1813–1892

Introduction

Born: Sep­tem­ber 10, 1813, Wood­bu­ry, New Jer­sey.

Died: Feb­ru­a­ry 18, 1892, Cam­den Ci­ty, New Jer­sey.

Biography

From the 1892 Min­utes of the New Jer­sey Con­fer­ence of the Me­thod­ist Epis­co­pal Church:

Rev. Charles H. White­car, D.D…was the young­est of nine sons of Ben­ja­min and Sar­ah Kel­ly White­car. He was con­vert­ed when a lad of twelve years un­der the min­is­try of Rev. Charles Pitman, dur­ing a camp meet­ing at Black­wood­town, N. J., and unit­ed with St. George’s Church, Phil­a­del­phia, in 1825, un­der the pas­tor­ate of Rev. Jo­seph Hol­dich.

Rev. Geo. H. Cook­man gave him ex­hort­er’s li­cense in 1833, and he was li­censed a lo­cal preach­er un­der the pas­tor­ate of Rev. Hen­ry White, and the pre­sid­ing el­der­ship of Rev. John Potts. Re­cog­niz­ing his call to the work of the min­is­try he con­sent­ed at the re­quest of Rev. Man­ning Force, Pre­sid­ing El­der, to serve as a sup­ply on War­ren Cir­cuit, N. J., for three months, with Rev. Sedg­wick Rus­ling. He was re­ceived on tri­al at the head of his class in the Phil­a­del­phia Con­fer­ence, Ap­ril, 1835, with John Mc­Clin­tock, Wes­ley Hud­son and Will­iam Han­ley, as as­so­ci­ates.

At this Con­fer­ence he was re­turned to War­ren Cir­cuit as jun­ior preach­er. His ex­per­i­enc­es on this his first and only cir­cuit, were full of pleas­ing in­ci­dents which he ne­ver wear­ied to re­late. He was ad­mit­ted to full con­nect­ion in the New Jer­sey Con­fer­ence in 1837, and or­dained Dea­con by Bi­shop Waugh. In 1839, in Greene Street Church, Tren­ton, N. J., he was or­dained El­der by Bi­shop Hed­ding.

At this time he was unit­ed in mar­riage to Miss Sar­ah Ca­ro­line Ru­dolph of Phil­a­del­phia. In 1851 he was again mar­ried; his se­cond wife was Miss Sar­ah H. West of Mount Hol­ly, N. J., who pre­ced­ed him to their hea­ven­ly home by less than one week. Thir­teen child­ren were born to them, nine of whom sur­vive him.

The fol­low­ing are the charg­es he served: War­ren Cir­cuit, Mend­ham, Tri­ni­ty, Jer­sey Ci­ty; Greene Street, Tren­ton; Hal­sey Street and Frank­lin Street, New­ark; Bur­ling­ton, Third Street, Cam­den; All­en Street, New York Ci­ty; Cen­ten­a­ry Church, Brooklyn; Tri­ni­ty, Jer­sey Ci­ty; Bor­den­town, Li­ber­ty Street, New Bruns­wick; Slate Street, Tren­ton; Com­merce Street, Bridge­ton; Third Street, Cam­den; Be­ver­ly, Woods­town, Had­don­field, Foun­dry, Mill­ville, and Moores­town.

He served as Pre­sid­ing El­der on the Bridge­ton, Tren­ton and Cam­den dis­tricts. For two years he was agent for Dick­in­son Coll­ege. He had been a mem­ber of the Mis­sion­a­ry Board, a Man­ag­er of the Church Ex­ten­sion So­ci­e­ty, a Del­e­gate to the Gen­er­al Con­fer­ence, and for six years a Trust­ee of Dick­in­son Col­lege.

The de­ceased was a man of mar­vel­ous en­dow­ments, of fer­vent pi­e­ty, and root­ed and ground­ed in the doc­trines of our Church. Full of faith and the Ho­ly Ghost, he went on his hea­ven-com­mis­sioned er­rand, a flam­ing ev­an­gel, a her­ald of the cross. The itin­er­an­cy af­ford­ed him an ex­tende­d field of op­er­a­tion, that in its far reach­ing re­sults has ben­e­fit­ed the church and the world while it has left a line of glo­ri­ous achieve­ments that will ev­er place the name of Dr. White­car as one of the fore­most men of our Con­fer­ence.

He was ed­u­cat­ed at the Lan­cas­ter­i­an School of the Un­i­ver­si­ty of Penn­syl­van­ia; thus his na­tur­al gifts re­ceived the adorn­ment of cul­ture and schol­ar­ship.

In the pas­tor­ate his suc­cess in ma­ny in­stanc­es was phe­nom­e­nal. His preach­ing was at­tend­ed with great pow­er and ma­ny were hope­ful­ly con­vert­ed un­der it. He was a brill­iant preach­er, with im­pas­sioned rhe­tor­ic, splen­did dic­tion and beau­ti­ful im­age­ry, In the El­der­ship his abi­l­ity was none the less marked. Alive to ev­ery de­mand of his dis­trict, the preach­ers felt their in­ter­ests safe in his hands, while the la­i­ty trust­ed his coun­sels.

