Digitized by the Internet Archive in 2015

https://archive.org/details/missionaryherald943amer

THE

Missionary Herald.

VoL. XCIV. MARCH, 1898.— Xo. III.

C)ne of the most delightful visitations of late years has been that of President Lainson and Vice-President James to some of the cities and churches in the A Visit at Wcst. Beginning at Chicago, they spent a Sabbath with its the West, churches, and the Monday following with the ministers, theological students, and Congregational Club of that city. Thence they went to Detroit, where a hearty welcome was accorded them ; thence to Cleveland, at which point the Congregational Club had provided a reception. An interesting day was spent at Oberlin, with the students and churches. President Lamson also visited St. Louis and Washington, and at each place received a most gratifying welcome. From many sources we learn of the great pleasure which this visit has afforded, and we are confident that much good will be accomplished. Dr. Lamson and Mr. James have experienced special satisfaction in the evidences of the love and sympathy with vvhich the American Board is regarded by the churches.

We welcome with great gladness, as will also multitudes of friends in all parts of the world, a memorial volume of our late Secretary, Dr. N. G. Clark, which Memorial of ^as been prepared by his wife, and published by d'he Pilgrim Press Secretary Clark, of Boston. It is a volume of 223 pages, half of them filled with papers selected from those presented by Dr. Clark at the Annual Meetings of the American Board. The story of his life is told briefly but most beautifully, followed by letters and testimonials from individuals and various associations, called forth by his departure from earth. This memorial brings before us with touching clearness the beloved secretary in whom there was a remarkable blend- ing of strength and gentleness. The papers which he prepared and are here printed are of permanent value, and the volume will prove a delight and inspira- tion to missionaries and friends of missions, by whom Dr. Clark was so greatly beloved and honored.

We did not refer in our last issue to the setting apart, by general consent of the missionaries and Christian people all over India, of Sunday, December 12, as a day of special prayer For the awakening of India.” That

Prayer for India. , , ^

date had passed before the tidings of its designation as a day of special prayer had been received here. But word is now coming that the day was observed with great interest in many parts of India. It was preceded in the churches by special services of prayer, and the religious newspapers and the churches did everything possible to prepare for the observance of the day.

86

Editorial Paragraphs.

[March,

Since our last number was issued, arrangements have been made by which President E. D. Eaton, of Beloit College, has been added to the Deputation of The Deputation to the Board to visit our Chinese missions. Colonel Hopkins China. and President Eaton will be accompanied by their wives.

Secretary Smith and Mr. and Mrs. Eaton sailed from Vancouver on January 31, and Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins follow from San Francisco, February 23. It may be well to state here that, aside from a portion of the expenses of the secretary in charge of the Chinese missions, the whole cost of the Deputation will be met outside of the treasury of the Board. It has been gratifying to note with what unanimity the press, both religious and secular, in the East and West, have united in commendation of the wisdom of sending this Deputation as a means for securing both greater economy and efficiency in the missions, as well as for the awakening of the churches at home to a deeper sense of the duty of evangelizing this vast empire of the Orient.

One of our best missionaries in Japan engaged in evangelistic work is con- vinced that he could increase his usefulness many fold if he had a stereopticon.

Wanted, It has been proven that addresses to the Japanese in which a A stereopticon. stereopticon is used have great power in disarming prejudices and in gaining access to the better class of people. Will not some one gladly give a first-class instrument to be, in some sort, his substitute in preaching the gospel in Japan? We shall be glad to hear from any one so moved.

Let no one fail to read the letter from Foochow, on another page, giving an account of services of unusual interest connected with the annual meeting of The Foochow missionaries and native Christians. The reports of the year’s Mission. work indicate remarkable growth, and the fact that the sessions were held in a heathen temple, since no church was large enough to hold the congregations, illustrates both numerical advance and the new attitude of the people, in that they were ready to rent their heathen temple for a Christian convention. The outlook in the Foochow Mission is certainly most inspiring.

In the current number of Congregational Work will be found a communica- tion from Dr. J. D. Davis, of Kyoto, which is quite in line with the statements The Reaction C)f Dr. Gordon in the article from him given in the last Missionary in Japan. Herald. The signs of a reawakening of the spiritual life among the Christians of Japan are unmistakable. On account of the defections which have occurred on the part of a few, many of our friends had almost despaired of the churches in Japan. They will surely be cheered by the statements of Dr. Davis as to what has been accomplished in the Japan Mission and as to the outlook for the future.

