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5. Wives and families. Another great impediment to the propagation of the gospel is the burthen of wives and families, which hang like a mill-stope round the necks of these poor missionaries. It is not possible that a man surrounded by such impediments can have that freedom of action or self-disposal which is quite necessary for doing any good in missions. Hence we find that some missionaries cannot land as at Otaheite, until suitable places are provided for the security of their wives. Others, after arriving on the sphere of action, are continually interrupting their labours, sometimes for months, to fetch their wives. Some return home at the expense of the society for their wives' health. What woman, under such favourable circumstances, would not sometimes find it conve nient to be unwellSee p. 95, 174. Then the children of these wives are already 80 numerous as to cause some embarrassment. One writes home, “ I thank God my wife and seven children are all well.” What delightful intelligence to a committee, who observe, "Some difficulty has arisen on a point which begins to be felt by other missionary societies,--the proper education of the missionaries' children." The evil you see begins to be universal, and what is the remedy proposed? 6 Seminaries for that purpose will be found necessary in all the principal missions !” Here is encouragement for subscribers; what money will still be wanted !
6. Want of Self-denial.--Self-preservation is said to be the first law of nature. It is a law perfectly. well observed by our Protestant missionaries. We have had no martyrs among them yet, nor are likely to have any soon. At Otaheite they lay under arms to protect themselves against the natives. They sought their safety in more substantial armour than that spiritual sword and shield which St. Paul recommends. They thought it wiser, I suppose, to imitate Peter's example, who drew the sword, and cut off the servant's ear who came to apprehend our Saviour. Indeed, where there is any thing like danger to be met, they find those are not the places for them. A remarkable instance of this occurred at Ava. Mr. Judson, &c. had begun a mission there a fear of persecution arosehe waited upon the emperor to solicit toleration-an unfavourable answer was received and they all fled away and abandoned their post.-M. R. 46. Nor are they fond of exposing
their persons in time of sickness, when their services, we should suppose, were most wanted. Hear what one of these valiant men writes. 56 Mr. Jowet had heard that the plague had reached Cairo. He wrote to the English consul there, who sent his horse to convey him to the consulate, where he remained shut up in full quarantine.”—p. 110.
In the same page you find another, Mr. Connor, interrupt. ing his labours and flying from the plague, till it at last overtook him in his seclusion, where he had thought himself in complete security. Nay, we are told in the Missionary Register, p. 71, that even the small pox put a temporary restraint upon missionary labours in various instances. How different, but how edifying would the conduct of these persons have been, if, instead of shamefully skulking away, they had entered the infected house, visited the sick, and when every other hope failed, had given the distressed creatures the comfort of religion, which it is the duty of its ministers to supply on such critical occasions. But such instances of self-devotion I have never
among Protestant missionaries. 7. Not disinterested. If any disposition be desirable in a missionary more than another, it is surely a disinterested spirit. Hence our blessed Saviour told his apostles, that if any stripped them of their cloaks, they were to give him also their coats. In opposition to this practice, Mr. Jowet had lost something out of his trunk on his journey to Jerusalem, where the good of the mission called him. Thinking, however, that his property was of more consequence than the mission, he lost so much time in. taking measures to detect the thief, that he was obliged to defer his journey altogether for that time, p. 110. Instead also of accommodating themselves to the poverty of the natives, and putting themselves on a level with them, the first thing a missioner does, is to provide a settlement, i. e. to build himself a comfortable house, with gardens adjoining; in fine, to have lands, and every convenience which they never possessed before they went on the mission. Some ride in palanquins, which is a sort of carriage used only by the nobles of that country. They tell the natives indeed that they do not come to take any thing from them, and yet they never fail to get whatever they can. The pretext under which they contrive to get money, is for the support of Missionary and Bible societies. They take subscriptions from those who are not Christians, and when they cannot get money, they are glad to lay their hands on any thing that is marketable, even a gallon of palm or cocoa oil; p. 93. Surely, this is representing the gospel as a most needy thing if it re- . quire to be supported by such rapacious means. It is a curious fact, illustrative of the profits of being a missionary, that one set of them in the East Indies, have subscribed out of their ing comes 2,5001. a pretty round sum as a subscription only from so few! Another subscribes singly 1,0001.! p. 52, and another bought one hundred acres of land ! p. 206. These circumstances have led many to suspect, that the missionary trade is rather lucrative one,
and have encreased the number of can. didates world have been so great. The society says they have fifty new ones that offered themselves, p. 67.
