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Religious and Missionary Intelligenee.
BY THE REV. E. BARRASS, D.D.
membership was only 13,487. If the The South African Conference - the
present rate of increase be maintained youngest of affiliated Conferences -num
five years more, more than half of the
soldiers in India will be total abstainers. bers 41,735 members, an increase of 2,441 for the past year. If the members
Dr. Stephenson, of the Children's in juvenile classes were included the in
Home, London, has had under his care crease would be 4,145. There are 413
during last year, 2,500 children, including day-schools with 26,091 scholars, and
500 who have gone forth from the Home. 428 Sunday-schools with 28,500 scholars.
He has also compiled a hymn-book conThere are ten industrial and training in
taining 252 hymns for children's meetstitutions, and among the candidates for ings, church festivals, hospital Sundays,
etc. the ministry were ten Europeans and two natives. There are 172 ministers, twenty
An ordination service of missionaries of whom aresupernumeraries, with twenty
was held recently, when four young men eight on trial.
were ordained for British Honduras and
Western Africa. More than half a century ago the Rev.
All had spent someJohn Ayliff commenced a mission among
time at the Missionary College, Richmond. the Fingoes. About a year ago a me
Numerous meetings in promotion of
Methodist union have been held in Ausmorial church bearing his honoured name was dedicated. The church will seat
tralia. The last of which we have read one thousand persons, and among those
was presided over by Chief Justice Wray,
Lieutenant-Governor. Among others who present many were ordained ministers and other office-bearers, descendants of
took part we find the names of Sir John the original Fingo refugees.
Madden, Governor of Victoria, and Mr.
John S. Larke from Canada. The meetA missionary who is on furlough in England, Rev. R. Balmer, has with him
ing was attended by two thousand persons.
and was most enthusiastic. a few Hottentot boys from Africa. He is holding meetings to raise funds to extend his mission among the Hottentot
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH. children in Africa. The boys three years Bishop Hurst surprised and pleased the ago could not speak a word in English, Central Swedish Conference at the recent but under his tuition they can both session in Chicago, by using the Swedish speak in our tongue and sing well
. At language in the opening services, at the one meeting, in Leeds, two thousand communion services, and in the ordination persons were present and were delighted. of the deacons and elders on Conference
The published results of the inter- Sunday. Bishop Hurst says that he mediate examinations show that the spent fourteen days in Washington searchMethodist College, Belfast, again stands ing for a site for the university. The first of all Protestant boys' schools in one selected cost $100,000, and is now Ireland. The girls' school takes fifth worth $500,000 ; $300,000 has been seplace among ladies' schools.
cured for the endowment of professorships Rev. Richard Roberts, ex-president of and the erection of buildings. One woman Conference, has preached during forty- gave $100,000. A wealthy Catholic gave three years of his active ministry 11,438 $12,000. A nephew of Pope Leo XIII., times, or 266 times per annum, giving an a labourer, whose children attend a Methaverage of five times a week. Mr. Roberts odist Sunday-school, gave $10. is seventy-two years of age and still pos- Dr. Hunt, one of the agents of the sesses the most buoyant spirits.
Book Concern, when addressing the ConRev. J. H. Bateson, superintendent of ferences which he visited, stated that the Army work in India, reports 23,745 $120,000 was donated from the profitsmembers, being an increase of 2,131 over of last year to the aged ministers. He the previous year. Five years ago the also said that one-third of the religious
literature of the last century in the United States is published by the Book Concern.
The Board of Education disbursed during the last school year over $70,000 in 138 different schools, thus aiding 1,539 students of differe nationa ties. All aid is granted in the form of an easy loan, and it is gratifying to learn that the repayment of loans last year reached $7,940.82, a sum nearly twice as large as any previous year.
Connexion that the state of the Missionary Fund prevents extension in Africa.
Rev. T. and Mrs. Stones have sailed to West Africa to take charge of the Aqua River Mission.
be African chief, Khama, who visiting England for the purpose of conferring with the Government respecting excluding intoxicating liquors from his territories, has been entertained by the Missionary Committee and has given much valuable information respecting missions among his people.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, SOUTH,
BIBLE CHRISTIAN CHURCH. The Bible Christian and Primitive Methodist denominations have agreed to co-operate together in the metropolis. Where one denomination has a church the other will avoid establishing a separate interest.
