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We spent the night at Sha Tong where we had the cheapest accommodation I have ever had. For six cash apiece we got a sleeping place at the inn and as much grass as we needed to cook our rice. After preaching to crowds, and distributing many tracts at Tsang Shing city, we stayed all night at an inn in Shek F'an, and returned by passage boat to Canton. No mission work had been done on the North river, so I felt it my duty to try to give the people there an opportunity of hearing the gospel. accompanied by two native preachers and was generally well received, but in two cases had narrow escapes from being injured. At Wong Tong as I was preaching, standing on a pile of lumber, a man who had been drinking made his way through the crowd brandishing a large butcher's knife and loudly threatening to kill me. I knew that it would never do to turn my back, so I committed myself to God and kept on preaching. He drew nearer and nearer, but just as he got near me some of the crowd disarmed him. This is one among several instances in which God has raised up some one among the heathen to take my part in the hour of danger, and impressed on my mind the truth of Christ's promise that He will suffer no evil to harm His people, when they are engaged in doing His work. I went on further up the river. While preaching from an open air altar above Lo Pau, a man threw a half brick at me with great violence, it passed quite near my head and struck a man in the crowd, and knocked out two of his teeth ; of course the anger of the people was excited against the ruffian, but many of them blamed me for causing the trouble.
On another tour I went up the North West river (Sui Kong) as far as Sz Ui city. Though the country was in a disturbed state as the rebels had just been driven out, I was well received. I shall never forget how when I was surrounded by a scowling, noisy crowd, their faces calmed down as they heard the gospel message, and how some rough braves who were very violent opposers took my part. I found then as I had done before that a prayer before the people and for them seemed to have much effect in calming them.
Apart from any Divine influence, the fact that you close your eyes and thus show confidence that you can trust them when you are not watching them, as well as the truth that you are engaging in religious worship, seems to quiet the minds of the people. On my return while preaching at Sai Nam I had my book bag torn and the tracts torn up before my face while we were hustled through the crowd and stoned as we returned to our boat. No serious harm was done, or intended however.
SETTLING IN THE COUNTRY. My work in Canton was not without results. I was permitted to baptize several, among whom were three English soldiers. The first converts were baptized in a pond near the Fi Loi Temple near the Little North Gate: This was the first baptism within the walls of Canton. One of these men then a young man is now a grandfather and one of our deacons. But I felt that while there were so many chapels in Canton, and such numbers of men in the country had never heard the gospel it was my duty, as I was single, to leave the men with families in the city while I endeavored to give the gospel message to those who had never heard it. So I tried to settle in the country. The war was still going on in the North near Peking, but it was comparatively quiet in Canton. After several vain attempts to rent a house in Sai Nam I at last succeeded in getting a place at Sai Sh'a, the chief market town in the Sz Ui District. I had preached here several times on my tours, and had been well received. However I had to take possession of my house under cover of the night. It was a little place in bad repair, and that night we had a heavy rain; the roof leaked so badly that I had to put a basin on my bed to catch the water which poured down. My boat was dismissed and I felt that we had burned our bridges and I was alone in the country some sixty miles from Canton. I here began Dispensary work and preaching. We had preaching day and night, and visited the neighboring villages and market towns. I lived in Chinese style and eat with my native assistants. The Gentry, however, soon began to try to drive us out. Meanwhile all did not go smoothly with the Allied forces in the North ; the Steamer “Mi Li” was captured between Canton and Hong Kong and her commander Capt. Rickaby and others were killed. These things unsettled the minds of the Chinese. The gentry posted up notices on the passage boats forbidding them to deliver any letters for me or to me; they had spies following me every time I went out, and finally sent a party of braves to the chapel with chains and orders to arrest and chain my assistant. I told them that he and I stood or fell together that they must arrest me if they touched him. They did not venture to seize me so we all went to see the local official (Sz Kun). The result of this interview was that the gentry changed their tactics and put pressure on the landlord whom they threatened with imprisonment and confiscation of his property. He came to me with tears and said he would be ruined unless I gave up the house. In order to save him I released him from his agreement, especially as notices forbade the people coming to us for medicine or books, or to hear preaching. As
we had scarcely any visitors our work seemed nearly at an end. One of the gentry who had been friendly gave me a letter of introduction to the gentry of Paʻk Nai, a town on the West river, I tried to get a foothold there, but though the gentry received me with much show of politeness, they secretly gave orders that no one should rent us a house. The gentry here were all-powerful : they had a P'a Shiin (armed cruiser) of their own, and had executed many people. This power of life and death had been accorded to the gentry during the Tai Peng rebellion and had not then been recalled. I once saw 36 heads of men who were executed by the gentry, hung up in cages by the roadside. After having been driven away from the country I returned to Canton and in the Spring of °61 succeeded after much opposition in gaining a foothold at Shiu Hing, 80 miles from here on the West river. This was the first permanent station occupied away from Canton. Our entrance there was not without difficulty. Three houses had been rented at different times, but as soon as it was known that they were for a foreigner, the people threatened to tear them down and the landlords were frightened. At last I got the back part of a shop. I kept my boat below the city until after dark. The landlord came on board at 9 p.m. and I paid him a quarter's rent in advance. The next morning I got in the house by daylight before the shops were open. The Kai fong called a meeting and talked of driving us out, but an old Gamaliel among them advised them to wait and see if any harm came before they resorted to violence.
