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6. We are
think of," but which shows “what poor
natives and poor missionaries have to conPONAPE.-(ASCENSION ISLAND.) tend with." A professedly pious captain,
who, on a former visit, had shown himself a LETTER FROM MR. STURGES, FEBRUARY
friend, whose coming was now “welcomed as TO APRIL, 1856.
a God-send,” who had attended the meetIn this communication, which covers
ings, addressed the natives, prayed in the period of about two months, Mr. Sturges missionary's family, and “promised all that mentions various incidents connected with was asked," was yet found to have abandoned the missionary work on Ascension Island.
himself to the licentiousness which is so fearUnder date February 9, he says:
fully prevalent, and to be, like others, “revpursuing our work with much more quiet
eling as with the brutes." Well may the than could be expected during the excite- writer ask, “Do you wonder the missionary's ments of shipping season.
heart is almost ready to break at times, not tions are rather increasing, but this can
because heathenism is so bad, but because a hardly be the case long if the Sabbath con
white heart is so much worse? What can tinues to be the special reveling day for sea
we expect of this poor people, when every men on shore." On the next Monday he
word and act they hear and see, except from wrote : “ Yesterday I preached to a large missionaries, is in such perfect keeping with and attentive congregation, on the doctrine of
all their lusts?" the resurrection. I have ever found this Again, February 22, he writes : " The busipeople more willing to listen when told of ness of distilling native rum is carried on Jesus and the resurrection of the body pretty extensively at times, and is mostly in through him, than on any other subjects.
the hands of foreigners. To-day, as I was They believe in the future existence of the making my accustomed tour, I passed near soul, but are surprised on being told that their three brothels, two of them kept by Englishbodies also are to rise from the grave and men, and one by an American. Such places, live again.”
surely, have few like them this side of the
world below! On passing the door of one I Baleful Influence of Foreigners.
looked in, and oh the sights! Beings in
human form and with white skins; but all In the afternoon of this Sabbath, few attend- else how unlike the human species ! Not one ed the service, and Mr. Sturges had reason to
of all these stupid and sleeping ones had suppose that sailors were in the place, not
life and decency enough to say a word to me; only keeping the people from hearing the but the poor natives, the mere remnant of this word of God, but leading them on to work
scathed people, how they stared and tried to all iniquity with greediness. He was con- hide away! Much as my heart ached at the strained to mention a fact "too painful to sight, I was glad to see that any of them had VOL. LIII.
feelings of shame. Poor creatures ; they know God and people, its own heaven and all this is wrong, but men from Christian
hell. lands compel them!”
April 7. Our congregation at this Ignorance-Orderly Congregations.
place has been very good for the last
two or three Sabbaths. True, some Feb. 29. While talking to a crowd boys are rude, and there is whisperto-day by the wayside, I urged upon ing; but as this is sometimes in the them the duty of prayer.
way of inquiries about what the teacher they would pray ; others said they could
says, we do not feel like checking it not, as they had no Bible or kava to pray entirely. We are really beginning to over!
It has so happened, that when enjoy our Sabbaths. We love to hear praying, I have clasped my Bible in my
the horn sending out its gospel sounds hands before me, not having any
through these verdant hills and valleys; on which to place it; hence their notion
and then, at 9 o'clock, to see the natives of the use of the book as necessary in coming to the house recently fitted up, intercourse with God. They consider
quite decently, for the worship of the kava as the only means of communica
true God. tion with their spirits, and always hold notions this rude people have of proper
It is pleasant to see what a cup of this drink in their hands when
conduct in the sanctuary.
They know addressing the object of prayer. A poor how to conduct; and most of them do native then, who has no Bible and no
conduct well. We have a small house kava, is shut out from this privilege.
fitted up expressly for worship. On one March 15. I am very busy now, mov
side of the preacher's stand is a small ing among the people. My heart is enclosure, forming a pew for the Nanaoften cheered to see how well they kin's family; and on the other, a similar remember what has been told them on
one for the missionary's family. The former visits, and how well pleased they floor in front, is covered with clean mats, seem on being told some new truth. In on which the congregation sit. making these visits, we usually start spend about one hour and a half in singpretty early in the day, and take as ing, talking, praying, &c. many neighborhoods in the route as is When the congregation is dismissed, convenient. We speak to all on the there is no confusion; all retire in pergreat concerns of the soul; and all seem
ect order; the males, who sit on the to expect it of us.
