THE history of the missionary efforts of this Church in Japan covers a period of thirty-one years, and is a record of patient struggle on the part of a little band of devoted spirits against mighty opposing forces. The obstacles usually encountered in the presentation of Christian truth to heathen nations were at first intensified by the hatred which the Japanese entertained for all foreigners, and especially those who proclaimed themselves the followers of Christ—a hatred engendered during the missionary operations of the Jesuits in the sixteenth century, and transmitted from generation to generation. Before recounting the fearful events of that period, however, it may be well to present a brief description of Japan.
The empire comprises four large islands and many smaller ones lying on the eastern coast of Asia, between the thirty-first and forty-sixth degrees of north latitude, and extending diagonally from southwest to northeast. The entire area is estimated at 155,520 square miles, and the population is about 40,000,000. The climate is variable, but generally healthful. In the southern portion of the empire the heat is at times almost tropical, while in the island of Yezzo the temperature occasionally falls below zero.
The western capital is Miako, or Saiko; the eastern Tokyo, or Yedo. (In 1889 the Japanese Government determined that the spelling of this name in Roman characters should be Tokyo.) The former, which has never been opened to foreigners, dates its foundation from A. D. 794. Its population is about 374,000. Tokyo has a population of nearly 1,200,000, and is the residence of the Imperial Court. It has a well-endowed college, numerous hospitals and asylums, a police force of three thousand members, and is connected by telegraph with the most important points in the empire. A railroad has been built starting at Kobé and, via Osaka, Kioto and Tokyo, reaches Yokohama. A branch is also being built northward, and is at present open to Sendai. A short road has been constructed from Hammamatzu to Tsuruga, to connect the west coast with the main line; and in the island of Yezzo there is a short piece of railroad running from Otaru to Setsupporo. An ancient highway extends from, the extreme north of the main island to Nagasaki in the south, called Tokaido, and it is proposed by the Japanese government to build a railway along side of this road.
The second city in size is Osaka, on the island of Niphon. It is an open port, and the port of entry for Miako, thirty-three miles distant. It has one small fort at the mouth of the river, four miles below the city, has fine canals and bridges, contains the national mint, and is the great financial centre of the empire.
Third on the list is Yokohama, on the bay of Yedo, twenty miles from the capital. It is the most important of the seaports, has a good harbor, and although without piers or docks, has a stone wall, built for the shelter of boats bringing cargo from ships which cannot come within half a mile of the shore. Nagasaki, on the island of Kiusiu, has also a large and secure harbor. It was the first port ever opened to foreigners, and has been the seat of a Dutch settlement since 1609. The principal ports now open to foreign trade are Yokohama, Kobé, Kanagawa, Tokyo,. Osaka, Nagasaki, Hiogo, Hakodadi, and Nee-e-gata.
Japan was first made known to Europeans in 1295 by the famous Venetian traveller, Marco Polo, whose accounts of the great island of Zipango were received, however, with utter incredulity. Nothing more was heard of Japan until 1543, when Ferdinand Pinto, a Portuguese adventurer, landed there. His visit was followed by the establishment, in 1549, of a Portuguese settlement which was maintained for one hundred years. The arrival and settlement of Dutch traders took place in 1609, and their foothold has ever since been retained. A commercial settlement of the English existed from 1611 to 1623, but their subsequent attempts to gain a location were ineffectual, and until Commodore Perry's expedition in 1852 the entire trade with Japan remained in the hands of the Dutch.
Having thus briefly outlined the commercial relations of Japan to the western nations, we will now trace the course of Christianity in its efforts to gain recognition in that heathen land. In the sixteenth century the Portuguese, after the successful establishment of trading-posts on the western coast of India, turned their attention to Japan, where they met with a cordial reception as merchants and Christians. The king of Portugal, desirous of extending the dominion of the Papal Church in the East, applied to the Pope for a fitting messenger to bear the tidings of Christianity. Francis Xavier, an earnest disciple of the Jesuit Loyola, was selected for the mission and departed for India, whence he proceeded to China, eventually reaching Japan in 1549. His success was marvellous; during his two years' labors in Japan thousands of converts testified to the power of his teachings, and whatever errors he may have inculcated in his allegiance to the interests of Popery (not then, however, in its pretensions what it has since come to) his personal devotion to the cause of Christ cannot be questioned. He returned to China in 1551, where his death shortly afterward occurred.
Soon after this commenced the persecution of missionaries and native Christians. In 1596 six Jesuit priests and twenty converts were crucified, and an edict of expulsion was promulgated against the Portuguese, who at that time claimed to have visited all parts of the empire and to have made one hundred thousand converts. The work of persecution went mercilessly on, but as late as 1629 there were still four hundred thousand native Christians in Japan. In 1636 occurred a terrible massacre of Christians said to have numbered more than two hundred thousand, and it was ordered that the image of the Saviour should be desecrated by being publicly trampled under foot.
To both these proceedings the Dutch settlers gave their sanction and assistance. Over the pit into which the murdered Christians were thrown was erected a monument bearing this inscription: "As long as the earth endures, let no Christian presume to set foot within the Empire of Japan; and be it known that, should any dare to disobey this law, though it were the King of Spain in person, or even the Christians' God, or the great God of all himself, he shall immediately have his head cut off." In 1649 there remained, so far as known, not one acknowledged Christian in Japan. The Dutch maintained their position, however, by conniving at these atrocities, and for the two hundred years following the extirpation of Christianity they monopolized the commerce with Japan.
The first gleam of light that penetrated the dense darkness of idolatry came with the expedition of Commodore Perry in 1852. The formation of a treaty between the United States and Japan in 1853, its ratification in 1854, and the opening of the ports of Hakodadi and Simoda, are historic matters upon which we need not dwell. The Japanese commissioners attempted to prohibit the introduction of Christianity, but through the firmness of U. S. Consul-General Townsend Harris, permission to teach Christian doctrine and build Christian churches was secured, and the first Christian worship in Japan for nearly two and a half centuries was held in December, 1858, at Consul Harris' house in the suburbs of Simoda.
WE now come to the first direct missionary movement on the part of the Protestant Episcopal Church. Early in 1859 the Rev. John Liggins, who had been laboring for four years as a missionary in China, visited Japan for the benefit of his health and met with an unexpectedly cordial reception from the Japanese officials. A few days after his arrival at Nagasaki he received information that the Foreign Committee had appointed the Rev. Channing Moore Williams and himself as missionaries to Japan. Being already in the field Mr. Liggins at once entered upon his duties, and thus was established the first Protestant Mission in the Empire of Japan.
Mr. Williams reached Nagasaki in the latter part of June, and in September of the same year Dr. H. Ernst Schmid was appointed missionary physician. Great interest was manifested in the Church regarding the new mission, and the visit of Bishop Boone of China to Philadelphia, accompanied by a deputation from the Foreign Committee, was made the occasion of special services in behalf of the movement. The first pecuniary aid was the sum of $200, contributed by St. Mark's Church, New York, toward the support of the first missionary.
Meanwhile Mr. Liggins found that but little could be done at first beyond learning the Japanese language (a sufficiently formidable task), teaching English to native officials, and furnishing the Holy Scriptures and scientific works to those who would accept or purchase them. Among his labors was the preparation and publication of a book entitled "One Thousand Familiar Phrases in English and Japanese," which met with a large demand and passed through several editions.
Mr. Liggins' visitors evinced much curiosity as to the nature of the religious views which he came to impart, but were greatly shocked to learn that he was a Ki-ris-tan, or Christian, as that was the term by which the Jesuits were formerly known, and in their minds it was synonymous with all that was vile. Upon learning that the missionary sympathized with their opposition to the doctrines and practices of the Jesuits, they were greatly astonished and eagerly sought further information.
These were but few, however, compared with the many who looked upon the Ki-ris-tans with distrust and aversion, and the missionary's labors were rewarded with but little encouragement. True, the sale of books, including the Bible, was protected by a clause in the treaty which provided that "The Japanese shall be permitted to buy whatever the Americans have to sell;" but another clause read that "Americans shall not do anything calculated to excite religious animosity," and upon this proviso the Japanese officials were inclined to place a very broad construction. The ancient hatred of Christians was undiminished, edicts, called Kosatsu, against things forbidden were posted in the streets, and the Christian religion headed the list. These edicts, posted on four boards placed under a pavilion, were called the great Kosatsu. The two relating to Christianity read as follows:
"BOARD NO. I.—LAW.
"The evil sect called Christian is strictly prohibited. Suspicious persons; should be reported to the proper officers, and rewards will be given.
"DAI JO KUAN.
"Fourth year Kei-o, Third month (March 24th—April 22d, 1868)."
"With respect to the Christian sect, the existing prohibition must be strictly observed.
"Evil sects are strictly prohibited. "Fourth month of the first year of Meiji (November, 1868)."
