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letter to the Board “what pleasure we felt in welcoming our new missionaries to this heathen land.” Arrangements were immediately made for a division of labor, in a way best adapted to efficiency and the attainments of the general objects of the mission. Mr. Mason had been recommended, when leaving home, to join the station at Tavoy, and with as little delay as practicable, he repaired to it. Mr. Kincaid procured a teacher, and commenced the study of the language, at the sanie time assuming all the duties connected with the English department. He preached twice on the Sabbath, and once at least during the week, to such of the army as were disposed to attend. Mr. Wade, finding himself unable, before assistance arrived, to do as much for the heathen at large as he had been accustomed to do when occupying a zayat, employed vative disciples to teach them and distribute tracts. Among tbese was Ko-Myat-Kyan (brother to the native Chief) who, from his first conversion evinced the genuine spirit of an Evangelist. This man interested himself particularly in the welfare of the Karens, and was accordingly sent among them. He visited numerous villages up the Gyaing, and returned with a favorable report. Mr. Wade was disposed to examine for himself the ground wbich had thus been explored, and to take with him Mr. Bennett, who needed relaxation after the uube ing fatigues of a year in the printing office. Every preparation being made, on the 25th of January, 1831, they commenced their tour, and were absent fifteen days. They found many of the Karens disposed to listen to the gospel, and some anxious for the establishinent of schools among them, that their children inight be taught to read. At one place, about one hundred miles up the river, the inhabitants of two or three villages requested them to tarry, and united in preparing a temporary zayat for preaching. The brethren consented to spend the sabbath. Several hopeful inquirers presented themselves, the fruit of 'Ko-Myat-kyans labors. Several others, who had exhibited hopeful appearances, and for a time abstained from idolatrous worship, confessed the circumstances under which they had returned to it. It seems that during the rainy season, many among them fell sick, and having no knowledge of medicine, they relied entirely on their prayers to the “Eternal God” to heal them. As this did not succeed, they returned again to the worship of demons. On this subject, Mr. Wade observes: “Let a teacher be provided with a few of the most important medicines, and have some skill to use them, and let him administer to the sick, as well as preach the gospel, and there is reason to believe that their superstitious confidence in demons would be easily overcome.”
Still further up the river, five or six days journey, the Karens had heard of the gospel, and received some tracts; and though there were but few that could read, yet as there were not tracts enough for all, they cut them into pieces, that they might have a few lines of the sacred writings to keep in their houses.
Soon after the brethren returned, our missionary, J. T. Jones and family arrived. They reached Maulmein February 17, and met with a no less cordial reception than those who preceded them. Mr. Jones procured a teacher, and commenced the study of the language. A month only passed away, before Mr. Wade resolved to return to his Karen field, and take Mr. Kincaid with bim, Mr. Jones, in the mean time, conducting the English services at home. The second tour was more interesting than the first. Ko Myat-Kyan and two other native Catechists accompanied the Missionaries. They reached the upper villages, so called, probably not less than two hundred miles from Maulmein, and preached the gospel at many places on both sides of the river. At one place the people offered gladly of their means for erecting a zayat, which we presume, will become a permanent seat of evangelical operations.
The result of the two visits, in conjunction with the previous labors of native brethren, has been the formation of a Karen Church, consisting of fourteen members. On leaving them to return, Mr. Kincaid remarks: "The Karens are a truly interesting people. They are more mild in their manners and more industrious in their habits than the Burmans; and though they are without fixed religious principles, they are not without superstition. They attribute every evil they experience to the Nats, [demons] whom they propitiate by offerings and sacrifices of various kinds.”
Immediately after this excursion, Mr. Wade adopted measures to extend bis efforts among the native population at Maulmein. He erected a new zayat, in an advantageous position, on the mission premises, and commenced worship in it. Around this the people would gather of an evening, and listen to the gospel, even when they would not presume to
Some were impressed, and others hopefully converted. Of the latter, seven came forward, between April 26 and May 29, and made a profession of religion ; making the whole number added to the native Church, for the year ending June 1, 1831, twenty. Considering the disadvantages under which the mission has labored for want of zayat preaching—the strong prejudices of the people, and the violent opposition wbich all have to encounter who embrace the truth, the increase is great. With many the struggle is severe. A young man of excellent character and promise, among the last baptized, no sooner submitted to the self denying rite, than he was reviled and driven from his home by persecution. Such an ordeal, however, tends to keep back the insincere, and insure the stability of those who connect themselves with the church. It is probably to be attributed to this, that the instances, of apostacy among the converts, notwithstanding their former ignorance, are as rare as in better informed communities.
During the month of May last, the state of Mrs. Wade's health, which had for some time been on the decline, became alarming. Her physician decided, and all the missionaries concurred, that a voyage at sea, was the only means which promised to relieve her. With great reluctance she consented to the measure. Mr. Wade, being himself indisposed, agreed to accompany her. They embarked as soon as an apportunity presented which was July 9th, for Calcutta. On their passage, they were overtaken by a storm, and threatened with the immediate loss of their lives. The ship sprung aleak,—the sand ballast choked the pumps, and the sails were riven. But Providence interposed, and conducted them safely to Kyouk Phyoo, a port on the Arracan coast.
