- You go to an embassy compared with which all the embassies of men dwindle into insignificance. You go forth as ambassadors of Christ. You go to crumble idols — to convey light to benighted minds — to kindle love of God in the souls of ungodly men. Who can overestimate the qualifications necessary for such work? The fervent, effectual prayer shall ascend to the mercy seat for you. You shall never see the day when your brethren who sent you out shall turn their backs on you; but look higher, the Saviour [sic] has told you, “Lo, I am with your always, even unto the end of the world.” The Almighty Friend will always be at your side to sustain you.
— from Address from the President of the American Baptist Missionary Union to the Missionaries of Buffalo New York by George N. Briggs
George N. Briggs (1796-1861) was the 19th governor of Massachusetts, serving seven successive terms from 1844 to 1851. Prior to his governorship, Briggs served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for six successive terms from 1831 to 1843. At 14 years of age, Briggs experienced a conversion during the Second Great Awakening and joined the Baptist faith. He remained a committed believer throughout his political life, for instance, objecting to Congress working on Sundays. In later life, he became president of the American Baptist Missionary Union.