January 27th, 1854, will long be remembered in the city of Reading. It was the day when nearly the whole community crowded to the sanctuary, not to listen to the voice of the pastor of the church, but to gaze for the last time on his lifeless remains, and to pay the last tribute of respect to one who was highly esteemed in life. His voice was silent in death, but his virtues were still fresh in the remembrance of the people.
Among all who have occupied a prominent position in the history of the Lutheran church in this country, perhaps there is no one who is entitled to a higher rank than
J. George Schmucker, D. D.
On This Page Baptists in Virginia. Circuit Preaching Call to York County, Pennsylvania The “Boy Preacher” Retirement to Williamsburg, Pennsylvania “He honored God, and God did honor him.” One of the founders and advocates of the General Synod Intelligence and Learning Published Works Eloquent Preacher Theological Views A man of prayer Unwavering faith in God’s promises Great moral courage Publication Information He was born, August 18th, 1771, in Michaelstadt, in the Duchy of Darmstadt, Germany.
The character and ministry of this venerable man are worthy of a permanent record in the history of our earlier ministers. His life was emphatically a life of severe and constant labor. He was distinguished for his learning and piety, and after having faithfully served his day and generation, he peacefully passed away, leaving to his children and the church, the precious legacy of a good name.
“While the soft memory of his virtues yet Lingers, like twilight hues, when the bright sun is set.
It was said… at the time of his death, that many generations must pass away, before the world could look upon his equal. From all accounts, he must have been a most extraordinary man, gifted with rare endowments of intellect, and possessed of the noblest qualities of the heart.
On This Page Early Life Publications Committed To The Flames Irresistible Power in the Pulpit Chronological Facts Ministerial Training Relocation to Hagerstown, Maryland Heartfelt Grief Publication Information Early Life In early life his opportunities for the cultivation of his mind were limited, and yet so active were his native powers, and so faithful was he in the improvement of the advantages he subsequently enjoyed, that he soon rose to an eminent position, and his name has been transmitted with high lustre to posterity.
“The first Lutheran minister, ordained in this country to preach the gospel.”
John Nicolas Kurtz was born in Lutzelinden, in the Principality of Nassau-Weilburg, and immigrated to this country in 1745. He came to the United States as a Catechet, and for two years after his arrival, engaged in the business of teaching as well as preaching, “in consequence of the entire absence,” to use his own language, “of competent teachers and the lamentable ignorance of the youth of his parish.
His life was devoted to the acquisition of knowledge.
The church has always associated with Dr. Lochman’s name that of Dr. Endress. They were not only contemporary, but they were nearly of the same age. They commenced their career together and pursued their studies in company. They were graduated at the University of Pennsylvania and both for a season, gave instruction. They studied theology under the direction of Drs.
“Dr. Lochman, so widely and favorably known in the Lutheran church, was born in the city of Philadelphia, December 2, 1773. His parents had immigrated into this country at an early period and, although in humble circumstances, were distinguished for their probity and piety. Their son George, when yet a boy, seemed to promise much, and awakened high expectations. He developed, in his childhood, a remarkable fondness for reading. Whilst his companions were engaged with their sports, he was interested in his books, over whose pages he poured with fixed attention and the greatest delight.
The transition from Dr. Helmuth to his intimate friend and colleague is very natural. Dr. Schmidt would, perhaps, have never abandoned the country of his birth, had it not been for his fond devotion to the friend of his youth, animae dimidium suce, separation from whom seemed so painful and almost insupportable. Such instances of friendship are rare, and yet how beautiful, how honorable to humanity! A well tried friend, one of kindred spirit and congenial tastes, cannot be too highly valued.
The memory of those who have been eminently useful in the church of God, should be cherished, and their virtues transmitted to posterity. They are worthy of grateful remembrance and respectful imitation. Their services should be embalmed for future generations. The language found in the burial service of the Church of England, is exceedingly beautiful, and has often been much admired:
“We give thee hearty thanks for the good examples of all these thy servants, who having finished their course in faith, do now rest from their labors.
Dr. Eli Huber was born Jan. 14, 1884, in Pinegrove, Schuylkill Co., Pa., and belonged to that class of people known as Pennsylvania Germans, who are the descendants of the emigrants who came to this country at an early period from the southern part of Germany. Jacob and Sarah Huber are the names of his parents. His father’s ancestors are reported to have come from Switzerland. Both parents possessed good natural abilities though deprived by force of circumstances and the times of a good education.