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ing. The depression is general, and Our work connected with the country there are few persons who have not ex- parts of this Circuit has recently been tensively suffered. Many of our own very laborious. We have taken on the people have been brought into pecuniary Plan two or three places in the neighdifficulties, and in them the spirit of bourhood of the Bushman's River. The piety has been severely tested. And country through which we travel on these some, we fear, have sustained spiritual journeys is dreary and fatiguing in the loss in connexion with temporal.
extreme. Here we meet with a few soli. Notwithstanding these painful events, tary English families, with whom, and however, we have cause for gratitude to their native servants, we hold religious the great Head of the church. Our services ; the population of such places congregations are increasingly large ; the being so scattered that it is quite imGospel is preached with power; and al- practicable to gather together large conthough conversions are not so numerous gregations. · But during these visits we as we earnestly desire, yet a few are prove that God does not only bless the turning to God, while cases of real back- many, when collected in the large and sliding are rare. We trust the chastise beauteous temple, but also the few, who ments of Heaven have in many instances devoutly worship Him in the humble been sanctified, teaching the sufferers the dwelling situated in the lonely wildervanity of earthly good, its insufficiency ness. Yes; I have felt the presence of to fill the capacity of the human mind, the Divine Comforter in the native but ; and the consequent necessity of seeking and where He is, is heaven. for and duly appreciating the “true The Mission schools here are prosperriches.” The salutary effects of the ing. The Anniversary of our Sunday. gracious revival with which this church School Union was celebrated last month. was visited last year, are still apparent. It was, as on former occasions, a season It has improved in many the tone of of lively interest. Examinations were piety. Our prayer-meetings have ever conducted in the English, Dutch, and since been better attended. And whilst Kaffir languages, which proved that the some who professed to be seeking salva- knowledge of divine truth is spreading tion grew weary, others are soundly con- in a very encouraging degree. My verted, and maintain their integrity. heart is filled with joy when from SabThis revival has introduced into the bath to Sabbath I behold many, both church several interesting young people, young and in our schools learning who are already presenting indications the things of God, who were once surof future usefulness. But we require a rounded with all the obscurity and derenewed outpouring of the Holy Spirit. gradation of Heathenism. Truly a great O that He may descend upon us more work has been effected in South Africa. abundantly, that our church may exhibit And I often think with what grateful more richly the fruitfulness of a well- emotion our honoured Superintendent watered garden !
must survey the results of Missionary The new chapel is now in rapid pro- enterprise during the last thirty years. gress,-preparations are being made for Our Tract Society is in efficient opeputting on the roof. And the Trustees ration. This is an important branch of are making praiseworthy efforts for the Christian instrumentality. Our Districompletion of this building. It will be buters are greatly encouraged : though a noble edifice ; and general gladness meeting from time to time with great will undoubtedly be experienced when it spiritual destitution, yet the divine blessis dedicated to the service of the Most ing attends their efforts. We have also High. The frequent arrival of emi. a pious man, who has for many years grants increases our difficulties in the been prominently connected with the present chapel, as constant applications Society, now employed in the capacity for sittings are being made that cannot of a Town-Missionary. His labours be met. Besides, the wants of the Fin. among the sick are rendered effectual to goe congregation render it necessary that the spiritual welfare of many. He is the present English chapel should speedily supported by the special contributions of be appropriated to their use. The natives the people. of South Africa know something of the We have a weekly service among the value of a comfortable house of prayer, military, which is well attended. There however indifferent they are with regard are about twenty soldiers meeting in to their own habitations; and I have no class, some of whom were formerly stadoubt that when Wesley Chapel is tioned at Fort-Peddie, where they reopened for them, it will immediately beceived their first religious impressions filled.
under the ministry of Mr. Dugmore.
But my sheet is full, and therefore I this land! The Heathen are perishing must close this letter. Allow me, ho- “ for lack of knowledge;" yet they are noured fathers and brethren, again to ap- bought with blood divine. But "how peal to you on behalf of Africa. A vast shall they believe in Him of whom they field remains to be cultivated. O for have not heard ? And how shall they more Missionaries! O that you had the hear without a Preacher ? And how means to multiply Gospel labourers in shall they preach except they be sent ?"
MISSIONS IN WESTERN AFRICA.
