The Nippon Sei Kokwai, Constitution, Canons, Synod--Present out-look--Missionary methods--Hopes for the future--Contribution of the Japanese: (1) Cheerful patience; (2) A proper estimate of wealth: (3) Subordination of individual interests; (4) Approach to Christian unity.
Almost as soon as Japan was open to foreigners at all, in 1859, a representative of the Anglican Communion appeared in the person of the Rev. C. M., now Bishop, Williams, from the United States. How modern the work is comes home to us when we remember that this earliest missionary, though he resigned his jurisdiction in 1890, is still humbly working on as a missionary among the Japanese. But it was not till fourteen years later that it became lawful for a Japanese to be a Christian, and the real influx of missionaries began. The C.M.S. had already sent a missionary, and before the year 1873 was over the S.P.G. was in Tokyo. Then the missions of our communion spread, the American mission being under the charge of Bishop Williams, who was responsible for both China and Japan, while the Bishop of Victoria, Hong Kong, was charged with jurisdiction over the English missions. To the missionary societies already in the field was added, in 1887, St. Paul's Guild, with its two community missions of St. Andrew and St. Hilda, for work in Tokyo, and in 1888 the Canadian Church began missionary work in Japan.
 From that time to this the episcopal roll has been as follows:--
2. Bishop Poole, 1883 to 1885, took over English missions in Japan from the Bishop of Victoria.
3. Bishop Bickersteth, 1886 to 1897, was called, first, Bishop of Japan, then of Central Japan, and then (on delimitation of the jurisdictions), South Tokyo.
4. Bishop McKim, 1893, succeeded Bishop Williams of the American Church four years after the latter's resignation. His jurisdiction, since the delimitation, has been called North Tokyo by the Japanese General Synod.
5. Bishop Evington, 1895, jurisdiction of Kiu Shiu.
6. Bishop Awdry, 1896, jurisdiction of Osaka; 1898, succeeded Bishop Bickersteth in South Tokyo.
7. Bishop Fyson, 1896, jurisdiction of Hokkaido.
8. Bishop Foss, 1899, succeeded Bishop Awdry in jurisdiction of Osaka.
9. Bishop Partridge, 1900 (of the American Church), jurisdiction of Kyoto.
At first the work was done through missionary societies each acting independently, and occupying different spheres, except in Tokyo, the capital, where four societies met, and in Osaka, the commercial centre, where the American Church and the C.M.S. were both to be found; nor in these great centres would one have been at all adequate alone.
As the work spread, the interlacing of the various missions soon demanded some local delimitations; while the Americans and the English were each using their own MS. translation of the Prayer-book, and it was obviously desirable that, before printing, one Prayer-book should be adopted for all the Japanese members of the same communion. These and other needs led in [209/210] due course to definite arrangements between the missionaries in concert with their Japanese converts; and with the sanction of the societies at home a single Japanese Church was constituted, and the jurisdictions delimited of the several bishops, who in their turn withdrew their missions from each other's local spheres, so that the work might be more compact and economical, and occasions of friction might be removed. Only in Tokyo and Osaka the jurisdictions were not delimited, and two or more missions worked side by side, restrained only by courtesy and mutual respect from interfering with each other.
It is so obvious for any one not in the field to ask why even these somewhat irregular, and it might be thought inconvenient, exceptions should exist, that a few words are necessary in explanation. Suppose a mission has been planted by the C.M.S. in Osaka, and circumstances lead the American Church to go there too, either before or after. Only in a few "concessions" in the country may foreigners hold property. The American Church wants to work in Kyoto, the former capital, twenty-six miles from Osaka; but Kyoto is not a "treaty port," and it is difficult to have institutions there, and still more difficult to secure them for the Church--their hospital, etc., must be in Osaka, with a view to Kyoto. Then, on the other side of Osaka, there is indeed Kobe, only twenty miles away; but Kobe is occupied by the S.P.G., and for three hundred miles westward from Osaka there is no other treaty port. Hence the C.M.S. also must have all its institutions in Osaka for the whole of that "Western district. Moreover, the two missions must not only have their main plant in the same city, but in the same few acres of it; for the "foreign concession" was a very limited area. The work of the two is mainly in different parts of the city, but the [210/211] plant, institutions, and houses of the missionaries are close together.
