Letter

Scope and Content

From North Lopham in Norfolk, to Mary Tooth at Madeley. Boyce has had to undergo much suffering and trial since she last wrote but with God's help she has come through.

She found that she could not live in Norwich after the death of her dear friend [[Martha] Gregson]. She prayed for guidance and soon after she received a letter from a friend in North Lopham inviting her to live there. Furthermore this friend had engaged two rooms for Boyce with a Methodist family near the chapel and only one mile from Boyce's sister. This was the Lord's doing especially when one considers that North Lopham is the place where Boyce first preached sixty-five years ago [1775]. She still has some 'seals' to her ministry living in the area and many more have 'gone to glory'.

Since moving here her health has improved. There has however been a great deal of sickness in the village and she has therefore had a lot of work to do. Her old enemy the Devil has been very active and would have destroyed her had the Lord permitted him. On December 16th Boyce was going to see a sick woman when she was knocked down by a horse and cart - 'a wicked careless youth was driving on the footpath behind me. I did not see him. I was covered with mire from head to foot. Got a blow in the back of my head with the horse, a wound in my left side and my right arm and hand much hurt…I was carried to the sick woman and talked with her a short time but I soon grew worse…was got to my home and to bed. Found one rib was brook…' Her friends were very attentive and the Lord has been a constant presence. Boyce has been confined to her rooms since although she has been enabled to pray for the 'enemy' who did it for he was Satan's tool. Spiritual matters are discussed. She is now able to sit up although her side is still very sore and she experiences difficulty in talking.

Two of her family have recently died but she does not feel the loss as keenly as she did for her friend [Martha] Gregson. Her presence seems to be near and certainly it will not be long before they are together with their friends and family above.

Now that she is unable to preach to the people she prays for them. It is a joy to hear that the work of the Lord is beginning to revive in some places including Norwich. She would dearly love to see it happening here also. North Lopham is an old Methodist Society but not 'lively'. They have three 'faithfull preachers who are diligent in calling on the members but the great hinderance of the work of God is here what it ever was - the love of the world. If to be religious was to git money they would all be religious…but praise the Lord here is a few lively loving precious souls…'

She was pleased that Tooth wrote to [Martha] Gregson's sister [Mrs Francis? - see MAM/FL 1.12/9]. Boyce received a letter from her yesterday - her health is declining but it is good to see that her sister's death has proved 'a great blessing to her soul…I believe she is in ernest to find an intrest in Christ'.

Boyce's love should be passed on to [William] Constable and his wife. She trusts that his ministry in Madeley is fruitful. Similarly her love should be given to Mr and Mrs Barber.