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have just received from the Rev. Carstairs town at which the shipping lies, which Douglas, from Formosa. That island lies foreigners call Tam-sui, is named by the two to three hundred miles east of Amoy, natives How-mei or Haw-bey. It consists and forms part of the province of Fuhkien. only of a few long straggling streets, with Williams, in “ The Middle Kingdom,” | perhaps four or five thousand of a popuspeaks of it as containing a population of lation, but it is difficult to conjecture on two millions and a half; and represents a few days' visit. The situation is very the island as fertile, possessing a salu- beautiful on the north side of the estuary brious climate, well watered, and in of the river, catching the south-west every respect meriting the name of wind and the sea breeze. On each side Formosa. No attempt seems ever to of the estuary the hills rise first in gentle have been made to Christianise it ; and slopes, covered with rich harvests, then this occasion would seem to be the first suddenly towering into two noble mountime that the "glad tidings of good tains, 2,000 or 3,000 feet high, seeniing to things” have been carried there.

guard the entrance to the fertile interior. Mr. Burns, in a letter from Amoy, re- These hills, where not yet brought under ferring to Mr. Douglas and Mr. Mac- cultivation, are abundantly clothed with kenzie having sailed for Formosa, says,- grass or trees, even to the summits. We hope that they may have oppor- The lowest slope of the northern hill tunities of doing good, and that their comes down close to the water, so that visit may be a step towards the opening the second street from the beach is built of the missionary field in that important on the brow - an excellent situation for island. Opium and Popery are already foreign houses, if this should be fixed on there before us." The annual meeting as the consular port of the island. of the Association in Scotland that sent We have also visited the only large Mr. Douglas to Amoy, takes place here town in the neighbourhood, called in on Monday next. Might not some steps colloquial Bang. kah. It lies some ten then be taken to carry out Mr. Burns's miles up the river, in the midst of a and Mr Douglas's desire to send the magnificent plain, completely surrounded Gospel to Formosa ?

by mountains, except where the waters Mr. Douglas's letter is dated,

make their way to this harbour. The

plain is quite level, all intersected by the Barque “ Asia,"

branches of the river, it may be some Tam-sui Harbour, Formosa, twelve or fifteen miles in diameter, and is of October 1st, 1860.

great fertility. Its one large town is Bang. We left Amoy on the 19th September, kah, a flourishing place; population proband entered this harbour on the 24th in ably above 50,000. The principal streets safety. Having brought along two of are broad, and filled with excellent shops; the Amoy Christians and a good supply the footpaths on each side are about ten of books, we have been busy last week feet broad, completely shaded from end evangelising in this region. I am not to end by excellent roofs, supported by aware whether the Dutch did any mission brick arches. There, and in a populous work during their occupation of the suburb of the same appearance, we spent island about 200 years ago ; but since three days with most excellent oppor. then, at least, I believe this is the first tunities of evangelising, living in a long proclamation of the Gospel in Formosa. covered boat. This whole region is The name Tam-sui seems to belong not colonised from the departments of Chang. to any town, but to the whole northern chew and Chin-chew,--that is, from the part of the island. The chief city of this country round Amoy. A very large pronorthern district (and, as far as I portion of the people have themselves hear, the only walled city in the north emigrated from the continent. The lanend) is called in the colloquial Tek- guage is exactly the same dialect; inchham, and in some foreign maps is deed, it is so all over Formosa. For this marked Tam-sui city. It lies near the reason, and the constant intercourse by coast, about forty or fifty miles south. native and foreign vessels, it would seem west from this place. This harbour is proper that this part should be evanonly about ten miles from the extreme gelised by the same missions that are north point of the island, at the mouth already established at Amoy. We meet of a very considerable river. It is be with a great many persons who have lieved to be the only tolerable harbour heard the Gospel at Amoy. It seems on the whole north-west coast. The quite strange, after crossing the sea, to

