Mends, Herbert

Mends, Herbert an English Protestant divine, born at Brinkworth, in Wiltshire, about the middle of the 18th century, was the son of Christopher Mends, also a clergyman. He early decided to devote himself to the ministry, and was accordingly placed at a gram-mar-school at Plymouth, where he obtained the rudiments of a classical education; and was after that instructed by the Revelation Samuel Buncombe, a minister of the Independent Church at Ottery St. Mary, Devon,. where he continued three years. In 1777, having completed his academical studies, he removed to Sherborne, in Dorset, and was ordained pastor of the Church. In 1782, his father's infirmities increasing, he was invited to assist him at Plymouth; here he was very successful, his Church augmenting greatly, not only in the number of hearers, but in the membership. He was steadfast and consistent in his attachment to evangelical truth in the midst of various and conflicting errors, which at that period pervaded the West of England, and which led him to express his sentiments with unusual energy in his confession of faith delivered at his ordination. If in his later years he insisted more earnestly on the obligations of true Christians to maintain good works, it did not arise from any diminished sense of the value of other religious duties; but local circumstances induced him to inveigh against certain errors which seemed to him dangerous to practical religion. Another great cause of his success was the animation and warmth of his address, which not only attracted a large congregation, but kept them still united at a period when a minister's waning energies frequently impair his usefulness. -In 1785 Mr. Mends became the first and most active promoter of the Association of Independent Ministers of Churches in the West of England, by which society valuable aid was contributed to the extension and success of the Gospel. He died about the opening of this century. Mends did not write much for publication. In 1785 he published an Elegy on the Death of William Shephard, Esq.; in 1789, A Sermon on the Injustice and Cruelty of the Slave-trade; in 1790, A Sermon on the Education of the Children of the Poor; in 1797, A Defence of Infant Baptism; and, in 1801, A Sermon preached in London before the Missionary Society.

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