Large rewards were offered to informers against the hated sect, converts were persecuted with relentless severity, many being cast into prison, and a rigid system of espionage was maintained over all suspected of sympathizing with them.
The great Kosatsu was placed in the heart of Tokyo, at the entrance to the Nihon Bashi (Bridge of Japan), whence it is said that all the great roads of the empire are measured.
In 1860 Mr. Liggins was compelled by continued ill-health to retire from missionary labor in the field, although he has never ceased to work, here at home, with all the ability that remained to him in his enfeebled physical condition. In the following year Dr. Schmid was for the same reason obliged to resign, thus leaving the entire burden of the mission upon the Rev. Mr. Williams. (Now practising in White Plains, N. Y. Senior Warden of Grace Church.) During his brief connection with the mission Dr. Schmid rendered valuable service, and his success in the treatment of many difficult cases bore ample testimony to his professional skill.
In the early part of this year Mr. Williams wrote that he had, as a beginning in the work of translation, rendered the Lord's Prayer, the Creed, and the Ten Commandments into the book style.
In 1863 Miss Jeannette R. Conover was appointed a missionary teacher and went to Kanigawa, but owing to hostile threats the lives of all foreigners were endangered, and she was forced to retire to Shanghai, with which mission she had been previously connected since 1853. (Afterward Mrs. Elliot H. Thomson, of the China Mission. Her death occurred at Ashbourne, Penn., September 19th, 1889.)
Mr. Williams continued his solitary labors, studying the language, receiving and conversing with Japanese visitors, translating a few chapters of the Gospel by St. Matthew and a small portion of the Prayer Book into Japanese, and holding services for the benefit of the English-speaking residents in a church which they erected—the first Protestant church ever built in Japan. His letters at this period spoke of the increasing interest in religious matters manifested by the educated natives, the growing desire for religious books, the stronger feeling of tolerance entertained by all classes, and urgently entreated that at least one more missionary might be sent to aid in furthering the good work.
In 1864 occurred the death of Bishop Boone, and in 1865 the Rev. Mr. Williams was elected as his successor. During this year the first convert was baptized, but not through the agency of the Protestant Episcopal Church; the long desired honor was gained by the Dutch Reformed Church. Mr. Williams, however, in February, 1866, baptized a Samurai of Hiogo. On the 3d of October, having in the interim returned to the United States, he was consecrated as Missionary Bishop to China and Japan. The services were held in St. John's Chapel, New York, the presiding-Bishop, Hopkins, being the Consecrator. There were present and officiating, Bishops Lee, Johns, Payne, Potter, Whipple and Talbot, and the Rev. Drs. Cotton Smith, Littlejohn, Twing, Denison, and Morrell. In Bishop Williams' report, made at this time, the following interesting incident is mentioned:
An intelligent old Buddhist priest, who had previously received a Bible and several tracts, became so interested in the doctrines of our holy religion that he bought up all the New Testaments he could find in the bookstores, and on his return to his province purchased twenty-five New Testaments, ten Old Testaments, and one hundred and thirty-five Christian books and tracts. He carried with him two large boxes of books to distribute in a region of country one hundred miles from Nagasaki, which it is impossible for a missionary to visit. (This priest afterward, it is said, wrote an attack on Christianity.)
In November of this year the Foreign Committee memorialized the government of the United States, praying for its influence, in connection with that of the English government, to persuade the rulers of Japan to repeal the law making the open profession of Christianity penal. Bishop Williams conveyed this document to Washington, and in company with the Rev. Dr. Charles H. Hall, then rector of the Church of the Epiphany in that city, presented it to the proper authorities. The reply of the Hon. Secretary of State was to the effect that, although any active measures would be regarded as premature, the United States Minister would be instructed to co-operate with her Britannic Majesty's representative in seizing any favorable opportunity for securing the removal of disabilities against Christians in Japan.
The year 1867 was marked by no event other than the return, in January, of Bishop Williams to China, whence he wrote deploring the Church's seeming apathy regarding the neglected missionary work in Japan, and pointing to the greater energy manifested by other Christian bodies; the Presbyterians and Dutch Reformed having three missionaries and one physician, and the Roman Catholics being still more largely represented.
Toward the close of 1868 the Bishop decided to make his home in Osaka, Japan, where his knowledge of the language would at least enable him to do something to keep the good seed already planted from utterly perishing, while at the same time he would be within thirty hours' sail of his jurisdiction in China. In a letter written at this time the Bishop urged the necessity of sending out men at once to take advantage of the great changes and openings then presented for missionary work. It was the testimony of influential Japanese and several foreign merchants that the time must soon come when the government would have to grant free toleration to Christianity, and it was very desirable that the Church should be so represented in Japan as to help on this long-desired event, and take advantage of any openings that might occur. The Bishop made earnest plea for at least one missionary and a missionary physician, the latter being particularly desirable, since he would have access to the highest officials, and by his medical services would gain their confidence and excite their gratitude. To quote the Bishop's words: "If he were the right sort of man, an active layman, who has the love of Christ in his heart and a desire to lead others to a knowledge of the like precious faith which he enjoys, he could, I firmly believe, do more good than a clergyman at the present time. It is a most critical time, and the opportunity should not be lost."
In December of this year General Vanvalkenburg, American Minister in Japan, having received from the Secretary of State the petition of the Board of Missions relative to the repeal of the edict against Christianity, wrote to Bishop Williams that, with the support of all the foreign ministers, he was pressing the matter upon the attention of the government; and had good reason to hope for the speedy repeal of the edict and the free toleration of Christianity. At the same time he advised caution in attempting "active, aggressive missionary work" until the question should be finally settled.
THE year 1869 passed by, and still no one volunteered for the upholding of the banner of Christ in Japan. The persecution of native Christians (chiefly Roman Catholic) still continued, more than four thousand being banished to the desolate island of Yezzo and other provinces of the empire. Near the close of 1869 the Rev. Mr. Liggins, being satisfied that his impaired health would not permit his return to the field, offered his resignation, which was accepted.
In March, 1870, the Bishop fitted up a little chapel in Osaka, held English services every Sunday, and confirmed four converts, this being our first Confirmation in Japan. At the close of the year there was little progress to report; religion was making but slender headway, although more than one hundred foreigners were employed as school-teachers, physicians, miners, geologists, and instructor in military and naval tactics. Another appeal was this year made to the State Department for an effort to obtain a repeal of the edict against Christianity, but as before, while warm interest was expressed regarding the subject, no favorable result was secured.
In 1870 there came one response to the Bishop's fervent appeals for aid; the Rev. Arthur R. Morris, of the Diocese of New Jersey, was appointed a missionary in December, and reached Osaka in May, 1871. He offered his services without salary, and at once applied himself diligently to the acquisition of the language. The outlook was more encouraging; there was a rage for English education and the adoption of the customs and inventions of western nations. Material improvements made great progress; light-houses were erected, steamboats built, railroad and telegraph lines constructed, and everything seemed auspicious for the furtherance of the work to which so few, alas! appeared willing to devote themselves.
Early in 1872 the Bishop made further translations of the Gospels and the Prayer Book, and organized a boys' school in Osaka, the Rev. Mr. Morris being the teacher of English. Several converts were baptized by the Bishop, and hope for the brighter future of the mission revived.
The year was made memorable by the removal of the anti-Christian Kosatsu, and the release from imprisonment and return to their native villages of the thousands of banished Christians.
In August the Rev. G. D. B. Miller, of Boise, Idaho, and in October the Rev. J. Hamilton Quinby, of Monticello, Florida, were appointed missionaries, reaching Osaka with their families December 3ist.
In March, 1873, Henry Laning, M.D., of Syracuse, N. Y., was appointed missionary physician, and arrived at Osaka July 4th. The mission staff was still further enlarged this year by the appointment of the Rev. Messrs. William B. Cooper, of the Diocese of Mississippi; William James Miller, of Pittsburgh; Charles H. Newman, of Wisconsin, and Clement T. Blanchet, of Illinois. Before the time of sailing arrived, the Rev. W. J. Miller was compelled to withdraw on account of ill health. At the close of this year the school in Osaka numbered about fifty pupils, and there was great improvement in the Sunday services in Japanese. The little chapel had been reconstructed and enlarged. Early in the year a Communion service of pure silver was sent for the use of the mission in Osaka. It was a memorial, and by direction of the giver a valuable ring was placed permanently upon the handle of the flagon as a memento. Contributions were received from St. Andrew's Church, Pittsburgh, for the establishment of a mission library at Tokyo. In November the Bishop made Tokyo his place of residence.
About the beginning of 1874 an attempt was made to prohibit Christian teaching and preaching. This step was taken by minor officials in the absence of Soyeshima, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs. Upon his return it was suppressed, through the spirited remonstrance of the Hon. C. E. De Long, United States Minister to Japan.