9

find the very same dialect, while a to descend on this locality as had fallen on hundred miles, or even seventy, on the other districts. Friday evening was fixed mainland, would bring us to unintel-on. The best room in the house (the ligible dialects. Therefore the call from drawing - room) was set apart for the Formosa is very strong to us, and our purpose. Persons of all classes assembled, American brethren and the London Mis- and took part in the proceedings. It was sionary Society. There is abundant a little Evangelical Alliance. Members of room for all in the numerous cities and week by week, and led the exercises by

four or five denominations were present wide plains of this great island, of which

turns. Very quickly the fruits began to we have but seen one small corner.

appear, first in the unreserve and openness “Come over and help us ” should ring in of heart with which every one poured out our ears, even till the Word of God shall his desires before God, in the catholic spirit be glorified here also.

breathed by all, in the joy which pervaded the meeting, and in the increasing numbers who attended. At first about forty were present. This number soon rose to sixty;

the sixty became seventy, and the seventy A FAMILY REVIVED.

eighty, until, in the course of a few months,

there were as many as one hundred and From the United Presbyterian Missionary thirty or one hundred and forty in weekly Record."

attendance on this so-called private prayer

meeting. Three or four apartments of the The following narrative relates to a family house having become filled, an adjournment in one of our congregations, which, like not

was made to an adjoining warehouse ; and a few others, has been blessed with revival. there the meetings have been going on A considerable number of hopeful conver since, as often as the much-looked-for sions have lately taken place in that con- Friday evenings come round. The prayergregation. The details that follow are

hearing God sent an abundant blessing. given by the minister, who for just reasons Not a few among the young were stirred up withholds the names of persons and places. to inquire anxiously after the way of salvaThese details strikingly illustrate the tion. The question, Have I found Christ power of intercession, and encourage us to for myself ? came to be more closely dealt CONTINUE instant in prayer. There has with. Personal salvation became the pronever been a time when meetings for prayer minent subject before the mind, and was have been so numerous, and so largely at- felt to be the “ one thing needful.” Partly tended throughout our church, as they have through this prayer-meeting, partly through been of late. In 1857, the estimated the preaching of the Gospel on the Lord's attendance at prayer-meetings over the day, and partly through the influence of United Presbyterian Church was about other prayer-meetings in the village, a 12,000; in 1858 it had risen to 18,000; considerable number of cases at length whereas in 1859 it reached 40,000. Let such occurred, where a genuine work of the facts as those embodied in the striking nar. Spirit of God in turning from darkness to rative that follows be accepted everywhere light seemed to have been accomplished. as an encouragement to" wait patiently for a fresh infusion of spiritual life was imthe Lord.” Who can imagine that the parted to many of God's people themselves, present is a time for relaxing attendance at and a time of refreshing was experienced. meetings for prayer ?

The Lord blessed Obed-edom, and all his A highly respected member of our Chris- household, for having kept the ark of God tian community an elder in my own in his dwelling three months; and in like church), has had a very striking manifesta- manner did he bless this family circle. Not tion of God's providential goodness made indeed at first. Two or three months to him and his family within the past passed away without any apparent change twelvemonth. In September, 1859, he paid on any of the five members of whom it was a visit to the north of Ireland, to see and composed. A dark cloud then came over hear for himself the doings of God's mighty their dwelling, as if God were about to hand in the revival movement going on answer their prayers by terrible things. there, with which he was so much delighted, First, the mother was seized with a dan. that on his return home he called together gerous illness; then one after another of a meeting of his friends and acquaintances, the family, including the father, until the and gave them a thrilling narrative of the whole, with the exception of the eldest son, scenes and experiences he had met with, were laid prostrate by the power of disease. winding up by calling upon them to meet The prayer-meeting in the house went on weekly in his house, for the purpose of still better attended, the exercises increasing supplicating a shower of the same blessings in fervour. It was soon found that the

a

a sneer.