Cautious, yet ag­gress­ive, he pushed the con­quests of the cross in­to ter­ri­to­ry where Meth­od­ism was not ex­ist­ing. Se­ver­al of the most pros­per­ous church­es of this Con­fer­ence were or­gan­ized by this pi­o­neer of our church.

Dr. White­car was an ar­dent camp meet­ing man, hence he was a warm friend of Pit­man Grove As­so­ci­a­tion. He was preach­ing on one oc­ca­sion the op­en­ing ser­mon of the camp meet­ing, when un­der the sway and spell of his in­spired el­o­quence, he gave the mot­to which has been the bat­tle cry of its ac­tive war­fare ev­er since, Pit­man Grove and Pow­er. For nine years Dr. White­car has been placed among the re­tired min­is­ters of our Con­fer­ence, yet he re­tained the old time fer­vor and main­tained the un­swerv­ing loy­al­ty and de­vo­tion which had so sig­nal­ly char­ac­ter­ized his long min­is­try.

His pre­sence at the preach­ers’ meet­ings and in the coun­sels of his breth­ren was a per­pe­tu­al ben­e­dict­ion. His last sick­ness was brief. To his friends it was ev­i­dent that the end was not far dist­ant, yet not un­til two weeks be­fore his de­cease were any grave ap­pre­hen­sions felt, when pneu­mon­ia set in with ner­vous pros­tra­tion ac­cel­er­at­ed by the sick­ness of wife and daugh­ter. Vis­it­ed by his pas­tor on the af­ter­noon pre­ced­ing his death, who said on en­ter­ing, I bring you the love of the breth­ren, he replied, Thank you, please re­turn them mine. He fur­ther said, I am in the ve­ry at­mo­sphere of hea­ven, bro­ther; it is all hea­ven­ly around me. I ne­ver had such a com­pre­hen­sive view of the atone­ment by Je­sus Christ as I have at the pre­sent time. Preach Be­hold the Lamb of God; preach it! My coun­sel to my breth­ren is, stand by the old land­marks. In the pray­er which fol­lowed he re­spond­ed with pe­cul­iar fer­vor. During the clos­ing hours of his life he ex­claimed, All is bright, all is well. When his pas­tor sang one of his fa­vo­rite hymns, this great sing­er, no long­er able to ar­ti­cu­late the words, fol­lowed the tune of the cho­rus, Glo­ry to the Lamb. Around his bed­side his child­ren ga­thered to whom he gave his lov­ing coun­sel, ask­ing them all to meet him in hea­ven. A half hour be­fore his de­part­ure he lay in a spir­it of per­fect com­po­sure. He had fought a good fight, fin­ished his course, kept the faith. Death to him was but a vas­sal wait­ing his bid­ding. So gent­ly did his life close that we knew not when his spir­it de­part­ed; He was not, for God took him.

His fu­ner­al ser­vic­es were held in Third Street Church, Cam­den, where he had twice served as pas­tor. The at­tend­ance was large, ov­er one hun­dred min­is­ters, be­sides pro­mi­nent lay­men, be­ing pre­sent. The ser­vic­es were most im­press­ive. The fol­low­ing breth­ren took part: Bi­shop Foss, Drs. Jack­son and Mac­laugh­lin, of Phil­a­del­phia; Dr. Dob­bins, of Wilm­ing­ton; Revs. Heis­ler, Hughes, West­wood, Wal­ton, Graw, Ball­ard, Wight, Reed, Ri­chard­son and Gen­er­al Rusling.

The oc­ca­sion will ne­ver be for­got­ten; it was a time of min­gled sor­row and re­joic­ing. The house of God be­came the very gate of hea­ven, and as the fa­vo­rite hymns of the de­part­ed saint were sung it was ea­sy to imag­ine his voice from the up­per choir join­ing the re­frain, and with harp and heart at­tuned trans­mit along the cor­ri­dors of glo­ry the song of Mos­es and the Lamb. The strong­est ex­press­ions of sym­pa­thy were shown the be­reaved fa­mi­ly, who are sus­tained by the in­spir­ing re­col­lect­ions of the con­se­crat­ed life of their now saint­ed fa­ther.

Freighted with the trea­sures of a de­vot­ed min­is­try, rich with the re­col­lect­ions of a suc­cess­ful ca­reer, ripe with the ex­per­i­enc­es of a long sea­son of toil­ing, beau­ti­ful with the glit­ter­ing stars that shall stud his crown, clad in the right­eous­ness of Christ his Sav­ior, our be­lov­ed brother has ex­changed la­bor for re­ward, the cross for the crown, earth for hea­ven. His voice of pe­cul­iar pathos and sur­pass­ing sweet­ness, hushed to the hear­ing of earth, is heard amid the sing­ing of hea­ven and not far from the throne he re­peats the cho­rus he loved so well, Glo­ry to the Lamb.

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