In February, 1874, a school was established at Yedo (or Tokyo, as it was renamed about four years before). Only five pupils were secured at first, but there was evidence of increasing interest, and the Rev. Mr. Blanchet reported that prospects at that station were encouraging. The Bishop had translated the responsive portions of the service; also the hymn "Rock of Ages." In May of this year the Rev. Clement T. Blanchet and the Rev. William B. Cooper were advanced to the Priesthood at Tokyo by Bishop Williams. This was the first ordination ever held in Japan. In June the little congregation at Tokyo were gladdened by the reception of a beautiful Communion service, presented by a sympathizing friend at home.
In July the Rev. G. D. B. Miller, with the consent of the Missionary Bishop and the Foreign Committee, was transferred from Osaka, Japan, to Shanghai, China, for the purpose of taking charge of the foreign congregation at the Hong Kew church. In August Bishop Williams made an earnest appeal for a division of jurisdiction and the appointment of a separate Bishop for China, as the vast distances to be travelled rendered it impossible for him to direct such widely sundered operations. By a singular coincidence the matter was at that very time under advisement in the Foreign Committee, and at the subsequent meeting of the General Convention the Bishop's request was granted.
In November, the missionary band was strengthened by the arrival at Osaka of Miss Ellen G. Eddy, of South Bend, Ind. In December the Rev. Charles H. Newman ceased his connection with the Japanese mission and returned to the United States. The year closed with more cheering prospects, and the Bishop and his faithful assistants looked forward with renewed faith and courage. During the year twenty converts had been baptized and confirmed, services in Japanese had been regularly held on Sundays, the authorities had given positive assurance that native Christians should no longer be persecuted, the demand for religious books had greatly increased, and more general interest in the subject of Christianity was manifested. The heaviest shadow that rested on the mission was the want of a sufficient number of workers; the field was indeed white with the harvest, but the laborers were all too few.
The record for the year would be incomplete without mention of the good work done by Dr. Laning at the dispensary in Osaka. During the first six months after its opening he treated more than one thousand patients gratuitously, and sold and loaned many Christian books in Japanese, Chinese and English.
In January, 1875, the first marriage between Japanese converts took place at Osaka. During this month a girls' school was established by Miss Eddy, which was often called by the Japanese the "Light in Darkness" school. There was no arrival of missionaries during the year, but the few who were bravely contending against fearful odds did not suffer their efforts to relax. The schools made good progress, and the number of converts W" was considerably enlarged. As before, the cry was for help, and especially were the services of active, earnest women needed; but no response came to the Bishop's reiterated appeals.
The first break in the mission circle by death occurred in this year. Mrs. Quinby, who for some time had been failing in health, left her home for the United States, October 5th, intending to spend the winter in San Francisco, and afterward to visit the east. Arriving in San Francisco October 25th, she failed rapidly, and entered into rest November 13th.
The year 1876 opened without any event of special interest in connection with mission affairs. Miss Eddy, writing from Osaka in January, mentioned the progress of the girls' school, which then numbered fourteen members; and Mr. Blanchet reported thirty-five pupils in the boys' school at Tokyo, and the baptism of ten converts. He also spoke of the urgent need for single women as missionaries.
In March Bishop Williams wrote that the Prime Minister had issued a notification to the effect that thereafter all government offices would be closed on Sunday. This was regarded as highly favorable to the cause of Christianity, indicating that the attitude of the government had experienced a remarkable change. There was evidently a growing inclination to adopt the customs and observances of western nations, and some of the officials even went so far as to express the opinion that the adoption of Christianity was essential to the future progress and welfare of the country.
On the morning of Easter Day the Bishop confirmed seven persons, five of whom were women, and in the afternoon baptized seven, five of them pupils in the school at Tokyo. About this, time there appeared many articles in the native press speaking; in favorable terms regarding Christianity. "The Daily Newspaper," the leading journal of Tokyo, said:
Under the tyrannous rule of the Tokugawa family the Christian religion was long prohibited by law and none might either teach or learn it; but at present it is as good as tolerated by the government, and we do not believe there is any probability whatever that the Holy Religion of Jesus will be suppressed by the State.
Under such circumstances it might have been thought that the spirit of missionary zeal would have brought some accession to the ranks of the little band of workers, but such was not the case. Bishop Williams concluded his report for the year ending June 30th, 1876, with these words:
In my last report an earnest appeal was made for more men and women but it has met with no response. No one—man or woman—has been found ready and willing to help us to do our Master's work in Japan. Other missions are increasing their forces, but we are stationary, or rather we are fewer in number than we were two years ago. Of Protestants there are now in Japan about fifty ministers, five missionary physicians and twenty single women, and Rome has sent two Bishops, twenty-five Priests and seven sisters; we number only five clergymen, one physician and one single woman. May God speedily put it into the heart of some one to "come over and help us."
In November of this year occurred a disastrous fire at Tokyo, destroying about ten thousand houses. The mission place of worship, school-room, and the Bishop's residence were burned, together with the greater part of the mission library and all the chapel furniture, including the organ. The loss was seriously felt, and great difficulty was experienced in obtaining new quarters.
In February, 1877, the Rev. William B. Cooper was married to Miss Alice M. Maclay—daughter of a missionary of another board—at Yokohama; and in April the marriage of the Rev. Clement T. Blanchet and Miss Annie V. N. Maltby—of the Woman's Union Missionary Society—was solemnized at Christ Church, Yokohama, by Bishop Williams.
In April, just five months after the great fire in which the mission buildings were destroyed, a new chapel (the first ever built outside the Concession) was completed. The boys' school was temporarily abandoned, owing to the impossibility of finding a suitable building for its accommodation. In this month, also, Dr. Laning opened a new dispensary in the heart of the city of Osaka. On the 11th of May Miss Florence R. Pitman, of Charlottesville, Va., was appointed a missionary teacher. She reached Tokyo in November, and entered upon her duties in the girls' school. In June Mr. Isaac K. Yokoyama was appointed a missionary, and soon afterward ordained, arriving at Yokohama in October. He had been in the United States six years pursuing his studies, when he decided to enter the Ministry and become a missionary to his own people. He was the first native clergyman of the Church which was the first of all Protestant Christian bodies to carry the Gospel message to Japan.
The additions to the Church during 1877 were not numerous, but the missionaries' hearts were often gladdened by such evidences of increasing desire to learn the truths of religion, as sustained their zeal and gave them reason to hope for an abundant harvest from the good seed they were constantly sowing.
The Church Missionary Society having advised its missionaries to hold a conference to discuss matters of common interest, it was decided that they should meet in May, 1878, at Tokyo. The missionaries of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel asked the privilege of attending the meeting, and it was suggested that all Episcopal missionaries should at the same time hold a joint conference. The suggestion was approved by the Foreign Committee. A proposition to establish a joint theological school for the training of candidates for the Ministry for the three societies was referred for discussion to the meeting in May.
In March, 1878, the Bishop announced that Mr. Cooper's health was so seriously impaired as to demand absolute rest and change of climate. He accordingly left for Europe, en route to the United States, accompanied by his wife. Mr. Cooper's enforced withdrawal was a seriousness to the mission, as he spoke Japanese very fluently and was most earnest and active in his work.
In June the Foreign Committee appointed as a missionary the Rev. Theodosius S. Tyng, rector of St. James' Church, North Cambridge, Mass. On the 3d of August, Mr. and Mrs. Tyng sailed from New York via England, arriving in Tokyo November 24th.
In July Miss Pitman wrote that three persons had been baptized and seven confirmed at the chapel in Tokyo. Mrs. Blanchet spoke of the increasing interest in the meetings held in the homes of converts. About this time there was established a divinity training-school at Tokyo, and by December it numbered thirteen students. Lectures were delivered by the Bishop on the Harmony of the Gospels; by the Rev. Mr. Blanchet on Church History; and by the Rev. Mr. Shaw, of the "S. P. G.," on Internal Evidence. On the 1st of November the Bishop opened a school for boys and young men, with sixteen pupils in attendance.
In his report at the close of the mission year the Bishop mentioned the excellent work done by Mr. Morris and Mr. Quinby; the great services rendered by Dr. Laning, who, during the year, had treated about 2,500 patients at the two dispensaries; and the steady progress making in the girls' schools at Osaka and Tokyo.
During the absence of the Bishop of Victoria (Bishop in charge of the English Church missions in Japan), Bishop Williams was requested to act in his place, and on Palm Sunday confirmed thirty-two persons at the Rev. Mr. Shaw's chapel in Tokyo. The conference above alluded to met in May. There were present the two Bishops and fifteen other clergymen. Their deliberations were most harmonious, and it was resolved to have but one Book of Common Prayer for the use of Japanese Christians. The Morning and Evening Prayer and Litany which had been prepared were authorized, and a committee appointed to translate and publish the Offices for the Holy Communion, Baptism, and Confirmation, and the Catechism. The students of the joint theological school were to live with Bishop Williams and receive instruction from both English and American missionaries.