cloud, though dark, was full of blessing. length he came to that memorable passage, One of the sons became hopefully impressed, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his and by and by gave satisfactory evidence of great love wherewith he loved us, even having undergone a saving change. The when we were dead in sin, hath quickened only daughter next became first an anxious us together with Christ,' &c. Instantly inquirer, and then a convert very shortly the thought struck him, God loved us when after. The second son, who had returned we were dead in sin. Dead in sin! That home ill of consumption, and beyond hope is precisely what I am; and yet God lored of recovery, was added to the list of the us when dead in sin. It is possible that triumphs of free and sovereign grace, and God loves me now, notwithstanding that I died in the faith and hope of the Gospel. I have become dead in sin? In a moment he The eldest son, I regret to say, had begun was down on his knees, crying for a sense to turn his back upon religion, and had for- of God's pardoning love to be revealed to saken the paths of virtue. Though not yet his soul. Without thinking of the presence arrived at the stage of confirmed infidelity, of his fellow.psssengers, he continued for he had been in the practice of scossing at the some time absorbed in that cry for the religious services carried on in his father's revelation of God's pardoning mercy to his house on the Friday evenings, and generally mind, and he was heard. He rose in a few alluded to the subject of revivals with minutes under the conviction that God

Towards the end of May last he really loved him, and was pacified toward left this district for Edinburgh, in the pro- him for all that he had done. During the secution of his vocation. There, being rest of the journey he continued in a kind beyond the reach of parental instruction of drcam of joy, his thoughts wholly and example, and led on by wicked com- absorbed in the new prospect--the marpanions, he went down the hill more vellous light-which had dawned upon him. rapidly, and to all appearance would soon On reaching home, he found his father in have become a wreck in the course of the garden, and saluted him with the er. profligacy, but that he was a child of many pression, “Oh, papa, I am all right now." prayers, and grace was in store for him. His father thinking he referred to the state One evening, being in a melancholy mood, of his finances, replied, “What! are your he was led to ask himself, What will all debts all paid ? “No; it is not that this course of crime lead to ? and suddenly I refer to, but something more important." the passage struck him with terrible power, Looking him earnestly in the face, his " The end of those things is death." He father again said, “Is it possible you have became greatly alarmed ; many Scripture found Christ?" "Yes," was the reply. statements which he had learned at the “Yes, I have found him; and I would not Sabbath school, and in his father's house, give him for a thousand worlds." The came up to his mind, and drove home the family circle were immediately assembled, arrow. There it rankled in his heart, with and a full detail of the remarkble experience out any power on his part to extract it. of the last twenty-four hours given by our Night came on, but he was restless. He young friend ; at the close of which all lay tossing on his pillow, the victim of re- present kneeled in prayer, and three times morse. Morning came, but with it no alle over poured out their united supplications viation. He went to his place of business ; and thanksgivings to the Father of mercies still it was impossible to find relief. He for his abounding goodness to them in reshut the oflice-door, and wandered along claiming the wanderer, and restoring a lost the street, the very picture of despair, and son and brother to the arms of Christian deeming none out of the place of woe more affection. This over, the father began to miserable than he. At length, hearing the think of the very last office in which he had whistle of the engine, it occurred to him to been engaged previous to his entering the go liome. He examined his pockets, and garden, where his unexpected interview had found he had just as much left over as taken place with his son. He had been would carry him there. He immediately writing to a Christian friend respecting started by the train then leaving.

God's dealings with his family ; and, unIt strongly occurred to him to put an end conscious of the Divine goodness which had to his wretched existence; but there were already been extended to him, the last too many around him to permit this being words he had penned were these: “ Poor done successfully. He found a gentleman

is no better-rather worse ; he with a packet of tracts; and as he had is still going on in his wicked ways as not yet lost every ray of hope, he asked a much as ever. O do pray for him, that the loan of one of these little messengers of power of Divine grace may touch his heart, mercy, in the faint idea of finding some re- and that he may be brought to a knowledge lief to his parched soul. Eagerly he read of the error of his ways." He now took down the page, seeking for a drop of living up the pen again, and added the following water to 'cool' his tormented spirit. At words ; "I had written thus far, when

