The Annual Report of the Melanesian Mission for 1901
From The Island Voyage and Report, Auckland, March, 1902, pages 1-12.
Transcribed by the Right Reverend Dr. Terry Brown
Retired Bishop of Malaita, 2010
 The Annual Report of the Melanesian Mission for 1901.
BY THE BISHOP OF MELANESIA.
"Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: They all gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be carried in the arms." Isaiah lx., 4.
THE first year of the new century has been, in some ways, one of the best years that the Church's Mission to the Melanesian Islands has ever seen. The number of converts baptised in the year has largely exceeded the average, reaching 1825, the highest number on record. The number confirmed was nearly 800, being another record in our history. Statistics are dull, and we shall not indulge in them more than is necessary in this report; but we cannot help giving at once to those who follow the fortunes of the Mission of the Selwyns and Patteson these outward and visible signs of the progress made in 1901.
A GENERAL REVIEW.
Taking first of all a general review of the islands, we see the Mission gradually strengthening its hold on the Solomon Islands, where now it has twelve clergy at work, seven white and five native. The hardest battle of the year has been fought at Marovovo, on the west coast of Guadalcanar, one of the finest islands in the Solomon Group. Seven years ago we got our foothold there, and with difficulty held it without placing a white missionary in charge; the two native teachers, Hugo Gorovaka and George Basile, maintaining a little school in the hills of the district called Vaturanga. When Basile died in 1899 the Rev. P. T. Williams called for volunteers among the boys at Norfolk Island, and some twelve lads answered his call, and joined Hugo in May last year. The activity of the white man and his little band very soon aroused the hostility of some of the more superstitious heathen, particularly of a chief called Sulukavo, and the people of [1/2] the island of Savo, who, although eight miles away, have great influence with the Guadalcanar natives on this coast. Then ensued a stubborn battle between the Mission party and their enemies. The people around, although of course heathen, were generally on the side of the Mission, but fear kept them from participating in the struggle. At last Sulukavo raided a school village, and killed, last Easter, one of the school people. This attack and the threatenings which followed it, caused Mr. Woodford, the Resident, to arm the Mission, and for some months watch was kept at night, the Christians even going to prayers with rifles in their hands. At last, finding no chance of destroying them, Sulukavo asked for peace, and Mr. Williams visited him in the hills, and received his promise of good behaviour in the future. The result of this moral defeat of their enemy is that lesser chiefs are now asking for schools, and giving us boys to train. One named Peo, at Tiaro, gave us five boys, and has now in his village a school, attended by more than 70 people. Altogether, in this island, we have now six schools, and 173 people attending them.
In Savo we have maintained our foothold, and the prospects are bright. Some of those baptised many years ago, when there was a teacher here, have returned to their allegiance to Christ, and are now attending prayers once more.
Ulawa steadily becomes Christian. This year its beautiful coral church, built by the native deacon, Clement Marau, has been consecrated. Clement would have been prepared for priest's orders had not the Christians at Luholu, on the other side of Ulawa, begged him to stay and help them to build such a church as he had built at Matoa. There are now 351 Christians out of about 700 people.
THE LATE REV. GEORGE SARAWIA'S HOME IN MOTA.
With his widow, son, grandchildren, and son's wife.
In Mala (Malanta or Maleita), there has been no increase in the number of schools, but the advantages gained in 1900 have been maintained. A large district at the south-east end is virtually Christian now, with about 650 baptised. Port Adam, where for many years the "Southern Cross" has anchored, and where, on one occasion she was in danger of being "cut out" by the natives, now, with Luke Masuraa as teacher, shows signs of life, and promises even to carry the Gospel down the coast to Qai, and other places farther west. Two Motalava boys were put down at Fiu, the village of returned labourers from Fiji, on the north-west side of the island. Here they have immense opportunities of teaching a very large population of entirely heathen people. There is a school, independent of us, at Malu, further west, where about 70 people get some teaching from Peter, a returned Queensland labourer. From all this coast we have lately picked up boys and men, and are now training them. Next year we shall settle a white missionary at the north-west end of Mala, and as he will have his [2/3] native workers already trained, we may hope for success from him.
