The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 20
Some Reasons Why you Should Support the Mission
Some Reasons Why you Should Support the Mission.
1st. You would not be singular. But the sect or congregation that has not its association for missionary purposes is now the page 17 noticed exception to a general rule. The Episcopalians in New Zealand have their Mission in Melanesia, under Bishop Patteson, and the Wesleyans theirs in the Friendly and Fiji Islands. Remember, too, that the sister colonies, since 1862, have raised for one purpose or another in connection with our Mission, the noble sum of £7,000.
2nd. You are near these Islands. They are only a week's sail from New Zealand, and form one of the nearest groups.
3rd. Your past efforts. This Colony was the first to send help in the shape of boxes of clothing and money, the latter being nearly sufficient to maintain the "John Knox," the predecessor of the "Day Spring." From you we have had church-door collections and Sunday School contributions. You have thus put your hand to the plough, and you cannot, nay, you will not, go back.
4th. The cheap rate at which Missions can be conducted there. A Missionary's salary is only £120. Five Missionaries from New Zealand will cost the Church not more than £650 per annum. If we had forty Missionaries on the group, the salary of a Missionary, even including his share in the "Day Spring," would be only £150.
5th. By aiding the Mission you will promote Science. As the gospel extends, new languages will be reduced to a written form, new plants, birds, and fishes will be discovered, and unheard of manners, customs, and mythologies will be brought to light.
6th, By aiding the mission you will benefit Commerce. These Islands lie on the eastern passage to China, and were they christianized, The ugh they may never have a numerous white population, vessels could call for wood, water, and vegetables, or to effect repairs, and large exports might be raised. As soon as the Natives are christianized they will cultivate and sell cotton, coffee, arrow-root, cocoa nut oil, cocoanut fibre, oranges, and other tropical productions, and purchase manufactured goods in return.
7th. By aiding the Mission you will benefit suffering humanity. I ask your help as philanthropists. You feel for the destitute and the sufferer. Even for the present life alone, on the supposition that heaven is a dream, that not one of these Natives will reach it, and The ugh these tribes may one day become extinct, I would urge you, notwithstanding, to send them the gospel. It will greatly relieve their physical distress. Do you not hear the piteous wail of the helpless infants, the cry of the neglected sick, of; the old, the insane, the wounded in battle, and the down-trodden women? Do you not hear the shriek of the widow about to be strangled, of the strayed Native, and of the shipwrecked sailor, soon to be killed? Maidens and mothers, do you not pity the poor women whose marriage ring or rather cord is also the instrument of their death? Ye worshippers of Jehovah, do you not feel for those who fear a stone—an eyeless, earless, mouthless, handless, footless god?
8th. By aiding the mission you will benefit yourselves and the Cause of Christ in this country. You will not be poorer in your basket or store. "Give and it shall be given" is the rule of Heaven. Have Britain's efforts for the heathen impoverished her? The ocean is the fountain of all the rain, but it all returns to its page 18 source by rill and stream and river. It will be even so with you; what you give in a right spirit will be returned many-fold into your own bosoms. "There is that scattereth and yet increaseth, and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty." No home interest will suffer by your taking the New Hebrides mission under your wing. By lengthening your cords there you will not weaken your stakes here. The congregation in Leicester that gave up Carey for India received as his successor the eloquent Robert Hall. Neither your brethren in the outlying districts nor the aborigines of this country will suffer. There will be a healthful action and reaction. The more you do for us the more you will be disposed and be able to do for these, just as when one branch of business is brisk, all the other branches are more or less affected for the better thereby.
9th. You ought to aid this work from gratitude. You are blessed for you know the joyful sound; you are a happy people because your God is the Lord; you know of salvation and of Him who is the way to heaven. Then I charge you in person, or by your representative, to make them known to the heathen. "Can you," I ask,
"Can you whose souls are lighted
With wisdom from on high,
Can you to men benighted
The lamp of life deny?"
You believe that in Heaven are many mansions, and that men of every nation are welcome there; then do not go up thither in selfish solitude—seek to take others with you.
10th. You are entreated and commanded to aid this work. As Christians and as individuals, not merely as churches, you are hemmed in and shut up to it, on the right hand, aye and on the left too. You stand where? Why between the commission of Christ and the prayer of heathendom, between the "Go into all the world" and the "Come over and help us," between the will of the Saviour and the wish of humanity. Heaven calls upon you to do it and earth entreats you, Christ commands you and men implore you, He who died for you says Go, and they who are dying in their sins say, Come. O then, go over and help them.
Mills, Dick and Co., Printers, Stafford Street, Dunedin.