sung were appropriate. Tho it was a favored season, yet, how far, far short did our feelings fall of what would seem our privilege on that most joyful commemoration! Lord, enter not into judgement with thy servants. (Sybil Bingham)
Dec. 26th. After a distressing seasick night, I awoke early this morning, hearing some one cry out “A heavy shower is rising in ‘the west”. I arose immediately took my tin cup and went on deck and. was so fortunate as to catch three pints of pure rain water as it ran off my umbrella. -This was indeed a prize, being so much better than our imported water; it will serve N. and myself two days.
The storm is over; the sun sheds his scorching beams upon us and we are obliged to seek refuge under the shadow of the sails.- We hope to enjoy a pleasant sabbath: we hope the sun of righteousness will visit our souls with His cheering rays, and inspire us with new zeal and activity in his service. – As usual we have a prayer meeting in the cabin this morning, in the afternoon public services on deck. Our Saviour can as easily be present with his humble followers, while tossing upon the mighty water, as when assembled in a house on land. We shall remember our American friends to-day and have the pleasure of believing that they are praying for us. – Yesterday was Christmas. We observed the day in a religious manner in commemoration of that divine Saviour whom we are going to proclaim to the perishing heathen. We have resolved ever to observe this day in-this manner. – An appropriate hymn was composed by Mr. Conant an Officer of the brig, and we trust a brother in Christ. We will transcribe and send a copy of it. – S. R. (Samuel & Nancy Ruggles)
26. – This Sabbath has been nearly lost. I arose this morning with the headache, which has continued during the day. Brother B, preached from the words ‘Christ came into the world’ &c. (Samuel Whitney Journal)