October 29th, 1849. It is with unfeigned thanks to God two deaths, one of whom was not under that I state that I have, for some time the new system of treatment; and the past, enjoyed a good flow of health ; and death of the other may be satisfactorily I think that it should call forth the gra- traced up to other causes than the clititude of every friend to Africa, that this Mission, which was once so fatal to the During the early part of September, I pioneers of our glorious work, should visited every station connected with the have been, for the space of three and a Domonasi Circuit, for the twofold purhalf years past, entirely exempted from pose of recruiting my health, which had those mournful events which, by their for some time previously suffered a little, frequency, eminently characterized the and also to examine the schools and early history of this Mission, and which societies; and as, with but one or two cast a degree of gloom over the mind exceptions, I had never visited these of Missionaries destined to Western places before, I may perhaps be excused Africa, who left their native land, doubt- in stating my views and feelings respectful of the issue of a few months; and ing them. were generally, if not invariably, regarded Some of the societies were not very by their friends as going to their grave. flourishing; and who can be surprised at But, thank God, these days of mourning this, situated as they are at from fifty to seem to have passed away. Others have sixty miles from the coast, and at the laboured, and died; and we have enter- same distance from any efficient pastoral ed upon their labours. May we who are oversight, and surrounded by everyleft behind receive grace to tread in the thing which is calculated to draw off steps of those who counted not their their attention from spiritual realities? lives dear unto themselves, so that they They cannot be expected to possess those might finish their short but glorious correct views and feelings, relative to course with joy, and whose memory, Christian doctrines, duties, and expeeven now, is as ointment poured forth rience, which we might reasonably look among those who shall be the crown of for in a more genial soil, and under their rejoicing, and the first-fruits of an more favourable circumstances. But, abundant harvest of precious souls ! while we have to mourn over the back
It is true, that some have, through ill slidings of some, and the carelessness of health, been lately compelled to leave others, we have, nevertheless, cause for their posts of duty, and their places are thankfulness and encouragement in benot yet filled up; but then to have no holding the steadfastness of a few, and new deaths, is a circumstance which the anxiety of many others. Anxiety calls aloud for our gratitude, and which about spiritual things was manifested in may also be regarded as indicative of many places, but in none so much as in the will of God, that greater exertions the little town of Donkwah, where both should be made by the church of Christ old and young, Captains and people, ap. to ameliorate the condition of the de- peared to be anxious to hear the great graded and deeply-injured African race. truths of the Gospel, and to enjoy its The new mode of treating the seasoning- blessings. This feeling was especially fever is likely to save many valuable evinced by the fact, that, when I entered lives. It has been adopted in the Eng. the town, the inhabitants were making a lish settlements along the coast during “custom” for a deceased friend; but the past season, and they have had but when they heard that I had taken my seat under the shed in which the school oversight and moral culture, which, with is kept, they left their heathen “custom,” our present means, it is impossible to and came and listened to me, while con- give ? I met the members on trial, versing upon subjects connected with amounting to twenty-one, and exhorted Christianily, from an hour and a half to them to cleave to the Lord. two hours; and, from the deep interest The schools, with but one exception, which they manifested, the objections appear to be prosperous ; the children in which they stated, and the questions general exhibit a remarkable aptitude which they proposed, I was led to be for learning; and their acquaintance lieve that they had thought seriously with our excellent Catechisms surprised about our holy religion. Shortly after and pleased me very much. And since the people had left, the Chiefs returned what I have seen, I must say, that I to inquire if they ought to resume the should almost feel sorry to see the cen“custom.” This gave me an opportu. tralizing school system, recommended nity of explaining the Gospel as a sys. some time since, too rigidly adopted ; tem of moral influence; and this I did for, if we can but supply these schools by taking one of the Chiefs by the hand, with efficient and pious Teachers, they as though I intended to use great force would become so many centres, whence in compelling him to do something. would be diffused Christian influence and “ Now," I said, “the Gospel is not like instruction, which would in some degree this: if you feel in your heart willing to enlighten and beautify this moral wilderabandon heathen customs, and deter- ness, and which would go far in pre. mined to serve the true God, it is very paring it for more extensive cultivation, good.” At the same time, I told them until it should be as fruitful as the garthat their own consciences would tell den of the Lord. them that these foolish customs did no We have recently held our Missiongood, neither to the dead, nor to the ary Meetings. But the one at Anamabu living ; but that they were often pro- was not so well attended by the members ductive of much evil to the living, inas- as it should have been : hence we did much as they drank much rum, and not realize £60 currency. But as I have fired away much powder, so that the since spoken very publicly to our people family of the deceased got so much in about it, I hope they are disposed to do debt by these things, that they were
a little more. The African is a great frequently obliged to sell themselves and money-lover; and it requires no small children into the hands of the creditors. amount of divine grace to overcome this They replied that it was very true, and propensity of his nature.
