In the midst of the painful and perilous conflicts inseparable from public life, and on the eve of that moment when the grave shall close over them forever, I may be permitted to indulge the pleasing reflection that, having been taught in childhood the unparalleled blessings of the Christian gospel, in the maturity of manhood I associated with my brethren of that age, for spreading the light of that gospel over the face of the earth, by the simple and silent process of placing in the hands of every human being who needed, and could not otherwise procure it, that Book, which contains the duties, the admonitions, the promises, and the rewards of the Christian gospel.

John Quincy Adams letter to the American Bible Society, From Samuel Hanson Cox, Interviews: Memorable and Useful; from diary and memory reproduced, New York, 1853, pp. 270-73.

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