So we remained. Various annoyances
however were experienced. One night iny door was taken from its hinges and carried off ; at other times dead cats &c., were thrown in. I began vaccinating aud healing on some days, and preaching day and night. I and my two assistants spoke for an hour at a time, resting two hours and preachi:g one, from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m., sometimes in the house and sometimes in the streets. My accommodations were not comfortable but I was glad to put up with any thing so I could retain my foothold. My room was lighted only by a hole in the roof which had to be covered with a board when it rained. During 1 hard rain the mud floor was a pool of water so that I had to put down stools to go from one side of the room to the other. However before our quarter's rent was out we succeeded in renting a very convenient house from a Mahommedan, which was my residence, in Shiu Hing for some years.
In '61 and '62 some of the Canton missionaries made tours into the country. Foremost among these was Mr. Vrooman of the A. B. C. F. M. who was the first to visit Kwang Si; he and Mr. Novin (of the U. P. mission) also went up
the North river as far as Lok Cheung. An overland expedition consisting of Archdeacon Gray, Mr. Bonney, Mr. John Preston and one or two of the merchants went on horseback N.E. of Canton, passing through Tsang Fa. They were attacked by robbers, and had their horses and baggage stolen. Mr. Bonney was noted for his accurate, methodical habits. While on this trip he was thrown from his horse, the others seeing that he did not rise from the ground nor attempt to catch his pony, came to help him supposing that he had been seriously hurt; but they found him with watch and note book in hand makiug the entry "at 10 hours 12 minutes a.m. was thrown from my horse.” On his return home Mrs. Bonney seeing that he was dressed in the Chinese clothes furnished by the mandarin and that he was in a sad plight was of course anxious to know what accident he had met with, but he merely said “Let us pray and fell on his knees and returned thanks for his deliverance. When he rose she naturally wished to know something of his danger, but he only said "wait till we come to that,” and pulled out his diary and read each day's experience in order until he came to the robbery! Mr. Bonney afterwards accompanied Dr. Dixon on an overland journey to Hankow and Nanking then in posression of the rebels. Messrs. Wylie of the British and Foreign Bible Society, and Krolezyk of the Rhenish mission, made a journey into Kwang Si and were attacked by pirates who robbed them of all that they had and tied the Chinese assistant up to the mast and tortured him to make him tell where the money was of which they supposed foreigners must have a great store.
During these years Mr. Roberts took up his residence at Nanking at the request of the Tai Peng Wong. When he had remained there for some months, finding that he could do but little good and had no influence with the rebels, he made his escape and after various experiences returned to Canton.
Dr. Kerr opened a Dispensary at Fat Sh‘an and Mr. & Mrs. Condit of the Presbyterian Mission took up their residence there. The great typhoon of July ’62 blew down the house they were building and that mission abandoned the station.
From Shiu Hing my assistants and I made frequent tours on the West River from Ng Chau in one direction to Sam Chau and and Kú Ló in the other, and up the San Hing river as far as Tin Tong. I also had a Ilakkal assistant who visited the Hakka villages from Ko Ming to Kwing Ning Districts.
The East river was worked by the brethren attached to the German and London missions. On July 27th, 1862 occurred a fearful typhoon which destroyed much property and many lives.
My colleague Mr. Galliard was killed by his house falling upon him, My other colleague Mr. Schilling was living at Whampoa as Seaman's chaplain, as the civil war in America cut us off from our means of support, and he sought employment at the Bethel. Tha “chop” on which he and his family were living was driven ashore by the storm, and they were in great danger, but were rescued by the captain of the "Alhambra” a ship then anchored at Whampoa. I was living at Shiu Hing at the time, but afterwards spent part of my time in Canton as I was called to the pastorate of the Church here left vacant by the death of Mr. Galliard. In January '64 Mr. Schilling lost his wife and returned to America with his motherless children, and I was left alone in our mission. We were often in straits and had many trying times during the war in America, but God enabled us to keep on with our work, and taught us to live economically, and forced us to teach our members the elements of self-support. So our four years of adversity were not a time of unmixed evil.
(To be concluded.)
THE FUTURE ATTITUDE OF CHINA TOWARDS CHRISTIANITY."
By Rev. J. EDKINS, D.D.
CONTENTS.-Religious persecution is likely to decline in China. Much local persecution
exists and is likely to continue. Prospects of missions in Corea and Annam aro brighter politically than they ever were. Contrast between modern persecution in easteru Asia and ancient persecution in the Roman empire. The history of religious thought in China throws light on tbe hostility felt to Christianity by the literati. Examples of the mode of attack employed by the literati in criticising Christianity. The change of attitude adopted by the literati towards Christianity in our own age, shows what their attitude will be in the coming time.
Christian missions to the Chinese are now conducted peacefully in the eighteen provinces with very few exceptions and this renders the present a suitable time for making some reflections on the situation. We are met as friends of the gospel and anything bearing on Christian progress is interesting to us. We are living in a heathen land which is each year more influenced by western thought and activity. I propose to discuss the attitude of China towards Christianity in the belief that just now to do this with some amount of care may be useful.
1.-Religious persecution is likely to decline. During the last two years there has been a large amount of persecution, but much of it was caused by and died out with the unhappy hostilities that arose between France and China. The assault made on the * An address delivered at the first annual meeting of the Peking and Tungchow local
Branch of the Evangelical Alliance on May 20th, 1886.