There are expressed a wish to be freed from these some noble exceptions to this; but the expensive customs. There is something bulk of the people seem to have very unusual in this spirit of anxiety, as it is vague and imperfect views of their duty experienced not only by the young, but to the church and the world. also by the old and grey-headed, some The Meeting at Cape Coast was the of whom expressed their regret that they best that I have attended in this counwere not favoured in early life with the try; the particulars of which you will, of means of hearing and reading God's course, receive from an official source, word. But these sheep in the wilderness together with the proposal of other imhave no shepherd : their only spiritual portant arrangements, which will, I hope guide is a Schoolmaster, who told me and believe, tend to the advancement of that he is often awaked at three or four the work of God upon the Coast. o'clock in the morning, in order to hold Our cause at Anamabu seems to make a prayer-meeting; and from the same a little progress: the boys' school is cause has as often a difficulty to close very well attended. Our congregations his doors at night. But is there not are large, and upon the increase; and great cause to fear that this precious we have recently received a few members seed will be choked by the various con- on trial. But as it is so near the end of trary influences by which it is surround- the year, when you will expect from me ed, and rendered unfruitful, from the a full report, I need not, perhaps, say want of direct and constant pastoral any more at present.
MISSIONS IN THE WEST INDIES.
There is one portion of the following Letter from British Guiana, which seems to call for a few introductory sentences, in order to direct to it the special attention of our friends. We refer to the case of “SAMUEL JOHNSON,” (-we wish that Mr Bickford had given us his original Cingalese name,-) a poor Coolie from Ceylon, who was one of the “Hired Labourers ” brought some years ago from the East, to supply the alleged deficiency of Labourers in our West Indian Colonies. The whole scheme of that novel Emigration was regarded by benevolent and Christian men with great suspicion and alarm. We believe it has not answered the expectations even of those who advocated it. But evil is sometimes overruled, by a gracious and almighty Providence, for ultimate good. In this case, at least, it has been so. The whole narrative is interesting and instructive. Extract of a Letter from the Rev. James Bickford, dated George-Town,
November 16th, 1849. I AGAIN take up my pen to address ence, have become pew-holders, and are you, in the hope that the contents of my now regularly hearing God's word from communication may be acceptable and our pulpits. I have felt it my duty to interesting to yourselves and to the Com- pray much to God for the conversion mittee.
of persons of intelligence and respectLast Monday week we held our Sep- ability; and I am thankful that in this tember Quarterly-Meeting for this Cir. matter, as well as in others, the Lord cuit. We met under a feeling of deep heareth prayer. The blessing will surely concern, lest a deficiency of the former
come; and persons qualified in the best quarter of nearly £180 sterling should sense will be raised up to conserve the be still lying on our hands, without the principles, and to extend the salutary inhope of being able to cover it in our Auence, of spiritual and vital religion to winding up at the end of the year. nations yet unborn. During the quarter we made a special Our hearts have been much gladdened effort among our congregations in aid of by a recent application from an East the Circuit funds, and held four tea- Indian for admission into our church by meetings, the profits of which were to be baptism. He is a native of Trincomalee, appropriated to the same object. The and came here along with hundreds of result of our efforts in these directions his countrymen, foolishly expecting to has been £114. 195. 11d., leaving still a find an El-Dorado in the mud-plains and deficiency of £89. 88. 3d., which we swamps of British Guiana. He is a must endeavour now to cover by renew- young man of much intelligence, writes ed efforts in the way of tea-meetings, and an excellent hand, and appears to have by application to the members of the much facility in translating the Scrip. church and congregation.
tures from English into Tamul, for the However, although financially “per- benefit of the Coolies. He chose for his plexed, we are not in despair; cast down, name at his baptism Samuel Johnson ; we are not destroyed." Our consolation and I sincerely hope he may find in his and triumph are, “ The best of all is, youth that peace of mind, and freedom God is with us."