Florida, or Nggela, as the natives call it, is now practically a Christian island, 3300 out of about 3800 people having received baptism. To go to daily prayers, regard Sunday, and be generally guided by Christian principles, are now engrained into almost every man's nature in Florida. A party of 40 Christians, journeying to Bugotu, in company with the heathen chief Lipa, and many other heathen, took their teacher (Lipa's son) with them, to read prayers for them during their time of absence from their village. But, although a Christian life has become to a great extent a second nature to a Florida man, we are far from saying that they are all that we would have them to be. They have just those faults that one always sees in a settled church, where religion has been habitual or conventional. They are not murderers as they once were, and they are not immoral. Their great fault is to love money rather than Christ, and this love of money is at the root of every ill in Florida. It comes out in their custom of tattooing the girls' faces to increase their price in the marriage market; also, in the enormous prices asked by parents for their daughters' hands. Until this year, when at the annual Vaukolu (native parliament) it was decided that 30 strings of money should be the fixed price paid for a wife, it was no uncommon thing for parents to ask 160 strings of money and 1000 porpoise teeth for their daughters. Marriage had become impossible for any except the rich men, and those who could go to Queensland and earn the money. This is the fault of a Florida man, and it lies deep down in his nature. Twenty years ago, when the island was heathen, Commander Bower, of R.M.s. "Sandfly," was killed, because Kalikona, a chief, had lost a string of money, and he said that only a man's head would make up to him for what he had lost. Headhunting and murdering have passed away, but the love of gain of money, and of a bargain, lie too deep in a Florida man's nature to be eradicated in such a short time.
Bugotu, 50 miles to the north-west of Florida, has been all this year without a missionary, Dr. Welchman having been invalided home to England at the beginning of the year. But we have no reason to think that his work has gone back in his absence. Nowhere on the Bishop's visitation this year was he harder worked than in Bugotu. Before breakfast every day he celebrated the Holy Communion in different villages, and administered to 50 or 60 people. After breakfast he baptised about 40, and confirmed as many more. Offertories of money, and valuable curios to the value of about £36 were made, and three missions planned to neighbouring heathen centres. There are now 1137 Christians in this once head-hunting island, most of them with an enthusiastic devotion to their religion. There is no love of money marring [3/4] their faith here, as there is in Florida. There seems rather a love of those who have taught them, and a deep love for Christ. One of them wrote to the Bishop after he had left them, thanking him for having come, and chiefly for the Bread of Life, which, said he, was "the best thing of all."
The island of San Cristoval shows some progress, with three new schools on the main island and one new one on the adjacent island of Ugi. Large and substantial churches are being built at Heuru and Fagani, the old established centres of the Mission on this island. Teachers have established themselves at Rafurafu, to the eastward, and after a seven weeks' stay on the opposite side of the island, Mr. Wilson left a little school at Bore, our first foothold on that side of the island.
There are now resident in the Solomon Islands the Rev. Henry Welchman (Bugotu), Rev. R. P. Wilson (San Cristoval), Rev. P. T. Williams (Guadalcanar), Rev. H. V. Adams (temporarily), and Mr. T. A. Williams (Florida), besides the five native clergy and 250 trained teachers. The baptised converts number 5642, the communicants 1016, and the hearers (unbaptised school people), 1199. The Mission has altogether nearly 7000 people attending its schools in the Solomon Islands.
SANTA CRUZ AND REEF ISLANDS.
The Rev. W. C. O'Ferrall and the Rev. H. J. Nind stayed for six months in this group. Their report shows that the long night is not yet passed, but there are signs that the dawn is at hand. At Nelua, our first foothold in Santa Cruz, the school is practically dead. At Te Motu there is more life, and 10 Cruzians were confirmed. But from Nimbi, on the south of the island, comes our best news. This village, after long refusing all acquaintance with us, yielded this year to the kindness of Mr. O'Ferrall, who dressed the ulcerated legs of some 30 or 40 people, who daily came to him. The result was the birth of a great friendship, and four little boys coming with us to Norfolk Island.
The Reef Islands offer little encouragement. We write it sadly, for no field of work could be more interesting than this, where Bishop Patteson was killed 30 years ago, with Joseph Atkin and Stephen, the native, and now offers greater prospects of the gathering in of a rich harvest. But a white man is needed there, and efficient teachers, and we have none at present to send. We have now asked two Maoris, from T'e Aute College, Hawke's Bay, to come over and help here. The Reef islanders speak a language closely allied to Maori, and until a white priest can be found our well-educated Christian Maoris might do the work admirably.