left side, first; then Nanakin and his To-day, I have been showing them how family; then the females. This order of people of all lands are one, have one sitting and retiring is all native; they God, and are all to meet in another have adopted it without a word from me, world. They have been taught that our
and we see no reason why it may not different lands have no common founda- continue. The attitude for prayer, is to tion, that each has its own basis, or that bow the head; the lower the bowing, the they rest, or float, upon the sea. We can
more reverent it is considered. In most easily show them how the several little crowds, the voice of prayer would hush islets clustering about this main island to perfect silence. We have not thought have one common foundation, and if it best to alter the native posture of these have, all lands may have. And if worship, they seem to do so well; and our lands are one, then the people are we fear if we were to change their one, and we are brethren. We then tell fashions, we should hardly make them them how one God made us all, and how better. we should all serve him. They have been
Speaking of an impression that ill health taught that different lands are like so might require him to leave the islands, Mr. many separate worlds ; each has its own Sturges says: “I hope such an evil will not
soon befall me. It has ever filled my mind with the gospel, he would make a useful man. gloom to think of being obliged to leave my Perhaps we shall yet see him a praying loved work. I believe my health was never
man, and an office-bearer in the church. I can endure much fatigue, and have hardly had a sick day or hour since my house
We hope earnest prayer will be offered was taken from me. We hope the loss of for his conversion. that property has been a gain to us in many
It may be asked, what has wrought so respects. Since then, we have been free to do the work for which we came here without
great a change in him, that he suffers many hinderances. We hope never to be
me to come and live here so peacefully ? encumbered again with many worldly goods. The answer is partly to be found in the Nanakin is now building us a native house fact that he thinks I may influence ships on the hill, in the old place. He offered to to come into this harbor. With this build it, though I had not said one word to him people, shipping time is becoming a about it for a long time.”
great harvest time. Then they can get
tobacco, and other “trade” in plenty. LETTER FROM MR. DOANE, APRIL 1, They can drive bargains too in licen1856.
tiousness, and can carry on what they New Residence-The Chief and the
regard as a lawful system of pilfering People.
from the ships. To all natives, stealing
from a ship is lawful ; and the more each THIS letter is of earlier date than others
one can get, of rope, old iron, oars, from Ponape, which were received some time since, and from which extracts were published clothes, knives, axes, in short, whatever
It in the January Herald. It presents, however, is portable, the better man is he. a fuller account than has before appeared of will thus be seen why the chief is anxthe circumstances under which Mr. Doane ious that ships should enter this port; commenced his residence at the new station, and as it is generally believed that misin the Jekoits tribe.
sionaries have an influence to bring I have completed my house and am them, he wishes to be in the way of now living in it. We moved on the profiting by this influence. I too am twenty-seventh of last month, and thus expected to bring “ trade” with me; far we have not been disturbed. Our and thus, by a little begging and some goods have all been brought in safety. trading, and of course many presents I was expecting, from the pilfering dispo- from me, he hopes to be well provided sition of the natives, to lose many small for. but valuable articles, as I could not put And besides all this, missionaries are them away securely, and they had to rising here, and are becoming of more pass through many hands and could consequence from year to year. Though easily have been taken. But I am happy we are foreigners, we are seen to be to say, not a thing is missing. This is not a little in advance of those “beachnot because the people of this tribe are combers » who stop here from ships. If so remarkably honest. Had they the then this chief can have a missionary liberty, we should soon be stripped of near him, he will place himself on an all we wear, as well as all we have in our equality with the Nanakin of the Kiti house. But we are secure thus far, tribe, and the Ichepon of the Matalanim. because God has favorably disposed the Not for once have I entertained the heart of the chief towards us. He thought, neither is it to be entertained, promised me that nothing should be that I am safe here because of any taken, and announced that he would put moral good I may do.
Far from it. any one to death who should steal from This people, like all unrenewed men, me; but he has had no occasion for dislike to be told of their sins, and they executing so severe a threat. Could this
care nothing for what I say of God and chief be brought under the influence of eternity. All this is, apparently, like
talking to the winds. I am heard in what I have to say, but all the natives
Madura Mission.—India. would greatly prefer that I should drop all preaching, and turn to dealing out
PERIACULUM. red cloth and knives, and drinking grog.
LETTERS FROM MR. NOYES, OCTOBER 21, Still, since I have been here, through
AND NOVEMBER 29, 1856. the influence of this chief, we have had
IN a letter from Mr. Noyes published in regular meetings on the Sabbath. Last
the Herald for February last, he mentions Sabbath, we appointed a meeting in the the organization of several small churches in morning, and lo, our congregation, of different localities in his field. In a letter seventy-five or a hundred, were at the dated October 21, he thus speaks of these door before breakfast time! We post
New Churches. poned eating till after service-rejoicing
I am delighted with the little churches so to do—that we might speak of Christ.
which have lately been formed in my Were it not for the influence the chief
field. The effect of them is excellent. exerts, we should have none to hear us.