IN January, 1879, the Rev. Mr. Cooper and wife arrived at New York. Mr. Cooper's health was much improved, and after a brief visit at his home, he at once commenced a series of addresses before congregations in the south and west, giving an account of the work in his field. The Rev. Mr. Yokoyama, who had been "rendering efficient service among his people, was obliged to suspend his efforts in great measure, owing to ill-health. The Rev. Mr. Tyng, writing from Osaka in March, spoke of the importance of that station and the urgent need of additional teachers, as instruction in the English language was an indispensable preliminary to Christian education. Mr. Blanchet also called attention to the pressing want of more laborers in a field which promised such an abundant harvest.
To quote Mr. Tyng's words: "The educated classes, who form a very large proportion of the people, have ceased to believe in heathenism." Among the lower classes, also, the ancient faith had greatly lost its hold, and almost the entire people were in the mood to listen to any teaching which promised something better than the discarded superstitions. 'The time was eminently auspicious for the inculcation of Christian truth, but the missionary force was numerically far too weak to improve the golden opportunity. Entreaties for assistance were made unceasingly, but the Macedonian cry for help was seemingly unheeded.
The divinity school continued to receive a considerable share of the time and labor of Messrs. Blanchet and Quinby, and its good influence was very perceptible. The girls' school at Osaka, under Miss Eddy's charge, made encouraging progress, with an average attendance of about twenty-five pupils; while Mrs. Blanchet and Miss Pitman worked energetically to render the girls' school at Tokyo equally successful.
On the 26th of June the Rev. J. Hamilton Quinby was married to Miss Mary Nelson, of the Woman's Union Missionary Society. In October the Rev. John McKim, of Nashotah, Wis., was appointed a missionary, and, with his wife, reached Osaka in March, 1880. On the 26th of December occurred another of those great fires for which Tokyo is so famous. The Bishop's house was burned and much of its contents destroyed.
In speaking of the good accomplished by the divinity school during 1879, Mr. Blanchet strongly advocated the training of a. native Ministry as the most effectual means of aiding the missionaries. To use his own words: "The people are actually getting ready for Christianity faster than we can carry it to them." Repeated invitations came from interior towns and villages for the missionaries to come and teach the "Religion of Jesus," but the force was altogether inadequate to meet the demands upon it.
The service of the Rev. Isaac K. Yokoyama, which opened with bright promise, was brief, since at his own request he was. deposed from the sacred Ministry early in the year 1880. In the opinion of physicians, his mental powers were impaired by over-study. On Easter Day the Bishop baptized seven, and Mr. Blanchet eleven persons. In June Mr. Edmund R. Woodman, of the senior class of the Episcopal Theological School, Cambridge, Mass., was appointed as missionary, to take effect upon his ordination to the Diaconate; and Mr. James McD. Gardiner was appointed missionary teacher to be stationed at Tokyo. On September 1st Mr. and Mrs. Woodman sailed from San Francisco, reaching Yokohama September 21st. Mr. Gardiner arrived in Tokyo on the I2th of October. On the 1gth of June, the Rev, and Mrs. William B. Cooper left San Francisco on their return to Yokohama, where they arrived on the 9th of July. Mr. Cooper's health was thought to be completely re-established.
Under the energetic management of Mr. Tyng, St. Timothy's School at Osaka continued to flourish, the number of pupils in May, 1880, being nearly fifty. The girls' school (Now St. Agnes' School.) also prospered, and four of the pupils were baptized. Dr. Laning's work steadily enlarged, and its importance can be judged from the Bishop's statement that one-half of those baptized during the year were led into the Church through their connection with him. The project of building a hospital was strongly advocated by the doctor, and an appeal was made for the requisite funds. The Committee on Work for Foreign Missionaries (women of the Diocese of New York) undertook to raise the needed amount.
In the Bishop's annual report the gratifying announcement was made that a number of native converts in Tokyo were laboring to instruct their own people in Christian truths, and that the congregation of Trinity Chapel had begun to make an effort for self-support, undertaking to meet all the current expenses by voluntary contributions.
On the 27th of August the Rev. and Mrs. J. H. Quinby left Tokyo for a vacation, reaching New York September 29th. Mr. Quinby had been in the field about eight years. In December the Foreign Committee appointed Miss Belle T. Michie, of Locust Grove, Va., as missionary teacher, to be stationed at Osaka. She reached her destination on the 9th of February, 1881, and began immediately to aid Miss Eddy in St. Agnes' School.
During 1880 the translation of the New Testament was completed and it was issued by the American Bible Society in one volume. It met with a great demand in Tokyo and Osaka, as many as four hundred copies being sold on the streets in one day. The price was from forty to fifty sen, then equal to about twenty-five cents.
The Rev. Mr. Morris, writing from Osaka in January, 1881, gave an encouraging account of the interest manifested in the Sunday services, the attendance being about forty in the morning and from thirty to fifty in the afternoon. On the 26th of January occurred another large fire in Tokyo, destroying over eleven thousand houses and making about fifty thousand people homeless. Two of the mission chapels were in danger, but fortunately they were saved. In March Mr. Tyng reported St. Timothy's School as being in a prosperous condition. The number of pupils was upward of forty, and new applications were made daily. Many were refused as being too young, but it was hoped that a primary department might be established. About the same time Mr. Gardiner wrote from Tokyo, giving an account of the progress of his school and enlarging upon the future benefits to be derived from the education of Japanese children. In April of this year Miss Ellen G. Eddy, who had been in charge of the girls' school in Osaka for nearly seven years, resigned in order to assume the care of her aged mother. She reached her home in South Bend, Ind., on the 22d of July. On the 12th of April Miss Margaret L. Mead was appointed as a missionary teacher and assigned to duty in Osaka as an associate with Miss Michie in conducting St. Agnes' School which had been so long under Miss Eddy's sole management. Miss Mead arrived in Osaka in June.
On Easter Day, April17th, four converts were baptized, three by Mr. Morris, and one by Mr. Tyng. In a letter from Mr. Blanchet, dated July 23d, were mentioned four indications of the rapid extension of Christianity in Japan:
I. The establishment of a number of religious papers with the government's approval—one of these, the Dendo Zasshi (the Evangelist), by members of the mission; 2, the greater demand for and the rapidly increasing supply of Christian literature; 3, the renewed energy put forth by the Buddhists in trying to bolster up their system, which was daily losing its hold upon the people; 4, the tacit allowance by the government of preaching the Gospel and of selling the Holy Scriptures openly in the interior, as well as at the open ports, irrespective of the protestations of the Buddhists against the same.
These facts constituted a strong appeal to the Church for prompt and liberal assistance of the missionary cause.
In his annual report the Bishop again referred to the great need of teachers for educational work, and the still more pressing necessity for clergymen to carry on the direct missionary work of preaching the Gospel. He reminded the Church that the workers in the field could not last forever and that others should be making ready to take their places, as it required two or three years of honest, hard work to fit one to be able to preach.
On the 11th of October, 1881, the Foreign Committee appointed Miss Sarah L. Riddick of Lewiston, N. C., as missionary teacher, to be sent to Miss Pitman's assistance in the girls' school, Tokyo. (Now St. Margaret's School) The appointment was approved by the Board, December 13th, and in March of the following year Miss Riddick sailed for the field.
ON New Year's Day, 1882, the Rev. Mr. McKim's infant and three Japanese children were baptized at Osaka. In February the Bishop wrote and made renewed appeal for three clergymen, urging the necessity for educated men, and expressing a strong preference for single men, as being more economically supported and easily removed from place to place than married men. His allusion to St. Paul's remark that "He that is married careth for the things of the world how he may please his wife" was very suggestive. At the same time he asked only that young men would be willing to remain single for, say five years, and devote that time to the benefit of the mission.
The Rev. Mr. Cooper and wife reached the United States on the 8th of April, and after some months retired from the work, touching which retirement the Board of Managers published the following statement:
Owing to the state of the Rev. William B. Cooper's health the Missionary Bishop of Yedo is convinced that his return to Japan would be inexpedient, in which decision the Board of Managers has concurred. Mr. Cooper has rendered, at the request of the Foreign Committee, efficient service in presenting the work of the mission to a number of parishes; but in consequence of accepting a parochial position, he has been obliged to withdraw from such service. Mr. Cooper's connection with the Board terminated December 31st, 1882.
On the 14th of February occurred the death of the Rev. J. H. Quinby, at that time visiting friends in Florida. Mr. Quinby had been a member of the mission for nearly ten years, a faithful worker, and his death was a sad loss to the mission cause.
On the 16th of May, Mr. James McD. Gardiner and Miss Florence R. Pitman were married at Tokyo by Bishop Williams, assisted by the Rev. Messrs. Blanchet and Shaw, the latter of the Church of England. On Trinity Sunday the Bishop advanced the Rev. Edmund R. Woodman to the Priesthood, the service being held in Trinity Chapel, Tokyo, the Rev. Messrs. Morris and Blanchet assisting.
