Imágenes de página

the sinner. They would be smitten with horror at the sugges

. tion of execrating and abandoning the Church, which not only - has perpetrated such things, but has never been induced to avow, in any public solemn form, its repentance of them, and to enjoin, at length, on all its adherents, the duty of giving a full toleration to Protestants. How would any suggestion of this kind be received at the Court of Rome? How would it, at any moment, for half a millennium past, have been there received? How would it be received by the vast majority of ecclesiasties of all Catholic Europe, excepting France? These gentlemen know perfectly well that in those countries where the Catholic Church retains its full prevalence, the most furious hatred is still entertained against what they call the heretics; and that, in a large portion of Europe, the attempt to form a congregation of protestant worshippers, would infallibly draw down the instant rancourous vengeance of ecclesiastics, of magistrates, and of the populace. Such is, palpably, the Church which these intelligent persons revere as representative of heaven upon earth. We cannot allow them to make another Church of their own, with ever so much liberality, tolerance, and so forth, among its constituent qualities, and to let themselves fancy they are good Catholics, while they adhere to such an imaginary Church. The plain question for them is,-Are you of the actual Church of Rome, or not? The real, essential nature of that Church is still palpable in its spirit and works ;--do you adopt that Church or not? If you are really the friends of religious freedom, by wliat paltering with conscience do you elude the conviction of the duty of becoming Protestants? In how many centuries do you expect that the actual Church of Rome will come to that liberality and charity, which you to profess to admire, and the contraries of which you must, therefore, abhor?

Art. IV. Journal of a Voyage from Okkak on the Coast of Labra

dor, to Ungava Bay, westward of Cape Chudleigh ; undertaken to 'explore the Coast, and visit the Esquimaux in that unknown Re. gion. By Benjamin Kohlmeister and George Kmoch, Missionaries of the Church of the Unitas Fratrum, or United Brethren. Le · l'evre. 2, Chapel place. Seeley. 1814.

(Concluded from our last.) IN reading their own account of these and similar enterprises,

we cannot avoid being struck with the activity and perseverance of the missionaries ; and the mere philosopher of second causes, would look upon these, aided as they frequently are by the most fortunate and uplooked for conjuncture, of circum:

stances, as sufficient to explain the whole secret of their unexampled success. But the Moravians are men of prayer. They wrestle with God, and never let go the engine, of which it has been said, that it moves Him who moves the universe. Were we to confine ourselves to a mere record of the visible events, we doubt not that many would receive it as a complete history of their missionary undertakings. But let us do no such injustice to their own narrative, and to the uniform spirit of piety and dependence which pervades it. Previously to the grant by the Privy Council, Jens Haven tells us, that the mission in Labrador was the constant subject of his prayers and meditations, and that with prayer and supplication he committed himself, and the cause he was to serve, unto the Lord. In the progress of the business we read much of his self-examinations and confessious, and of his crying out unto the Lord for help, and for faith to commit himself and his cause to Divine protection. This is a fair specimen of a Moravian missionary; and these are the deep and holy exercises with which the world cannot sympathize, and which the men of the world banish altogether from the history of human affairs. They form the turning point of the machinery, without which nothing would be accomplished; and they who smile at the occult influence which lies in a believer's prayer, should be informed, that to this principle alone do the Moravian preachers attribute the whole of that sensible effect on which they lavish all their admiration.

Such has been the success of the Moravians in these three settlements, that, in 1788, the whole number of the baptized, from the commencement, amounted to one hundred and four, of which sixty-three were then alive; and the actual number of baptized, and of candidates for baptism, in 1812, was two hundred and ninety-two. They have translated the Gospels into the Esquimaux language, and are proceeding with the other books of the New Testament. They have taught many of the natives to read and to write. These poor barbarians can now carry on an epistolary correspondence with the Moravians in this country, and in point of scholarship, and of civil accomplishment, are farther advanced than the great mass of the peasantry in England.

The following extracts from some of their latest periodical accounts, will give a more correct exhibition of the spirit and proceedings of the missionaries, than can be done by any description.

"Your kind letter conveys strong proof of your participation in the work of God among the Esquimaux here, and of your 'joy at all the good which the Lord has done for us. You also " mention that you join in our prayers that new life from God would visit our young people. We hope and trust with you


that the Lord will, in his own time, so powerfully awaken 'them by his grace that they can no longer resist. With reIspect to the adults, we have again abundant cause for thank'fulness in reporting what the Lord has done for them in the year past. The greater part are advancing to a more perfect knowledge of themselves and the power of his grace, and afford < thereby a proof to others of the necessity of conversion. The 'schools have been attended, during the past winter, not without 'blessing, to which the books printed in the Esquimaux language, and sent to us by you, have contributed much. Since the departure of the ship last year, three persons have been ad'mitted to the Holy Communion, one adult and three children baptized, and six admitted as candidates for baptism. Of the Esquimaux belonging to our congregation here, twenty-five ' are communicants, one of whom is excluded; fourteen bap⚫tized adults, of whom two are excluded; twenty-nine baptized 'children, and twenty candidates for baptism, in all eighty






eight persons. We cannot precisely state the number of Esquimaux who dwell on our land, as some of them purpose ' removing to Okkak, and one family from the heathen has come to us. The whole number may be about one hundred and fifty. As the highly respected British and Foreign Bible Society has again intimated their willingness to print part of the holy scriptures in the Esquimaux language, we accept their offer with ⚫ much gratitude, and shall send, by the return of the ship, the Gospels according to St. Matthew, St. Mark, and St. Luke, 5 which our late brother Burghardt was still able to revise, re


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


questing you, at the same time, to salute the society most cordially on our behalf, and to assure them of our great esteem • and veneration. They have our best wishes and prayers, that 'their exertions may be crowned by the Lord with abundant suc cess, in the salvation of many thousand human creatures in all 'parts of the globe.


