Page images
PDF
EPUB
[blocks in formation]

ment. The design of these is to prepare their pupils for the examinations required of those who expect to take a course in law or medicine. The studies of the preparatory course are Latin, French, English, rhetoric, logic, rational and moral philosophy, geometry, history and geography.

The regular course in law extends over five years. Acquaintance with all the preparatory studies is requisite to enter on this course. "The Academy of Laws, or, as it is frequently denominated, the University of Sao Paulo, ranks first among all the literary institutions of the empire." At the satisfactory completion of the five-years course the academy confers the degree of Bachelor of Arts, and every Bachelor is entitled to present theses on which to be examined as a candidate for the degree of Bachelor of Laws. Competitors for this degree are required to "argue upon their theses with nine professors successively, each discussion lasting half an hour."

Medical schools are equally exigent in their requirements, and pride themselves on their results, insomuch that graduates of our own universities and those of Europe are required to sustain theses before they are allowed to practice medicine in that country.

"If a man has four sons-one of brilliant talent, he says of him, this one must go to Sao Paulo; a second less showy, he must study medicine; a third of executive ability, let him take care of the plantation; a fourth stupid and dull, this fellow is good for nothing but a priest, let him go to the Bishop's Seminary."

This estimate of the liberal courses open to Brazilian youth, given me by an intelligent Brazilian gentleman from the province of Minas, sufficiently characterizes the class who attend the diocesan seminaries, of which there are twelve. They do not attract the flower of Brazilian youth, and they who do frequent them have no chance to prove that "the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple," nor to say, "I have more understanding than my teachers, for thy testimonies are my meditation." I gave a New Testament to a youth who frequented that of Sao Paulo. It was taken from him as a dangerous book by his

[November.

professor of theology. Of course the keystone is lacking in that arch.

When the emperor visited our schools in Sao Paulo ten years ago, he said to the senator Martins Francisco de Andrada, "This is altogether the best school I have visited, both in its appointments and its thorough teaching; but it is a school of propaganda."

[ocr errors]

Que doutrina se ensina?" his majesty inquired of one of our native teachers. "The gospel only," was the laconic reply.

The Westminster and Child's Catechism were subsequently placed in his hands that he might be inteirado (entirely informed) on that point.

Accepting them graciously, he said to the writer, "I know, I know already; it is Protestant."

"Your majesty will search in vain in either of those compendiums of Christian doctrine for anything contrary to God's word."

"I do not doubt of it. But I am of the opinion that the Bible should not be admitted in the schools. Leave that to the Church. If you will eliminate that feature from your course, you can count upon our protection."

"Your majesty will not be offended when I say that in the matter of teaching what Jesus Christ taught we count upon higher protection than that of any mortal."

And we have had it. The schools have steadily grown in favor with God and man until (inclusive of kindergarten) nearly four hundred pupils are in daily attendance, and daily hear the word of the head Master who spake as never man spake. Now, LET US

CROWN THEM WITH A COLLEGE.

Rev. H. Corbett, D.D., of Chefoo, China, cheers us by the following note:

At our last communion our hearts were made glad by the public profession of faith in Christ of ten pupils from our training-school. Their ages vary from fifteen to twenty years. They are all picke boys from our country schools-all of more than average talent and faithful in their studies. If their lives are spared we hope by God's bless ing great things of them.

[blocks in formation]

For churches that have not yet adopted the scheme of weekly offerings set forth in the Directory for Worship, chapter vi., it is recommended by the General Assembly that the first Lord's day of the following months be set apart for contributions to the boards:

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

JOHN G. PATON, MISSIONARY TO THE NEW HEBRIDES. Published by Robert Carter & Bros. Price, $1.50. This autobiography introduces us to the pioneer work of a missionary hero. The story of the years spent upon the island of Tanna, one of the New Hebrides, of his efforts to win the cannibal tribes to accept Jehovah as their God, his patience and courage, his marvellous escapes from the dangers of land and sea and from the still more frightful dangers of treachery and open violence, are thrilling as any romance. That labor in such fields is not in vain is illustrated by the fact related by Mr. Paton,

NOTICE.

that the natives of a neighboring island, determined to have the Scriptures in their own tongue, toiled "through fifteen long but unwearying years, planting and preparing arrowroot," to raise the £1200 necessary for the printing of the book. If this vol ume is favorably received, an additional one is promised giving an account of Mr. Paton's more successful labors on another island of the group, where he had the joy of seeing the whole popula tion of the island converted from idolatry and a church planted, which has itself become a centre of missionary effort.

