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But Once

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The passage the clerk shared at the September business meeting is from Stephen Grellet, a French-American who received a call to missionary work in 1798 when he survived the yellow fever in Philadelphia. He had gone to Philadelphia to give support to the dying there who had been abandoned by their families. Over his life, he traveled the world (including Tennessee), meeting with the Pope and a Tzar as well as enslaved people, workers, pirates, and prisoners:

“I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.”

A biography of Stephen Grellet is in our library, and many portions of his memoirs can be found online.