The convention of the Student Volunteer Movement, to be held in Cleveland, Ohio, February 23 to 27, promises to be a meeting of unusual importance. It The student Voiun= will unquestionably be the largest of the kind ever held, and teer Convention, presence of Messrs. Mott and Wilder and others who have

been leaders in the movement, who will have much to report concerning what they have seen of missions in all parts of the world, will give unwonted interest to the sessions. May the Spirit of God rest upon the assembly and a new im- pulse be given to the work of bringing this lost world into allegiance to Christ !

1898.]

Editorial Paragraphs.

87

'Fhe estimated expenses of the American Board for 1897-1898 are $650,000. This will involve an average monthly expenditure of about $54,000.

. . The regular donations from the churches and individuals

Financial. °

for the month of January amounted to .... $46,457.39 The legacies amounted to 12,636.82

Total for January ’. $59,094.21

While these receipts for the month equal our estimated expenses, there is ground for solicitude, since the donations from the churches are less than last year, and these winter months are our most fruitful seasons.

For five months of the fiscal year the regular donations have

amounted to $158,041.72

The legacies have amounted to . 74,021.36

Total for five months $232,063.08

It will be seen that the legacies constitute nearly one half of our receipts for five months, and these total receipts are $38,000 less than the amount needed to meet the estimated expenses of this period.

Aside from the above there was received for the Debt in January, $2,415.09, and within the five months, $18,393.06.

The receipts for special objects in January amounted to $2,289.14, and for the five months to $10,239.92. These gifts marked special” are applied according to the will of the donors, and in no wise help in meeting the regular appropria- tions or pledges of the Board.

The readers of the Herald should examine these figures with the utmost care. They show that the American Board is still in grave financial distress. Every friend of missions should see to it that the story of need is told, and that every effort possible be made to largely increase the resources of the Board.

The office of the American Board in New York has been changed from the Bible House to what is called the United Charities Building, corner of Fourth New Office in Avenue and Twenty-second Street. The other Congregational New York. Benevolent Societies have also removed to the same floor of the same building. Our District Secretary, Dr. Creegan, should hereafter be addressed at that office. Our monthly paper, Cong?'egational Work^ has also gone to the same new quarters and its address will be simply Cong7'egational Work, Fourth Avenue and Twenty-second Street, New York City. We call special attention to this fact, inasmuch as communications for that paper are occasionally addressed to the Rooms of the American Board in Boston, In this connection it is not amiss to say that Congregational Work is proving its right to be by the success which has attended it during the first year of its life. While it does not claim to make any complete record of missionary work, it has yet entered thousands of homes otherwise unreached by missionary literature of any sort. Limited though its space is, it has given fresh and interesting matter concerning the progress of the kingdom in our own and other lands. It begins the year 1898 with some improvements and with much promise of being a genuine aid to the varied forms of work in which all Christians should be interested.

88

Editorial Paragraphs.

[March,

Letters have been received from Ruk and Ponape, coming by the way of Manila, the latest date from Ponape being October ii. The missionaries report themselves as in good health, though Captain Bray, of

From Micronesia. i i - ii

the Morning Star, which was at Ruk during the latter part of September, had been ill of remittent fever, confining him on shore seventeen days. Owing to reports that had been industriously circulated in the Mortlock Islands that the Star would not again visit that group, and that the American Board would abandon its work there, it was deemed best that the vessel should go to the Mortlocks to disabuse the minds of the natives. This was done, and the result was most cheering. Captain Bray reports that ‘‘ the Star was greeted with cheers at all the stations, and the plain talk we had with the teachers and chiefs made us feel that they now realize the true condition of affairs.” The deeds of all the property belonging to the Board at the islands were obtained, and were taken to Ponape, to be sealed by the Spanish governor. Captain Bray says that under the circumstances they were most agreeably surprised to witness the ear- nestness of the Mortlock Christian communities. There was no sign of the old heathenish painting of the body, and the captain can say : The Mortlocks

certainly impressed me as a Christian land. Surely the Lord himself must have kept his everlasting arms underneath.” For details of the work both at Ruk and the Mortlocks we must wait for the letters that will come up by the Star, which is expected at Honolulu in April.