from the fear of death, which the great In reference to our congregations in lexicographer and moralist did not expeGeorge Town, I am happy to say that, rience until a dying hour. A few days notwithstanding the excessively wet wea- after his baptism he wrote me a pleasing ther during the first seven inonths of letter, thanking me for the spiritual inthe year, and the general sickness which structions he had already received ; and prevailed after the setting in of the dry applying to be further advised as to the season, they have continued good and course of studies he should follow, in steady. A number of respectable per order that both his mind and heart sons, who in former days were alto- might make progress in doctrinal knowgether beyond the reach of our influ- ledge and religious good. It afforded me
much gratification to put into his hands our devoted Missionaries in India to the “ Book of books,” accompanied by “labour on at God's command ;” sus. a few elementary theological works ; and tained by the prayers and sympathies of I have strong confidence as to his rapid our directors, and by the liberal donaadvancement in the truth, and stead. tions of the friends of Missions in our fastness in his Christian profession. native and beloved country! Since his baptism, a Priest of the Romish Whatever consequences may result to Church has been teasing him. He was the Mission funds in England from the informed by the impostor, that “if he wicked conduct of certain agitators, and wished to be saved, he must pray to the whatever may be the feelings of the subA postles Peter, Paul,” &c. : to which scribers by reason of the base attacks absurdity and wickedness he meekly re- made upon the Executive of our Misplied, “We did not read anything in sionary departments, one thing is certain, God's word about praying to them.” that confidence is not withdrawn from Some of his unhappy countrymen, having the General Secretaries and Committee heard of his baptism, sought to him for of our Mission in these parts. This week information concerning the Christian I have had another application from the Scriptures and religion ; and with most Trustees of the Cumberland chapel, to grateful readiness did he comply with take over, fully and permanently, by legal their request. There appears, therefore, transfer, the entire premises for the pura probability, that, under Providence, a poses of the Wesleyan Missionary Soci. gracious work may yet be effected in the ety. There is an encumbrance of about souls of some of these wretched entigrants 300 dollars, which would have to be met, from India, and that the conversion of and then this property, which cost nearly Samuel Johoson may not only furnish the 5,000 dollars, would be the property of instrument, but be the pledge, of their the Society, and the congregation would regeneration, and consequent physical be brought under, as far as our means and moral improvement.
would permit, the influence of our minisSince this interesting case came under try. As my letter has unwittingly run my cognizance, I have been led to attach to so great a length, I must reserve the more importance than previously to our particulars of this renewed application, East India Mission. Samuel Johnson and our duty in respect to it, for the next was taught to read and write at a Mis- mail. sion-school in India ; but he would not The large supply of Reports and other look into the Christian's Bible. The valuable books and papers, kindly sent Missionary used often to remonstrate by Mr. Hoole, have come duly to hand. with him; frequently were the tears seen My time has been much occupied to-day chasing each other down his face ; and in sending the Reports, &c., to the fervent were the prayers offered to Hea- friends of our Missions, who have been ven on behalf of the refractory lad; but for some time eagerly expecting them. no pleasing effects were witnessed. The Such supplies do not lie upon our hands, Missionary may be gone to his reward; neither do they rot upon our shelves : we but this person, once so obstinate and gratefully receive them, and promptly wicked, is now “meek as a Lamb,” and put them into circulation. is endeavouring to be a genuine disciple We are, thank God, tolerably well and of the Missionary's Lord. What an happy. We entreat a continued interest encouragement does this case furnish to in your prayers.
November 7th, 1849. I AM thankful to say that we still of that place we may emphatically say, are in health, and enjoy a tolerable “ What has God wrought !” At Godegree of encouragement in our Master's naïves, where we have been toiling appawork. It is truly gratifying to be able rently in vain for a long time past, we to say, that every Station in the French now begin to see some small signs of part of the District is more or less pros- prosperity. At Cayes, where Satan has pering, and our hopes becoming more fearfully raged during the late troubles, and more satisfactory. At the Cape our the Gospel is beginning to show forth indefatigable brother, Mr. Hartwell, has its saving power; a small society of two opened a new chapel, of which, doubt. or three having been formed there, with less, he has sent you an account. Truly the hope of still greater success.