No report has reached us of these islands, and all that we know of their condition and progress during the year is from personal observation during a visit lasting only two or three days on [4/5] one voyage in the "Southern Cross." The Rev. Simon Qalges is in charge in Mr. Robin's absence, and apparently things are going on satisfactorily under him. The first converts on Toga were baptised by the Bishop, numbering 35. Qalges was travelling about among the heathen on this island, and many had taken the first step towards Christianity by eating their meals with their families, a thing quite unlawful for the heathen to do. He had also stopped some fighting. Loh seemed to be quiet and happy under Clement Latahau. Both here and at Tegua there were confirmations, 24 persons at the former place and 26 at the latter. At Tegua, a Mission under "Bertram Tedun," a boy just returned from Norfolk Island, was arranged for to Hiw, the last heathen island in this group. Considering that we have none but native teachers, under a native deacon, here, we feel very thankful for the quiet progress which seems to be made, and for the general stability of the little church which Mr. Robin built up before he was called away to work for the Mission in England. The Christians number 363 (out of a total population of about 800), of whom 123 are communicants.
Eight islands, to the north of the New Hebrides, filled with Christians of a bright and very happy type. The Rev. T. C. Cullwick and the Rev. H. V. Adams, with a native priest, three deacons, and 121 teachers, minister to over 3000 people, and Christianity has a firm hold on the people. Little stone churches, built by the people with stones from the shore, cemented with lime burnt from the coral of the reefs, are to be seen now in almost every island. At Mota a very fine concrete-walled church, with iron roof, was dedicated this year, large enough to hold 400 people. The last stronghold of heathenism, Santa Maria, is now being vigorously attacked on one side by 20 Motalava teachers, and on the other some Merelava Christians have this year began work. To this group we look for missionaries for other islands, and generally find them. Clement Marau is a native of Merelava; Simon Qalges (Torres Islands), of Ureparapara; Johnson Telegsem (Mala), of Motalava. There cannot be very much wrong with the Christianity of a people who have sent out missionaries such as these. The only fault we can find with them is that they allow too much license to the Tamates, or secret societies, the initiation into which lasts over many weeks, and frequently keeps the boys going through it from prayers and school. Whether these societies, dating back to heathen days, and allowed by Bishop Patteson, in his desire to avoid Europeanising the natives or robbing them of pleasures really innocent, are harmful to the Church in these islands, is a matter which we have been inquiring into this year. We have decided to allow them to continue, with certain restrictions, until a white missionary resides in the group, when their effect n the lives of the people will be better able to be closely studied. [5/6] Land has been bought at Vureas, in Vanua Lava, and next year or the following one will probably see the Rev. W. C. O'Ferrall and Mrs. O'Ferrall settled there.
NEW HEBRIDES ISLANDS.
The three northern islands, Pentecost (Raga), Leper's Island (Opa), and Aurora (Maewo), are worked in by our Mission, and of late years there has been greater progress made here than anywhere in the diocese. After being more backward than any, and in Patteson's days one of the hardest to win, Pentecost is now far ahead of all the islands in its quantity, if not quality, of schools. The difficulty is to find teachers fast enough to meet the demand of villages all over the island for Christianity. Fifty villages have teen supplied with teachers, but twenty more are asking for them. No less than 640 persons have been baptised this year, of whom 509 were adults. There are nearly 1300 baptised converts in Pentecost, and nearly 1700 more are attending school and prayers. The Rev. W. H. Edgell resides at the north end of the island. His house and belongings were destroyed on August 31 by the crew of a French recruiting vessel; a wanton and unprovoked outrage for which the owners have since paid compensation. Next year Mr. Edgell will build a good weather-board house on the site of the ruins of his old one, and so make a more permanent home. Besides him, there are four Roman Catholic priests on the island, who also have their roll of converts.
In Leper's Island (Opa) there is not so much to encourage us as in Pentecost, but still our prospects are bright. There have been 172 baptisms in the year, and the schools number 26, instead of four, as there were seven years ago.
Aurora (Maewo) is worked with Pentecost. The north and the south ends are Christian, but the middle, which is very sparsely inhabited, remains heathen, through the want of enterprise and missionary spirit of the Christians.
THE STAFF OF WORKERS.
There has been no numerical increase on the white staff of workers, one lady, Miss Hume, of Rangiora, New Zealand, being the only addition to our strength; against which we have to set the loss of Miss Farr, who for 10 years had done good work at Norfolk Island. The year was a barren one as regards new men, and we hope we may never again pass a year without a single man joining us. Mr. Nind was advanced on December 22 to the deaconate; and William Vaget, of Merelava, was ordained priest; and Worow, of Motalava, deacon, before the second voyage. Our staff now consists of the Bishop, 24 clergy (14 white and 10 native), 1 layman, 1 deaconess, 7 ladies resident at Norfolk Island, and 528 native teachers.
