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office of the holy ministry; and that the Rev. Professor Aitken, M.A., Rev. Professor Spence, and the Moderators of the respective Presbyteries, be associated with the Edinburgh Presbytery on the occasion of Mr. Walker's ordination, and they are hereby appointed corresponding members of Edinburgh Presbytery accordingly.
5. PETITION FROM HUTCHESONTOWN CONGREGATION, Glasgow, ANENT THE ERECTION OF A PLACE OF WORSHIP.-A petition from Hutchesontown Congregation relative to the erection of a place of worship was considered by the Synod. The petition and accompanying papers were read, and the Rev. Alex. J. Yuill and Mr. William King, elder, were heard in its support. The petition is as follows:
“That your petitioners were formed into a Congregation in September, 1872, and since then, but especially since the induction on the oth September, 1874, of the Rev. A. J. Yuill, as pastor, the Congregation has largely and rapidly increased. That the Congregation worshipped in a hall of the Southern Academy, Elgin Street, until very recently, when the Academy was purchased by the patrons of Hutcheson's Hospital, who would not allow to the Congregation the longer use of the hall. After much anxiety and diligent search, the use of a hall in Norfolk Street was at length obtained; but only till Whitsunday next.
“ That the want a Church has thus been attended with many inconveniences, and the removing from one place of meeting to another unquestionably tends to hinder the prosperity of the Congregation, and is consequently hurtful to the Church at large. That in these circumstances, and after due consideration, your petitioners have resolved to attempt to build a Church. That should the petitoners be successful in this enterprise, and a Church be erected in a somewhat public thoroughfare, there can be no doubt that the enlargement and welfare of the Congregation will be secured.
"That the Congregation being yet, however, comparatively small, and considering the pecuniary difficulties which hitherto they have had to meet in maintaining ordinances, it need hardly be said that it is impossible for your petitioners of themselves to erect a suitable building, and therefore before proceeding with the proposed erection they consider it proper to lay the matter before your reverend Court for approval. That your petitioners have every reason to hope that within a short time they will obtain a site for the proposed Church, on easy terms, from the trustees of Hutcheson's Hospital, on whose table a petition is at present lying for consideration.
“ That your petitioners have already promised to subscribe nearly three hundred pounds, and believing as they do that this effort to extend the influence of the Church will meet with your hearty concurrence, and with the liberal support of all who revere the principles and blood-purchased attainments of the Protestant Reformation, your petitioners hope ere long to gain the object they have in view.
“May it therefore please your reverend Court to take the foregoing petition into your favourable consideration, and to recommend the matter to the sympathy and support of the various Congregations of the Church.”
After conversation, it was moved by the Rev. Thomas Robertson, and unanimously agreed to, that the petition be received with thankfulness at the measure of prosperity granted to the Hutchesontown Congregation since its formation ; that the Synod sympathize cordially with the object in view ; that the Congregation be encouraged to look out for a suitable site on which to erect a Church, but before proceeding therewith that they submit the plans of the proposed site and building to the Glasgow Presbytery for approval; and that in the event of the Hutchesontown Congregation raising a fifth part of the sum required for the Church, either among themselves or friends unconnected with the denomination, and a representation be made to the Synod at its next meeting to this effect, an appeal will then be made to the Congregations under Synod's inspection, for aid to enable the Hutchesontown Congregation to erect a suitable place of worship.
6. REFERENCE ANENT GRANTS FROM THE HOME MISSION FUND TO CONGREGATIONS.—Took up a reference from the Committee on Bills and Overtures anent the terms of the Synod minutes bearing on the period during which grants are
ordinarily made to weak congregations out of the Home Mission Fund. The matter was introduced in Committee by Mr. John Smith, elder from Carnoustie, sho expressed a desire to have it minuted that, while the grant is restricted to a period of three years, it be understood that congregations obtaining such grants are not thereby debarred from approaching the Synod, either before or at the expiry of the time specified, with a petition for a continuance of the grant. The minute bearing on the matter having been read, it was agreed to record in the minutes, That a congregation receiving aid from the Home Mission Fund for any definite period, may subsequently approach the Synod by petition for a renewal of the grant, when the circumstances of the petitioners, and their claims on continued support from the Fund, will be duly considered.
7. OVERTURE ANENT TESTIMONY.—An Overture from the Glasgow Presby. tery, relative to the continuance of the Historical part of the Testimony, and lying on the table since previous meeting of Synod, was introduced, when it was moved by the Rev. John Ritchie, and agreed to, that the Overture be not entered on till the Synod next meets.