Bishop Hendrix writes from Japan that the great needs of the mission are a first-class church on a choice site in East Osaka, also a suitable building for the Lambeth Bible-Training and Industrial School in Kobé, and an endowment for Kwansei Gakuin, our noble college and theological school which has one of the best sites and buildings in Japan. The importance of these three objects cannot be easily estimated. The Conference proceedings were shared in most intelligently by the native preachers and laymen, who hail the early publication of the Discipline in Japanese. They promise to be diligent students of economy.
METHODIST New CONNEXION. The Sunday-school Union Committee has made arrangements for scholars to be examined in their knowledge of the Scriptures, and the Connexional origin, history and polity.
The motto of the societies of Christian Endeavour for the connexional year is, “A Society in Every Church. The number of societies at present is about two hundred, an increase of between seventy and eighty during the year.
THE METHODIST CHURCH. Wesley College, Winnipeg, now in course of erection, will be an imposing edifice, and is the third of the denominational colleges in that city. The cost of the stone and brick work alone is $40,000, and the total cost will be $80,000. By the time these notes are printed the college will be opened.
Rev. Messrs. Crossley and Hunter, who held a successful course of meetings at Guelph, are now in the Maritime Provinces where, including a visit to Bermuda, they propose to remain during the winter months.
The new College Hall, in Newfoundland, has been formally opened by a grand inaugural concert.
The Conference in Newfoundland reported an increase of 975 members, and also an increase of 642 scholars in the Sunday-schools.
The Conferences in the Maritime Provinces and Newfoundland are making efforts to add $25,000 to the capital stock of the Supernumerary Fund, and have appointed Rev. C. H. Paisley agent to visit the circuits for this purpose.
PRIMITIVE METHODIST. A local-preachers' manual is to be published.
Ministerial associations are established in every connexional district in England. Recently, the association in the North of England met in Bishop Auckland. The Bishop of Durham, Dr. Westcott, entertained two of the ministers at his residence, and spoke earnestly in favour of union.
The Connexional Orphanage is doing great good. Efforts are being made to establish a home in London for young men who drift thither from the country.
Great regret is felt throughout the
Items. Romanism is not increasing so rapidly as is often reported. There are a million less members in Great Britain than in 1841. There are only nine million in the United States. The strength of Popery is in its unity.
Thomy La Fou, a Roman Catholic coloured man, died in New Orleans and left an estate of $300,000. Over $200,000 noted Scotch divine, lives in one of the lowest parts of Edinburgh. Her home consists of a few rooms in an alley, surrounded by drunkenness, poverty and suffering. Every night she goes out into the lanes of the city with her lantern, and she never returns to her quarters without one or more girls or women she has taken from the streets. The people love her, and she is never molested or insulted.
was distributed among the educational and charitable institutions of the city. He provided for his own relatives and for the widows of a number of former friends. He gave $3,000 to the Methodist University of New Orleans, and also a block of ground and $5,000 in cash for the Methodist Old People's Home.
The wanton encroachment of France upon Madagascar renews the interest of the Christian world in the Malagasy and their queen.
Like her predecessor, Queen Ranavanola III., she is a Christian, and Christianity is really the religion of the State. There are 1,200 congregations and over 1,000 schools in successful operation. The Jesuits are believed to be the cause of the late troubles. Like Tahiti, Madagascar is now a protectorate of France.
The centenary of the London Missionary Society was recently celebrated. The society is now largely supported by the Congregational body, though its founders were Episcopalians, Presbyterians, and Congregationalists. When churches are formed as the result of missionary labour they can adopt whatever form of church government they may select. At the tirst meeting held one hundred years ago, fifteen ministers were present, but at the first centenary meeting, which was breakfast gathering, one hundred and fifty were in attendance.
The children’s gathering in connection with the Centenary was held in Exeter Hall, when more than three thousand were present. The hall was picturesquely decorated with banners, Chinese scrolls, and missionary emblems, while missionaries of both sexes and of many nationalities, attired in their gorgeous native robes, were seated on the platform. China sent nine, including three ladies, Madagascar six, India fifteen, Africa four, the South Seas three, and New Guinea and the West Indies two each. Salutations in various native tongues were frequently applauded; hymns in Hindustani, Chinese, and Malagasy were sung, and addresses were delivered by missionaries from various parts of the world.
Mrs. Spurgeon, of London, keeps up her work of supplying ministers of small means with good books. During 1894 8,403 volumes were distributed, mostly works by Mr. Spurgeon. She says that while recipients have been Baptists, Congregationalists, Methodists and Episcopalians, more applications have been received from the clergy of the latter Church than she could fill.