 Dr. Welchman has been in England most of the year for his health; the Rev. L. P. Robin as organising secretary. Of the rest of our workers, the Revs. R. P. Wilson, P. T. WilIiams, H. V. Adams, W. H. Edgell, and Mr. T. A. Williams, have their homes already, or are making them, in the islands. Archdeacon Palmer and the Rev. A. I. Hopkins have taken charge of the school at Norfolk Island. The other clergy work upon the old-established lines of this Mission, spending about six months in the islands in their districts, and the rest of the year at Norfolk Island, helping in the training of their boys. There is no doubt that every year will see more of our number making their homes amongst their people in the islands. It must not be supposed that in the future Norfolk Island will not have the same importance that it has had in the past. It is ideally situated for a training school for Melanesian teachers, and as our missionaries develope by residence their work in the islands, so will grow the need for well-trained teachers. The connection by cable, shortly to be made with Australia and New Zealand, will fit it better than ever to be a headquarters for the Mission. In the eyes of Melanesians, it is a white man's country, and, therefore, desirable to be seen and stayed in, if possible. A training college in one of their own islands would never draw the natives to it as Norfolk Island does, and, therefore, for many reasons the headquarters and chief training college of the Mission will for many years remain where it now is. Norfolk Island has, moreover, in 1900, become a part of the diocese of Melanesia, by a resolution of the General Synod of New Zealand.
The Mission Staff suffered a heavy loss in the deaths of two native priests, George Sarawia and Henry Tagalad. The former led a blameless life in the ministry for 30 years, and his Christian death, just after the completion of his new church in Mota, stirred the hearts of all his people deeply. Poor Henry Tagalad, one of Patteson's best boys in old days, tripped and fell just at the end of his race. His fall probably hastened his death, for it is said that he died of a broken heart. He is now with the all-merciful Saviour, and with Him no doubt he will find mercy.
There are 11,318 baptised Christians now on the Mission's books in the islands, and about 150 more at Norfolk Island being trained. Besides these, there are 755 catechumens, and 4,459 hearers, i.e., persons attending our schools, but not yet baptised, making in all 16,682 persons under the Mission's teaching.
As to the character of the converts, and the reality of their Christianity, it is only possible for us partially to judge, as between a white and a black man there is a great gulf, and not many are the white men who have found a bridge for it. We can judge them only by what we can see. What they feel in their hearts, and all [7/8] that they believe, God alone can know. We see them as the "lolomaran," or enlightened, against the background of the "lologon," or night-hearted heathen from whom they have come. They were once steeped in superstition; they killed their little children; cruelly ill-treated their wives; were frightfully cruel; were headhunters and cannibals. Compare with this the life of the Melanesian Christians, with their wonderful faith in God and Jesus Christ, their daily prayers and school, their new condition of peace, except when attacked, many of them able to read and write, honest to a degree that puts men in large cities to shame, making large offerings in order to support the Church or bring the Gospel to the heathen. We do not say that they are all that they should be; but we do say, judging by their works, that they are the most powerful witness to the power of God's Spirit that we have ever seen, and that it would be well for the Church if she had everywhere throughout the world children as true and good as these.
OUR WEAK SPOTS.
It has been truly said that the two most striking developments of modern missions are medical work and women's work. We regret to say that we are extremely weak in our Mission in both of them. Every missionary carries his medicine-chest, and the natives regard him as capable of curing any ailment under the sun, sit they never so long, with a temperature of l05deg., in the cool refreshing sea. We, alas, know our own limitations, and only wish we had the knowledge and the power they believe we have. It is difficult enough to keep ourselves well, let alone our people, with their strange ideas of medicine. But what could be done, if only we had medical men with us, we have seen this year, in Santa Cruz, where Nimbi has been opened up to us entirely through the healing of the ulcerated legs of the people that came to us. For some time we have had it in our minds to build a hospital in the Solomons, and if Siota, in Florida, had not shown signs of being unhealthy, it would probably have been built before now. But we are not really in a position to maintain a hospital without at least two doctors on the staff, who may relieve one another, when one is sick or goes for his furlough. We feel that it is a very serious matter that the Mission has not provided a hospital for the Solomons, as the Presbyterians have for the New Hebrides, and we trust that a medical man may read this confession of omission of duty, and help us to supply what is so much needed by offering his services as a medical missionary. By the generosity of the friends in South Australia and elsewhere, and from funds supplied out of the Marriott bequest, a first-rate little hospital, with eight beds for boys and two for girls, has been built this year at Norfolk Island. A case of instruments was subsequently supplied through the Ladies' Committee in Sydney.
