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possess it for the first time, or to realise what it is to them when they first hear it read or explained. Some describe the effect of God's Word taking hold of them as if their whole being had been stirred mightily-to others it comes like a light streaming into their dark hearts, or like good tidings of great joy. Some, like the blind, can only say one thing, "I know that whereas I was blind now I see." There is such reality in all whose hearts are awakened or whose interest is stirred, they can only tell what they feel in their own simple way. They know none of the set phrases of religion which have alas! become such current coin in England as almost to have lost their true ring. They often express it thus; "I am changed, all is changed, my life is changed," and it is a fact, for with them faith and works go hand-in-hand.
"They really love the Bible. One woman said to me, 'I never go to bed without reading God's Word, and I always put it under my pillow; I like to have it close to me, it gives me such peace and comfort.' Many others do the same. Then they not only read it themselves, but they teach it to their children, and family prayer becomes a regular practice in the home.
"When asked what most impressed them at the meetings, the answer is-'It was God's Word.' They listen to it as a message from God Himself to their souls.
"The demand for Bibles is now so great that it would be impossible to give them; so the people buy them at a reduced price. Two dozen New Testaments have been put into the Lending Library, and they are always out, and with the fervour of new readers of the best of books, they sometimes decline a tract offered by a lady visitor, saying, 'I do not need a tract now, for I have a Bible.' Even Reference Bibles are much prized as lent to the young men for their Bible Class.
"And we must remember that their reading of the Bible in Paris have all to count the cost;' they probably lose all the gifts dispensed by the Sisters of Charity; but one woman being told that if she continued to attend the meetings she would have no more relief, replied, 'I do not mind, the Gospel is dearer to me than all their gifts.'"
Another, who had been often on the brink of starvation said, "Ah! it is so different to bear hunger with Christ and to bear it without Christ."
Of course all is not encouragement; but we must refrain from further quotation. Those who wish to help such work can get the book, and observe its further needs; meanwhile it brings the poor of London into fresh sympathy with the poor of Paris, in the reception of what seems to be very really and truly a BIBLE MISSION.
A BIBLE-WOMAN FOR JAFFA.
WE have received the following appeal, which, perhaps, some loving reader will be disposed to meet:
"During the last fifteen months Mrs. Hall and I have been working here under the Church Missionary Society. Very soon after commencing work we felt that it was of the greatest importance that the women should be regularly and daily visited, and have the Bible read and explained to them in their own homes. We therefore secured the services of a most efficient and earnest Christian Bible-woman, who has ever since devoted her whole time to the work, visiting the people and inducing them to come to the services and Bible-classes which we have arranged for them. The C.M.S., however, did not feel able, on account of the late terrible deficiency in their income, to pay her salary. We therefore appealed to private friends in England, who most kindly supplied us with money to pay her salary for one year, but with no promise of renewal. I, therefore, write to You, to beg that you will kindly aid us in this work, and pay the salary of this Bible-woman in future. She is a daughter of one of the first Protestants in Syria. earnest, devoted Christian, who really loves and delights in her work for the Master's sake. We have been paying her P.300 a month, or about £25 a year. She is invaluable to us,
She is a most
for without her it would be impossible for Mrs. Hall to do any work amongst the women.
"I would most earnestly commend this work to you, and beg you to aid us by your fervent prayers, and by supplying us with the salary of this Bible-woman.
IN THE MOUNTAIN OF EPHRAIM.
[The writer of the foregoing paper, the Rev. J. R. Longley-Hall, went to Syria in July, 1876. He has described a visit paid to Abood, at the invitation of the Protestants of that place, which we extract from a City Mission Magazine.]
ABOOD is marked in Van de Velde's beautiful map of Palestine exactly on the line of latitude 32 degrees, and about 35 degrees 15 mins. east longitude. According to the same authority it is the "chief place of the district in which it lies." The population is about seven hundred, of whom formerly about half were Moslems and half professing Christians, members of the Greek Church. But since the commencement of the dreadful war between Russia and Turkey, so terrible has been the drain upon the Moslem portion of the population that in Abood they are now less than one-third.
