JOHN JUDSON BAGLEY
BY GEORGE H. HOPKINS
June 7, 1882
Thinking it better for every one to have a church home he connected himself with the Unitarian, as more nearly expressing his ideas of what a church should be, though his interest was not confined to that denomination. Wherever good men and women met and worshiped the living God there was his church. Such he was ever ready and willing to join in every good word and work.
He had a deep and abiding faith in the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of men. To him the Father's infinite care was ever present everywhere.
The following lines of the poet he so much loved he used to often repeat:
"And so beside the silent sea
I wait the muffled oar;
No harm from Him can come to me
On ocean or on shore.
I know not where His islands lift
Their fronded palms in air,
I only know I cannot drift
Beyond His love and care. "
We will let his own words tell of his convictions and belief. The following extracts from his letters written when a young man, give a correct insight into his character, and show a mind full of noble aims and correct views of the highest duty of mankind, and that the boy in the village school or the -country store, the young man behind the desk or as a traveling salesman had found time to gather pearls when others were content with moss. To him the book of nature was ever open and he read the pages eagerly-and intelligently:
"Jan. 16th, 1853, Sunday.
It is a beautiful morning. The sun is shining on the frosty grass, and as the frost gradually disappears, and trickles down in drops of water, it teaches me that we too, should follow the example of the sun, and shed the genial influence of a kind word and a smile, to make glad the heart of the unfortunate and sorrowful.
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