MEMOIR of Sr. Wilhelmina Albrecht,who departed April 23rd, 1842, at Nain in Labrador.
(Compiled by her Husband.)
Periodical Accounts, Vol. 16(1841-44), 275-79

"My late dear wife was born September 26, 1810, at Niesky, where her parents, Brother and Sister Jung, then resided. Soon after her birth, they were called to serve the Mission in the Danish West Indies, whither she accompanied them, as an infant six months old. The preserving care of her Heavenly Guardian was remarkably manifested during this journey. On their arrival at Hamburgh, their covered wagon was examined in a very rude manner by the officials, one of whom thrust a pike into all the contents of the waggon, and amongst the rest, into the basket containing the child. The parents being engaged at the custom-house, did not immediately observe what was passing; but, on looking round at the waggon, the mother perceived it, and cried out to the man, in alarm- `There's a child in the basket!' Happily the infant had escaped uninjured, and all further search was put an end to. After a tedious and dangerous voyage by way of North America, they arrived safe and well at their place of destination. In a short paper, written by my late wife previous to her confirmation, she says:-

 "`In my fifth year, I was brought back to Europe by a Missionary couple, and placed in the institution at Kleinwelke, for the education of children of Missionaries. Here I soon became quite at home, and was very happy. As I grew up, and could understand what was said to us in the children's meetings, I enjoyed many blessings from the Lord. On our festival celebrations and prayer-days, I dedicated myself to our Saviour as his property, and besought Him to make me a truly obedient child, and a pleasure to those who had the care of me. A prayer- day during the Passion-season was especially blessed to me; my heart was so deeply impressed with the conviction, that my Saviour had died on the cross for my sins also, that I thought that nothing could sever me from Him; but, alas! the happy feeling gradually vanished, and I became more and more indifferent to Him.
 "`June 4th, 1824, I was admitted to the choir of girls. On thus closing the years of my childhood, I reviewed, in the presence of the Lord, the numerous mercies, spiritual and temporal, which he had bestowed upon me, and asked myself, what I had rendered to Him in return. Then I was constrained to cry out, with shame and deep compunction,-
 "Lord, I approach Thy mercy-seat,
 And pray Thee to forgive me;
With contrite heart, I Thee entreat,
 Show pity, and receive me. /276/
 Cast all my sins and trespasses
 Into the ocean of Thy grace,
 And them no more remember."
 "`December 11th, I had the privilege of being present at the Holy Communion, and the blessing which I received on this occasion, has left a deep impression on my heart. Being now about to enter on the prepatory instruction for that sacred ordinance, it is my most fervent prayer to our Saviour, that I may so improve the opportunity, as never to have occasion to look back upon it with regret, and that I may, through His grace, adhere to the covenant which I am about to enter with Him, till He shall call me to Himself.'"
"March 1st, 1828, she was received into the congregation, and shortly afterwards entered into the choir of single Sisters. In April, 1830, she was engaged as teacher in the same school, in which she had so happily passed her childhood. She entered upon this important office with fear and trembling, under a deep sense of her insufficiency; but, after a nine years' service, she could joyfully thank the Lord for the support and help which He had granted her. She often declared, that this period was the happiest period of her life. She loved and was beloved, and enjoyed good health, till the last two years, when she had occasional attacks of nervous weakness.
"In 1839, she received a call to join me in the service of the Labrador Mission. Devoted, as she was, to the Lord's will, the acceptance of a call to Labrador was a matter of considerable self-denial to her, especially as her constitution was but weakly; yet she complied with it in reliance on her Heavenly Guide, whose help she had experienced in time past. We were married April 21st; our hearts were at once united, and we promised each other, to keep the prize of our high calling of God in Christ Jesus steadily in view. We set out from Kleinwelke, May 2d, accompanied by the good wishes and prayers of many friends. The parting from a place where she had spent nearly the whole of her life, and which was endeared to her by so many happy remembrances, was heavy, and still heavier was the separation from her dear mother, to whom she cleaved with truly childlike affection. Her heart fainted at the thought, that she would see her no more on earth.
 "After a prosperous journey by land and sea, we reached Nain, August 21st. She now applied herself with great cheerfulness to her new and arduous duties; and, though she had often to feel, that her willingness outran her strength, she likewise experienced that the Lord can increase strength to them that have no might. In the October following, she had to struggle with an attack of illness, from which however, by the help of God, she soon recovered.