Women's work in our Mission is scarcely more than begun. New Guinea has 11 single ladies in the field itself. The C.M.S. has [8/9] 331, besides the wives of the missionaries. Our Mission has only three single women. These, with the wives of the clergy, live at Norfolk Island, and do excellent work in training 30 or 40 girls, but none, with the exception of the late Mrs. Welchman, have as yet been sent to work in the islands. There is no reason why they should not work there just as single women work in New Guinea and elsewhere. One of our difficulties preventing them hitherto has been the want of accommodation for them on the "Southern Cross." This will be remedied shortly, when our new vessel reaches us in 1903. Another difficulty has been the want of a training college in the colonies, to test the vocation of those who offer their services, and give them some training. This we hope to remedy also by procuring a first-rate deaconess from England. Money has this year been given by our generous friend, Archdeacon Samuel Williams, for the building of a Deaconess' Home; and we hear that a lady is already on her way from England to join us. It must not be supposed from what we have said that the women of Melanesia are being entirely neglected. The trained girls from Norfolk Island make excellent teachers; and the men also have classes for the women. But we are not doing nearly as much for them as we should do, or as much as any other Mission in our position, Protestant or Roman, will do if it comes.
Two of the Mission's oldest and most valued friends, true links with the past, Miss Charlotte Yonge and Archdeacon Dudley, were taken from us during the year. Miss Yonge's interest in the Mission of her cousin, J. C. Patteson, was keen from the beginning, and strong to the end. Shortly before her death she wrote a letter of four columns to one of the English Church papers, supporting the appeal for a new Mission ship. All the proceeds of her well-known book, "The Daisy Chain," have been the Mission's from the time of the publishing of it, and have brought us a valuable and regular income. Her "Life of Bishop Patteson" is a standard missionary work which everyone reads, and by which many have been stirred to give their lives to the work of the Church abroad, in Melanesia as well as in other lands. Archdeacon Dudley was one of the first missionaries, having joined us in 1861, ten years before Patteson's death. He imbibed much of the Bishop's gentle spirit and character so that those who knew him felt that in him they saw a reflection of the martyr-Bishop of Melanesia. For 25 years he acted as Hon. Treasurer, performing by himself voluntarily a task which has now, since Canon MacMurray found the work too much for him with his other duties, become one of some expense to the Mission. Canon Calder, now Archdeacon of Auckland, has continued to give up some of his valuable time to the editing of the SOUTHERN CROSS LOG. Miss Farr, for 10 years a member of the Staff, and for the past year organising secretary in Adelaide, [9/10] has, with great regret, found it necessary to resign both positions, in order to give herself to duties in her own home. In England we have had the advantages of an organising secretary, the Rev. L. P. Robin, who, with an assistant secretary, the Rev. A. E. Corner, as energetic as himself, has made the Mission better known, and gained many subscribers both to the General and also the New Ship Fund. Dr. Jacob, Bishop of Newcastle, continues to give most valuable help as Chairman of the English Committee. We have to thank also Mr. Henry Goschen, a name known and honoured in England and the colonies, for acting as Hon. Treasurer to the New Ship Fund in England. S. Matthew's, Dunedin, has taken Mr. Edgell as missionary curate working in Melanesia, and has relieved us entirely of the duty of finding his stipend, a generous annual subscription indeed. In England, Australia, and New Zealand the Mission is under a deep obligation to very many who have constantly remembered it, and never ceased to help it by their prayers, labour, and alms.