Conflicting reports come from the island of Ponape. Mr. Price, who came on the Star from Ruk to Ponape, speaks in very favorable terms of the new The Situation Spanish governor at Ponape, who seems a fair-minded and capable on Ponape. man. He gave permission to go to any part of the island, and he promised to take into careful consideration all suggestions made in the interests of the mission. Mr. Price was unfavorably impressed by the appearance of the people. Drinking seemed very common, and the moral tone low, yet he believes that the people are ready for the coming of the missionary and that there would be reasonable response to his appeals. Captain Bray saw many signs that Roman- ism was declining, and giving place to Protestantism on the island. He learned that in several places the Christian natives were about to build new churches and commence public worship again. Henry Nanpei, the native Christian laborer, who was with our mission before it was driven out, affirms that the Christian work is prospering and that more schools and churches have been erected the past year than ever before.

The newspapers have reported the disturbances in Prague, where our mission to Austria has its central station, and a letter from Dr. Clark reports that, though , ^ the riots were not as bad as they have been represented, yet

Affairs at Prague. ■' r ji

they were bad enough. Though many lives were sacrificed and over one thousand persons were wounded, not one of the adherents con- nected with our mission was concerned in the rioting, and no one of them was injured. Dr. Clark writes : “We can say to the government, ‘You can have no occasion to punish any of those who love to hear the gospel.’ He adds, We are still under martial law, but its severity is already relaxed a little. At first all houses were required to be locked up at seven o’clock, but now they may remain open until nine and our evening meetings are doing full work again.”

I89S.J

Editorial Paragraphs.

89

We have before reported the erection of a fine hospital building in iMadura City, under the care of Dr. Van Allen, the funds for which were contributed by The New Hospital native gentlemen of the district, all of whom are non-Chris- at Madura. tians. The completed building was opened on the twenty- ninth cf October by His Excellency Sir Arthur Havelock, governor of Madras. After prayer by Dr. Chester, of Dindigul, the Rajah of Ramnad, who was one of the principal donors, having subscribed 16,000 rupees ($4,800), made the opening address. While not cloaking in the least his continued adherence to the Hindu faith, he spoke with much feeling concerning the excellent work done by Dr. Van Allen through his medical work. Among other things he said: “It is Christian charity that has brought our Western sisters and brethren to come and work amongst us here, and it is Hindu charity that has given the little we have given for the construction of this hos- pital. . . . The natives of this district and the inhabitants of Madras lie under a deep obliga- tion to the American mission in general and to Dr. Van Allen in particular.” Dr. Van Allen fol- lowed with an' interesting state- ment concerning the building, that it had cost 42,000 rupees, and that while almost every rupee for its construction had been con- tributed by native gentlemen, some of the furnishings of the hospital had been provided by native Christians and by friends of some of the missionaries. .Sir Arthur Havelock, in opening the hospital, spoke warmly of the success which had attended it and the good which it might be expected to accomplish. The photo-engraving adjoining is of the Pandari Sanathy, or high priest, of a large Hindu temple about forty miles from Madura, who, though of course a thorough- going orthodox Hindu, yet gave 500 rupees toward the construction of this hospital, the money coming from the temple funds. It is well understood by all the contributors to this work that it is to be a Christian hospital, in which the gospel is to be preached continually, while patients are treated in the best methods known to Western medical science.

Missionaries have their sacrifices, some of them cutting their hearts most sorely, but they ask no special commiseration on this account. They have A Full Life great reward, oftentimes here, always in store for the future.

One of their number, who has no easy path, as the world would judge, says in a recent letter : I never before found life so rich, so full, so alluring.”

PANDARI SANATHY.

90

Editorial Paragraphs.