But it may be asked, when by agreement between the authorities of the English and American Churches there came to be an English Bishop of Osaka, why should not the Americans have withdrawn or been placed under him? Well, we must repeat first that they were there with a view to the American Diocese of Kyoto, and it is only since 1899, since "treaty revision" has given greater freedom, that foreigners can live and rent land and own houses in Kyoto. But further, there would arise the difficulty of their maintenance. American Churchmen could hardly be expected to continue for any length of time to support work which was no longer the work of their own Church, nor directed by their bishops, nor reported in their own missionary periodicals; and the English mission was not in a position to undertake the responsibility of their institutions. At all events, it is quite certain that the first Bishop of Osaka would have been most unwilling that the American Bishop of Kyoto should withdraw from Osaka either his mission or his control of the churches there connected with that mission, and the present Bishop shows no signs of being otherwise minded. The corresponding question in Tokyo, though at times it has been more thorny, is, in great part, of the same kind, and space does not allow us to enter into it.
We have not the statistics of the number of baptized Christians of our communion at the time (1887) when the Nippon Sei Kokwai was constituted, but in 1891 it is given as 4900; in 1902 it was 11,451. [In 1906, 13012.]
What is the Nippon Sei Kokwai? Let its constitution speak for itself--
"1. This Church shall be called the Nippon Sei Kokwai (Holy Catholic Church of Japan).
 "2. The Nippon Sei Kokwai receives the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, believes them to be a revelation of God, and to contain all things necessary to salvation, and acknowledges the faith contained in the Nicene and the Apostles' Creeds.
"3. The Nippon Sei Kokwai teaches the doctrine of the Lord Jesus Christ, and administers the two Sacraments of Baptism and the Holy Supper which He established, and the discipline which He ordained.
"4. The Nippon Sei Kokwai preserves the three orders of bishop, priest, and deacon which have been transmitted from the time of the Apostles.
"5. The Nippon Sei Kokwai holds every third year a General Synod, the date and place of meeting of the same determined by the bishops. The bishops, in consultation with the standing committees of the several districts, may call a special session of the General Synod.
"6. The General Synod shall consist of the bishops, and of clerical and lay deputies elected from each district. The method of election shall be determined by canon.
"7. The president of the General Synod shall be elected by the bishops holding actual jurisdiction from among their own number.
"8. In the General Synod the bishops shall vote separately, the clerical and lay deputies may vote either separately or together. Questions shall be determined by a majority of the bishops, and a majority of the clerical and lay deputies.
"9. The functions of the General Synod shall be as follows:--
"(1) To determine matters that concern the peace and progress of the Nippon Sei Kokwai.
"(2) To establish a society for domestic and foreign missions, and to control the same.
"(3) To amend the constitution and canons.
 "10. Proposals to amend the constitution must first be brought forward in a regular session of the General Synod, and receive its assent, and then be passed by a two-thirds vote in the next regular session of the Synod." Besides this constitution, the General Synod, which is its governing body, has passed and from time to time revised canons on the following subjects: (1) Election of bishops; (2) standing committees; (3) candidates for Orders; (4) examination and ordination; (5) evangelists; (6) churches; (7) pastors; (8) vestries; (9) district synods; (10) the Board of Missions; (11) marriage; (12) discipline; (13) Prayer-book and the Articles; (14) general provisions.
One or two of these are as yet incomplete, but the extensive and very careful revision by the General Synod of 1902 makes it improbable that, beyond filling the gaps, any important changes will be made for some considerable time; and the General Synod, while it becomes in larger and larger proportion Japanese, is becoming also more and more harmonious, moderate, and responsible in the tone of its discussions.