Helen Chalmers, the daughter of the
RECENT DEATHS. Rev. Samuel Laycock, of the Methodist New Connexion, died recently at Gateshead, England. During sume of his latter years he lived in retirement. So long as health permitted he was a faithful, earnest minister of the New Testament. He was spared to the age of threescore years and ten.
Rev. Joseph Lee Fox travelled twentysix years in the Methodist New Connexion, and retired at the last Conference. He was a man of considerable ability, and made many warm attachments. He selected Blyth, in the North of England, as his final earthly home. For three years he was minister there. Soon after his superannuation serious brain trouble affected him from which he never rallied. His father died from the same disease.
Rev. James Williamson, M.A., LL.D., of Queen's University, Kingston, died August 26th, aged eighty.nine. He was a native of Scotland and was educated for the ministry in the Church of Scotland. Since 1842 he was professor in Queen's. He was a man greatly beloved, and was of great service to the Presbyterian Church. He was by marriage brotherin-law to the late Sir John A. Macdonald, at whose funeral he delivered his last public address
Rev. W. G. Pascoe, of the Wesleyan Methodist Church, England, was recently called to his reward. He was a man of great purity of character and was made abundantly useful in all his circuits.
Rev. Juhn Ridclift, of the Bible Christian Church, died in South Australia last July. He was a native of Deron, in which county he commenced his ministry and was instrumental in the salvation of many. In Australia he laboured as a pioneer, and laid the foundations of the Church broad and deep. He attained the age of seventy-five. One erening he retired to rest in his usual health and next morning "he was not, for God took him."
The People's Bible History, Prepared in the
Light of Recent Investigations by Some of the Foremost Thinkers in Europe and America. Illustrated copiously and beautifully, and accompanied by portraits of the several authors. Edited by Rev. Geo. C. LORIMER, LL.D., with an Introduction by Right Hon. William Ewart Gladstone, M.P. 1,300 pp. 4to -9} x 13inches, 200 engravings. Chicago : The Henry 0. Shepard Company. Price in case, $15. Sold only by subscription.
One of the most hopeful signs of the times is the intense interest which is manifested in the Word of God. No book has ever been so widely read, so carefully studied, and so sharply criticised as the Bible. Around it for ages has been waged a strenuous war. But from every conflict it has emerged more than conqueror. It has been cast into the fiery furnace of hostile criticism and it has come forth without even the smell of fire upon its pages ; for abiding in it, a perpetual presence, is the Spirit of the Living God. It has been the inspiration of all that is wisest and best and holiest in the laws and literature of mankind, and of the holy lives and happy deaths of believers in its sacred truths. No one has paid a more glowing tribute to this Book of books simply as a body of the world's noblest teaching, of its sublime poetry, its pure morality, its enthralling narrative, than Mr. Huxley, who cannot be accused of undue bias in its favour.
Yet this Book is far too little studied and known. Even those who study this Book in the Bible-class, or Sunday-school, or for private devotion, know far too little of its relations to the ancient races of mankind, of the manner in which it has been handed down from age to age, or of the light thrown upon its pages by that greatest of modern commentators, the spade of the explorer.
The design of this volume is to bring aid from every source for the better comprehension of the Word of God. For this purpose the ablest authorities in the whole range of biblical scholarship have been laid under tribute for the discussion of various phases of the comprehensive study and various periods of its history, While this method sacrifices somewhat unity of treatment it gains in wider range and more ample and more exhaustive discussion.
It is a curious example of the versatility and theological learning of Mr. Gladstone, ex-Premier of Great Britain, that he has found time to write a general introduction, prepared special y for this volume, of twenty-six quarto pages, setting forth the value of scriptural studies to the laity. From this remarkable treatise we give copious extracts on another page. We deem it a happy coincidence that we are able to present in the same number of this magazine such striking defence of Christian revelation from both the past and the prospective Premier of Great Britain.
Professor Sayce, of Oxford University, doubtless one of the greatest living authorities on the subject of Assyriology, contributes an article of forty pages on the literature of the Old Testament, and Dr. Farrar, Dean of Canterbury, contributes seventy pages; Dr J. Monro Gibson, of London. eighty pages ; Dr. Lorimer, general editor, one hundred and ten pages.
