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as hearers and then as catechumens. After remaining catechumens for one or two years, they were baptized. All round that neighborhood Christianity was making a deep impression, and that, too, beyond the actual number of converts made, - a fact which could be seen in the gradual dying away of heathen customs, such as burning for witchcraft, which had ceased in the neighborhood of the mission. Outside the mere circle of converts, then, there was a gradual leavening of Christian feel. ing which was preparing the way for a wider acceptance of our holy religion in the future. But even in a country where there were so many baptized people as at Magila, the converts had to make great sacrifices. They had to break off from their family customs, which were often polluted with heathenism. Thus there were some initiatory rites through which boys and girls had to pass before arriving at manhood and womanhood, and which were almost always of a very polluted nature. This custom was source of great trouble to Christian converts, because their families were most anxious that they should go through the rite, for, unless they did, when they were married the nurses would try to kill their children.
“ Central Africa " for November, 1888, referring to some remarks of Canon Taylor, and also of Dr. Cust, very pertinently says :
“Whilst both insist upon the spirit of self-sacrifice as the essential of the missionary's life, they do not equally insist upon the like spirit being required at home, as a necessary condition of success in foreign mission work. Yet how can we reasonably look for 'heroic missionaries,' unless we have heroic parents who will bring up their sons and daughters to hold that a life devoted to spreading the kingdom of God is the highest of all earthly callings, and who rejoice in developing the vocation for it in any to whom it has been given ? How can we reasonably demand that all missionary priests and bishops should be heroic,' unless bishops and priests at home are heroic also ? It was well said the other day, that, whilst we knew of missionary bishops who had been translated to English sees, we had as yet no case of an English bishop resigning his home see to bear the gospel to the heathen. And yet, if we are to demand that all our missionaries be heroic, judgment' should surely 'first begin at the house of God,' and our fathers in God show the more excellent way. It is difficult to conceive of the impetus that would be given to the foreign work of the church by an English bishop, or even a dean, throwing up all home position and power for the love of souls to whom the word of God bas never come.”
The authorities of the Universities' Mission, we see, considering how largely the revolt in Eastern Africa has been owing to the intolerable arrogance of the Germans, and their utter want of tact, are very much opposed to any present military coöperation of the two countries. The editors of the Allgemeine Missions-Zeitschrift speak more strongly in condemnation of their countrymen than “Central Africa." The London committee, in December last, passed the following resolution : “That, in the opinion of this committee, any combined military or naval operations on the coast of East Africa, carried on by England and Germany at the present crisis, will be fraught with injurious results to the friendly relations which have been maintained for many years past between the natives of East Africa and the English missionaries.” “Central Africa” says, sharply but with reason, that, “whatever the ultimate programme of the 'blockade' may be, at all events it resolves itself, to begin with, into German revenge for their expulsion, under a kind of international sanction.”
“ Central Africa,” remarking on the gradual creation of a Swahili literature, as to the importance of which we shall speak presently, says :
“The Pilgrim's Progress is also appearing in a Swahili dress, and can hardly fail to be as popular and useful to all East Africans who learn to read as on other continents. It is curious how uniquely natural and consonant with East African ideas is Bunyan's allegory, treating all human life as a journey through a wilderness. Where are there such wildernesses, or such journeys through them, as those trodden daily, year after year, by the thousands in Africa, to whom they are almost the whole of life? Where do the Pilgrim's experiences repeat themselves with such familiar frequency, the lions by the way, the morass, the robber's hold, the distant scene from mountains, the valley of borrible fear, the dark whelming river, even the wicked city ?”