We have noticed that in some other Christian bodies the missionaries remain members of their home Churches, without becoming members of the Japanese Churches which they have founded. There are, no doubt, some advantages in this, notably that as the congregations feel themselves entirely self-governing and independent, they are free from the irritation of any foreign control in their own country, and it has therefore been easier for them to draw in adherents and ministers from a higher level of society than is usually the case with us. Ambitious minds fret at what seem to be leading-strings. But the advantage, especially with a view to the far future, that comes to the Nippon Sei Kokwai from a constitution under which the Japanese Church is self-governing, yet [213/214] contains on an equal footing Japanese and foreigners alike, far outweighs any possible disadvantages. Reasonable control is exercised, from within and not from without, by those who have the longest experience, the highest offices, and behind whom lie centuries of Christian ancestry. But as the Japanese increase in numbers, and ripen in faith and knowledge, the control automatically becomes counsel, and the majority passes gradually from the foreigners to the Japanese themselves.
Thus in the General Synod of 1902 there were six bishops, all foreign; thirty-six representative clergy, of whom there were present seventeen Japanese and seventeen foreign; and thirty-six layrepresentatives, all Japanese Plainly, at this stage, the foreigners cannot override the Japanese laymen, nor the Japanese the foreign bishops. Probably, and we think it will be well if it is so, a good many years will pass before the majority in the House of Bishops becomes Japanese; but no revolution, nothing but quiet progress along lines already laid down, is needed to bring about this complete independence. Meanwhile, the best heads, foreign and Japanese, meet in council to govern the Church, and to understand and persuade one another. This automatic educational process, as well as the automatic progress towards self-government, is of the highest value, and that both are gradual is no small part of the benefit. There does not seem to be nearly so much friction between missionaries and Japanese in the Nippon Sei Kokwai as elsewhere, because of the complete equality of the two within the Church. This may be one cause of the extent to which other missions work through institutions, as the institutions continue to belong to the missions and not to the local Churches; or it may be due merely to the American habit of working in this manner, and to the greater ease with which they can find money than [214/215] men; and among men, educationalists rather than evangelists and pastors.
Our congregations are, however, behind theirs in developing self-support rapidly; not behind the Church of England if relative wealth is considered, but behind other "Protestant" bodies both there and here. No doubt our Japanese Christians are too well satisfied to rest on the financial support of missionary societies, just as English Churchmen rest contentedly on the gifts of former ages for the maintenance of the Church to-day, and in both cases they are too little conscious of the element of meanness in this, and of the injury to their own character and to the prospects of the Church. [Since the above was written there is some progress in this matter, and the subject is now receiving very serious consideration from the Japanese themselves (1906).] And though it is by no means an adequate reply, in both cases also it may be urged that they are supporting foreign missions, for the Nippon Sei Kokwai has for six years past carried on a mission work in the Japanese dependency of Formosa, to which, though the American mission contributes something, neither the English mission societies nor missionaries subscribe, unless it be by individual gifts through occasional offertories.
Altogether, the present condition is one of progress and much hopefulness. Christian influences are more and more admitted into the higher families where the social bar is greatest. The Christian homes of foreigners are more and more sought for children, not indeed for their Christianity, but for their care in bringing up as well as for intellectual advantages. No doubt in a good many cases the parents hope that their children will get the moral and intellectual benefits, and do not believe they will ever be so benighted as to become Christians in this advanced and agnostic age; but they are [215/216] willing to take the risk. Mission schools were never so numerous and so full as now, while Christian boarding-houses for students are a new growth rapidly developing. The scandals in regard to bribery, the low state of commercial morality, the inefficiency of moral teaching without the background of religion which it is generally acknowledged can be found only among Christians, the power of Christian faith, hope, and love to raise the criminal, besides the purely secular interests arising from the increasing intercourse with the West, the need for a familiarity with Western manners, the value of the English language, and a clear recognition that it is impossible to understand English literature without a pretty intimate acquaintance with the Bible, all tend to open doors to Christian influence. It is widely supposed, not among missionaries only but among Japanese, that in the higher ranks there are many genuine believers in the position of Nicodemus, or of Naaman in regard to the house of Rimmon. Such men may not be strong, but a crisis of unfair resistance to Christianity might, and an accession of one or two princes of the blood to the Christian name (removing the great social and family inconveniences attending the confession of their faith) certainly would, lead them to show their real colours.