 "November 18th, 1840, she was rejoiced by the birth of a son; but her joy was soon changed into mourning, as it pleased the Lord to take our child to Himself after a four-weeks' illness. She was greatly afflicted by this bereavement, and it was some time, before she could reconcile herself to the dispensation, and feel, that even His chastisements are nought but love. Through the mercy of God, however, her troubled heart was comforted, and peace returned to her bosom.
 "In September, 1841, she began to complain of great internal /277/weakness, accompanied by many alarming symptoms. The disorder baffled all means which were employed, and a long school of suffering now commenced, in which her faith was put to a severe trial. Her Lord intended to refine her dear-bought soul in the furnace of affliction, and thus prepare it for the heavenly kingdom. In her diary, she thus expresses herself on the subject, on her 31st birthday, the last which she spent in this vale of tears: `Many tears, both of joy and grief, flowed down my cheeks, as I yesterday evening reviewed the days of the past year. From the beginning to the end, it has been full of afflictive experiences; and, had not Thine hand sustained me, O faithful Saviour, I must have sunk under the pressure. But Thou didst hasten to succour and to strengthen me, so that, at its close, I can utter no voice but that of thanksgiving; Thou hast done to me far better than my deserts; to Thy name be, therefore, praise and glory! I commend myself anew, for the coming year, in which my prospects are, indeed, but gloomy, to Thy further care and guidance. Go Thou before me, blessed Saviour, on the narrow path, and, through Thy grace, I will follow Thee, step for step, with childlike resignation; and thus, with a bowed, yet joyful heart, I commence another year of my pilgrimage. At the same time it is my earnest prayer, that Thy views with me may this year be more fully attained. No pain or suffering comes by chance, and my corrupted heart requires the fire of trial to purify it from its dross. May Thy Holy Spirit disclose to me more and more the depths of my own heart; then I shall have sufficient employment with myself. Yea, be not weary of me, O Lord! I would most gladly be Thy sole property; yet I stand continually in my own light, forgetful that my power and striving can do nothing.'
 "At the commencement of the present year, it seemed as if the disorder had taken a favourable turn, and the prospect of being restored to activity filled her heart with joy. She was often exceedingly distressed to see her Sisters overwhelmed with work, while she was obliged to lie inactive- an addition to their cares and burdens. Frequently would she ejaculate, `Help them, O my Saviour, and have pity on Thy poor child!'
 "The apparent improvement was, alas! Of no long continuance; the cough and expectoration still remained, and the pain in her left side was such, that she should not bear to lie upon it throughout her illness. In the latter half of January, she grew evidently worse, and became impressed with the conviction, that the Lord would take her to Himself. Her whole soul was now occupied with the joyful prospect of a speedy release from the groaning tabernacle. On my remarking to her, that it seemed as if her illness would be the means of her consummation, and asking, what was the ground of her hope, she said- `Believe me, our Saviour is preparing me in stillness: I am greatly blessed; I feel His peace, and rejoice in the prospect of my dissolution; but the idea of separation from you pierces me to the heart. Dear Saviour, do Thou Thyself loose this tie! Pray for me, that my sufferings may not be protracted, and that my faith may endure to the end.'
 "Lavater's Bible Extracts for Mourners was a source of much consolation to her. Resigned, as she was, to the Lord's will, she gladly gave into the hope, excited on any abatement of the malady, of being spared to me yet longer. But the Lord had otherwise determined. /278/April 11th she was seized with spasms, and looked forwards with composure to her summons home. She took an affecting farewell of the Sisters, thanking them for all the love which they had shown her, and then asked me, with a feeble voice, whether I thought that our Saviour would now take her to Himself. On my reply in the affirmative, she said- `So do I, and I feel His peace.'
 "The spasms ceased in the evening, but on the 16th, they returned with increased violence. We now took a solemn farewell of each other for this life. With many tears I commended her in prayer to Him, who had given her to me, imploring Him to be with her in the last struggle, and to preserve her faith lively and stedfast to the end. In the night following, she slept several hours, which she had not done for a length of time, and was better the next day. Thus she continued, with occasional attacks of spasm, till the 22nd, when they became so threatening, that I preformed the mournful office of imparting to her the last blessing of the Church. The agony which she endured often forced from me the sigh,-`Help, Lord; come and release thy dear-bought sheep!' a petition in which she joined from the depth of her soul. Towards midnight, she uttered a joyful exclamation-`My Saviour is coming! I see him in a beautiful green pasture; He has a white robe in His hand,-yes, it is for me!' Soon after she continued-`He is coming nearer; He will take me presently. What bliss!' She now grew gradually weaker, but was for the most part sensible, till 3 o'clock, when she asked-`Is our Saviour there?' adding, directly -`Hush, hush! He comes.' Shortly after, she asked if I was present, and on my assuring her, that I was, she said, `And where is the Saviour? Ah! He too is here, and now we are all together again.' And thus she fell asleep in Jesus. Her age was thirty-one years and a half.
