Johann A Schürmann ~ Correspondence
Progress Report from the Benares Mission Station
Statements lately received in communications from Messrs Buyers and Shurman of the Benares Mission whose labours continue to be favoured with evident tokens of the Divine blessing Under date August 10 Mr Buyers thus writes:
On account of the extreme heat of the season, our labours in preaching have been much curtailed for the last three months. Six or seven services have, however, been generally kept up and now we shall be able to enlarge our efforts considerably. We have not recently baptised any converts excepting one man, a native of China, and, as far as I know, the only Chinese in Benares. He is but imperfectly acquainted with Hindustani, and none of us could teach him in his own language, which formed a great obstacle to his being so well instructed as we could wish; but as he seemed sincere and very anxious to be baptised, we thought it our duty to do so as he at least understood, and appeared to believe in, the fundamental truths of the Gospel.
This year we have had a good many applicants for baptism, but not of a satisfactory kind. At present there are some but I am not quite satisfied as yet with their state of mind.
Our Orphan Boarding school is getting on very well. We lately had a considerable addition to it, and there are now twenty-one orphan boys entirely supported. These are brought up, you are aware, as Christians, and are all baptised, or will be so, with the exception of a few whom we thought too old to come under the denomination of infants, and have left their baptism to take place when they may themselves make a profession. Being now well satisfied that tis mode of carrying on schools is the most satisfactory, as none, or next to none of be children can ever become heathen or Mohammedan, and that in this way we can bring up a class of young men women altogether free of the of idolatry, we are going to enlarge the institution by receiving about 100 more boys. These have been collected in the districts where famine has been raging, in the neighbourhood of Agra, by a Society formed for the relief of the sufferers: we shall soon, therefore, have about 150 children, connected with, and adopted, as it were, by our Mission, who will form a nursery for Hindustani church.
Our object is to give them a pure scriptural education, and to keep them entirely separate from the heathen. They learn Hindustani, Hindui and English. Those are most talented we shall educate in higher branches of knowledge, both in own and in the English language, hoping that among them some may be found who will be able ministers of Christ; while those who are not so promising will receive good plain Christian education in their own language, and be put to such trades as may offer the best prospects of their being able to obtain a comfortable livelihood.
The Native Girls Boarding school under charge of Mrs Mather having been removed to Mirzapore, a new female branch has been begun by Mrs. Lyon. In so much enlarging our Orphan Schools we are, to a great extent, acting on faith as our funds are doubtful. We shall do all we can on the spot to obtain support for them and hope that our friends will also assist.
Evangelical Magazine and Missionary Chronicle, Vol 17 New Series. 1839 Page(s): 145.
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(Created: 13.01.2015. Last updated: 25.01.2015.)
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