The special importance of the Swahili may be inferred from these remarks of Dr. Cust in his valuable work on the African languages :
“This is, and is destined to continue, one of the twelve most important languages of the world, with reference to the vast area over which it is a Lingua Franca, its position as a leading language amidst a host of uncultivated congeners, and its power of assimilating alien elements, especially the Arabic, which has done for it what it has also done for the Turkish, Persian, Urdu, Hausa, and Malay. ... Swahili means the language of the people of the Coast.' ... It is still spoken in the greatest linguistic purity about Patta and the other ancient settlements: along the Coast, proceeding downwards, it has become greatly modified by alien influences, Arabic, Persian, Indian, Portuguese, till in Zanzibar it reaches the extreme degree of divergence. I cannot call this corruption, unless I could at the same time call the magnificent Indian vernacular Urdu a corruption, instead of a development of Hindi, and English a corruption of Anglo-Saxon. It is not even spoken on the Coast to the south of Ibo. ... A greater tribute can hardly be paid to it than is paid by Cameron, that he only understood this one language, and it carried him successfully through from the East to the West Coast, as some one was found in each tribe passed through who understood it. It has already been stated that the specimens of Swahíli aided in the discovery of the great theory of the unity of the Bantu languages. It is not the court language or ruling language anywhere, not even in Zanzibár, but the commercial language everywhere, whether at U-Jiji, or U-Ganda, or Mombása, or in U-Zarámo. . . . Every drop of European culture that finds its way into the vast language field of the eastern and western sub-branches of the eastern branch of the Bantu family now under description, must filter through this one mouthpiece of Zanzibár and this single funnel of Swahili. It must be borne in mind that portions of the Bible have now been translated and published by Steere in the dialect of Zanzibár. Experience on the West Coast of Africa, the story of the English Bible and of Luther's Bible, warn us that when the language of a country is still in flux, it will settle down and gravitate round the translation of the Scriptures, if a good one, as I doubt not that Steere's is: therefore, humanly speaking, the lines of the Swahili language are laid down forever. The Scotch do not value the translation of the Bible less because it is composed in the southeru dialect of the great English language.”
“Central Africa” for last December has this: “One of our staff, writing from Zanzibar on September 24th, referring to the fight between the Germans and the natives at Bagamorgo, says : *I have seen nothing all day but 100 dead black bodies, killed for sheer “lust of property." One reads carelessly of such things, but when it comes as near as this it is very terrible. Be quite sure our consul helps us all he can; no one could be kinder, more helpful, more full of thought and care.'
“Ou St. Andrew's Day, Mr. John H. Bone, accompanied by a native teacher from Kiungani, was swept away in a small canoe from Zanzibar to a small village south of Bagamorgo. They were on the point of being killed by the coast tribes as Germans, when a bystander recognized the native as a meinber of the Universities' Mission. Both were immediately released, and dismissed with a message that the tribes were at war only with the Germans, who had taken 100 lives. We could scarcely wish for a more telling proof of the cordial feeling that at present exists towards us. God grant that the joint blockade' may not obliterate it.”
We greatly regret that Archdeacon Farler, who is scarcely less valuable to the Universities' Mission than Bishop Smythies himself, and who is a good deal older in the work, has been compelled by his health to leave Africa, and is forbidden by his physicians to return. He joined the mission in 1875, shortly after the consecration of Bishop Steere.
Blantyre, the principal mission station of the Church of Scotland, is on the river Shiré, about one third of the way down from Lake Nyassa to the Zambesi. The Rev. D. C. Scott writes to the Convener of the Missionary Board : “We are to have our first communion on Sunday, and I have had classes for some time. Along with us will sit down, if God will, Kagaso and his wife Evangeli, Rondau, Kapito and Kumitawa, Malota and Chesoyaga, Matengo and Nacho. ... The interest among all the people is very great, and there is much ground for hope ; and when one feels that in this there lies the foundation of the African Church, one looks with awe and gratitude upon the humanness in which the Christ is thus incarnate, to be the Saviour of the world. We are not just founding a mission : we are saving Africa. I see no way of withdrawing from the responsibilities, and I believe that nothing whatever can hinder the fulfillment if we have the faith we are bound to have.” ... Mr. Scott says, in “The Church of Scotland Home and Foreign Mission Record”: “The Arab slave-trade is making frightful progress. It is not an age-long business. Thirty years is almost the beginning of it. Caravans of Arabs are pouring in — for trade? No! Hardly a bale of cloth goes up country from the East Coast; it is guns and powder — not even spirits. It is simply slaughter and slaughter of thousands, and the desolation of the fairest lands — lands where the natives were at peace, where industry and thrift and happiness ruled ; where, to get through one village, you might start in early morning and not pass out of it till the sun was half-way down, journeying straight on; and these are now desolate. Fresh routes are opening up to them, and the desolation is spreading. It is not slave-trade ; it is ruthless massacre of the most barbarous type." And yet there are those that are snarling at Cardinal Lavigerie because he dares to let himself be set on fire by such abominations !
