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BERBICE.

LONSDALE. This locality has been the scene of Missionary labour since the year 1832. The late venerable John Wray, deeply deploring the neglected condition of the coloured people of the District,—then in a state of slavery,—sought the means of extending to them the blessings of Christian instruction; and, with that view, obtained a grant of land from the proprietors of the Lonsdale Estate, for the erection of a chapel. The proprietors of surrounding estates, and other benevolent individuals, subscribed liberally towards the building, which was opened for Divine worship by Mr. Wray and Mr. Scott, now of the Demerara Mission, on the second Sabbath of December, in the year above named. On the 26th of the same month, when the slaves had a holiday, Mr. Wray preached t8 & large congregation, and on that occasion wrote as follows :"It is pleasing to see them leave their African dances, and other vanities, to come and hear the Word of God with seriousness and attention.”

To the benevolent and Christian mind, it cannot but be a subject of grateful reflection that, within a few years after, the entire coloured population of the West Indies, subject to British influence, were released from their bondage, and invested with many political and social rights

. The manner in which this great event was celebrated at Lonsdale, is thus noticed in the records of the Mission for the year 1838:

* At no station was the career of freedom commenced in a more devout and grateful spirit than among the liberated population of Lonsdale and its outposts. Half an hour before the midnight preceding the 1st of August, the chapel was filled to excess, and those few last moments of the old era, with the first half hour of the pew, were employed in rendering thanks to God for mercies received, and praying for his blessing on the glorious event. These interesting services were resumed at an early hour of day, and as the sun arose on the people, then assembled for the first time beneath its light in a state of freedom, they were unitedly engaged in singing the hymp,

? The year of Jubilee is come!' "In the middle of the day, a meeting for the worship of God was again held, and Mr. Forward preaches to a crowded congregation. At the conclusion of the service & subscription was commenced, to assist in sending the Gospel to Africa, and the amount soon increased to 500 guilders. Including the other contributions at the station, the whole amount in the past year has been nat less than £375 sterling.

The first resident Missionary appointed to Lonsdale was the Rev. Jas. Mirams, who entered upon his labours in 1833.

On his removal, he was succeeded, in 1836, by the Rev. Giles Forward, upon whose

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return to England from failure of health, the Rev. John Dalgliesh was appointed, in 1842, to the charge of the Station. He continued to be the resident Missionary until October, 1849, when, upon his accession to the pastorate of the church and congregation at New Amsterdam, the general duties of the Lonsdale Mission devolved upon Mr. John Foreman, Mr. Dalgliesh continuing to make periodical visits to the station, to administer the ordinances.

This portion of the vineyard, it will be seen, has thus long enjoyed the advantage of Christian instruction, and we are happy to add that, not only have the people been brought to participate in the civil rights and immunities of free men, but many of them have likewise been emancipated from the bondage of sin and error, and made the happy subjects of that glorious liberty wherewith Christ makes his people free.

With respect to the Mission Buildings represented in the Engraving (see page 217), it is to be observed, that the Chapel, originally built by Mr. Wray, was subsequently enlarged, and will now seat 600 adults and 200 children, the average congregation being about 700. The School house, which was completed about the time Mr. Dalgliesh took charge of the station, accommodates 130 children, the usual number in attendance. The Dwelling-house was erected several years ago, a gallery having been erected at a later period.

Mr. Dalgliesh, who is at present on a visit to this country for the benefit of his health, in reporting the state of the Lonsdale Mission for the last year, remarks, that the members of the Church, about 200 in number, have maintained an exemplary deportment, and lived at peace among themselves.

In connexion with the station are two interesting Bible-classes, the one for males, taught by Mr. Foreman; the other for females, by Mrs. Foreman. The male class is attended by about twenty young men, most of whom were formerly in the day-school, and are now efficient Sabbathschool teachers.

The Sabbath-schools have afforded much pleasure, both as regards the teachers and the children. The former have been in the regular habit of meeting Mr. Foreman twice a week for religious instruction, with a view to the more efficient discharge of their school duties.

The Day-school also continues to form a very cheering field of labour, and so great is the attachment of the children to the school, that the parents experience great difficulty in keeping them at home, even on indispensable occasions.

The annual examination took place on the 27th of November last, · when a large number of persons present, who take a deep interest in the education of the young, expressed themselves highly pleased with the progress

and attainments of the children.

TAHITI. GROSS PROFANATION OF THE LORD'S-DAY, ENFORCED BY THE FRENCH GOVERNOR,

Since the establishment of the French Protectorate in this island, the Missionaries have had repeatedly to complain of the restrictions imposed upon them in the discharge of their sacred functions, and of the disregard evinced by the authorities to the terms of the treaty guaranteeing the religious liberties of the island. But on no preceding occasion has só gross an abuse of power, and so grievous a violation of the rights of conscience been perpetrated as in the instance which we now, with the deepest regret, communicate to our readers.