As we look back over the years we feel that we have much indeed to thank God for, and much to give us new courage for the future. But, what of the future? At a meeting of a missionary society held a few years ago in England, the report of the year's work said that the prospects in Africa were dark. A missionary from that country answered: "No, the aspects are dark, but the prospects are as bright as the promises of God can make them." We thank God that our aspects cannot be called dark, and our prospects are as bright as they can be. There are openings in almost every island now for us to enter at, and find a welcome. Our difficulty is to find men to come and reap with us the great harvest of souls which has sprung up from the sowing of those who went before us. Mr. Woodford, the Resident, speaking at a Melanesian Missionary meeting in Sydney, said that our need was more men, and, if we did not get them, others would come in and take our work from us. He has sent an urgent letter asking if we intend to send a missionary to the north-west end of Mala, which, as he says, is ripe for Christianity. "If the Melanesian Mission is not immediately prepared to put an experienced white man in charge of this part of Mala, I beg that you will inform me by the first opportunity, because, in case of your refusal, the Wesleyan Mission will, I know, be prepared at once to undertake the duty." Happily, the Rev. A. I. Hopkins can be spared from Norfolk Island, and will undertake this charge early in 1902, and will remain in charge until relieved. We have already called for a priest to volunteer for this particular post, one of the most promising of great results of any in the Mission's field.
The New Ship Fund, which, in our want of faith, we thought would barely, and with difficulty, reach £10,000, has gone ahead by leaps and bounds since it was taken up in earnest in 1899, and has [10/11] at the end of 1901 reached £13,000, not counting the value of the present vessel (about £2000), and money is still coming in. Truly this collection of money for an urgent need has been marvellously blessed. The new year (1902) will, we trust, see the new vessel built and sent out to Auckland in good time for use in 1903. By means of this ship we shall be able to extend our work to the furthest limits of the diocese, Shortlands and Choiseul, and shall also be able to visit islands to windward, and others which lie a little out of our straight course. For this ship, indeed, the isles have been waiting.
A step of the greatest importance to us has been taken by the Australian Commonwealth in prohibiting the Queensland Labour Traffic. We understand that "no Kanakas are to be introduced into Australia after March 31, 1904, whilst from the year 1902 onwards, the numbers of those in Queensland are to be so reduced that by the end of 1906 none is to be left." Our people have hitherto been carried away at a rate of probably quite 1,000 every year to Queensland, and large numbers have stayed there, and many have died. There can 'be no doubt that Queensland has steadily depopulated Melanesia. We by no means say that she have given us nothing in return for our loss. Many of our people have become Christians in Queensland, and have returned, and set up schools of their own in their islands, or have been employed in our schools. However, whether the traffic in souls of men has been for the good or evil of the islands, it is now condemned, and will shortly cease. This for us will mean that the islands will be entirely dependent upon the Mission for Christian teaching. Men and women of all denominations in Queensland will anxiously watch what we do for the returning converts, and any sign of slackness of zeal in ministering to them will be the signal for missionaries of the various Christian bodies to settle in our islands. If we cannot do the work ourselves, we shall welcome them; but we would infinitely prefer to see the Church of England rise to her ever-growing responsibilities, and appreciate her extraordinary opportunities in Melanesia, and send labourers from her own children into this part of God's vineyard. These, holding the same simple and pure faith that was held and taught by Patteson, and is now believed by practically the whole Church of Melanesia, numbering nearly 12,000 souls, would introduce no divisions or strifes between creed and creed, such as have been seen in Uganda and other places where difference of religion has not only impeded the spread of Christianity, but has led to war and bloodshed.
With islands in every group, from the New Hebrides to the Solomons, now begging us to give them Christianity; with a new ship practically in our hands, capable of carrying us to every island; with new opportunities given us by the approaching cessation of the labour traffic; and with a remembrance of what God has done [11/12] in the past, and has promised to do in the future, who could say that our prospects are not bright? But what will the brightest prospects avail if we have not the right spirit or the means to realise them? The isles are truly waiting now for the Gospel of peace and salvation. Their hands are outstretched to us of the Melanesian Mission; and we in our turn look back to the Church which has sent us forth to preach, and say: "Lift up thine eyes round about and see; all they gather themselves together; they come to thee; thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side. . . . the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee; the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee." Now is the Church's time to arise and shine. The mission to the islands calls urgently for more men; not merely one or two to gather in this great harvest, but twenty at least; and there would be work for still more. Surely God yet speaks to men, and says: "Go ye into all the world, and make disciples of all nations." Surely to many He must now be saying: "When I called ye did not answer; and when I spake ye did not hear." And yet no promise of Christ is more certainly fulfilled than that with which He comforts those who for His sake have forsaken "houses or brethren, or sisters, or fathers, or mothers, or children, or lands;" they "shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit eternal life."
Norfolk Island, December 31, 1901.