[March,

It will be remembered that when the Pandita Ramabai opened her home for child widows at Poona, India, the work was purely philanthropic and in no

sense missionary. She was simply protesting against the social

Pandita Ramabai. , ^ , . , , f,

system of India which relegated these young widows to a life of suffering, if not of infamy, and she sought to provide a home for a few which might be an object lesson to all Hindus. Though herself a professed Christian, she expressly disclaimed any purpose to proselyte the inmates of her institution. Some four years since, two or three of the girls declared their Christian faith, and the Hindu gentlemen who were on the Advisory Board of the institution were greatly excited and published their complaints against the Pandita. Al- though it was proven that this action on the part of the girls was entirely spon- taneous, many supporters of the institution withdrew from their connection with it. Yet the institution prospered and another settlement was made at Khedgaon, both of them being crowded with inmates. The remarkable fact now appears that in both these Homes a genuine revival has taken place. At Poona no less than ii6 women and child widows have been baptized, and in the other institu- tion almost as many (io8) have enrolled themselves as Christians. A writer says of these converts : The happy faces and frequent expressions of praise show that the Spirit teaches his children alike the world over, for these women have never come in contact with many Christians, revivals, or baptismal services.” A work of such beneficence, though its purpose be simply humanitarian, if carried on in the spirit which the Pandita Ramabai manifests, will surely lead to Christ and to his redemption as the source of power.

It is an interesting movement which the Rev. Gilbert Reid, formerly of the Presbyterian Mission in China, has inaugurated with a view of reaching the A New Institute higher classes in China and imparting to them a better knowl- for China. edge of Western literature and science. Having an exception- ally large acquaintance with mandarins and others in high position in China, Mr. Reid believes that through an International Institute, having a public library and a museum for the exhibition of articles illustrating Western science and art, together with rooms for lectures and social intercourse, the higher and most influential classes of the Chinese can be brought into sympathy with foreigners and can thus be helped immensely in their efforts for the better enlightenment of the empire. The scheme has been endorsed by Li Hung Chang and other prominent Chinese, as well as by many foreign merchants and missionaries in the empire. The movement is not directly religious, yet it is designed to bring the Chinese into connection with the arts and sciences of the Western world through a medium not hostile but favorable to Christianity. There are many men of means in this country, philanthropic in their desires, who do not altogether approve of the course of missionary societies in establishing schools and colleges which are confessedly designed to propagate the Christian faith, holding that it would be better to first educate the natives and rely upon the indirect influences that would follow from a liberal education. Those who reason thus will have a fine opportunity to contribute to an institution which, under exceptionally favorable circumstances, would seem to meet their views.

1898.]

Editorial Paragraphs.

91

The last reports we gave from the kingdom of Uganda were of a re- bellion of Soudanese troops against the government which threatened seriously

Sad News the lives and fortunes of the missionaries. Tidings have now been from Uganda, received by telegraph from the eastern coast that the leading man among the missionaries, Mr. G. L. Pilkington, has been killed, and that there was a fear lest the garrison of the Budu province might rebel. What has happened beyond these brief statements is still unknown, but the situation is most alarming. Mr. Pilkington was a remarkable man, the equal of Hannington and Mackay as a missionary leader. Though but thirty-three years of age he has been seven years connected with the mission, and during this period has accomplished an extraordinary amount of work, especially in the way of transla- tion of the Scriptures and of a Christian literature into the native language. His abilities in this line seemed almost phenomenal. On his first journey inland he made such proficiency in the language that he could speak it on reaching Uganda, and in less than three months after his arrival he had begun the work of translating the Scriptures. This was in 1890. The New Testament was finished and sent home to be printed in 1893, and the Old Testament, of which he translated all except a few of the minor prophets, was finished in 1896. He wrote and translated hymns and much other literature for the Baganda. He was a man of great spiritual power, acting as chaplain to the army, and often preach- ing to large audiences, sometimes numbering 2,000. An English army officer who had been with Air. Pilkington in Uganda, writing to the London Times, says : ‘‘ In Mr. Pilkington’s death the cause of civilization in Africa has received a severe blow, and England has lost a devoted servant.” Further news from Uganda is awaited with much anxiety.