In the American papers for 1821, there appears a curious document, an extract from which is worthy being introduced in this place. It is an appeal from an Indian chief to the president of the United States, on the subject of grievances, among which
appears the following. « Another thing has created great confasion among us, and is making us a quarrelsome and divided people, and that is, the introduction of preachers into our nation. These black coats contrive to get the consent of some of the Indians to preach among us; and wherever this is the case, confusion and disorder are sure to follow, and the encroachment of whites upon our lands, is the invariable consequence. The governor must not think hard of me for speaking thus of the preachers. I have observed their progress, and when I look back, to see what has taken place of old, I perceive that whenever they came among the Indians, they were the forerunners of their dispersion; that they always excited enmities and quarrels among them; that they introduced the white people upon their lands, by whom they were robbed and plundered of their property; and . that the Indians were sure to dwindle and decrease in proportion to the number of preachers that came among them. It is true these preachers have got the consent of some of the chiefs to stay and preach among us; but I and my friends know this
to be wrong, and they ought to be removed. Besides we have been threatened by Mr. Hyde, who came among us as a schoolmaster and a teacher of our children, but has now become a black coats and refuses to teach our children any more, that unless we listen to his preaching and become christians, we shall be turned off our lands. We beg' he may not be allowed to plague us any more.
We shall never be at peace while he is among us.?
“We are afraid too, that these preachers by and by will be come poor, and force us to pay them for living among us and disturbing us."
Upon this document I shall make no comments, but ouly add that the Indian chief, who composed their foregoing complaint, is called Red-Jacket. It appears not to have been immediately attended to, for the following year I meet with this article in one of the American papers. “July 26 1822, arrived at Now York, the celebrated Red Jacket with many. attendants in 30 canoes. The object of their journey is to free their country from illiterate and self-sufficient missioners who infest their borders." See True Briton, Oct. 8th, 1899.
Whoever has read and attentively considered the abovementioned impediments to success, will not be surprised that the Protestant missions should no where have been prosperous.. If to this we add, that their missionaries have never performed miracles, nor given any other supernatural proof of the divinity of religion as the apostles did, when they preached te infidels, we shall not wonder at their complete failure.
Their future Hopes and Prospects. Although the conversion of nations be in itself not perhaps that is called a mark of the true church, yet I have always considered it as a permanent miracle, confirmatory if not ati absolute proof of truth. I have considered that no io fidel nation can ever be made Christian, but by the divine co-operation; that the Almighty will never lend his assistance to the propagation of falsehood, and therefore that no false religion will ever succeed in converting infidel nations. With these ideas I first began to examine the accounts of Protestant missions; and every thing I hitherto read on the subject has tended to con
firm me in my previous opinion. When therefore I see these poor missionaries struggling as it were against fate, acknowledging their total incapacity of doing any good, turning from side to side in quest of a reason why they cannot get on, finding always any plea expect the true one, yet still looking forward to success, hoping against hope, and still confident amidst all their disappointments, I own I am moved with pity for such as I take to be sincere in their fruitless labours. The 20th Report of the Church society tells us that they have about 200 labourers in their connexion. Many of the other societies are equally powerful, and yet after 20 years labours, they begin the review of their missions with this general remark. “ Present and visible success is not indeed a necessary test of the divine acceptance of our labours.” M. R. p. 1. Powerful must have been the influence of truth, to have forced from them so painful an acknowledgment. “We have not,” say they again, 6-any dazzling display yet to make. But little success Kas yet appeared in the actual conversion of the heathen.”' Ch. So 1:50. This being the avowed case, it is quite curious to see the different manners in which they account for this extraordinary want of success, and the different expedients to which they look forward with better hopes. Sometimes it is attributed to the bad character of the heathens, as if all heathens had not uécessarily some bad characters to stand in need of conversion.! “ The real character of the natives," they say, “must be steadily born in mind, that the missionaries may be prepared for deception and disappointment.” ib. 160. Sometimes it is the prevaYence of the slave-trade, which defeats their exertions, 68. In some places they would succeed if it were not for the Roman Catholics, who are numerous, and form a most serious obstacle to the progress of truth, Ch. 196. And in others they hope for better success, when the natives shall have been civilized, 209. As for preaching, they seem to have given up all hopes of ever succeeding by that. It is true our Blessed Saviour gave that command, and his apostles executed it literally, but modern ingenuity has improved upon that plan. The first expedient they have adopted instead, is to circulate tracts, and chiefly the bible. “ It is to the abundant diffusion of the scriptures, that we must look, under the blessing of God, for the true enlight