Moody, Joshua

Moody, Joshua a Congregational minister, was born in Wales in 1633. His father migrated to this country, and settled at Newbury, Massachusetts, in 1635, and Joshua was educated at Harvard College, class of 1653. There had been no regular clergyman in Portsmouth, N.H., previous to 1658, in which year he began to preach, and a church being formed in 1671, he was ordained pastor. In 1684 Cranfield, the governor, had him unjustly imprisoned for nonconformity with the Church of England rites, and after a confinement of thirteen weeks he was set free, but commanded to cease preaching in the province. Going to Boston, he became the assistant in the First Church, and was also invited to take charge of Harvard University, but he declined the last-named offer, and in 1692 returned to his charge at Portsmouth. During the witchcraft troubles in 1692 he had opposed the unjust and violent measures towards the imagined offenders, and aided Philip English and his wife to escape from prison. His zeal in this matter caused his dismissal from his church, and he retired from the ministry. He died in 1697. He published, A practical Discourse concerning the choice Benefit of Communion with God in his House, witnessed unto by the Experience of Saints as the best Improvement of Time, being the Sum of several Sermons on Psalm 84:10, preached at Boston on Lecture Days (Boston, 1685 and 1746, 12mo): — A Sermon on the Sin of Fornmality in God's Worship, or the Formal Worshipper proved a Liar and Deceiver, preached on the Weekly Lecture in Boston from Hosea 2:12; and two or three occasional sermons. See Cotton Mather's Funeral Sermon, Magnolia, 4:192-199; Sprague, Annals of the Amer. Pulpit, 1:160; Drake, Dict. of Amer. Biog. s.v.

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