Some very vigorous utterances have been made recently by Bishop Tucker, of the English Church mission in Uganda, bearing upon the question of the estab- Seif=support in Hshment of a native church. The missionaries of the Anglican

Africa. Church, it has been said, have carried not only their own faith but the forms and methods of their church into pagan lands, paying compara- tively little attention to the customs and predilections of the people among whom they labored. Whether this is true or not in general, it certainly is not true of Bishop Tucker, who expresses himself boldly about the absurdity of at- tempting to set up churches after the Anglican pattern. He declares that there should be a ‘‘much larger and freer use of the ministry of. lay men, who should be admitted into various forms of service which have been regarded as solely belonging to the clergy.” He deprecates the use of European money and urges most strongly the necessity of realizing the sacredness of the great principle of self-support.”

One of the first reports to arrive from our missionary fields in response to the information as to the appropriations made by the Prudential Committee for How it Strikes 1 898 comes from Dr. Clark, of Austria, who says that the sugges- Them. tjon that these appropriations cannot be larger than those of 1897 fairly takes away his breath. May God have mercy upon us ! The work doesn’t break men down half as rapidly as does the cutting down of the estimates.”

92

[March,

A Negitxted People the Albaniaiis.

A NEGLECTED PEOPLE THE ALBANIANS.

BY REV. J. W. BAIRD, OF MOXASTIR.

In the southwestern part of the Balkan peninsula and under Turkish rule live nearly one and one half millions of Albanians. In Greece there are many who still speak Albanian, and others are found in Italy and Sicily. After the Turks overran Albania many of the- people found it to their temporal advantage to become Moslems, and since then others have done the same. Probably three fifths of the race are now Mohammedans so far as they have any religion. The

remainder are about equally divided between the Greek and the Roman faiths.

While there are many dialects and clans, all may be included in these three : the Tosk, or southern, the Gheg, or northern, and the Lehi, or northeastern. The Tosks are the most pro- gressive and mercurial. Those not Moslems are connected with the Greek Church, but that church will do nothing for them except through the Greek language, and unscrupu- lously opposes schools, books, and preaching in the home language of the peo- ple. That church wearies itself in trying to cram Greek down the throats of the Tosks. This can only end in disaster, as it has done with the Bulgarians of Macedonia. It has al- ready lost them the friend- ship of those Tosks who cherish a national spirit and long for the enlightenment and elevation of the common people through books and schools in the vernacular.

The Gheg Christians belong to the Roman Catholic Church, and many of them are much more fanatical than are their Tosk brethren. Some of the Gheg Mos- lems, too, are very strict in their religion. In general, however, Albanians are indif- ferent to the claims of religion and slack in observing its rites and ceremonies. The Roman Catholic missionaries in Scutari, while teaching mainly other lan- guages, have at least one school where elemetary instruction is given in Albanian,

A YOUNG TOSK ALBANIAN.

1898.]

A Neglected People the A Ibanians.

93

and they have published a few religious books. The Ghegs do not seem to be so desirous of education as are the Tosks. The Lehi, mostly Moslem, are the least interesting. I have heard of no school nor book in that dialect. There seems to be little national spirit. They are, however, an unruly people and give the government much trouble. Their turbulence has caused many Servian- speaking Christians living near them to flee to other parts.

The Albanians are the most warlike of all the races in Turkey. It is com- monly conceded that they make its bravest soldiers, though because of possible loot they prefer to serve as bashibazouks. They put little value on human life. There is a legend that because of their fierceness the rulers of the infernal regions for a long time refused to harbor any Albanians froni this world. A monk,

Duro, bought of the pope’s agent permission for them to enter the lower regions and re- moved from his -country- men the disgrace of being too violent to be ad- mitted to hell. They are restless under law, and their excessively in- dependent spirit shows itself everywhere. Each one loves his own way so much that there is little hope that they will unite firmly in any enter- prise that requires time and patience. They are, however, noted for their faithfulness, and conse- a gheg Albanian lady.

quently are sought for

watchmen, cavasses, etc. They count cowardice and unfaithfulness to an ac- cepted trust a disgrace as worse than death. Brigandage and cattle-lifting are very common and are not regarded as disgraceful, inasmuch as they are acts of prowess. These Shqipetars, for that is what Albanians call themselves, are much like the eagles, shqiponye, from which their name is derived, and swoop down on their prey like eagles. Thieving they consider despicable, and deceiv- ing one who trusts them is low-lived. They are a sturdy race of mountaineers, rather lighter in complexion than the Greeks, broad-chested and large-headed.