"The outward wants of our Esquimaux have been but scantily supplied during the last winter, as the seal fishing in nets did 'not succeed, only sixty-six being taken and they were able to get but little when they went out on kajaks, or on the thin ice. It was very providential that the supply of provisions sent for the Esquimaux by the ship last year, enabled us to relieve 'their most pressing necessities. The want was severely felt in spring, owing to the long continuance of the cold, with much snow, which prevented the seals from coming hither till late in the season. The Esquimaux had, consequently, to be supported for a considerable time out of the store, which occasioned us no small uneasiness, on account of the debts which they unavoidably contracted. Nor were these circumstances,



as may be supposed, without a degree of influence upon the 6 state of their minds, though we cannot say that they were productive of abiding detriment. They felt grateful, that by the Lord's mercy they were preserved from perishing 'through famine.' Per. Acc. United Brethren, No. Ixiv. P. 254. The above is from Nair; the following is from Hopedale.


"Your kind expressions concerning us and our labours filled our hearts with gratitude. We can assure you, dear Brethren, 'that the daily mercies of our Saviour still attend us both in our 'external and internal concerns. Poor and defective as we feel 'ourselves to be, he has not taken his grace and spirit from us, 'but forgiven us all sin, daily and richly supported and helped us in our labours, comforted us in all distress, preserved us in peace and brotherly love, and excited in us all an ardent de'sire to live unto and serve Him with all our hearts.

'Several of us have been ailing, but he approved himself our 'kind physician, and nothing essential has been neglected in the 'performance of our daily duties through illness. Constant com'aunion with him is the source of all spiritual life and strength, ' and we pray him to lead us more and more into that blessed 'track.

· With thanks to Him we are able to say, that the walk of most ' of our Esquimaux has been such as to give us heartfelt joy. "Our Saviour has led them as the good shepherd in the way of ⚫ life everlasting, and by his Spirit taught them to know that ' without him they can do nothing good. They set a value upon the word of God, and desire in all respects to live more in con'formity to it. The love of our Saviour towards them excites 'their wonder, and they sometimes complain with tears, that 'they do not love him, and give joy unto him as they ought for 'his great mercy vouchsafed unto them. The word of his cross, 'sufferings and death melts their hearts, and causes them truly 'to repent of, and abhor sin, which nailed him to the cross, and

to mourn and cry for pardon. Instances of this blessed effect of 'the doctrine of a crucified Saviour we have seen in our public 'meetings, in our private converse with them, and in the schools. "The latter have been kept up with all possible punctuality and 'diligence.

'We can declare, with truth, that Jesus Christ, our Saviour, 'has been the heart's desire of us all, towards whom we wish to press forward, that we may live to him and enjoy more of his 'sweet communion. Notwithstanding all weakness and defi'ciency still observable in our small congregation, we have great 'reason to rejoice over most of them, especially over the com'municants. The celebration of the Lord's Supper is to them

a most important and blessed transaction. We have re-ad'mitted to it those, whom you may remember last year to have 'fallen into foolish and superstitious practices during a time of 'sickness and frequent deaths, but who truly repented of their

' error.

We pray for more spiritual life among our youth, in whom 'we have discovered too many traces of levity.


Two adults and two children have been baptized, two girls, baptized as children, were received into the congregation, three 'were made partakers of the Lord's Supper, three became candidates for it, and one a candidate for baptism. One child died 'during the year past. At the conclusion of the year our con'gregation consists of eighty-eight Esquimaux brethren and 'sisters, of whom thirty-one are communicants. One hundred and twenty-two persons lived on our land. We have had no addition from among the heathen, none having resided in our 'neighbourhood


To the worthy British and Foreign Bible Society we beg you to present our most cordial thanks, for the Gospel of St. John in the Esquimaux language, printed and bound up in the best manner. Our hearts are filled with gratitude towards them 'for this most valuable donation, and we pray the Lord richly 'to reward them for it, and to cause all their labours of love to 'succeed, for His glory and the welfare of mankind. Our peo


ple take this little book with them to the islands when they go "out to seek provisions, and in their tents, or snow-houses, spend their evenings in reading it with great edification and blessing. They often beg us to thank the Society in their name when we write to England.

We feel very sensibly the loss of private letters, and of the 'diaries and accounts of our congregations and missions, by the 'the stoppage of communication between England and the Continent. O that the Lord would hold his hand over our settlements in Germany, since it appears as if they were threatened 'by a new war.

As you approve of the building of a store-house for our Esquimaux, we shall now take steps to complete that work.'Per. Ac. Ixiv. p. 260.

Let it be observed, that Okkak, the most northerly of the three settlements, lies in a latitude little short of 58° N. and 24° to the south of Cape Chudleigh; that on doubling this cape, the coast trends S.S.W. as far as to 584° of N. lat.; that it then takes a sweep to the northward, and thus forms a bay named, in the accounts of these missionaries, Ungava Bay. The line of the voyage extends then from Okkak, along the coast of Labrador, to the Cape Chudleigh Islands, from whence it takes a south

« AnteriorContinuar »