There has never been any regular Protestant Mission work carried on in Abood, but once or twice it has received mis+ sionary visits from the Rev. F. A. Klein, of Jerusalem, and others. During the last eighteen months, however, since I landed in Jaffa as the Agent of the Church Missionary Society for the purpose of re-opening their work in that town and district, I have received repeated and urgent requests from a small body of Protestants in Abood that I would visit them constantly for the purpose of holding services and preaching to them the Gospel. For some time I was quite unable to comply with the request, as it was necessary that work in Jaffa should first be started before outlying districts could be attended to. However, about two months ago I was able to leave Jaffa for
a day or two, and accompanied by my catechist and a man to look after the horses, I started for Abood. We reached the village about two hours after sunset, at the close of a ride of more than thirty miles over ground of the roughest description. As we rode into the village we awoke some ten or a dozen dogs, who commenced barking around us, and in their turn roused a number of men who came out from their houses to see what was the matter.
We rode into the middle of the village, and asked for the chief man of the Protestants who had specially invited me to visit them. There was then a long consultation between him and the fifteen or twenty men, who had gathered around us, as to where we should be lodged. At last they led us to a large courtyard, where we dismounted, and I commenced taking off my saddle-bags, saddle, bridle, etc., etc. I then called to my servant, who had just carried them into the house, to bring me the horse cloth, but the men informed me that I could put that on when I got the mare into the house, and I was thus made aware of the fact that I was to sleep with my horse. This being the case, I laid my hand on the mare's head to lead her into the house, but my host interrupted me with, "Wait until we have turned the cows out," and before he had finished the sentence, out ran ten or a dozen cows, nearly knocking me down. The house consisted of one room, part of which was raised about a foot above the rest. On this raised part were laid mats for us to sleep on, and in the lower part (which was as disgustingly filthy as any badly kept pig-sty) were housed two or three donkeys and calves, and now my mare. The room was large, and only lighted by a piece of wick dipped in olive oil.
They told me that there were about thirty men with women and children in the village, who wished to be recognised as Protestants. They implored and entreated me to open a school for boys and girls. There was no school of any kind whatever -Greek or Moslem; and with a few exceptions every man, woman, and child was ignorant even of the alphabet. They said, therefore, that if we opened a school, Moslems, Greeks, and Protestants would all gladly come to it. They begged also
that some one might be sent to conduct regular Protestant services in the village. I replied that I would do all I could for them, and if I could obtain the necessary funds I should certainly rejoice to supply them with both school and services. I then read to them a portion of Scripture, and spoke of Christ and His great salvation, of His love for sinners, and His great and laborious work for their redemption. All listened with the most rapt attention, and many asked questions and showed a truly intelligent and earnest desire to know more. Presently our supper arrived, and we ate most heartily, as we were very hungry after the long ride. At the close our host asked us to hold another little service, which we did; and the honest eager faces fixed on us filled our hearts with pleasure and gladness, and quite made up for the fatigues of our long journey and the uncomfortableness of our lodging. Indeed the circumstances of our lodging reminded us most strikingly of how He of whom we were speaking, and in whose service we had entered the village, was born among the oxen and cradled in a manger, ready to go any length of discomfort and humiliation in order that He might sympathise with and save poor fallen man.
The next morning at six o'clock we rose and found that our friends were already outside the door listening for some sign of our being awake, and at once they trooped in. We then read and prayed with them, exhorting them most earnestly to begin, continue, and end each day in communion with God. I was much pleased with the simplicity of these people; so different from the grasping, dishonest tone of the people in the towns. They indignantly refused to receive anything in return for the chicken, eggs, bread, etc., which we had eaten, and only begged and entreated that as they had shown me temporal hospitality, so I would to the utmost of my power endeavour to obtain the supply of their spiritual needs. This I promised to do. Shortly afterwards in came a Moslem who assured me that all the Moslems and Christians in Abood were brethren, and lived in love and peace with each other. He asked me if I was ready and willing to be "the father" of all the peopleboth Moslems and Christians in the village, and if I would