94

A Neglected People the Albimians.

[March,

They have a great passion for carrying arms and somewhat of a weakness for ornament and fine clothing. In mental ability they are at least the peers of any race in Turkey. Many of them rise to places of distinction in the Turkish gov- ernment, and others become successful merchants. The few that have become Protestants are of marked ability.

Paul preached the gospel ‘‘ round about unto Illyricum.” Who preached it to those ancient Albanians? They do not know. Some suppose that Christians fleeing from the persecutions of the earlier Roman emperors settled in Albania and planted the gospel there. The Albanians received the gospel before the Slavic tribes did. Greece has Greek saints, Rome, Roman saints, and Servia, Servian saints, while the Bulgarians boast of their Slavic apostles ; but I have sought in vain for the name of an Albanian saint, reformer, lawgiver, or philos- opher. If you ask for heroes, you find a large supply, including Alexander the Great, Pyrrhus, and Iskender Bey.

The first book in Albanian was published near the close of the sixteenth cen- tury, a small catechism. Since then, at long intervals, small books have appeared, but as almost no one could read them they made but little impression. If the number of books has been very small, the number of different alphabets has been large enough to be a real curse. About fifteen years ago an alphabet of thirty- six letters was adopted. Since then there has been some literary activity, but it has had many difficulties to contend with. The Greek Church fiercely opposes all schools, books, newspapers, and preaching in Albanian, even when conducted by orthodox Greek Christians. The Turkish government, too, would like to have Albanian a dead language, and so frowns down on all publications and schools. Albanian, however, persists in being almost the only language spoken in Albania.

Schools can hardly be said to have ever existed in Albania, except in languages foreign to the people. There are not more than five Albanian schools at present, and most of these are very small and poor. The Protestant school for girls in Kortcha is doing a good work for Albanian girls and is flourishing. Would that there was a similar school for boys.

The European Turkey Mission began work in a small way for this race about seven years ago. A preacher was sent to Kortcha, and he found quite a number of hearers. Lack of funds compelled us to withdraw him for a while, but he is now there and at work again. The colporters of the British and Foreign Bible Society, good Protestant Albanians, are doing a good deal as colporters, selling among other Scriptures the Albanian New Testament and six books of the Old. They report the people in many places as desirous of hearing the gospel in the tongue in which they were born. Many Moslem Albanians are desirous of hav- ing Albanian schools. They say there is no hope of elevating the common people except by schools in the mother tongue of the children. Some of these Moslems are very favorably inclined to our work and even press us to enter into it more fully. Some of them are restive under Turkish rule. There is no reason to think that bad as is the state of the country at present it would improve were the revolutionary schemes of some to be realized and Albania be given auton- omy. Albania needs peace, schools, and above all the gospel. With these that fierce race, much like the ancient Saxons and Norsemen, may soon become sturdy Christians and a blessing to their neighbors.

1898.]

A Quarter Century of Missionary Work at Van.

95

A QUARTER CENTURY OF MISSIONARY WORK AT YAN, EASTERN TURKEY.

In 1872 a mission station of the American Board was opened at the city of Van, on the eastern shore of Lake Van, about 150 miles southeast from Erzroom. The twenty-fifth anniversary of the commencement of this work was celebrated at Van on Friday, November 12, and on the subsequent days. It was an occasion of special rejoicing in reviewing God’s mercies during these years. The audiences were not as large as they would have been had it not been for a severe snowstorm, but the people of the city gathered in goodly numbers.

THE MISSION PREMISES AT VAN.

Among those present was noticed a priest from a neighboring Armenian church. At the sendees on the Sabbath, November 14, Dr. Raynolds gave a history of the work in Van, while at the noon service Mr. Allen read an interesting paper on the work of the American Board in Turkey, its objects and methods. On the next day the pupils of the two schools, including the inmates of the orphanage, gathered for a memorial service. During the sessions much gratifying and appreciative testimony was given to the beneficent influence of the missionary work, and gratitude was expressed to the missionaries and to the American Board and its patrons in America for their efforts.

During the twenty-five years five missionary families and five single ladies have been connected with the station ; 105 persons have been admitted to the church.

g6 A Quarter Century of Missionary Work at Van. [March,

Of the fifteen who have died, Mrs. Raynolds reports that four swell heaven’s martyr list, and died nobly.”