As yet, however, the even nominal Christians are but about 1 in 300 of the nation, and those of our own communion do not exceed 1 in 3500. They are drawn very little from the highest and the lowest grades, and most largely from the lower half of the professional and salaried classes. It is a good sign for the country that we begin to find tradesmen and merchants coming in, not perhaps in such centres as Yokohama which are the least accessible of all to higher moral or religious influences, but in country towns where the best [216/217] national characteristics have not been so much undermined by the haste to be rich, and other demoralizing tendencies. The "knightly" ideal of older Japan, with its customs of honour often involving great simplicity and self-control and self-denial, and with its utter separation of wealth from status, still commands general respect, and has considerable influence, where it has not been destroyed by too much contact with the commercial self-advertising ways of the West. [See Rev. J. T. Imai's little book, "Bushido (Past and Present)," published in Japan, of which copies can be obtained at the S.P.G. office (1906).] In these the class of Japanese who come to the great ports show themselves but too apt pupils, often taking the evil without the good, and outheroding Herod in selfish individualism. But where this spirit has not come in the soil is good, the prospects are favourable, and the time is fully ripe.
What should be our methods? All lawful methods are useful, and the times when the iron is specially hot for an effective stroke of this kind or of that change rapidly in this kaleidoscopic scene. Every man and woman has special aptitudes according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all pastors and teachers?
1. But first and foremost of all missionary methods comes the "more excellent way" of Christian charity in which all must walk, consisting, as St. Paul teaches, very largely in humility and absence of self-assertion, in sympathetic courtesy, in gentle kindliness of tongue and bearing, in thinking and making the best of people, and in patience and forbearance with faults, real or supposed; for where we are disposed to despise or quiz or criticize, it is often we that are conceited, self-opinionated, or narrow, quite as much as it is they that are wrong; [217/218] and there must be that gentle patience in which the Japanese so greatly excel us. Given faith, hope, and charity, and the attractive power of character and example, especially as seen in a Christian home, where the true relation of husband and wife, of parent and child, are illustrated, we come next to the special methods for which God endows some, not others. Thus--
2. Evangelistic preaching can never go out of use. Even at home it is renewed from time to time in parochial missions, and is constant in the long-neglected slums of great cities. How much more needful is it where there is no Christian atmosphere, no foundation of knowledge, no home teaching, no technical terms for the commonest Christian ideas such as "God," in our sense of the one supreme Being! It is as astounding that some, even missionaries, should "not believe in" this method as that others should seem to suppose it almost sufficient alone.
3. Pastoral work. This ought, as soon as possible, to be done through the converts. They only can get full access to homes and hearts, and understand the thoughts and puzzles and temptations of their fellow-countrymen. But it must be acknowledged that new converts are often good evangelists, but very seldom good pastors. The shyness of intruding, the necessity of conforming to custom, difference of rank, the self-consciousness which comes from these things, and the possibility that those to whom they go will regard them as little more qualified than themselves, are embarrassments which do not affect the missionary at all in the same degree. Great allowance must be made for them.
4. Literature. Tracts are a very difficult question. At the early stages they are inevitable, in great numbers. Some of them are really good. They must, at the beginning, be largely given free of charge, for those for whom they are wanted do not want them, though if given they [218/219] may cast their eyes over them and get a thought which will lead them to ask for more. Some of the really good and larger tracts would be bought by those who already have their interest awakened.