The “Record” publishes this prayer: “O thou Lord of the harvest, who hast commanded thy Church to go everywhere preaching the Word to those who have not known thy name! Grant, we pray thee, that the witnessing for Christ in China and Africa and India, by the Church of our fathers, may be watered with the dews of thy Holy Spirit Bless the converts who have been already brought in, and keep them by thy power. Increase the number of those who from month to month shail yield themselves unto Jesus; and grant that the present year may be one of fruitfulness and abundant blessing, to the praise of the glory of thy grace, through Jesus Christ. Amen.” — The Rev. Alexander Hetherwick, who had buried a native girl that had died, says: “A dreary place is the native cemetery, overgrown with rank grass and weeds, so that one had to bore one's way to reach it, dreary and lifeless like the native creed. A few broken pots placed here and there mark the last restingplace of their owners, but no token of any hope beyond the grave. The few little articles the girl had were torn up or broken, and put into the grave ere it was closed in. I spoke to them by the open grave of the resurrection from the dead, but how could they comprehend it on whose ears the news had fallen for the first time! If anything could make a man a missionary, 't is the sight of the native mourning and funeral. Is it not something to be even the bearer of the tidings of Him who said, 'I am the resurrection and the life'?”.
The“ Record” republishes from the “ Manchester Guardian” a letter from Bishop Smythies, which gives a fuller impression of the Church of Scotland missions near Lake Nyassa than we have obtained from their own communications. He is insisting on the duty of the British people to maintain open communications with both ends of Lake Nyassa, threatened now at the north by the Arabs and at the south by the rather arrogant claims of the Portuguese to levy customs, now that British activity has made this worth while. The bishop says:
“The one ontlet for the waters of Lake Nyassa is the river Shiré, which flows into the Zambesi. Except for a short distance in one part, this river is navigable throughout its course. .. About halfway between Katungás and Matope is the African Lakes Company's store and settlement at Mandala, and a little more than a mile from it the flourishing mission village of Blantyre of the Established Church of Scotland. It is wonderful to see this village, with its gardens, schools, and houses, in the midst of Africa. The writer has twice within the last three years, when visiting Nyassa, experienced the generous hospitality of Mandala and Blantyre, and so can speak from his own personal observation. Being situated on such high ground, the climate is much more favorable to Europeans than is the case in most other mission stations in that region. It is easier, also, for the same region to grow fruits and vegetables imported from Europe. It is difficult to overestimate the effect of such a settlement as a civilizing agency in the country. Mr. Hetherwick, who was in charge of the station for some time in Mr. Scott's absence, has mastered the language of the great Yao tribe, and has lately published a translation of St. Matthew's Gospel, which shows a wonderful grasp of the genius of the language. Mr. Hetherwick has now returned to his mission station, some fifty miles to the northeast, under Mount Zomba. Mr. Scott is said to be equally a master of Chinyanja, the language of the Nyassa tribes. The English government have recognized the important influence these settlements are likely to have by appointing a consul to Nyassa, who has lately built a house close to the flourishing coffee and sugar plantations of Mr. Buchanan, under Mount Zomba, some forty miles from Blantyre, and near Lake Kilwa, or Shirwa. Mr. Buchanan is also a good Yao scholar, and takes care to teach the people, who come to him in considerable numbers for employment. Situated high up on the slopes of Mount Zomba, which rises precipitously above it, — the streams which rush down from its summit being diverted and distributed so as to form a system of irrigation for the different crops, - Mr. Buchanan's plantation is a picture of beauty and prosperity, and offers every prospect of health and permanence. But all these settlements must depend very much for their welfare on their waterway to the coast - the rivers Shiré and Zambesi. They were established under the belief that this waterway would be always open to them without interference. It would be very disastrous if they felt that tbey were entirely at the mercy of what the Portuguese on the coast might at any time choose to do. Those who live there have good reason to watch jealously any encroachment on liberties hitherto enjoyed and supposed to be guaranteed, and there is no doubt that a little firmness on the part of the English government is all that is wanted for their adequate protection. The difficulties of establishing missions in the region of Nyassa are sufficiently great without any obstacles being put in their way by a European power. ...