In his retrospect of the twenty-five years. Dr. Raynolds speaks of the diffi- culties that have been connected with work at this station. The Armenian national feeling has always been stronger in Van than elsewhere, and anything considered inimical to the national church was especially resented. Moreover, this station was occupied later than others, and after the suspicions of the Turk- ish population had been aroused concerning missionary work, and hence the opposition has been felt more severely here than in other places. Yet Dr. Ray- nolds dwells upon the following signs of progress :

Twenty-five years ago the Bible, especially in the modern tongue, was an almost unknown book. During these years more than i,ooo copies of the whole Bible, upward of 3,000 copies of the New Testament, together with 4,500 parts, have been introduced, and I feel sure that before the massacre considerably more than half the Armenian houses in the city were in possession of, at least, a New Testament, while hardly a village could be found without a few copies of the precious book. Many of these were lost or destroyed during those days of violence. I am sure that a large portion of these books were intelligently and diligently read, and in many instances brought a revelation of the truth, even without the living preacher’s influence. Twenty-five years ago the doctrines of the new birth and of salvation by free grace alone were quite unknown, and the prejudice against evangelical preaching was simply tremendous. Personal con- versations, the Sabbath preaching, the instruction in the schools, and the labors of colporters, evangelists, and Bible-women have effected an immense change in these respects, so that now the intellectual understanding of these vital doctrines is somewhat general, while we see much reason to believe that there is a con- siderable number of persons, not counted as Protestants, who have passed from death unto life. That the strong prejudice formerly existing has been greatly weakened is attested by the numbers frequenting our Sabbath services, often reaching 500, besides the children of the orphanage. It is attested by the respectful demeanor of school children and others, which has taken the place of the calling of ^Prote,’ and other forms of abuse which formerly greeted us when passing through the streets. It is shown, also, by a perceptible improve- ment in general morality, especially in a reform in the ilrinking customs of the city, and the decrease in profanity and impurity in ordinary conversation. It is shown by a marked elevation of the position of the female sex. It has been pleasantly emphasized this week by a polite letter of congratulation sent by the head of the Armenian community, in his own behalf and that of his people, anent this celebration.”

In the paper of Rev. Mr. Allen he speaks especially of the educational work, and of the fact tliat other educational schemes adopted by the Armenians had failed, while the mission schools remained and prospered as never before. He says of them :

^ Aside from the fact that they give daily instruction to more than 500 pupils, they are also serving as an incentive and example which the Gregorian schools are glad to follow. A certain national pride prevents these schools from imitating us too closely, but in certain essentials the drift is in the same direction. In a

1898.] Sixth Annual Conference of Foreign Missionarj/ Societies, 97

word, our schools, once so poorly attended and so despised, are second to none in standing, are overflowing with pupils, and they occupy in the eyes of the people the highest position of leadership in the matter of a truly Christian education.”

Of his associate. Dr. Raynolds, Mr. Allen says : One of the most noteworthy

facts connected with the history of the Van station is the peculiar way in which Dr. Raynolds has been identified with it from the beginning. He has held to his post through all weathers and all changes. He has been called to witness war, pestilence, famine, massacre, and to pass through dangers of all sorts. Often at most trying periods he has been absolutely alone. To his unswerving loyalty and indomitable perseverance must be attributed the fact that a missionary station exists here to-day, and that on a basis so firm and enduring.”

As to the future of the station Mr. Allen says : “Van’s danger and misfortune under all circumstances have been her isolation from the large centres. On all sides swarm hordes of wild Koordish tribes of men. The remoter districts have been for years at their mercy. The result is to-day that Christians have practi- cally abandoned these districts, while in the nearer regions and the city, emigra- tion and the sword have decimated the population in fearful proportions. How long will this steady depopulation and impoverishment go on ? A practical extinc- tion of the Armenians in this province is possible as in no other part of the empire. It is going on even now at a rapid pace, and nothing is being done to prevent it. The very life of our work depends on the answer to the above question. If this process continues for twenty-five years, it is difficult to imagine how a mis- sionary station can be needed here beyond that time. If, however, the hand of oppression is stayed, there is much to be hoped for and a great work is in prospect. Beyond political difficulties, I see few real obstacles. I believe we shall always have opposition from the Gregorian body. Let not those who hear of certain concessions imagine that Gregorianism is fast crumbling, and that evangelicalism will soon take its place. The body is strong, old, deep-rooted, and will exist as long as the nation. But the important thing is that the real evan- gelical movement, which has already begun, is the spirit which the Gregorian Church cannot and will not resist, and which will, by the grace of God, eventually bring to her what she needs a new life.”