Original Christian books are not as yet very numerous in Japan, but things are going forward, for the first Christian novel with a motive has made its appearance. The library of translated books is limited but valuable, as a few samples will show; e.g. Liddon's, Moberly's, and Gore's Bampton Lectures, Dale on the Atonement, Trench on the Parables and Miracles, Maclear on the Creed, the "Imitatio," the "Pilgrim's Progress," and others. Commentaries on the various books of the Bible are now coming out. Of course the S.P.C K. is our great helper in all this. The American missions are even more active than we in this work, whilst it is a special feature of the Methodist mode of operation. Meanwhile the public appetite leads to the translation of standard English literature of all sorts, including novels and plays such as Othello, in which the, to them unpronounceable, Western names and places are changed into what will be familiar to the Japanese. It is important, therefore, not to lose time in bringing good English books to their knowledge; and a great extension of translation work is urgently needed. [The Conference of Bishops of the Anglican Communion in the Far East, held in July, 1906, passed the following resolution:--No. 6 (b). "In view of the great need of reliable and helpful Church literature in the native tongues throughout the whole of the Anglican Communion in the Far East, and of the fact that books in either Chinese, Japanese, or Korean can be easily modified and adapted for use in any one of the three countries, this Conference, knowing that the translation of secular and infidel literature is rapidly increasing in these lands, requests the bishops in China. Japan, and Korea respectively to devise means by which Church literature may be made mutually available."]
The Bible is, as we have said, the book most of all [219/220] sought after as literature"; and the Bible Society, which has taken immense pains, has a Standing Translation Committee. But the work, both of translating and of revising, is one of great difficulty. The difficulties of translation are of two sorts. (1) Clear expression of unfamiliar ideas. Not merely such theological ideas as Trinity, salvation, justification, are incapable of expression except by the coining of words and grouping together of Chinese symbols, which gradually come to have a meaning to the readers, but such ideas as God, sin and sinner, conscience, motive, character, sympathy, love in the Christian sense, were non-existent in the language. (2) The choice of a style. The literary style is Chinese: the more Chinese, the more dignified and classical. This style is unintelligible to the uneducated and to most of the women. The conversational style is widely different from this, and is mainly pure Japanese, vague, devoid of technical terms, and thought of as fit for chat and children, beneath the dignity of a great subject dealt with in written form. Even in English, and apart from the question of style and dignity, a scientific book containing such expressions as the "conservation of energy" could not be made either intelligible or readable in the pure Anglo-Saxon section of our language. The difficulty is still greater in making a readable and intelligible Japanese Bible, tolerable to scholars, in which there is not a large element of Chinese, while that very element constitutes the difficulty in the way of making it a book for the masses. We do not doubt that the present Japanese Bible is a very creditable work and a good compromise; but, being a compromise, it cannot be either a pleasant style to the learned, or an easy book to the simple. Nor is the work of revision easier. It is greatly needed from time to time, for the meaning of words changes rapidly in the present state of the language, new [220/221] words introduced to express new ideas gradually becoming familiar, and old words adopted for theological use getting a definite technical meaning; and a revision that may make our Japanese Bible more adequate and more acceptable to all is becoming more possible. For though as yet a good scholarly Chinese Bible is more to the taste of well-educated Japanese (who can all read Chinese) than our version, yet less attention is paid year by year to Chinese in the schools, the written and spoken forms of the Japanese language are drawing nearer and nearer to each other, and the technical words of Christianity are year by year growing more definite in their meaning, more uniform in their use, and more widely understood, so that what was said three years ago indistinctly by a circumlocution can now be clearly expressed by a single word. However, it will not do to send old editions rapidly out of date by frequent revision. Some valuable experimental work has been lately done in the issue by our Church of a "Liturgical Psalter," subdivided, and pointed for chanting, and a committee is engaged on the Epistles and Gospels, which as yet are read from the Bible. If these should find approval, they might indicate to the Bible Society's Committee the lines for future revision. But though various versions form the best of brief explanatory commentaries to persons who do not know the original, it may be that, in addition to the Bible Society's work, a Roman, a Russian, and a Baptist Bible in Japanese, besides several Chinese versions, and our Liturgical Psalter and Epistles and Gospels, may prove an embarras de richesses. [Since the above was written the Japanese have brought the subject of Bible revision to the front, and they have themselves formed a preliminary committee to confer with a sub-committee of the "Central Bible Translation Committee," which consists of representatives of the foreign missionary societies working in Japan. Any forthcoming version will be the work of the Japanese themselves to a much larger extent than its predecessor. Thus it is likely to be much more idiomatic on the one side, whilst on the other the Japanese acknowledge that they cannot do without the Hebrew and Greek scholarship supplied by the foreigners (1906).]