The close of the mission year brought little change in the state of affairs in the field; the schools, the dispensary and the chapels in Osaka were in efficient order, though the absence of Dr. Laning, who, after a service of more than eight years, returned home on a visit in November, 1881, affected the attendance at the dispensary. In was designed, upon his return, to open a hospital and generally enlarge this most, useful branch of the mission work. He arrived at Osaka November 1st, 1882. On December 14th, he was united in marriage with Miss Belle T. Michie, the Rev. John McKim officiating. Mrs. Laning remained in charge of St. Agnes' School, formerly known as "the girls' school."
In Tokyo the boys' school (Now St. Paul's School) continued to flourish under the able management of Mr. Gardiner. In June the entire charge of St. Margaret's School was placed in the hands of Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner. As Miss Pitman, Mrs. Gardiner had been connected with it almost from its beginning. Mr. Blanchet reported that of the thirty-five pupils who had been in the school, twenty were baptized and twelve confirmed. There were seven chapels in Tokyo, and it was expected that two or three more would soon be added to the list. In concluding his report the Bishop again adverted to the need for two clergymen and additional teachers.
In September the Rev. A. R. Morris, after eleven years' continuous service at Osaka, left for a visit to the United States, reaching New York in January, 1883. In November Mrs. Blanchet, with her children, returned to this country. Mrs. Quinby, since the death of her husband, had been considering the advisability of returning to the field; but was obliged to reach the conclusion that the state of her health would not permit, and her connection with the mission ceased.
Toward the close of the year two new preaching-places were opened in Osaka; and on the 15th of December Mr. McKim, assisted by Mr. Ozawa, held the first services at Koriyama, a town about fifteen miles distant from Osaka. The attendance at these services was very encouraging.
On the Sunday before Easter, March 18th, 1883, in Trinity Chapel, Tokyo, two graduates of the theological school, Mr. Nobori Kanai and Mr. Masakazu Tai, were admitted to the Diaconate, being the first Japanese ever ordained in Japan, and the pioneers in the establishment of a native Ministry. The admission of Mr. Nakashima as a candidate for Holy Orders was also announced. On the first of May Mr. Blanchet, after more than nine years of faithful labor, left for a vacation, arriving at New York August nth. In June Miss Emma Verbeck, daughter of the Rev. Dr. Verbeck, long connected with the mission of the Reformed (Dutch) Church, was appointed a missionary teacher and assigned to St. Paul's School, Tokyo. Miss Verbeck was born in Nagasaki and educated in California. On the 28th of June Miss Margaret L. Mead retired from the mission, having married the Rev. Edmund C. Hopper, of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. In September the Rev. J. Thompson Cole, who was appointed in May and ordained to the Priesthood in July, sailed for the field, reaching Tokyo in October, where he assumed the duties of a teacher in St. Paul's School. In the course of the year—in addition to his other labors—Mr. Tyng found time for the preparation of a hymn-book containing 144 hymns, and also to superintend the erection of a new hospital building in Osaka. In his report for the year Dr. Laning stated that the receipts from patients had paid current expenses, contributed $1,000 toward the erection of the new building, and left a balance of $119.37.
A new structure for St. Margaret's School, with accommodation for fifty pupils, was also approaching completion. The Bishop reported that the number of baptisms exceeded that of any previous year, with one exception, and that the converts, manifested much zeal and earnestness. In December Frank W. Harrell, M.D., a graduate of the University of Maryland, was appointed medical missionary to Tokyo, where he arrived in March, 1884.
The number of appointments made in 1884 was larger than for several years before: Miss Rebecca F. Falls, of Alexandria, Va., missionary teacher for St. Agnes' School, appointed January 8th, reached Osaka May 2d; Miss Mary Mailes, of Boston, Mass., to aid Mrs. McKim in work among women, appointed February 12th, reached Osaka May 16th; Miss Emma Williamson, of Nyack, N. Y., missionary teacher for St. Margaret's School, appointed February 12th, reached Tokyo May 2d; the Rev. Henry D. Page, of the Diocese of Virginia, appointed March 11th, reached Tokyo May 19th; Miss Frances J. Shaw, appointed in the field April 10th, as trained nurse in St. Barnabas' Hospital, Osaka; and Mr. John H. Molineux, of Hoboken, N. J., missionary teacher, appointed December 9th, reached Tokyo March 31st, 1885.
The reports for the mission year ending June 30th were of the most encouraging nature. At Osaka the number of communicants had nearly doubled; St. Timothy's School had upward of fifty pupils, and St. Agnes' School thirty-four; the Chapel of the Holy Comforter (the Awaji Machi Chapel) was prospering and the new St. Barnabas' Hospital was in successful operation, having treated 4,073 dispensary cases and forty-seven in-patients. The establishment of this institution with its complete appointments was due to the generosity of members of the Woman's Auxiliary. In Tokyo the new building for St. Margaret's School had been opened with twenty-four pupils, St. Paul's School was flourishing, and Dr. Harrell had established two dispensaries which were doing much good, although a well-equipped hospital was greatly needed. The only retirement during the year was that of the Rev. Clement T. Blanchet, on the 31st of December, greatly to the regret of the Bishop and the Foreign Committee.
The Rev. William B. Cooper, for nine years actively engaged in mission work in Tokyo, but whose connection with the Board terminated in December, 1882, died in Brooklyn, N. Y., on the 27th of February, 1885. There were no new appointments during this year and the working force was somewhat reduced by the resignation of Miss Rebecca F. Falls in April, and Miss Frances J. Shaw in June.; but there was no relaxation of effort on the part of those who remained, and in many respects the progress of the work was gratifying. The Bishop reported the number of baptisms as nearly double, the confirmations two-thirds more, and the communicants over a third more than those of the previous year. The number of pupils in St. Agnes' School had increased from thirty-six to fifty-one, and the day-school of the Chapel of the Holy Comforter had prospered, having thirty-eight pupils. St. Paul's, Tokyo, closed with fifty-three, and St. Margaret's with thirty pupils. The work at the country-stations was very promising, and that among the women was full of interest and encouragement. At St. Barnabas' Hospital 920 outpatients had made 4,869 visits, and seventy-four were treated in the wards. At Tokyo, Dr. Harrell's medical work had also largely increased, 2,156 patients having received treatment.
In September, Miss Williamson was placed in charge of St. Agnes' School, Mrs. Laning having resigned the position of principal; Mr. Morris was transferred from Osaka to Tokyo to teach in Trinity Divinity School, and Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner, having returned from a year's visit to the United States, resumed their duties at St. Paul's School. On the 28th of October, Mr. J. H. Molineux was admitted to the Diaconate. In November, the Rev. J. Thompson Cole returned to this country, reaching his destination December 22d. His marriage with Miss Annie E. Lee took place on the 28th of April following.
On March 4th, 1886, Mrs. T. S. Tyng and children sailed for the United States, the seven years' term of service of her husband and herself having expired in November, 1885. Mr. Tyng was obliged to defer his departure until June owing to the pressure of affairs, including the work in Gojo, a town of 10,000 inhabitants on the Kii river. In his annual report Bishop Williams wrote as follows regarding the movement toward greater unity among the Japanese converts:
The conviction has been growing for some time past, that steps must be taken to meet the natural desire which the Japanese have for some voice in the management of the evangelistic work in their own country. The more the work grows, and the greater the number of converts, the stronger will this feeling become. The converts gathered by the missionaries of the three Church Societies in Japan—English and American—see other bodies of Christians giving a large amount of control to the Japanese, and naturally expect that they should be allowed to take part in the management of the work.
But apart from this natural desire of the Japanese, which cannot be disregarded, the best interests of the missions require that the Japanese should be made to feel, at the earliest time possible, that the responsibility of evangelizing their own country rests on them; and there can be no doubt that they will take a deeper interest in what is done, and throw themselves more heartily into the work when they realize that it is their work, and that they have a voice in the settlement of the manner in which it is to be done. With this in view, a conference of delegates from the three Church societies laboring in Japan was called by the Bishops in July to try to arrange, by personal consultation, some plan by which the three societies might work more together, and bring the Japanese converts into closer union. The conference was most harmonious, and there was a marked unanimity of opinion that every effort should be made to draw the converts gathered by the different societies into the closest relations, so as to form one Church. A provisional constitution and canons (very few in number) were drawn up, and it is earnestly hoped that the Churches in America and England will approve our action, and give us authority to use the canons until such time as the Church in Japan shall be prepared to enact laws for itself.