No record of this station should fail to make allusion to the relief work done at Van during these twenty-five years. The famine of 1879-80 called forth the energies of the missionaries, and, in connection with the British consul, relief to the amount of $12,000 was then distributed. In the same connection, during the massacre of 1895 subsequently, no less than ^168,000, contributed in Europe and America, has been devoted to the relief of the sufferers. The indus- trial work conducted by Dr. Grace Kimball and her associates forms a part of the good accomplished at this station.

THE SIXTH ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF FOREIGN MISSIONARY SOCIETIES.

The Sixth Annual Conference of the representatives of the Foreign Mission- ary Boards of the United States and Canada was held in the Methodist Build- ing, New York, on January 11-13 last. The Conferences which have been held

98 Sixth Annual Conference of Foreig7i Missionary Societies. [March,

during the past few years have been of more than ordinary interest, the prime object being the consideration of questions of administration pertaining to foreign missions. The membership of the body is confined mainly to the executive officers and committees of the Mission Boards, though foreign mis- sionaries who may chance to be in the country and can attend the meetings are cordially welcomed and may become corresponding members. These meet- ings should not become, in our judgment, popular meetings, but rather places where the officers of our Boards may come together and compare notes upon methods of operation. It is certainly no place for legislation, nor could such a body commit any of the Boards to any course of action. It has, therefore, been deemed wise that the Conference pass as few resolutions as possible, and do as little legislative work as possible.

At the Conference which has just been held forty-six members were present, representing twenty-one missionary societies, and some fifteen corresponding members were invited to sit in the assembly. As a result of this and previous meetings, good progress has been made toward securing a uniform statistical blank, from which the facts in regard to foreign -missions may be easily gathered. The question of self-support has been carefully considered, and papers relating to its principles and methods hare been sent out to all the mission fields, with most beneficent results. The Student Volunteer Movement has been the sub- ject of most kindly consideration, and all the departments of that work have been reviewed in a friendly and sympathetic way. Questions relating to comity and to unoccupied fields have taken much of the time of the Conference, and while no rule has been submitted for acceptance by all the Boards, yet the ac- quaintance, one with another, has been of great moral influence ; and it is hoped in the near future that the forces of our American societies may be more economically distributed, and that there may be practical advance in coopera- tion, especially along the lines of higher education.

One of the most important documents presented at the late Conference was in regard to the Ecumenical Missionary Conference to be held in New York in 1900. The committee in charge have received most cordial responses from nearly all the Foreign Mission Societies in the world, and it is expected that this Ecumenical Conference, lasting for ten days, will be one of the most im- portant assemblies of the kind ever held. All friends of foreign missions may well look forward with prayerful interest to this great gathering.

The Relations of the Editors of Religious Journals to Foreign Missions’' was the subject of an important paper. This paper was read by an editor of one of our prominent journals, in which he took the ground that it was the editor’s business to keep in close touch with missions, not only for the sake of giving proper information to the churches, but also in order to make correct judgments in regard to significant movements among the nations of the earth. ‘‘The Relation of Foreign Missions to Young People was discussed by one of New York’s earnest pastors and brought forth much fruitful thought.

One whole session was given to questions concerning the treasury, dwelling chiefly upon the methods of receiving money from the churches and transmit- ting the same to the missions. Questions also were raised in regard to exchange and salaries and the management of legacies. These officers, thus meeting

1898.] A Typical Village Church in the Madura Missio^t, 99

together and comparing notes, receive and give valuable and practical informa- tion for the better conduct of the work in the future.

Another Conference was in session during these same days in the Madison Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, the International Conference of the Woman’s Boards of Missions for the United States and Canada. On one after- noon a