We have no reason to be ashamed of the Methodist contributions. Dr. Bristol, of Evanston, contributes seventy-five pages, and Professor Beet, of the Wesleyan College, Richmond, England, a valuable section on literature of the New Testament, and Professor Gregory, of Leipsic, one on the manuscripts of the New Testament. The most important section, we think, is that of one hundred and forty pages by Professor Wilkinson on the life of our Lord. The engravings
numerous and excellent, many of them full-page.
These are a few out of the many authors engaged on this work. Of this book Bishop Vincent says, “What Gladstone and Sayce have written expressly for its pages, giving the latest results of their largest knowledge, is enough to justify even the most cultivated people among us in the purchase of this admirable book, and the English ex-Premier and the eminent English archæologist are only two out of more than a dozen specialists who have contributed to the People's Bible History." Dr. J. L. Withrow, of Chicago, says, “Dr. Gregory, than whom we suppose there is no living linguist of higher reputation for New Testament scholarship, writes simply enough to interest a Sunday-school primary class.”
The publishers issue a question-book of one hundred and twelve pages on the
contents of this Bible history, with page references. These books will form an apparatus for the study of the Scriptures such as we know not where else can be found.
reckless in his conclusions as to the authorship of the Pentateuch. Dr. Stebbins, like William Spiers, whose book we reviewed last month, traverses these conclusions and vigorously maintains the conservative and orthodox point of view.
Mr. Hastings' treatment of the same subject is more popular in its character and is a vigorous defence of the impregnable rock of Holy Scripture”-a refu. tation of many attacks upon its veracity, and an exposure of the shallow criticism on “the mistakes of Moses” by showing the mistakes of the critics and the historic corroboration of the world's great lawgiver.
The Higher Critics Criticised. A Study
of the Pentateuch for Popular Reading, being an Enquiry into the Age of the so-called Books of Moses, with an Introductory Examination of Dr. Kuenen's
Religion of Israel.” By Rufus P. STEBBINS, D.D., with Preliminary Chapters on the Higher Criticism, and an Appendix concerning the Wonderful Law, by H. L. Hastings. Boston: H. L. Hastings. Toronto : William Briggs. Pp. 450. Price, $1.50.
This title describes very fully the nature of this volume. Mr. Hastings, the publisher and author of about half the volume, has rendered invaluable service to the Church of Christ by his manful defence of the truth and zealous evangelism in the city of Boston. Dr. Kuenen is one of the most destructive of the socalled higher critics. He affirms that not one of the Psalms is from David's hand, although many of the eminent Hebrew scholars believe that he wrote from twenty to eighty of them.
Kuenen is equally
The Story of Bessie Costrell. By MRS.
HUMPHREY WARD. New York : Mac-
This is rather a disappointing book. We expect something much better from the author of “Marcella" and “David Grieve." This is a sombre not to say gloomy narrative. It describes the vulgar theft of money from a squalid miser by his feather-headed niece. Its moral, if it has any, is its illustration of the benunibed influence of the drink habit on the conscience.
OUR PROGRAMME FOR 1896.
We think that a glance at the announce- will be read with a special interest, “The ment of the 43rd and 44th volumes of Hand on the Helm," a tale of Irish life, the MAGAZINE will indicate that it is the of smugglers and Methodists, of true lore best we think we have ever made. The and its trials, of Irish brogue, Irish husplendidly illustrated articles on “ Britain's mour, Irish pathos, and Irish piety. It Keys of Empire,” Around the World will be illustrated with a score of engrarwith the Union Jack," and The Greater ings. “The Elder's Sin" describes the Britain of the Southern Seas," with ser- heroic character of the Covenanters of eral papers on our own great Dominion, Scotland. “ The Man Trap" is a strongly will give it a patriotic character that written temperance story, by the author should appeal to the patronage of every of “Lost in London.” The Trials of loyal Canadian. The articles on “Every Philip Strong,” and “The New Social. Day Life in Bible Lands" will throw ism," by the author of “ Philip Meyer's much light on many passages of Holy Scheme," are also powerfully written Scripture. Its stories of the heroism and stories. The six chapters of “Hiram romance of missions, its character-studies Golf's Religion ; or, Shoemaker by the of the men and women who have moulded Grace of God,” will inspire to braver dohistory, its sketches of social and moral ing and holier living. These stories purreform, and its papers on Popular Science chased in book form would cost several will furnish instructive reading to all times the price of the MAGAZINE for the classes.
We trust that each reader A feature of great attractiveness will be will renew promptly and endeavour to its admirable serial stories. One of these secure an additional subscription.