“ There is another danger which has lately shown itself in acute form, -the danger which arises from the impatience of the Arabs at the presence of Europeans and their influence on the lake. For some time in that district there seems to have been an abatement of those horrors which Dr. Livingstone describes as witnessed by him and perpetrated by A rab slave-traders. In all probability this has been caused very much by the presence of English and Scotch missionaries and traders, with their steamers on the lake. The news of what happened last year at Karonga, near the north end of the lake, shows that the Arabs are only biding their time to repeat on the shores of Lake Nyassa the murderous raids which have always marked their course. ... Surely we are not going to offer the spectacle to Europe of abandoning Lake Nyassa, discovered by English enterprise, on which subjects of Britain, alone of European powers, have settled for purposes of trade or the higher purpose of religion, to the Arabs and the desolations of the slave-trade.
" It has been mentioned that the Universities' Mission has begun work on the east side of the lake. Three years ago a steamer was sent out for its use in parts and put together at Matope, on the Sbire; a mission station has been formed at Lukoma, an island about the middle of the east side of the lake and five miles from the shore. This island seemed to be healthier than the shores of the lake, and its bays afford a sheltered anchorage for the steamer. Though the island is very small, the population is probably nearly 3,000, drawn there by desire of security from the Magwangwara, the marauding tribe of the neighborhood. The plan proposed by the mission is to form a central school on this island, and a station for English missionaries, and to establish schools under native teachers in all the towns on the lake shores. . . . All this work, too, must depend very largely on there being an open way to the sea by which supplies may be regularly received.”
The last statement in the May "Record” gives five “very cogent reasons why we should object to the Portuguese settling down beside our Mission : (1) We think that they have no right to be there. They have done nothing for the country; indeed, worse than nothing, for they have hindered our efforts by greatly raising the tariff at Quilimane. Now that we have made the country valuable, they want to take the fruits of British labor, British capital, and the sacrifice of British lives. (2) So much are the Portuguese disliked by the natives, that their coming would be the signal for hostilities, in which the missions might be destroyed. (3) The Mozambique having been long a convict settlement, the Portuguese community is tainted. They would also bring with them a rabble of degraded natives from the coast. The effect on our young people would be disastrous. Slaving would be connived at. The missionaries have no confidence that orders from Lisbon would be carried out by the local executive. (4) The rum traffic, which our Christian traders have hitherto been able to exclude, could no longer be kept out. (5) Jesuits would counterwork the efforts of our missionaries, and would be favored by the Portuguese. No guarantee from Lisbon would prevent endeavors to drive out our missions.”
When the Portuguese hold quiet, we can afford to leave them alone. But when they begin to bestir themselves to the annoyance of better races, we are reminded of Byron's lines :
“Well doth the Spanish hind the difference know
Charles C. Starbuck. ANDOVER.