By the orders of Governor Bonard, the 4th of last May, the Christian Sabbath, was appointed to be observed as a season of festivity, in honour of the anniversary of the French Republic. So unprecedented an outrage on the feelings of the religious portion of the community could not but be highly offensive to the Missionaries and others; and means were used to induce the governor to postpone the projected festivities till the morrow, but in vain.

From the mournful details given in the following correspondence, of the scenes that were enacted at Papeete on that Sabbath, it will be seen that many whose principles had been proof against the power of the French, and the sophistries of the priests, have, for the time at least, grievously fallen into the snare of the tempter. While deeply deploring a result so dishonouring to the gospel, and so disappointing to the Christian friends of Tahiti, we should wish it to be borne in mind, that these unhappy people have now, for several years, been the subjects of a foreign and despotic power; that they are no longer free agents, and that the moral weakness they have exhibited in the day of trial is a not infrequent, though painful, result of the loss of national independence.

It is pleasing, however, to add, that in no part of the island, exeepting Papeete, which, as the seat of government, is peculiarly under French influence, was the sacred day thus profaned; and we are distinetly informed that, at some of the Missionary stations, it was observed with marked reverence and solemnity.

On the Lord's day immediately preceding the 4th of May, the Missionaries, in addressing their respective flocks, took occasion to admonish them as to their Christian duty in the prospect of the approaching erisis; and as it devolved upon the Rev. William Howe to preach at Papeete to a congregation of English, American, and other foreigners, he se faith fully denounced the unrighteous ordinance, that he has rendered himself obnoxious to a government prosecution. The result of the trial bas not yet transpired in this country; but as there is every reason to apprehend that a conviction would be obtained, and be followed by Mr. Howe's imprisonment, our beloved brother and his colleagues have, at the present juncture, a strong claim upon the sympathies and prayers of the Society.

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The Directors have already memorialized her Majesty's Government on the subject of these flagrant violations of the treaty entered into between Admiral Du Petit Thouars and Queen Pomare, in the year 1842; and they are not without hopes that, through its friendly mediation with the Government of France, an end may be put to the oppressive proceedings of which, as will be seen from the following correspondence, there is such just cause to complain,

The Rev. A. Chisholm, writing on behalf of the Committee of Missionaries in Tahiti, under date, Papeete, May 1st, 1851, makes the following statement:

“In ours of last month, we advised you of involve the natives; and the shock apparently the difficulties in which we were involved, in given to their minds was not less than we consequence of the enactment of the new laws ourselves felt. The consequence was, that in regard to Missionaries. We have now the our thoughts were naturally directed to the disagreeable duty to discharge of informing you subject in our Sabbath-ministrations, when that fresh troubles have since arisen, from a justice to our own consciences, as well as to quarter we did not then anticipate. In the the souls of our hearers, compelled us to Government Gazette of the 24th of April, speak plainly on the subject. In the English published in the native language, an an. chapel here, Mr. Howe took for his text, nouncement was made that Sabbath, the 4th Isaiah lviii, 13th and 14th verses, from which day of May, being the anniversary of the he took occasion to show the blessings to be establishment of the French Republic, had expected by nations and individuals from a been commanded to be observed as a fête-day rigid observance of that blessed day, and the in France, and that it was also to be so ob disastrous consequences likely to result from served in all the French colonies. A pro its desecration. The hearers generally, both gramme of the engagements and amusements English and Americans, expressed themselves for the day was then given, and is as follows: highly gratified by what they heard ; and " * The things to be attended to on Sabbath, several of them have since expressed, in writMay 4th:

ing, as to the entirely unobjectionable cha“1. At 7 A.M.-A discharge of artillery. racter of the sermon on the points in ques6.2. At 11 A.M. - The French governor tion. It seems, however, that a son of Mr.

will receive district-governors and chief Orsmond's, who was present, reported to an judges, who are to be introduced by officer of government the following passage:Paraita Regent.

Woe to those who fill high places, and 6.3. At 12 M.D.-The band will commence ought, therefore, to be an example to those

playing, when the greasy pole will be around them of obedience to the laws of God,

climbed, and also the revolving inachine. when they take an opposite course! What "64. At 3 P.M.-A feast will be given to will be the end of that man, who, when God the native dancers.

declares his day shall be kept holy, replies, It 6.5. At 7 P.M.- The public buildings will shall not be so; but takes God's day and dibe illuminated.

vides it into portions, setting apart one por6. At 8 P.M.-Fireworks.

tion for one pleasure, and another for another, "67. At 9 P.M.- A ball will be given by and, when the sun has declined, crowns the

the governor, at which the district-go whole by an arrangement to spend the night in vernors, chief judges, and principal per amusements equal in folly to those that have sons, are invited to be present.'

occupied the hours of the day? The end of "As you may conceive, our minds were such an one is fearful to contemplate, if he perexceedingly distressed by this announcement, severe in such a course. “My soul, come not as there has not hitherto been anything ap thou into their secret, and unto their assenıbly proaching to such an open and undisguised mine honour, be not thou united!” Friends, violation of the Lord's-day, at least so as to let not one of us sanction such proceedings!'

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