Forty Years in South China eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 197 pages of information about Forty Years in South China.
required by the Scriptures, we expect that it will in all cases be adopted by our missionaries, subject, of course, to such modifications as their peculiar circumstances may for the time render necessary.  The converts at Amoy, as at Arcot and elsewhere, are to be regarded as ‘an integral part of our Church,’ and as such are entitled to all the rights and privileges which we possess.  And so in regard to the formation of a Classis.  The Church at home will undoubtedly expect the brethren to associate themselves into a regular ecclesiastical organization, just as soon as enough materials are obtained to warrant such measure, with the hope that it will be permanent.  We do not desire churches to be prematurely formed in order to get materials for a Classis, nor any other exercise of violent haste, but we equally deprecate unnecessary delay, believing that a regular organization will be alike useful to our brethren themselves and to those who, under them, are in training for the first office-bearers in the Christian Church on heathen ground.  As to the difficulties suggested in the memorial, respecting the different Particular Synods to which the brethren belong, and the delays of carrying out a system of appellate jurisdiction covering America and China, it is enough to say: 

“1.  That the Presbyterian Church (Old School) finds no insuperable difficulties in carrying into operation her system, which comprehends Presbyteries and Synods in India as well as here; and, 2.  That whatever hindrances may at anytime arise, this body will, in humble reliance upon the Divine aid and blessing, undertake to meet and remove them as far as possible.  The Church at home assumes the entire responsibility of this matter, and only ask the brethren abroad to carry out the policy held steadily in view from the first moment when our Missions began.

“The following resolutions are recommended: 

“Resolved, 1.  That the Synod view with great pleasure the formation of churches among the converts from heathenism, organized according to the established usages of our branch of Zion.

“2.  That the brethren at Amoy be directed to apply to the Particular Synod of Albany to organize them into a Classis, so soon as they shall have formed churches enough to render the permanency of such organization reasonably certain.”


This utterance of the General Synod, while made with the best intentions, fell with exceedingly painful echo on the ears of the missionaries at Amoy.  Was the flock they had gathered with so much prayer and effort, and reared with such sedulous care, to be thus summarily divided and perhaps in consequence scattered?  The missionaries felt persuaded that their brethren in the United States could not fully appreciate the situation or there would be no such action.

Mr. Talmage again took up his pen in behalf of his Chinese flock.  If it had been dipped in his own blood his utterances could not have been more forceful-could not have palpitated with a heartier affection for his Chinese brethren’s sake.

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Forty Years in South China from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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