 5. Disputation is hardly in Japan a separate method. It comes into preaching, both in church and still more at meetings in which students form a majority. Topics are often chosen, such as "The Nature and Existence of Evil," "Personality and Responsibility," "The Christ of History;" and though opponents rarely speak at the same meeting (indeed, the police would quickly interfere if discussion became hot), there is quiet conversation in groups after the address. Periodical literature, too, is quite as full of discussion of religious and moral problems in Japan as in England.
6. Charitable institutions. The Roman mission works largely through orphanages, of which they reckon the inmates by thousands. Ours and other missions also have institutions of the kind, but on a much smaller scale. The blind, and the lepers too, who are very numerous, are cared for in institutions carried on by missions, and there are some homes for the aged poor. In the case of help to prisoners, missions have done something; but the two most important works, those of Mr. Tomeoka (Reformatory Cottage Homes), and of Mr. Hara (Discharged Prisoners' Home), are carried on with great self-devotion by Christian Japanese, though a good many foreigners help them with subscriptions. There can be no doubt that works of this kind are recognized as fruits of Christianity, and commend it to the people, and especially to the leaders of the community. Foreign Christians try the experiments, and Japanese, both Christian and non-Christian, follow the example.
7. Medical and nursing missions. The day for these is almost past. Mission hospitals and dispensaries have done much work, and still do a little; but in ever [222/223] large town there are now one or more public hospitals, not generally so well found as those of the West, but suitable to the needs of the people; and well qualified Japanese doctors open private hospitals in connection with their own houses. There are thousands of "Red Cross" nurses trained and at work all over the country, the sign on their shoulders showing whence their charity was learned. There is great kindliness, but not generally the loving devotion to the patients which is seen where Christian nurses minister as to Christ Himself, nor have many of them quite the skill and force of character of our fully trained nurses, though they are quite good under proper direction; and it outweighs many disadvantages when doctor and nurse speak the same language as the patient. Hence the time for medical and nursing missions is past. It becomes an underselling competition with home industries.
8. Educational methods, with which we will include social, since the two are very frequently combined. These in Japan are very important.
(a) Training schools for the ministries of the gospel, both for men and women, are the first and most absolutely necessary thing. As our Lord through the careful training of a few is converting the world, so we missionaries, who can never be the converters of a nation such as this, may train men and women from among them who, by God's blessing, may be the instruments of their conversion. There is still much work to be done under this ,head. We may note especially that though there are already trained men who can and do study deep theological works in English, yet until they are more conversant with the ancient languages they can only have access to the original authorities by the help of foreign scholars.
It is worth mentioning that our little St. Andrew's Choir School in Tokyo is just beginning to send on, as [223/224] pupils to the divinity classes, lads exceptionally well prepared to receive the further training. [The first set of these have just graduated from the Divinity School, to the great advantage of the Church (1906).]