I administered the sacrament to each of One word from him, commanding the
them not many days since. The deapeople to remain at home, and we should
cons passed around the cup and plate as have vacant seats and dead walls to
gracefully as I ever saw deacons in preach to. It is not a little encour
America. The collections for the poor aging in our first attempts, to find so
go into their hands, and they seem to be large and attentive congregations as we
fulfilling the duties of their office faithhave.
fully. We have no pastors yet, but hope My residence here will greatly lessen
to have in due time. I have my eye on the fatigue of a tour around the island. From Kiti here, occupies about one day,
two persons whom I hope to bring for
ward before long as candidates for the and it always has been trying—as weary
office. We have no specific form of ing almost as the toil of the day-to be
church organization, such as could be obliged to camp for the night in some feast-house. These inns afford no con
classed properly under any sect of Chris
tendom; nor are we ready for ecclesiasveniences. All you have is the floor to
tical organization. The churches are sleep upon and the roof to shelter from
in their infancy, and hardly know their wind and rain. Any other comforts you right hand from their left in these matmay wish, food to eat, a place to sleep, ters. We have a majority of Presby&c., you must either bring with you or
terians in the mission at present, and go without. The trials of the brethren
had at the time the Deputation were will therefore be somewhat lessened by here, but I do not think they know finding here a Christian home. We experience some trials. At pres. We hardly know ourselves,
who were Presbyterians and who not.
and preent we are alone, twenty-five miles from
cious little do most of us care what our brethren, and this separation is trying in this wilderness. The habits of
we are called, if we be allowed the lib. the natives also are trying. My house is erty to act as the New Testament and looked upon as public property, or rather
our own good sense teaches. all expect to find here a home. They
Call for Help. come to lodge, to eat, to lounge. I have In the letter from which the above extract been obliged to administer many rebukes; is taken, Mr. Noyes says, “Do send us more yet they seem to regard my house as men, we pray you, for we labor at present like that of other foreigners, and to the
under great disadvantages in that respect. house of a foreigner all can have free
Our work cannot be managed efficiently with our present force.” And his letter of Novem. ber 29, is mainly devoted to a presentation o
the necessities of the mission in this respect. | 1850 the number has decreased, and Since the letter was written, two missionaries
at present, it is as low as it has been and their wives have left the United States to join the mission, but this fact will not greatly
any time since 1845. No new missiondiminish the force of the statements made,
ary from the United States has been sent as applicable to the present wants of the to us for eight years. The providence field. This scanty reinforcement will do but of God directed hither two brethren from little towards filling the vacancies and occu- the Jaffna mission-one in 1853 and the pying the new stations referred to.
other in January of the present yearOur need of missionaries is pressing. but they have scarcely made good the Unless we have help soon, our work must places of those obliged to leave. We go backward. It has pressed so heavily see no prospect of relief from our presupon us, so poor has been the prospect ent uncomfortable position for some years that we should obtain an adequate num- to come. Yet, when the wants of our ber of laborers, and so deeply impressed field are fully understood, and the charhave we been with the importance of acter of our work and the prospect of fully occupying this Madura district, great results in it (if strength be afforded cultivating more fully those parts of the for efficient operations) shall have been field already under partial cultivation, fairly brought before the minds of canand “ breaking up the fallow ground” didates for the ministry, I confidently
" in those large and extensive portions of hope that many will be induced to come it as yet a barren waste, that it has been to our aid. This hope relieves, in a a serious question with us whether we measure, the despondency which opought not to invite other missionary presses us while looking at our present societies to come in and take from our state and our more immediate prospects. hands a part of the work. Of the eigh- Notwithstanding that we have been teen stations into which our field is a feeble band, and have prosecuted our
" divided, only eight are now occupied, work these many years under great disand several of these are large enough advantages, the Lord has not permitted us for the labors of two able bodied mission- to • labor in vain and spend our strength aries. Though I enjoy good health, and for nought.' I venture the assertion, can endure as much as most foreigners in that few missions of the Board, if
any, this country, I find it impossible to per- for the past eight or ten years, can show form the labor that ought to be bestowed more precious and cheering results than on my own station. I can visit each of have been realized here. But our sucthe congregations once a month, and do cess has had the tendency to lead us something among the heathen, but mul- into greater embarrassments. Converts titudes of heathen villages must be left made, and new churches formed, have unvisited, and thousands cannot hear the devolved upon us new cares and labors. preached gospel. The same is true of New congregations and new openings other stations, and if such be the fact in among the heathen have called for longer relation to places supplied with resident and more wearisome journeys, and for missionaries, what shall be said of the more strength to be expended in preachten stations unoccupied ? The mission ing the gospel to the ignorant. Our has received no considerable reinforce- corps of native laborers is by no means ment since 1846. In that year, four new such as is needed. The mission de. missionaries arrived, and one mission pended at first upon the young men of family returned to the United States; 80 Batticotta seminary and upon other forthat at the commencement of 1847, there eigners, and our seminary has not been were in the field nine ordained mission in operation long enough to furnish us aries. In 1848 the number increased an adequate supply of men. Foreigners to ten, and in 1849 to eleven. From cannot be depended upon for our work,