GLEANINGS AT HOME AND ABROAD.

Rev. George Heber Jones, in the Gospel in all Lands, says:

A heathen young man, a Korean of the scholar class, who is a follower of Confucius and a worshipper of his ancestors, gave expression, in conversation with the writer, to the following sweeping delaration:

"In this world there is but one thing which makes men different from each other, and that is the teaching of Jesus. The so-called differences among men pass so quickly they are not worthy the name. A Korean may have a yellow face, dark hair and dark eyes, while an American has a white face and passably light hair and blue eyes, but there comes a time when alike their faces wrinkle and the hair whitens, and together they pass into the Great

Beyond. Youth finds them different, but life, ere it finishes with them, makes them the same. Life metes out to them the same joys and sorrows; they share the same hates and loves, griefs and pleasures, and when through with this world no ray of light guides the one or the other into the darkness.

"But the teachings of Jesus must work a wonderful change, for the Christian does not hate; he loves the people-all people-and desires to do them good. He holds to a wonderful truth and commits no evil work. A beautiful ray of light shines from heaven upon him; he loves God and God loves him.”

When Ko-chet-thing, a Karen convert, visited America, he was urged on a certain occasion

1889.]

Gleanings at Home and Abroad.

to address a congregation in respect to their duty to send out and support more missionaries. After a moment of downcast thoughtfulness he asked, with evident emotion, "Has not Jesus Christ told them to do it?" "Oh yes," was the reply; "but we wish you to remind them of their duty." "Oh no," said the Karen; "if they will not obey Jesus Christ, they will not obey me."-Christian Secretary.

During the life of the present emperor no friend of Brazil can wish for a change in the form of government. The country is not ready for a republican form. It needs to be educated to it. Should the present form of government be overthrown by any hidden chance and a republic proclaimed, we might look for far less liberty than we now enjoy.-Brazilian Missions.

At the Woman's Union Missionary Society's twenty-eighth annual meeting Dr. Elizabeth Reifsnyder stated that she had treated 60,000 cases in three years at her hospital in Shanghai. Her opening cheerful remark was: "I am interested in all missions, but China is home, and

"Be it ever so-filthy, there is no place like home.'" Some missionaries are so deeply interested in their work for others that they wish only to live, labor and die among the poor perishing heathen. Such devotion is scarcely human, but divine.-Medical Missionary Record.

We are told that the average wages of many Japanese do not exceed ten cents a day. And yet in the last year native converts in Japan have given to mission work nearly $27,000. It would not call for so large a measure of selfdenial on the part of the ministry and membership of the Reformed Presbyterian Church to contribute this year at least the $15,000 appropriated to foreign missions. In fact, such an offering would be only a little given out of great abundance.-Herald of Mission News.

And how would that calculation apply to our Presbyterian Church? Figure it.

There are four Baptist, two Methodist and six Presbyterian churches among the Indians of western New York. The Presbyterian churches include nearly three hundred menbers, and the Baptist nearly four hundred, while it is fair to presume that the Methodist

459

number at least a hundred more. Within the last five years the Presbyterian church edifice on the Cattaraugus reservation has been repaired and refurnished. At the Allegany reservation a new house of worship has just been completed and dedicated free of debt. It is a commodious and tasteful structure, costing about $1500. Two thirds of this sum was contributed by the Indians themselves in money and in labor. The erection of this building grew out of the revival of religion at Jimersontown, and the free, generous giving of these people in their relative poverty indicates a practical piety on their part which is noteworthy. The church building at the Tonawanda mission has also been repaired during the year at an expense of $500, of which the Indians gave $300. Over $1400 has been contributed by the Indians of the four reservations for religious purposes during the year. One new Sabbath-school has been organized, and twenty-four persons have been received to full communion in the church. Eighteen dollars has been raised by the Allegany and Cornplanter churches, and six dollars by the Tuscaroras, and sent to the Foreign Mission Board as a contribution for work among the heathen. Religious meetings are held each week at twenty different places on these reservations. Three young Indians are studying with the Rev. Mr. Runciman to fit themselves for the ministry, and an organ has recently been bought and paid for by the Indians to facilitate services at the outlying districts.-Report to Presbytery of Buffalo.

