Puslapio vaizdai




The center of the picture shows the "theater" with steps, erected at the junction of choir, sanctuary,
and transepts where the King, after being crowned, sat enthroned, and received homage.

[graphic][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

ANY things have been said of the foreign missionary work, some of them extravagant, most of them unkindly, a few witty, sparkling, cutting, and in many cases wrong.

This, frankly, is no defense of the foreign missions; it is not even a Christian view of the work.

I am a Japanese by birth-a mere heathen. It is, therefore, an impression of an outsider pure and simple, and these I know to be facts.

Forty-odd years ago, at every gate to both the Flower Capital of the mikado and Yedo, city of the shogun, at many of the entrances to the towns and villages of Nippon, there stood a large notice-board. It was official. In bold, heavy, black, fat strokes, so that he who ran the highway might read, was the following:




That is to say:

firmly forbidden as hitherto!"
"The evil sect Kirishitan [Christian] is

VICE-ADMIRAL URIU He studied at the United States Naval Academy, married a Japanese who was a Christian and was graduated at Vassar, and during the war with Russia held high command under Admiral Togo.

To-day you may see a few of the same old noticeboards, and read the same historic inscription, but you must go to the Tokio Museum to find them. They are

no longer on the streets. Thirty-five years ago there were eleven baptized Protestant Christians. To-day there are seventy thousand of them in Japan; they own 600 churches; in their Sunday-schools they teach 100,000 children.

Is this the fruit of the Christian missions in Japan? Certainly. But not

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic]
[ocr errors]


The large buildings are the government offices on the street by the castle road in Fukui. A usual form of notice read: "The evil sect called Christian' is strictly prohibited. Suspicious persons should be reported to the proper officers, and rewards will be given." These anti-Christian edicts were written on boards about two feet long and one foot high.

fine Russian cruiser l'ariag in the harbor of Chemulpo, is a Christian; and many other officers of the navy and army of Japan of to-day are proud to be called Yaso. The editors of some of the leading metropolitan dailies are Christians. In 1890, when the Imperial Diet was convened for the first time in the history of Japan, the House of Representatives had a Christian for its president. His Majesty the Emperor of Japan contributes regularly to the funds of the Y. M. C. A. To-day no one can irritate a Japanese by calling him Yaso. These are some of the fruits of the missionary work in Japan. Not the fruit, however.

taught. Our lord of Kumamoto clan also established one. But how to secure a foreign instructor who would teach the Western knowledge to the children of the samurai of Kumamoto, there was the rub, and more especially because the lord of the Kumamoto clan was particular. The clan of Kumamoto, as all the empire knew, was proud of two things, its historic castle, built by Kato Kiyomasa, and the heroic tradition of its warriors as brave as the builder of the castle. It was all very well for other effete clans to employ foreign bonzes-that is to say, missionaries -as instructors to their young men; but not for Kumamoto. The clan of Kuma

COUNT OKUMA Ex-Premier of Japan, founder and president of the Waseda University. Though a very busy man, he finds time to act as home manager of the base-ball team now in the United States.

moto must have a soldier for its instructor. No priest, no mere man of letters who was little better than a woman; he would hurt the esprit de corps of the clan. All these emphatic wishes of the lord of Kumamoto clan were, therefore, detailed to Dr. G. F. Verbeck, who was a sort of national adviser in such matters, and on his recommendation Captain L. L. Janes went to teach the young samurai of Kumamoto.

Most assuredly the captain was no bonze. But it was also true that, in comparison with that white-flaming tower of zeal for God that was in his bosom, an every-day missionary would have looked like a penny candle flickering and fading before a typhoon. Captain Janes was a soldier, and an officer, of course. In a thousand times more emphatic sense, however, he was a soldier of the Cross.

For nearly three years Captain Janes said nothing of Christianity to his Kumamoto boys. Think of the apostolic ardor such as that of Captain Janes looking upon silence as golden, and for three patient years! How could he have managed it? The entire credit, I am half afraid, does not belong either to the miraculous patience or to the still more wonderful

wisdom and tact of Captain Janes. For one thing, he could not speak Japanese well enough to preach the Gospel in it, and his students could not understand English. But as of yore,


God moves in a mysterious way His wonders to perform.


Because he could not preach with words, Captain Janes lived out a Christlife in his every-day actions. And I believe no sermon has ever been known to be quite eloquent enough to compare to the eloquence of a simple Christian life. And the magic eloquence of it touched the hearts of the rugged children of the Kumamoto samurai. 'He gave his whole strength," writes one of his old pupils, recalling those Kumamoto days, "teaching English and the sciences. But he was so kind and fatherly in his treatment of his pupils that they came to forget that he was a foreigner." Let me put it in another way: the three years' wordless work of the captain built a bridge over which his thoughts could pass into the understanding, not only mental, but sentimental as well, of his

[graphic][merged small]
[merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small]


In this house the New Testament was translated into Japanese by American scholars and missionaries between 1874 and 1880. Dr. Brown presided at most of the meetings of the committee.

and of the zeal with which he devoted his life to the work of Christ, "as though it were a snake, and did not like even to see a Bible; but we so respected him that we concluded to go to the meeting. One of us went to the teacher of Chinese [a teacher of Chinese in those days was also a preceptor in the doctrine and teachings of Confucius, for the Japanese boys all studied classic Chinese with the sacred books of Confucius as their readers] and asked his consent. He replied that we might go to learn about Christianity, not

backed by his Christian life, a thing which was both new and wonderful to the Kumamoto boys, Captain Janes taught them. the Bible. He never asked the young men to become Christians. Two of the boys tried to impose upon his judgment; they went to him one day and said, "We wish to become preachers of the Gospel." He told them bluntly that they were not worthy to be anything of the kind-a rather striking contrast with certain other missionaries and missionaries and their methods. The sharp, unexpected contrast impressed the

« AnkstesnisTęsti »