Gospel Ministers

In a recent radio program with Ligon, we were talking about a hymn by the Anglican Bishop, William Walsham How (the hymn was, "O Word of God Incarnate"). In the course of our conversation we came across this quotation (cited in Ernest E. Ryden's English Hymnody):


Bishop How once gave a striking description of the characteristics he believed should be found in an ideal minister of the Gospel. "Such a minister," he said, "should be a man pure, holy, and spotless in his life; a man of much prayer; in character meek, lowly, and infinitely compassionate; of tenderest love to all; full of sympathy for every pain and sorrow, and devoting his days and nights to lightening the burdens of humanity; utterly patient of insult and enmity; utterly fearless in speaking' the truth and rebuking sin; ever ready to answer every call, to go wherever bidden, in order to do good; wholly without thought of self; making himself the servant of all; patient, gentle, and untiring in dealing with the souls he would save; bearing with ignorance, wilfulness, slowness, cowardice, in those of whom he expects most; sacrificing all, even life itself, if need be, to save some."