The following incident from the report of a Waldensian pastor's work in Sicily reminds one of the struggle of Martin Luther when a monk at Erfurt:

"An interesting case is given of a Messina lawyer and his wife, who were brought to Christ. Signor Villari was a man of ability, and a sincere though bigoted Roman Catholic; he was taken ill with a disease which was, after some months, declared incurable, and might soon prove fatal; he was filled with alarm, and became anxious about his soul; he sent for a priest, told him of his doubts and fears, and wished to know on what reliable authority he could believe that his sins would be forgiven. The priest could say nothing to quiet the lawyer's conscience. He sent for another priest, one of great repute in such cases, but he, too, failed to meet the sick man's difficulties. He at length begged an interview with the arch

460

Gleanings at Home and Abroad.

bishop, which was granted. The archbishop repeatedly assured him, 'What I am stating to you is the solemn truth.' The lawyer would as often reply, 'I believe that you are stating what you sincerely believe to be the truth, but that does not quiet my conscience. I want to know whether that is really the divine truth.' After this he fell into a state of despondency and great distress. At this point his wife suggested that he should call in one of the evangelical clergymen of whom she had heard so much from friends, as speaking not on their own authority, but on the authority of God's own word of revelation. The lawyer, after much hesitation, at last sent for Signor Scuderi to come and see him. With some surprise, and almost suspecting some priestly trap, Signor Scuderi went. The sick man opened his mind freely. M. Scuderi, with the word of God as his authority, laid before him God's gracious and loving plan of salvation, with texts suited for his case; and while he was doing so, a new light was visibly breaking in upon the lawyer's mind, the Lord opening his heart, and that of his wife, to receive the word. At last, as it delivered from an intolerable burden, he exclaimed, with great emotion, 'I believe, yes, I believe all you have said, and I am prepared to do all that you will tell me I ought to do. I wish to live and die in this faith.' On his next visit Signor Scuderi found the wife sitting by the bedside of the sick man reading the New Testament to him. He was calm, happy and resigned, and from that time proclaimed his faith to all his friends who visited him till his death."-Missionary Herald (Ireland).

A laborer among the Indians in Rupert's Land gives a striking illustration of heathen unrest. A young Indian of the Rainy River tribe was of considerable promise and much liked by all the Indians. A little before he died, when surrounded by a large band of singers and the whole Indian faculty of medicine, who had exhausted their arts in the vain effort to restore him to health, he asked to be heard, and gathering all his strength he uttered these words: "I am dying, I am miserable! You have kept me from the light, and now I do not see which way I am going! Your way is all darkness, I cannot go in it. You have led me the wrong way. You are all blind; I do not want you any longer!"

[November.

Another instance comes from Aurungabad, in central India. A missionary was preaching, in 1882, at a town called Paitan, on the river Godavery, during one of the immensely-attended native fairs. He wrote home, "In the great gathering of this celebrated town, where we have preached twelve hours daily, and been heard, as I calculated, by at least 10,000 or 12,000 people, I have noticed a strange desire to know our religion. There is an increasing restlessness on the part of the masses, and often have I heard them exclaim, 'Oh do show us the way of salvation! Show us the inner mysteries of your religion. We are far from being happy. We want peace.'"-Herald of Mission News.

Dr. John Dixon, of the Mildmay Medical Mission to the Jews, reports 11,121 visits of old and new patients to the dispensary in 1888, and 2489 visits of doctors to the patients in their own homes, besides the work of the deaconesses in connection with the mission. In this way over 5000 Jews and Jewesses have not only received medical help, but have heard the gospel each time they visited the mission.Friend of Missions.

Fourteen mothers' meetings are held every week in different quarters of Paris in connection with the McAll Mission, attended by an average of 200, mostly women of the lower classes, many of whom have led hard and reckless lives, but who have been brought under the influence of the gospel and have been changed and softened. These meetings are being imitated by the Reformed churches, and even the Roman Catholics are organizing similar missions.-Canada Presbyterian.

The Cherokee Indians support over one hundred common schools, with an aggregate of four thousand and fifty-nine pupils, and a high school for boys, with two hundred and eleven students. They are just completing a seminary that will accommodate one hundred and sixtyfive students.-Presbyterian.

All that tends to excite and maintain a spirit of vital godliness and living faith will tend to excite and maintain a missionary spirit.-Rev. J. C. Whiting, in Baptist Missionary.

« PreviousContinue »