The statistics for 1886 showed the number of adult baptisms. to have been nearly three times as many in the previous year—159 as against fifty-five—the confirmations (seventy-seven) greater by one-half, and an increase of communicants from 131 to 229. The prosperity of the schools was undiminished, and the work at the out-stations had made vigorous progress. On the 2d of September the Rev. J. H. Molineux and family sailed for the United States, Mrs. Molineux's health requiring her return; and in October Mr. Molineux retired from the mission. He afterward accepted an appointment as missionary in the Domestic field and worked under Bishop Hare, South Dakota. On the 23d of September Mrs. McKim left Japan and reached her home in Wisconsin on the 23d of October. In November the Rev. Mr. Page, by the Bishop's direction, was transferred from Tokyo to Osaka to take charge of Mr. Tyng's work during his absence. The only appointment for the year was that of Mr. Adolph M. Lewish, a student from the General Theological Seminary. He was ordained Deacon in June, sailed in December, and reached Tokyo March 2d, 1887.
The movement for the establishment of a native Japanese Church assumed definite shape in February, 1887, when a general conference of Japanese Christians and delegates from the several missions was held in Osaka. Great unanimity and earnestness were manifested, and the name of Nippon Sei Ko Kwai—meaning simply, "Japan Church"—was adopted.
In April the Rev. John McKim, after seven years of faithful service, left for a visit to this country; followed in June by the Rev. E. R. Woodman, whose term of seven years had also expired. In May the Rev. Isaac Dooman, a native of Persia, was appointed a missionary. With his family he first visited England and Persia, reaching Tokyo in February, 1888. In August the Rev. Mr. Cole and wife, and in October the Rev. Mr. Tyng, with his family, returned to their respective fields of labor. In September Dr. Harrell resigned from the mission, to accept an appointment under the Japanese government.
A notable event of the year was the establishment of the Osaka Ladies' Institute by native Christians, for the purpose of bringing Christian influence to bear upon the higher class of women. The plan met with much favor, and in July the institute numbered 102 members. Very valuable assistance was given to this enterprise by Mrs. Laning. Another important incident was the erection of a handsome church at Nara—the first church built by Japanese converts without help from the Board of Missions. Nara is the ancient capital of Japan and hence the centre of the Japanese religion. Every street corner has a temple. The priesthood is stronger here than anywhere, except Kioto.
The general result of the year's work, considering the small clerical force, was very encouraging. There were 243 baptisms in all, of which 207 were adults. Several new out-stations were established, and nothing but lack of suitable men to take charge of them prevented a still larger increase of country congregations. It had been arranged that Mr. Molineux should take charge of St. Timothy's School, but as he was ordered home by the physicians on account of Mrs. Molineux's illness, and as there was no one who could take the management, it was thought best to discontinue the school. All the pupils upon scholarships, and a few others, were transferred to St. Paul's, Tokyo. Under Miss Williamson's able management St. Agnes' School had grown until the number of pupils reached sixty, of whom forty-four were boarders. An addition was made to the building but the accommodations were still insufficient. St. Margaret's School, with fifty-seven pupils, also needed more room, and the want of another teacher was severely felt. Miss Mailes' work in training Bible women was productive of excellent results, and much valuable work among women was done by Mrs. Laning and Mrs. Page. At St. Barnabas' Hospital and at the dispensaries in Tokyo the medical work had largely increased, and the fees were more than sufficient to meet current expenses.
DURING the year 1888 the appointments were as follows: January nth, the Rev. Victor M. Law, M.D., as missionary teacher; left Omaha April 16th, and reached Tokyo May 15th. February 3d, Miss Sarah S. Sprague, of Hartford, Conn., missionary teacher; sailed April 21st, reached Tokyo May 15th. April 11th, Miss Leila Bull, of Pittsfield, Mass., to take charge of the Osaka Ladies' Institute; sailed April 21st, reached Osaka May 23d. April nth, Miss Carrie E. Palmer, of Boston, Mass., missionary teacher; and Miss May V. McKim, assistant teacher; sailed September 8th, reached Osaka October 3d. May 9th, the Rev. John C. Ambler, of Virginia (his departure was deferred until the following year); reached Tokyo September l8th, 1889. September 12th, Miss Martha Aldrich, missionary teacher, to take charge of the Young Ladies' Institute, Tokyo; sailed October 26th, reached Tokyo November I4th. October 10th, the Rev. Joseph M. Francis, of Whitewater, Wis.; sailed January 15th, 1889, reached Tokyo February 9th.
The mission met with a great loss in the death, on February 6th, of the Rev. Nobori Kanai, one of the two Japanese admitted to the Diaconate in March, 1883. Bishop Williams wrote concerning him as follows: "The Church in Japan has lost a thoroughly honest member, trusted and respected by all; an earnest, faithful laborer, and a fearless, hard-working minister of the Gospel. His friends, Japanese and foreign, mourn his loss as that of a true and much-loved friend. The Church and all who knew him will miss him greatly. No one will miss him more than his Bishop, to whom he has been as a son in the Gospel. While we grieve over his loss we can only pray that God may raise up in this land others like-minded, who shall labor as earnestly, faithfully and successfully as Mr. Kanai."
On the 13th of June the resignation of the Rev. A. M. Lewish was accepted. The mission was reinforced by the return of the Rev. Mr. McKim in October and the Rev. E. R. Woodman in November, with their families.
The June reports showed a great advance in all respects; the number of adult baptisms reached 406, the infant eighty-seven, a total of 493; there were 242 confirmations, and the communicants numbered 657. The three congregations in Osaka—St. Timothy's, the Holy Comforter and St. Paul's in charge of catechists supervised by Mr. Page—had grown numerically, and become self-supporting. On Trinity Sunday a new congregation—St. John's—was organized by Mr. Tyng and soon numbered eighteen members, with thirty persons being prepared for Baptism. St. Agnes' School was prospering, with an average of seventy-five pupils, fifteen of whom were baptized and eight confirmed during the year. Still more satisfactory results were looked for when the new school-building should be completed. The membership of the Ladies' Institute was about seventy-five, and Miss Bull's teaching was productive of gratifying results. Mrs. Laning also rendered valuable aid by teaching in the Bible-classes, English, sewing and cooking. Miss Mailes' work among the women was very encouraging, the record showing that 6,582 persons had attended the 396 classes held, and that 1,805 persons were present at the 674 visits made. Ten young women were in training as assistants. St. Barnabas' Hospital continued to increase in usefulness, with 8,224 outpatients and 88 in-patients. The fees—$3,022—paid all current expenses and left a balance of several hundred dollars. In his report Dr. Laning stated that "chiefly through the Bible woman's work seven of the patients have been baptized, four others admitted as catechumens, besides other members of these households having been brought into the Church."
The work in Tokyo, although less vigorous than that in Osaka, showed decided growth, both Trinity Chapel and Christ Chapel reporting more than three times as many baptisms as during the previous year. St. Paul's School had an average of eighty-two pupils, and more room was greatly needed. St. Margaret's, with fifty-eight pupils, was also in need of additional accommodations. Work at the country stations was making good progress; at nine places regular Sunday, and week-day services were held, and sixteen others places were visited at intervals. The school started and supported by the Christians at Nara was flourishing under Mr. Dooman's able direction, and numbered about 125 pupils. An English school had also been established by the Christians at Gojo. During the Christmas holidays Bishop Williams visited Osaka and confirmed eleven persons at the Church of the Holy Comforter; eleven at St. Paul's; eighteen at St. Timothy's, and eleven at St. John's—in all fifty-one.
On the 12th of February, 1889, two missionary teachers were appointed—Miss Georgiana Suthon, of New Orleans, to take charge of instruction of Bible women in Tokyo; and Miss Rebecca Ford Heath, of Covington, Ky., as teacher in St. Margaret's School, Tokyo. They sailed on the 6th of April and reached their destination April 23d. On the 20th of April occurred the formal opening of the Young Ladies' Institute, Tokyo, in charge of Miss Aldrich. This was designed as a school for young ladies of the higher classes, and was expected to be largely self-supporting. The funds for establishing this school were raised almost entirely by the Woman's Committee on Work for Foreign Missionaries, of the Diocese of New York. The school opened with nine pupils, which number was soon increased to nineteen.
At Tokyo, on the 9th of May, Miss Sarah L. Riddick was married to Mr. Thomas R. White of this country. Miss Riddick had been in charge of St. Margaret's School for nearly seven years, discharging the duties of principal with great ability and success. Mr. and Mrs. White sailed for the United States June 7th.
Work was begun in Tsuruga, the terminus of a short road from Hammamatzu connecting the west coast with the main line, the first service being held in a theatre, about the end of June. In December the Rev. Mr. Tyng wrote from there that he had baptized five adults and three children, and that one of the converts, a retired physician, had offered to give a fire-proof store-house, 30 x 48 feet in size, to be turned into a church. A catechist was in charge of this station. A volunteer helper, Mr. Nagata, had been carrying on work in the town of Imazes.
On the 9th of July the Rev. H. D. Page and wife sailed from Yokohama, reaching San Francisco on the 24th of the same month. Mr. Page, who had been in the field about five years, presented the work of the Japan Mission before the Board of Missions at the General Convention.
