A selection from a letter written by William Carey to his good friend and supporter, John Sutcliffe. While Carey mined for jewels in India Sutcliffe helped hold the ropes in England. Carey was known as a “plodder.” This letter shows how he could faithfully plod along in spite of the difficulties and discouragements of the work. The letter was written on January 1, 1806.
I think this past year has been on several accounts the most successful one of the Mission, since its commencement. We have disagreeable things in sufficient number to keep us from security, and to humble us, nor is the success of the Gospel, at all, proportioned to the vast multitude of souls in this country. Yet we have increased and been blessed. Twenty seven natives and three Europeans have been this year added to us by baptism. We have less irregularity, and fewer defections to mourn than in any preceding year, though some instances of both have occurred. We have some growing, useful gifts among our native brethren, and I am mistaken if there be not an increase of true piety among them.
The Journal and Selected Letters of William Carey, collected and edited by Terry G. Carter, Smyth & Helwys, 2000, p. 158.