NEXT MEETING.—The next meeting of Synod was appointed to be held within Victoria Terrace Church, Edinburgh, on Monday, the 7th May, 1877, at seven o'clock evening.
The Moderator having briefly addressed the Court, offered up prayer; and after the closing verses of the 122nd Psalm were sung, the meeting of Synod was concluded by the Moderator pronouncing the apostolic benediction.
WILLIAM B. GARDINER, Synod Clerk.
OUR FOREIGN MISSION. At the commencement of another year, we may be pardoned for obtruding the claims of our Indian Mission anew before the readers of the Magazine. This we do that a fresh impetus may be given to prayer, on behalf of the missionaries and their work, the teachers and their pupils, and the inmates of our Orphanage. We make no appeal on the liberality of our people, for they have given hitherto with no stinted hand; but we ask their continued supplications at the throne of grace, for those more immediately engaged in the great work that is being carried on in a densely-peopled corner of that heathen land. We are convinced that if those at home earnestly besought the Lord to guide His servants in India, and direct their ministrations, the inhabitants of Seoni, and its numerous surrounding villages, would reap the benefit, and through the Divine blessing many souls would be rescued from eternal death.
Several letters have been received from the Rev. George Anderson, since we last reported on the progress of the Mission. Along with a letter that came towards the end of September, photographs were sent of the missionary and catechists, the matron and orphans, the bungalow and orphanage. These enable us to form some idea of the men employed by our church in the work of evangelising the heathen, as well as of the house occupied by our esteemed missionary and his family, and the home provided for the orphan children. Arrangements may subsequently be made for having these copied, and distributed among the friends of the Mission. Referring to the School-house, which the Committee authorised Mr. Anderson to erect or purchase, he states in a letter dated August 22nd, -“I have bought a house to be used as a school-house. The situation is excellent, not far from the Mission compound, and yet central so far as the town is concerned. The foundation has been tested for ten or twelve years, and the building is substantial. We are getting it altered to serve us at present, and hope to enter it by the ist September. After the rains are over, I propose to take down the roof, which is flat, and therefore heavy, and the beams of which are bent and not very strong, and to break down most of the interior walls, and enclose the courtyard. We shall then have a fine large hall, and accommodation for probably over three hundred scholars. The sloping tiled roof which I propose to put on, will be safer than the present one. I think the total cost of the school-house may probably amount to about £80, when the contemplated alterations are finished; but I am not sure if its equal could be erected for double that amount, if we had to buy materials and begin from the foundation. The school” Mr. Anderson adds "continues to prosper. We have now about 190 scholars, and have reason to expect more.”
Writing on September roth, Mr. Anderson says, “We have now over 190 scholars. The other day I had occasion to go to the Zillah School, when there were present in it 38 scholars. There were also 40 present in the branch school conducted in the same building, -making in all 78. Allowing that one fourth of those enrolled were absent, the total number would be about 104. There is another branch school which has on the roll, I am credibly informed, no more than 30. You will therefore see, that we have decidedly the majority of boys, besides hope of increase. It is possible that our numbers may diminish when we begin to levy fees. We are therefore desirous to delay levying them as long as we can; but ere long we must begin.
"I am sorry to say, that one of the infant orphans, Susan Burnham, died on the 31st August. She has never been at all strong since she came to us, and more than once we have had reason to think that she would not live long. She was getting her eye teeth, which weakened her very much. She was a very sweet little child, and had always a smile for us when we spoke to her. We expect soon to get a little Gond girl, who is presently in the hospital."
The most recent letter received bears date November 9th, and it indicates that the missionary and educational work continue to make satisfactory progress, while another important branch of mission work has been started,-David Gajadhar having been sent out occasionally as a colporteur. The letter contains a number of interesting state
a ments, and we here give it almost verbatim :
"You are aware that the school-louse is undergoing extensive repairs ; I might almost say that it is being rebuilt. Work of this kind needs to be very closely superintended. When the work is finished, we shall have one room measuring 25 by 38 feet, another measuring 40 by 11 feet, and two small rooms additional. The largest apartment is to the back, in the centre is the boys room, and in the front is the verandah, having a small room at each end. The house, having been built by a Mahometan, was so constructed as to shut out light and air, which rendered it necessary to make a number of doors and windows. Any doors that were in the building were very low, so that a person of average height had to stoop in order to enter. This is the universal custom here in native houses. The school compound will now be fully occupied with the building ; but probably enough we may be able by and by to buy up some cheap neighbouring houses. It would, however, only tend to raise the prices if we were to show any eagerness to obtain them.