Here they were received by Col. Wood, commander of the forces in that vicinity; who welconied them to all the accommodations of his family. The sea air and change of situation proved highly beneficial to Mrs. W. They spent a few weeks, and finding her health improved so fast they relinquished the purpose of proceeding further, and returned to Maulinein. It must be viewed as a special indication of divine favor, that these indefatigable missionaries were restored so soon to their labors. Their absence from the station would be felt and deplored at any time, but especially when the number was so small, of those who had acquired the language, and could speak to the heathen.
The period, however, spent at Kyouk Phyoo, was not lost, but turned to the best account. The town is new, healthy, and in the neighborhood of numerous villages. The inhabitants are Muggs, and speak the Burman language. To them the native brethren who accompanied Mr. Wade, addressed the gospel, and were received gladly. It is not improbable that this place may soon be occupied as a missionary post, with great advantage.
ENGLISH DEPARTMENT. This department of Christian effort, has received more than ordinary attention within the last year, and has exhibited the most cheering results. Mr. Kincaid, on his arrival, took the pastoral charge of the church ; and during the residence of Mr. Jones at Maulmein, he was aided by him efficiently in the discharge of bis duties. These brethren deemed it a privilege, while acquiring the language of the heathen, and preparing to address them, to find a field which they were already qualified to enter, and cultivate to advantage. The soldiers seemned no less gratified to witness the unusual attention paid to their interests, and came out to meetings in larger numbers than ever. The consequence was, that the place in wbich they assembled, would not contain them. A new and commodious house of worship was therefore erected, and when completed, was generously paid for by captain Moore, and other officers of his Britannic Majesty's 45th Regiment. On the assemblies convened in this chapel, God has poured ont his Holy Spirit; converts have been multiplied, and backsliders reclaimed. The Church has increased from fourteen to thirty five members, and at the date of the last baptism, reported July 17th, the work was still in progress. Two sabbath schools, one for males, the other for females, were established among them, under the superintendence of Mrs. Jones and Mrs. Kincaid, and were for the time well attended.
PRINTING ESTABLISHMENT. The Board have been unwearied in their measures to perfect and give efficiency to this establishment. According to expectation, Mr. Oliver T. Cutter embarked with his family on board the ship Gibraltar, of Boston, October 12th, 1831, bound to Calcutta. He has not yet been heard from, but has doubtless arrived. He is to aid Mr. Bennett. He took with him a second press, the gift of the Oliver Street Church, in the city of New York. A third printer, Mr. Royal B. Hancock, is now under engagement to join this department with as little delay as possible.
He will carry out two additional presses, one, presented by Rev. Ebenezer Loomis, of New York, the other, by the late lamented Jonathan Carleton Esq. of Boston. Besides a thorough acquaintance with the art of printing, Mr. Hancock has acquired a knowledge of the stereotype business, and procured the principal materials necessary for the establishment of a Foundry, as soon as he shall arrive at Maulmein.
The types, which were some time deficient, have with much labour and attention been prepared at Calcutta, under the eye of William H. Pearce. In a recent letter to the Treasurer, he expresses his conviction that the fount is now complete and ample for an edition of the New Testament.
From the above facts it appears that we are rapidly approaching a consummation long desired by the friends of Burmah. The power which the press is capable of wielding over the millions of that country is no longer doubtful. The people will read when the truth is put into their hands. The spirit of inquiry increases, as the means which are to awaken it are multiplied. At first, it was impossible to give away books except to a few, and even then, in some instances they were returned. Now they are sought after by men who travel great distances to solicit them in person. Nor is it uncertain whether with vigorous exertions the demand can be supp!ied. The capability of a single press, worked under many disadvantages decides the question.
For several months Mr. Bennett was alone,-in a climate uncongenial,—and he has since availed himself of but two native pressmen, and
a Swede, yet he has published, by estimation, at least two hundred thousand tracts.
The price, moreover, at which the work can be executed, places it within the reach of ordinary means. Had the expense been double in that country to what it is in this, where every tàcility for printing is enjoyed, no one should have been surprised. But it is ascertained that Tracts can be published there at the rate of eight pages to the cent, or 800 pages to the dollar ; therefore, within one titth of the standard rate at which they were issued for years at the best depositories in this country. It is further calculated, that with additional presses in operation a reduction may be made from the estimate above, and bring the issues there, to correspond with the issues here.
From such an accession of strength as is now promised, the best results may be anticipated. The thousands who ask for light from YaMergui, Tavoy, and the entire kingdoms of Burmah and Šiam, will recieve it. The sacred scriptures, so long desired in Burman, will be sent forth. The power of issuing new translations of the word, as in Talieng or other languages, will be possessed, and we may hope, in a few years, those vast regions of darkness will be filled with the knowledge and glory of God.
