To F. J. Tytus

16 January 1863


[MS in Finney Papers # 1756]


Finney received the following letter from. F. J. Tytus:


Middleton Butler City Ohio.

January 14. 1863.

Revd Mr Finney,

My dear brother,


will be surprised no doubt in receiving

a letter form one who is an entire

stranger to you. Although a stranger

personally I am well acquainted with your

history from many years as an Evangelist,

& have read with much interest form time

to time how the Lord blessed your

labors. I also watched with great interest

the success that attended the preaching

of Elder Knapp & greatly desired that

he should visit our town & we succeeded

about six years ago in getting him to

spend a few weeks with us. His labours

were greatly blessed & as the result of

the meeting 45 precious souls were

[page 2]

converted and added to the Baptist

church of this place of which I am

a member. We have a good church

of about 200 members. A beautiful house

of worship and an excellent Parsonage

for our Pastor & all paid for. we

pay our minister Revs D. D. Watson $800

salary in addition to the Parsonage which

he has rent free worth about $200 ---

A few weeks since we gave the minister

a donation amounting to $170. -- we are

all right in temporal matters, but

very many of us

in spiritual things ^ we are dead.

I have had a great desire for several

years to see a union protracted effort

made in this place. I believe it would

result in great good. The Presbyterian

church in this place and the Baptist

church are on the most friendly terms.

When either happen to be without preaching

the whole church almost in a body

worship with the church who have

preaching and visa versa -- So that there

[page 3]

is the very best feeling existing between

the two churches. They have also a

very fine House of worship & a good

strong church -- But like ourselves are

spiritually dead. Each of our

churches have been holding prayer

meetings every night since the first

Monday in this month, in our churches

seperately. The membership in each

church are considerably revived and

a few souls are enquiring the way

of salvation. Now it has been

impressed upon my mind & I hope

by the Spirit of God, that if the

labors of our good brother Finney

could be obtained to labor with the

two churches for a few weeks, preaching

alternately in the Baptist & Presbyterian

house & have the co-operation of both

churches to pray, & exhort, & visit, and

labor, that great good might be

accomplished to poor dying sinners by

the blessing of almighty God.---

[page 4]

I have not said a word to any member

of either church on the subject, nor does

any any [sic] one know that I have written

to you, nor will they know untill I

get your answer. I did not know

what might be the state of your

health, or what your engagements, or whether

or not you had given up all protracted

efforts - but I do believe in my heart my

dear brother if you are so situated that

you can come & enter upon such

a work that God will bless your

labor of love by permitting you to see

many converts turning to the Lord.

If you can & will come I feel

very sure that I can get both

churches to unite in extending an

invitation to you - and before you

come I should think it best to draw

up in writing an agreement to be

signed by the two Pastors & Elders & Deacons


[page 5]

# that no door should be opened

in either church to receive members

untill you concluded your meeting,

and there should nothing be said by

members of either church on the subject

of membership or ordinances &c untill

the close of the meeting.

I am very desirous to engage in just

such a meeting as this, where every

appearance of sectarianism shall be

kept out of view & out of the way of

the unGodly.

I hope my dear brother that

God by his spirit may direct you,

& influence you to feel it to be

your duty to come & to come soon.

The meetings for prayer will continue

I think this week & next so that you

will find Christians ready to work.

Last week in our church was a

week of confession & renunciation of sin

[page 6]

and a number of our members are

awake & fully on the Lords side &

need to engage in any way for the

furtherance of Gods cause.

Our town contains about 3000 inhabitants

is a lovely manufacturing place ----

on the Cincinnati & Dayton R. Road

37 miles from the former & 23 from

the latter. Your congregation will

be large every night & day -(if you

hold day meetings) The only trouble will

be to get the people seated.

Our people are liberal & will

not fail to remunerate you for

your labor - we believe the laborer

is worthy of proper compensation -

If you can come, you will

please write me immediately & let

me know in confidence your view &

feelings & then I will say to our,

& the Presbyterian church that I

believe your services can be had

if they invite you. They shall not

[page 7]

know what you have said to me

confidentially. Yet I would not

propose the matter to them unless I

had assurances that you would come

if invited by the two churches --

Please write me just how soon you

can come, & give me directions how

to arrange matters between the two

churches so as to avoid any unpleasant

feelings with regard to members &c &c &c.

Excuse this long & hasty epistle.

I hope & pray that we will not long

be strangers to each other but that we

shall soon see each other face to face.

I have long had a desire to hear

you preach & trust that I

may soon have that desire gratified.

It is only a short ride from

Oberlin here via Sandusky & Dayton Road

Direct to Middleton Butler Cty Ohio.

Very truly your

brother in Christ

F. J. Tytus


Finney's reply was as follows:


Oberlin 16th Jan. 1863.

Rev. F. J. Tytus.

My Dear Brother.

Yours of the 14th inst is to day

recd My soul is full of desire to comply

with your request, but my health

will not allow me to undertake such

am amount of labor at present.

I love to hold union meetings &

the work to which you wish the Pastors

& churches to invite me is just such

as my soul delights in. I have been

sick for about two years, quite

seriously so for much of that period.

My health was so far restored twice

during this time that I commenced

preaching, but soon brought on a relapse.

I am now preaching again, & am proceeding

more cautiously than before. I do not

think I could preach enough to meet

your wants, at present, without breaking

down. My strength is improving & I hope

[page 2]

by the blessing of God to be able

to go forth & labor as an evangelist

again by another winter. The most

that I have preached of late is three

a on

times a week. This was ^ trial ^ my

strength. To meet your wants I should

need to preach 6 times per week &

attend enquiry & prayer meetings.

This I dare not at present undertake.

To decline accepting such invitations

causes me to grieve in spirit, but

I must submit. Never were such efforts

as you contemplate more needed

than now. O for strength to go


20th Jan. I had written the above when

my Dear Wife came in to my study, & on

my reading it to her, she felt so much

for your people that she suggested that

I should defer writing for a few days

& see if my health did not appear to

be such, that I could venture an

answer in the affirmative. She accompanies


[page 3]

me & holds meetings with the females

& gets them into the work. Her meetings

often become large, & one of the most

important instrumentalities in the

promotion of a revival. She longs so

much to be in the work that she would

risk a good deal, but upon the


whole it is too ^ evident that at present

I could not endure the requisite labor,

that I must decline giving you an

affirmative answer.

God bless you My Dr. Brother

C. G. Finney.