most unexpectedly God answered my not but think that the earnest and sincere prayer in the joy of my heart, and now the Christian men who promoted them deserved dead is alive again the lost is found. I have now to ask you, not to pray for his

esteem. Coming to speak more particularly conversion, but to help us to thank God of their efforts, Mr. M'Culloch said, “ But for having in his abundant grace answered is a revival desirable which is brought to us our many prayers, and filled our tabernacle through the agency of laymen? Brethren, with the voice of rejoicing and salvation.” revival is desirable, come how it may. I

At the very time when the eventful have never felt as some feel on the subject struggle was going on in the mind of the of lay preaching. It looks like the leaven young man in the train coming from Edinburgh, both his parents, all unconscious of of Rome to be jealous of lay agents, for if the cloud of blessing that was in store for they have the necessary knowledge and them, were engaged in the exercise of grace and faculty for speaking, it seems to wrestling prayer on behalf of their son, - me little else than the ancient priestcraft of the father, at a prayer-meeting, supplicating Rome to forbid their services. I speak not, the Divine throne for converting grace to of course, of laymen occupying the pulpit unrepenting sinners; and the mother, in her closet, putting God in remembrance of instead of ministers, a practice to be discoubis promises, and holding him by the girdle raged on differentgrounds, and liable to various of his faithfalness. The latter rose from serious objections of a different kind; but I her knoes in the attitude of looking up and speak simply in the meantime of lay agency expecting an answer; yet, when the answer came, she could scarcely believe it. And in supplement of the regular ministry. What both parents were led to follow the example harm can result from laymen of high characof the nobleman of Capernaum, to inquire ter and thorough Christian principle adat what hour the change took place; and dressing their neighbours on the common on observing it was the same hour when salvation, reading the Word of God to them, they had been importunately knocking at the gate of mercy, they found additional praying with them, and exhorting them to reason to believe the word and promise of flee from the wrath to come? Nay, we God, their heavenly Father.

have far too little of this. Some may think that lay teaching, lay preaching, lay praying, | lay leadership in things sacred, may tend to bring the ministers of religion into contempt.

No, it will not, provided ministers teach LAY PREACHING.

better, preach better, pray better, lead better

than they. Brethren, when I look at the Or a recent Sabbath forenoon, the Rev. remarkable prominence of lay agency in the Colin M‘Culloch, first minister of Montrose, great revival movement throughout this delivered a discourse on this subject in the country, I cannot help thinking that God's Old Church there, from the words, “ Wilt voice is in this matter warning the ministers thou not revive us again ?” The congre- of religion and the Church in general, of the gation numbered upwards of 3,000. After great danger into which they have brought pointing out the nature of true revival as themselves by their strifes and discords. laid down in the Word of God, he proceeded Ministers divide, and strive, and quarrel ; to refer to some of the symptoms by which they will not unite for any one grand the movement had been characterised, mak- object of Christianity without sectarian and ing special reference to the tendency so selfish scheming for party purposes. They common with many to indulge in fallacious cannot do God's work. Well, God will marks of conversion, and to divide the carry on his work without them. Ministers people into “converted" and "unconverted.” are left quarreling over their points and Many were really converts without any claims and boundary lines, while laymen physical manifestations, and many others are raised up by God to do the work. The were not converts who had passed through people are sick at heart of the strifes and great agony and dark trials. But as to the quarrels of the clergy; they long to realize fruits of the movement, he said, they must the sweetness of unity, and they rise in one wait patiently; aud, while those who con- mass at the unsectarian voice of the laymen ducted revival gatherings sometimes mis- who know how to tell them simply of their took the means to be used, still he could Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ."- Courant,

us.