 "I have lost in her an affectionate and faithful helpmate, and none but my Saviour, who was her all and all, can comfort me. May He grant me the favour, when my race is run, to be united with her eternally, and with her to sing His praises! And may my last end be like hers!'"
Extracts of Private Correspondence
 From Nain
"YOUR kind letter found me in circumstances of the deepest affliction. My heart was filled with anguish in the remembrance of the treasure I had been called to resign, and in the daily experience of privations, which none can rightly estimate, but those who have endured them. You both can and will sympathise with me, when I inform you, that on the 23rd of April last, it pleased the Lord to take home to himself my beloved wife, after eight months of weakness and suffering. Her lot is unspeakably blessed; but I am made to feel, that my journey is still through a vale of tears.
 "I know not whether I mentioned to you, in my last letter, that my dear wife was far from well, when the Harmony visited us last year. I thought at the time, that her illness was chiefly caused by the conflict /279/of feelings, which attended the perusal of letters, congratulating us on the birth of a dear infant, whose smiles no longer cheered our hearts, and by whose removal her tender spirit had been deeply wounded. The sequel, however, proved, that her complaint was more serious that we had imagined. She began to suffer from sickness and relaxation of the stomach and bowels; and these symptoms were soon followed by fever, headache, cough, oppression on the chest, and violent pains in the left side. No doctor was at hand, and we knew not how to treat a case of this kind. In vain we did search through and through, the few medical books within our reach, and try one remedy after the other. Up to the end of September, no improvement had taken place; the patient rather grew worse and weaker. The prospect was gloomy indeed; a winter of eight months was before us; we knew not to whom to apply for help, but the Good Physician Himself. In the first days of January, there appeared something like a favourable change, and we ventured once again to cherish hope; but before the end of the month there was a return of all the more alarming symptoms, and that with increased violence. In March it became evident, that her recovery was hopeless, and in the beginning of April, she was already too weak to walk about, so had to carry her from her bed to her couch, whenever she could bear to be moved. As she could only lie on the right side, owing to severe pain in her left breast, her situation was truly distressing, particularly as from the very commencement of her illness, her cough seldom allowed her to sleep. On the 22nd of April I imparted to her the blessing of the Lord and of the Church, for her departure, the very day on which, three years before, our marriage had taken place at Kleinwelke: words cannot describe what I then felt. About half past four the following morning, her dear-bought soul was gently released, and permitted to enter the mansions of heavenly rest. By her removal, I feel as if I had lost every thing; for she was not only a tender and affectionate wife, but also a faithful follower of Jesus; united to him by living faith, and ever desirous to know and to do his will. Her soul pleased the Lord, therefore hastened he to take her away. After reading the above, you will readily believe, that the past year has been one of heavy trial to me. For eight months, I had to nurse my dear suffering wife, and meanwhile to take my share in all the duties and labours incident to the Missionary calling in this country, and which included the general management of our store. Many and fervent were my prayers for help, and often did the dear sufferer join me I thanking the Lord, for the measure of it which he vouchsafed. As the period of her sufferings drew to a close I became seriously unwell myself; Br. Lundberg had to suffer from erysipelas in the face, Br. Fritsche from the influenza, and Sr. Lundberg from a complaint of a similar kind. As to our Esquimaux, nearly every family was attacked by the prevailing malady. On every side, there was nothing but trouble and sorrow. Yet, when we cried unto the Lord in our distress, he heard our prayers and sent us help and deliverance; to Him alone do I now look for comfort and support, in my state of affliction and loneliness, and I can declare to his praise, that he does not withhold them. While I commend myself to your prayers, I would entreat you, at the same time, to remember my venerable mother-in-law, Sr. Jung, who, by the departure of my dear wife, has been bereft of the last of her six children.
 C.G. Albrecht
(Text made available by Dr. Hans Rollmann)