In July new work was begun at Sakai, a town of 50,000 inhabitants, seven miles distant from Osaka. A preaching-place was opened, in charge of a catechist, and visited frequently by Mr. McKim, who, on October 27th, baptized the first converts, seven in number. Mr. McKim also stated that eleven catechists were stationed in a district assigned to him, comprising the provinces of Setsu, Yamato, Iga and Isé.
In his annual report the Bishop wrote as follows regarding the new constitution for Japan:
Since the last report an event unique in the history of the world has occurred, which is fraught with far-reaching consequences to Japan. On the 11th of February last the Emperor, in fulfilment of the promise made several years ago, gave a liberal constitution to the country. ... By this constitution Japan has, in a day, been changed from a despotism into a constitutional monarchy with a parliament which will meet annually to make laws which shall bind alike prince and peasant throughout the land.
One article of the constitution materially affects us, as a Church having a mission in the country. The 27th article declares that "Japanese subjects . . . shall enjoy freedom of religious belief." This is but another way of stating that Christianity is henceforward tolerated. For there has been no question of the toleration of Buddhism and Shintoism—the only other religions which can possibly make any efforts at propagation here. This may be considered almost as an invitation to Christians to put forth their strength to spread the religion of Christ in this "Land of the Rising Sun," and Christians of many names and divers beliefs—from Greek and Roman on the one side to Quakers and Unitarians on the other—are crowding into the country. There were at the end of last year 443 Protestant missionaries, of whom 150 were married men, twenty-seven unmarried, and 124 unmarried women. The Roman Church had two Bishops, eighty Priests, and forty sisters. The Greek Church was represented by one Bishop and two Priests. Our Church has only nine married men, two unmarried, and nine unmarried women—in all only twenty-nine missionaries.
Our Church must settle what part she is to take in the great work of bringing the people of this interesting country to the knowledge of and faith in the Lord Jesus; and what she determines to do must be done without delay. She cannot think that she has, in any sense, come up to the measure of her responsibility. For the truth is the mission has been sadly undermanned from its commencement to the present; and the fact is especially apparent at this time when, by the new treaties, the whole country is to be thrown open to our missionaries to travel and reside where they may please, without restrictions of any kind.
On September 25th the new school-building at Nara, the corner-stone of which was laid May 16th, was opened with considerable ceremony in presence of about 250 persons, including many Japanese officials and citizens of distinction.
Bishop Williams having tendered his resignation, the House of Bishops after due deliberation, and with suitable expression of its appreciation of his long service, accepted it on the i8th of October. Immediately upon receipt of this information in Japan, the Standing Committee unanimously requested the Bishop "to continue the exercise of episcopal functions until a duly qualified successor entered upon the duties of such office," to which the Bishop consented.
On the 29th of November Dr. and Mrs. Laning, with their children, left Osaka for the United States, it being the Doctor's second visit to this country since his appointment in 1873, and Mrs. Laning's first home-coming after nine years' service in the field. They reached San Francisco December 17th, and proceeded to Charlottesville, Va.
During the year work was begun in Kioto, a city ranking next to Tokyo and Osaka in population, it having 270,000 inhabitants; a Japanese house was rented and fitted up for use as a chapel, and three young men and one woman (all Japanese) were sent to preach and teach. Mr. Tyng wrote that on the first of December he administered the Lord's Supper to sixteen communicants.
The new Trinity Church, Tokyo, was consecrated on the First Sunday in Advent, December 1st, with impressive services. Fully 700 persons were present, nearly all of them Japanese. One hundred and eighty-three persons partook of the Lord's Supper, 150 of whom were Japanese. The building, a fine structure of brick with stone trimmings, was designed by Professor J. McD. Gardiner, the headmaster of St. Paul's School. This church was the personal gift of Bishop Williams.
On the 10th of December John J. Sellwood, M.D., of East Portland, Oregon, was appointed missionary physician. At the same time Miss Ida Goepp was appointed missionary teacher, the appointment to take effect in the following summer. On St. Thomas' Day, December 21st, in Trinity Church, Tokyo, Bishop Williams advanced the Rev. Masakazu Tai to the Priesthood.
The appointments for 1890 were as follows: February 11th,. Miss Lisa Lovell, as missionary teacher; Mr. J. Lindsay Patton, Theological Seminary of Virginia (to take effect after his ordination as Deacon); March 11th, Miss Mildred Nelson Page, of New York, as missionary teacher.
On the 11th of February Mrs. Laning died at Charlottesville, Virginia. The Rev. Henry D. Page, then in this country, who had seen Mrs. Laning shortly before her death, thus spoke of her:
Mrs. Laning was one of the kindest of women, and before her marriage was abundant in good works, particularly in the care of the sick. Her marriage with Dr. Laning, our physician at Osaka, gave her still more frequent opportunities of ministering to those in illness, or otherwise afflicted. . . . How uncertain is this life! Mrs. Laning came home to see an aged and infirm, father, as in all human probability his stay here could not be greatly prolonged; but though a strong and robust woman, we now see that she herself came home to die, and has gone before those whom she might naturally have expected to follow only after the lapse of many years. She will be greatly missed by us all, and especially from the work in Osaka. The Osaka Ladies' Institute owes its inception to the persistent efforts of Mr. Mori and Mrs. Laning, and we, who saw her daily, often wondered to see how great was her activity in other directions as well. Her works do follow her; and let us see to it, so far as in us lies, that the Osaka Ladies' Institute, fostered and developed under our care, becomes her lasting memorial.
Bishop Williams also wrote, as follows: "The last mail brought the sad intelligence of the death of Mrs. Laning. She was a most earnest, hard-working missionary, who did not spare herself, and her loss will be greatly felt in the work at Osaka. Especially will the Japanese women there, to whom she was a great help, miss her. May others be raised up to take her place."
The following minute was adopted in the field:
The Standing Committee of the Japan Mission desire to place on record their profound and sincere regret at the news which has just reached them, of the death, at her home in Charlottesville, Virginia, on the 11th of February, of Mrs. Henry Laning.
Endeared to so many here by ties of friendship, and bound to the mission by a faithful and consistent service of nine years, she carries with her the grateful recollection of many who through her heard of our Lord and Saviour. The duties and cares of a busy home never separated her from an active and untiring round of work for Christ. A zealous interest in and an abiding affection for His cause were ever shown in her devotion to the work.
To those whom God has bereaved we tender our deepest sympathy, and with them mourn the loss of one of the beloved whom God hath called up higher.
[Signed] A. R. MORRIS, H. D. PAGE,
J. T. COLE, J. McD. GARDINER.
Dr. Sellwood and wife sailed for Japan on the 15th of February, reaching Tokyo on the nth of March. After seven years' continuous service in the field, Miss Verbeck left for the United States May 27th, arriving in New York June 23d. The Rev. H. D. Page and family, accompanied by Miss Mildred Nelson Page, sailed from San Francisco June 3d, and reached Tokyo June 21st. The Rev. Arthur R. Morris, senior Presbyter of the mission, left Yokohama on the l7th of July for a vacation, reaching New York November 5th. On the first of October Miss Ida Goepp and Miss Lisa Lovell sailed for Japan, arriving in Tokyo, October 20th, where Miss Goepp was assigned to duty with Miss Aldrich in the Young Ladies' Institute. Miss Lovell reached Osaka the 29th of October, and was appointed to work with Miss Bull, teaching English in the Ladies' Institute in that city.
On November 20th Dr. Laning and his children, accompanied by his niece, Miss Mary E. Laning, sailed from Vancouver, reaching Osaka on the nth of December. The Rev. Victor M. Law, M. D., was compelled by failing health to retire from the mission, and, with his family, left Yokohama December 4th, arriving in San Francisco on the 19th of the same month. The Rev. J. L. Patton and wife sailed for the field on the 18th of December. It was understood that Mr. Patton was to take charge of the work at Maebashi, a large town sixty miles north of Tokyo.
The result of the year's work is summarized in the Standing Committee's report that "there had been substantial progress, all along the line." The individual reports spoke of continued efforts with gratifying results in most instances, although there was a falling off in the number of pupils at the schools, and fewer baptisms and confirmations than during the previous year. The Rev. Mr. McKim's explanation of the reduced number of baptisms was applicable to the field generally. He wrote:
The people have been immersed in politics, and with their impulsive and impetuous natures have given themselves up to the discussion of political principles, to the neglect of business and religion. Another reason is that an anti-foreign reaction has taken place, largely due to the failure of the Japanese government to obtain a satisfactory revision of the existing treaties with foreign powers. Still another cause is that we have found it necessary to be more strict in our preparation of catechumens for Holy Baptism.
The first Japanese Parliament met on the 25th of November, and on the 28th was formally opened by the emperor in person. The speaker of the new imperial parliament is a Christian, and out of 300 members, fifteen are Christians—a large proportion when it is remembered that out of a population of some 40,000,000, only 80,000 are Christians.