The parts of the New Testament already issued at Maulmein, are the Gospels of Matthew and John, Acts of the Apostles, Epistles to the Ephesians and Hebrews, two of John's Epistles, and Jude. Of some of these, there have been successive editions. A small addition has been made to the list of tracts as reported the last year. Four of the principal tracts have been translated, and forwarded to the Board, which appear to be admirably adapted to the state of the people for whom they were prepared.
TAVOY. The events at this station are of a highly interesting character. It has suffered by the afflictions and necessary absence of its missionaries, but has nevertheless experienced an unequalled accession to the church. Mr. and Mrs. Boardman resided here without any American associates from 1828, and labored, as we have reason to think, with unvarying faithfulness. As the result, a number of Karens were turned to God, and a wide spread spirit of inquiry awakened in that interesting people. In this state of things, the health of Mr. and Mrs. Boardman failed, and wbile the Karens were finding their way to them from numerous villages, to ask what they should do to be saved, both were obliged to retire. The parting scene was truly affecting. The anxious inquirers were loth to part with those, to whoin they looked for direction in the path to heaven, and in return, the teachers were as loth to leave. Duty, however, was imperative, and all acquiesced.
What occurred in their absence is worthy of particular notice, since it serves to illustrate the character of the converts, and the faitbfulness of God to his missionary servants, wbom he will not suffer in any wise to lose their reward. We have seen the native christians at other stations exhibiting a zeal and intrepidity in labors for the salvation of their countrymen, scarcely to be expected especially in the absence of their more experienced leaders. The same spirit was exemplified by those at Tavoy. “Their manner,” says Mrs. Boardman “has been such as to remind us forcibly of what we read respecting the Apostles and primitive christians. The chief, Moung So, and Moung Kyah, bave taken such
of the Scriptures as we could give them, and gone from house to house, and village to village, expounding the word, exhorting the people, and uniting with their exertions, frequent and fervent prayers."
Such a course of means, steadily pursued, served to water the seed sown, and cause it to vegetate and spring up, and bear the harvest which Mr. B. on his return, was allowed to gatherin.
It was not till December 1830, after an absence of seven months, that he resumed his labors, and then under the pressure of great weakness. He took with him Ko-Ing, an ordained preacher, and Ko-Thah-byoo. No sooner had he reached Tavoy, than his faithful Karens gathered about him from the country, bringing with them many who gave evidence of true conversion to God, and wished for baptism. Successive days were spent in a scrupulous examination of the candidates, and in the course of six weeks the best satisfaction was obtained of twenty three, who were admitted to the rite. While Mr. B. was filled with joy in beholding such trophies of Redeeming love, intelligence was brought, that a far greater number in remote villages which he had formerly visited, had obtained like precious faith, and were desirous to give the same proof of their attachment to Christ, but were unable to come to town. On receiving this information, together with an urgent request that he would without delay come to them, he consented, though he was at the time so exhausted by sickness as to be unable to ride or walk. A zayat was prepared for bim at a distance of three days journey, and every thing was made ready for him to commence the undertaking. It was at this juncture, so interesting and important, that Mr Mason arrived. Nothing could be more in time, if we consider all the circumstances which followed.- Nothing could be more refreshing to Mr. Boardman than the countenance of a brother, sinking as he was under accumulated weakness, and with so great a work just before him—a brother with whom he might entrust those sheep in the wilderness, for whom he had cherished so great solicitude, and from whom it was plain he must soon be taken. Nothing could have been more seasonable to Mrs. Boardman, about as she was to be bereft of her husband, and left a solitary widow, without a single missionary associate.
Mr. Mason, on first seeing the emaciated form of Mr. Boardman, hesitated respecting his contemplated journey, but when he perceived the ardor of his soul, and how much his heart was set on accomplishing the work proposed, he foreboré all objections, and resolved to accompany him. 'On the 31st of January, 1831, they started, Mrs. B. in company, and Mr. B. borne on a cot.
After three days they reached the place, without any very sensible exhaustion. “ During our stay, however,” says Mr. Mason," he so evidently lost strength, that Mrs. B. on one occasion advised him to return; to which he replied with more than cominon animation, “The cause of God is of more importance than my health, and if I return now, our whole object will be defeated—I vant to see the work of the Lord go on.' Wednesday morning, it was apparent," says Mr Mason, “that death was near. He consented, provided the examination and baptism of the candidates could that day be completed, to return. Accordingly a little before sunset, he was carried out in his bed to the water side, where, lifting his languid head to gaze on the gratifying scene, I had the pleasure to baptize in his presence thirty four individuals, who gave satisfactory evidence to all, that they had passed from death unto life. After this, he seemed to feel that his work was done, and said "Lord now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eyes have seen thy salvation. The day but one after, while on the boat that was to bear him to Tavoy, he took his upward flight."
Of this faithful missionary, much ought be said ; but the honor which God put upon him, infinitely outweighs all commendation of ours. His death resembles a triumph. He fell
, but it was at his post and in