(b) Elementary schools are adequately supplied by the country, and it would be folly and waste under the conditions to attempt to compete with them; and as religion of all kinds is excluded from schools recognized by the Government, it is only through home, Sunday school, and Church that we can look to do much for the children of elementary school age.
Above the elementary standards demand for education exceeds the supply, and as the Japanese boy is studious and obedient to established rule far beyond his English fellow, and when he rebels against a master is more likely to do this for his inefficiency than for anything else, it is possible to fill missionary middle schools and to work them in part through foreigners. On account of the prohibition of religious teaching or rites in schools recognized by the Government, many mission schools have renounced their "recognition," and chosen to be private schools. This gives them freedom, not only to teach religion or assemble in worship as much as they will, but also to choose their own curriculum, and to make it really strong in that most valuable of lines--the study of foreign languages. They fill better, in fact, than ever before. But their pupils being at great disadvantage as compared with pupils of "recognized" schools in the matter of entry into higher and normal schools, universities, and the professions, are constantly leaving them for Government schools, if a vacancy can be found before the school course is over. [The actual disabilities have been largely removed since the above was written, but the disinclination of Japanese to enter institutions in Japan in which they will be under the government of foreigners is great and growing. It is doubtful whether such institutions have a long future, in spite of some obvious advantages (1906).]
 Some of the mission schools hold to their "recognition," but have boarding-houses for such scholars as will use them; and the Government, with benevolent neutrality, regards the boarding-house as a separate institution, with the teaching and practices of which it has nothing to do. Therefore, though there can be no prayers or Christian teaching in these schools, and no doubt the boys or girls are fagged by the very long hours of the Government curriculum, yet, subject to that disadvantage, there is no restriction on the worship or the lessons or the general routine of the boarding-house, and, if properly managed, these boarding-houses fill well.
Other Christian boarding-houses also exist in considerable numbers all over the city of Tokyo for students of the universities, or of the public and private schools. Students who want a place for meals, sleep, and study apply eagerly for admission. They are charged about the same price which they would pay for their accommodation elsewhere, and they club together and board themselves. As the places we are speaking of are mostly connected with some mission, like-minded, quiet, moral men and boys get together in them, and there usually is the further advantage of direct connection with some foreign missionary who can help them in their English, and show them something of foreign modes of life--matters of great value to them.
Of most methods in this country it is difficult to say whether they have a future of more than a year or two, things pass so quickly to the next stage, and it is always important to strike while the iron is hot; but there are elements in the boarding-house work which look as if it had a pretty long lease of life, and was capable of large development.
Especially in the case of girls sent to Tokyo for higher education there is an opening of this kind. Three such [225/226] hostels connected with our missions now exist in Tokyo, one under O.M.S., one under S.P.G., and one under St. Hilda's, besides the boarding sections of the girls' schools at St. Hilda's and in Bishop McKim's district at St. Margaret's.
The boarders in the hostels number about forty or fifty, but those who frequent these houses are many times that number. The students bring their relations and friends; the hostels become centres of Christian social life, and of charitable work societies, as well as of what is more directly evangelistic. The missionary ladies in charge are sometimes teachers in the highest educational institutions, such as the Peeresses' School and the Women's University, and so come naturally into contact with a very large number of those who may hereafter be leaders in society, or teachers in the higher branches of study. It would be difficult to overrate the importance of this work, or to see a limit to its possible development, if the best, and none but the best, engage in it. These houses offer many attractions for students. They come for English language and manners that they may be able to take their place with ease, if called upon, in Western society, possibly at Legations. They come, too, for protection from moral dangers, and with this they get the knowledge and offer of the gospel under circumstances favourable to its acceptance.
There are many more topics and methods on which we might touch, such as the immense value of community missions for some kinds of work, and, side by side with this, the necessity for exhibiting fully the beauty of the Christian family life of England, which, once seen, impresses the Japanese deeply; but we must hasten to the last portion of our subject, which is indeed the motive of this whole article.