“ The school is getting on very much as when I last wrote. As yet we have not been successful in our attempts to get a second English teacher; but we hope that we may be able to get one by the beginning of the new year.
On Wednesday, the ist instant, I accompanied Mr. Bose and David Gajadhar to the Mundara fair, where we stayed till Saturday. We had 16 or 17 meetings in the fair, all of them large; and we had the satisfaction of observing that a number of persons were evidently much impressed with what they heard. This year we saw no pretended demoniacs, and there was very little that we noticed worth writing about. Near oịr tent was the tent of a wealthy village owner, whose son or daughter, (I forget which) a mere child, was engaged to be married to the son or daughter of another malguzar. The women connected with these two families came twice or three times to the tent of the former, and sang a monotonous tune for a considerable time. One evening a procession of these women, numbering say from 50 to 100, came to the tent singing all the way. We could not make out distinctly what they were singing. They stayed for some time, after which they left, singing abusive and very obscene language, directed against the malguzar above mentioned. He called on us next day, when we spoke to him about the obscene language which the village women had uttered. He replied, that it was the custom of their caste; and all that we could say could not convince him that it was wrong On the contrary he maintained that it was an expression of affection for him. On inquiry, he informed us that on similar occasions this practice would be maintained as long as he lived. At the same time these women are so modest in their own way that, if a gentleman were to appear in their village, they would rush into their houses to avoid being seen.
“Since I last wrote to you, a new branch of mission work has been begun, viz : colportage. David Gajadhar has begun to take tracts and books with him for sale in the district. About a fortnight ago he went out for five days, walking from village to village, and sold tracts to the value of u annas (15 4¢d). Considering the state of education in this district, and the poverty and prejudices of the people, I think this was a good beginning. This kind of work always involves, in India at least, pecuniary loss; and for some time to come we cannot expect it to be very successful here.
“I told you in a former letter of the death of Susan Burnham, one of the infant orphan children. Since then, I am happy to say, two orphan children have been made over to us. One of them is a boy of about three years of age, of the blacksmith caste. According to your instructions, he has been named Thomas Manson, in memory of our late revered minister of that name. The other is a little girl, somewhat younger than the boy, of the Brahmin caste. She is to be provided for by Mr. Fraser, Assistant-Commissioner, who to our great regret has been again transferred from Seoni, after a residence of about a month and a half. He has not yet told us by what name he wishes her to be called.”
The Foreign Mission Committee having recently considered the advisability of sending out another ordained missionary to Seoni, resolved meanwhile to instruct the Convener to correspond with ministers, and ascertain if any young man connected with any
our congregations, was likely to offer himself for this important and necessitous field of labour. The Convener will be glad to hear of any one who feels constrained, out of love to Christ, and a desire to be instrumental in saving souls, to leave his country and relatives, and go to the rescue of the benighted heathen. To encourage young men to decide on going to India, the following is extracted from the journal of the Rev. Dr. Caldwell, a well-known Indian missionary;
Perhaps in no other country in the world would a foreigner, coming amongst the people to teach a foreign religion, be received with so much courtesy. My assistants also testify that they have everywhere been received with respect, and listened to with attention, except by a few thoughtless young men. On the other hand, perhaps in no country in the world would arguments and appeals, patiently listened to from day to day, and apparently assented to, produce so little immediate effect. There is a great gulf in this country between assent and conviction, and a still greater gulf between conviction and action.”
Priesthood in the Light of the New Testament. The Congregational Union Lecture
for 1876. By E. Mellor, D.D. 8vo., pp. 423. Hodder & Stoughton, London.
1876. THE “ Congregational Union Lecture,” which was established with a view to the promotion of “ Biblical Science, and Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature," has done good service to the cause of Scriptural Exegesis and Evangelical Theology. The volumes that have been already issued afford abundant evidence of careful research, profound thought, and earnest zeal for the advancement of the cause of revealed truth and of religious liberty. We have perused a number of them with much interest and no small profit. Even in cases where one is constrained to dissent from the sentiments of the Lecturer, the views which he advances are deserving of respectful attention and thoughtful consideration, as they are generally presented with clearness and candour, and sustained by arguments which are at once plausible and weighty.