IN reviewing the history of the Church's efforts to Christianize Japan, the mind is inevitably impressed with two prominent thoughts—the magnitude of the work sought to be accomplished, and the inadequacy of the means provided. With regard to the first, its gigantic proportions are made all the more appalling by the reflection that here are about forty millions of people, already partially emancipated from the thraldom of heathenism; intelligent, impressionable by nature, easily influenced, actually in a transition state and open to the first powerful influences that may be brought to bear upon them. On the testimony of a Christian Japanese, they have literally trampled their ancient gods beneath their feet, having paved garden walks with the stone, while the remains of their former religious observances serve only to furnish food for laughter and derision when hireling priests attempt to reawaken the olden adoration of meaningless mysteries and the grovelling terror once inspired by deities of wood and stone.
The result of this revulsion of thought and feeling is inevitable; in becoming iconoclasts the Japanese are greatly in danger of drifting into agnosticism, if not absolute atheism—a conclusion the more to be feared for the reason that their intellectual development makes them not only critical investigators of the new theology presented for their acceptance, but scathing satirists of the inconsistencies and shortcomings of many of its nominal professors. They are quick to detect any discrepancy between precept and practice, and they have but too frequent opportunities of seeing how widely these are sometimes asunder. Even the pure and blameless lives led by the few pioneers in the Christian army are insufficient to convince these keen-eyed critics of the general potency of influences which in individual instances have produced such unquestionable results.
Then again, the difficulties are enhanced by the fact, incomprehensible to the average Japanese mind, that there appear to be several different descriptions of Christianity, each of which is offered as the one only true and genuine faith; nor is their bewilderment at all relieved by the unedifying spectacle of members of various Christian bodies acting in practical opposition and rivalry, and virtually presenting each other as doubtful exponents of true theology.
In justice to the earnest, devoted, self-sacrificing, and indomitable missionaries of all religious bodies, it must be said that these bickerings are usually confined to those who have no practical acquaintance with the situation; while those who occupy the van and fight manfully against tremendous odds are almost invariably actuated by a feeling of brotherhood and comradeship which leads them to sink their differences of opinion and heartily co-operate with one another in the grand assault upon the common enemy.
The inadequacy of the means employed by the Church for the accomplishment of this most important object is shown in the fact that after the lapse of thirty-one years she has less than thirty representatives in the field; and this corporal's guard is expected to battle with a foe whose cohorts are counted by millions. This state of affairs would be positively ludicrous, were it not so sadly deplorable. Surely the Church does not lack the means to urge on the holy warfare; her ranks certainly contain as brave and devoted spirits as ever buckled on the armor of righteousness and flung themselves impetuously upon the serried lines of the enemy; why then is the material aid so slender, and why are the numbers of the stalwart soldiers of the Cross so few?
It is to be feared that the labors of those who are in the field are scarcely appreciated at their true value. There is apt to be a feeling of impatience at the apparently slow progress made. This is unjust; it should be remembered that at least two years of the most assiduous study are necessary in order to attain tolerable familiarity with the language, and that even then it is very difficult to translate our thoughts and modes of expression into intelligible Japanese.
The missionaries are but few, but they have not been idle, nor is the value of their work to be measured by immediate and visible results. They may not be permitted to see the full fruition of their labors, but they are clearing the way for those who are to come after them, and the good seed they are planting is the living germ which will some day develop into complete maturity. Herein lies our hope for the future.
An architect may plan to erect an edifice whose foundations shall be laid broad and deep, and whose towering superstructure shall endure for ages, but hundreds of busy hands must be at work before the first indication of growth appears above the surface of the ground. In secluded quarries the hammer and chisel are fashioning the stone into fitting shapes; in the depths of the forest sturdy blows arc levelling the timber that shall be wrought into forms of beauty; in dark recesses of the earth the pick and drill are exhuming the ore that is to gird the structure with lasting strength; and as little by little the various materials are brought into harmonious relationship, the walls and turrets and pinnacles are reared aloft, and at length the majestic building stands in completed beauty, a monument to the patience, the skill, the earnestness and the determination of its creators.
In the distant field of Japan our missionaries have prayed and labored, in loneliness and discouragement, oft-times ready to sink under the heavy burden, yet still toiling on with an ardor that would not recognize defeat. They have been gradually making impressions upon flinty natures, uprooting deeply seated prejudices, bringing to light the hidden treasure of genuine worth, and in all their trials have been sustained by the conviction that, with God's blessing, the darkened hearts of fellow-beings were slowly but surely being moulded and fashioned into fair temples meet for the dwelling-place of His Holy Spirit.
Rev. JOHN LIGGINS, May, 1859. Returned, 1860. (Still living.)
Rev. C. M. WILLAMS, August, 1859. (Bishop of China and Japan, 1866; Missionary Jurisdiction of Yedo, 1874. Resigned Jurisdiction, 1889.)
H. ERNST SCHMID, M.D., November, 1860. Returned, 1862. (Still living.)
Rev. ARTHUR R. MORRIS, May, 1871.
Rev. G. D. B. MILLER AND WIFE, December, 1872. Left the Mission, 1874.
REV. J. H. QUINBY AND WIFE, December, 1872. (Mrs. Quinby died November 14th, 1875; Mr. Quinby died February I4th, 1882.)
HENRY LANING, M.D., July, 1873.
Rev. WILLIAM B. COOPER, November, 1873. Connection with the Mission ceased December, 1882. (Died, February 27th, 1885.)
Rev. CHARLES H. NEWMAN, November 1873. Left the Mission December, 1874.
Rev. CLEMENT T. BLANCHET, November, 1873. Resigned, December, 1884.
Miss ELLEN G. EDDY, November, 1874. Resigned April, 1881.
Miss FLORENCE R. PITMAN, November, 1877. (Now Mrs. Gardiner.)
Rev. I. K. YOKOYAMA, October, 1877. Deposed from the Ministry, at his own request, 1880.
Rev. T. S. TYNG AND WIFE, November, 1878.
Rev. JOHN McKIM AND WIFE, March, 1880.
Rev. E. R. WOODMAN AND WIFE, September, 1880.
Mr. J. McD. GARDINER, October, 1880.
Miss BELLE T. MICHIE, February, 1881. (Afterward Mrs. Laning. Died, February 11th, 1890.)
Miss MARGARET L. MEAD, June, 1881. Left the Mission, June, 1883.
Miss SARAH L. RIDDICK, April, 1882 Returned, June, 1889.
Rev. NOBORI KANAI, March, 1883, (Died, February 6th, 1888.)
Rev. MASAKAZU TAI, March, 1883.
Miss EMMA VERBECK, June, 1883.
Rev. J. THOMPSON COLE, October, 1883.
FRANK W. HARRELL, M.D., March, 1884. Left the Mission September, 1887.
Miss FRANCES J. SHAW, April, 1884. Resigned, June, 1885.
Miss REBECCA F. FALLS, May, 1884. Left the Mission April, 1885.
Miss MARY MAILES, May, 1884.
Miss EMMA WILLIAMSON, May, 1884.
Rev. HENRY D. PAGE AND WIFE, May, 1884.
Mr. JOHN H. MOLINEUX AND WIFE, March, 1885. Resigned, October, 1886.
Rev. ADOLPH M. LEWISH, March, 1887. Resigned, June, 1889.
Mrs. J. THOMPSON COLE, August, 1887.
Rev. ISAAC DOOMAN AND WIFE, February, 1888.
Rev. VICTOR M. LAW, M.D., AND WIFE, May, 1888. Returned, December, 1890.
Miss SARAH S. SPRAGUE, May, 1888.
Miss LEILA BULL, May, 1888.
Miss CARRIE E. PALMER, October, 1888.
Miss MAY V. McKIM, October, 1888.
Miss MARTHA ALDRICH, November. 1888.
Rev. JOSEPH M. FRANCIS AND WIFE, February 1889.
Miss GEORGIANA SUTHON, April, 1889.
Miss REBECCA FORD HEATH, April, 1889.
Rev. JOHN C. AMBLER AND WIFE, September, 1889.
JOHN J. SELLWOOD, M.D., AND WIFE, March 1890.
Miss MILDRED NELSON PAGE, June, 1890.
Miss LISA LOVELL, October, 1890.
Miss IDA GOEPP, October, 1890.
Rev. J. LINDSAY PATTON AND WIFE. (Sailed for Japan, December, 1890.)
THERE are in the Mission nineteen Sunday-schools, four Day-schools, including the Ladies' Institute at Osaka and the Young Ladies' Seminary at Tokyo, and the following Boarding and Day-schools: St. Agnes' School (Girls), Osaka, St. Paul's (Boys), and St. Margaret's (Girls), Tokyo; Trinity Divinity and Catechetical School, Tokyo; also a Boarding and Day-school (Boys), Nara.