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CARRUBBERS’-CLOSE MISSION.

in little groups for prayer, kneeling round

the room, and the simple but earnest prayers Those of our readers who are acquainted of these dear children filled our hearts with with Edinburgh must know something of wonder and our mouths with praise. You, Carrubbers'-close. The Lord has been

Mr. and all your fellow labourers, carrying on a very gracious work in that myself and husband, are generally prayed dark district for some time, and many tokens for by name, and very earnestly do they pray of His favour have been enjoyed by those for the greater outpouring of the Spirit on who labour there.

this neighbourhood, and this great city. In The following extract from the Wynd visiting their homes, I find the testimony of Journal may encourage those who labour in parents very satisfactory as to the great similar districts. The “cold scepticism of change in their conduct. But there are also professing Christians” referred to is much opposing influences--one ungodly mother, to be deplored, but it is found in many other who never enters a place of worship, was in places besides Carrubbers'-close :

great anger with two little girls who went “Some of our best and most fruitful home in a very anxious state about their branch meetings are now conducted in pri- souls, and told me they were far too young to vate houses. It is astonishing to find the think about these things, and that she would variety, and the loveliness of the variety, of not allow them to go back again. I said, the agencies for promoting the Redeemer's Will you forbid them to come when Jesus kingdom, which are now springing up around invites them, saying, Suffer little children

Men are always for stereotyping some to come unto me, and forbid them not, for particular plan of operations. God, on the of such is the kingdom of heaven.' We are contrary, cultivates in his garden of the not surprised at this, for light can have no Church the most beautiful diversity of evan- fellowship with darkness; but the cold, sus. gelistic flowers. The following extract from picious look of fellow Christians, is chilling a letter from a “ mother in Israel will when they tell you that children will weep describe a work which might be going on in over ghost stories, or anything that excites every dining room. She says, “ I send you their emotional feelings, &c. All we can say a very few lines which will gladden your is, that such tears do not generally produce heart, concerning the good work' still a life of new obedience, or send children to going on and increasing in interest amongst their knees to pray. Will you bear these the dear girls meeting in our home every lambs on your heart at a throne of grace ?" Monday evening at seven. Of the nine who were first brought under deep conviction of sin-some of whom did not obtain peace for several days—five or six are now rejoicing ILLUSTRATIONS OF SCRIPTURE in the Saviour, and taking part in the meetings, and inviting others to come to

spied the sepulchres that were

there in the mount, and sent, and took tbe bones Jesus. Last Monday week we found it out of the sepulchres, and burned them upon the difficult to part them, even at the late hour altar.”—2 Kings xxiii. 16. of half-past ten o'clock, and there were ten or twelve yery anxious ones. There was one

The pious king, in his endeavour to deat girl, who I did not know had einbraced destroy all trace of idolatry, not only the Saviour till I asked her some questions overthrew the groves, with their altars, about her soul, in the shop where she was but even burnt the remains of those quite alone: she looked in my face and who had formerly taken part in the said, 'I found Jesus in your house,' adding, idolatry which his father encouraged. with touching eamestness, 'Eh, I didna ken Ezekiel (xxiv. 10), when foretelling the I had sic a wicked heart.' Last night our destruction of Jerusalem, under the dear friend Mr. gave an address to similitude of a boiling vessel, says, about 75 or 80 in our dining-room. The “Heap on wood

let the room was quite crammed as a few boys bones be burned.” After the return had come at the invitation of our boys, of the Jews from captivity, the valley who are anxious that papa would begin a of Hinnom, in which they had sacri. boys' meeting. After Mr. left at ficed to Moloch, became an object of half-past eight, Mr.

addressed them,
scorn and contempt.

All kinds of hoping to close the meeting, but very few filth, together with the bodies of went away: they still lingered to be conversed with. Mr. then withdrew to one

malefactors, were thrown into it, where, room with all the boys, and I to another with as a sanitary precaution, fires were kept nine girls who wished to speak with me.

burning: Even at a quarter to ten o'clock, when we Mr. Underhill, writing from India, deemed it expedient to break up the meeting, says :-"We went aboard at daylight we found those in the dining-room gathered on the 18th, and before night, had

“Josiah

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