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decidedly in the interest of economy.
Your committee are glad to report that already special committees have been appointed by these two societies to consider the advisability of such a consolidation. But apart from this one case, we do not think that the time is ripe for any immediate organic change, looking toward a new distribution of work in the interest of an ideal unity. The reasons for this conclusion, are : 1. Financial Reasons. We are convinced that
consolidation of societies or any transfer of work from one society to another, at the present time, would result in a falling off in the aggregate amount of our contributions, and possibly also an embarrassinent of some societies with regard to their vested funds. rience of the American Board should be a warning on this point. When it took up the work in papal lands, formerly carried on by the American and Foreign Christian Union, it appealed to the churches for a second contribution for that special field, but the money did not come. The Home Missionary Society had a similar esperience a dozen years ago, when at the suggestion of the National Council it undertook the missionary work of the Sunday School and Publishing Society. The result was, that that work “disappeared and was not." A reduction in the number of societies would simply necessitate an increase in the number of departments of each. It could not lessen the amount of necessary supervision, except at the expense of efficiency, and hence could be no gain in respect to economy. The great difficulty to be overcome is not any present unwise expenditure of money, but the smallness of the amount raised as compared with the greatness and unspeakable urgency of the work. The things that in our judg. ment need reorganization are not primarily our benevolent societies, but the hearts of God's people. What we want most of all is not new enginery, but more steam. We have none too many societies for the immensity of the work.
2. Administrative Reasons. (1) It is manifest that the school work and church work of the Home Missionary Society and the American Missionary Association have grown upon their hands by a natural interdependence of the two. Any reorganization which would separate them would break the most delicate ties and tear asunder elements of civilization which belong both naturally and historically together. This it seems to us could not be accomplished, especially in the South, without great damage to both
branches of the work of the American Missionary Association. The same is true of the Home Missionary Society. Its officers justly feel that they must support such academies as Worcester Academy at Vinita, Indian Territory, and Rogers, Arkansas, and the College at Lake Charles, Louisiana, for the sake of the welfare of the church work in those vicinities. The one is the natural feeder of the other. They cannot be put under different administrations without cutting natural cords of life. It may be said that if these interests cannot be put under different administrations, then divide geographically -- put all work for a single field into the hands of one society. This would seem to promote simplicity and unity, but the providential development of the different branches of the work, especially in the South, together with the peculiar condition of society there, seems to make it undesirable not to say unsafe, for either organization to withdraw from that field. The present complicated and perplexing phases of the race problem alone seem to demand the presence of both organizations in the South, if our work there is to be carried on with force and catholicity. It has been well said that “the Negroes, the Indians, and the Chinese are too near the iuffancy line to be transferred from a society that has won their confidence, to one that has not.” On the other hand, Christian work among a certain class of whites at the South can probably be better carried on by a society whose principal work is not among the blacks. Serious objections also lie against the assumption by the Home Missionary Society of the work of the New West Education Commission. The time may come when the free school work of the New West Education Commission may be supplanted by the public-school system of the Territories, leaving that society free to devote its energies to academies or high schools. But that good time is yet in the indefinite future, and to drop that noble agency, which is so potent a factor in the evangelization of Utah, and put its school work into the hands of the Home Missionary Society, which has neither the funds nor the facilities for carrying it on, would, in our judgment, be suicidal. Besides, the public feeling in Utah is such, that a transfer of the schools from an educational to a distinctively ecclesiastical organization would probably awaken an opposition which might defeat the entire work. Economy and efficiency might both be thus frustrated by forced and unnatural combinations.
(2) The divorce of church and school work in either home or
foreign mission fields, would seem to us to overlook two essential facts : First, that church material bas to be created before it can be organized into churches. A process of training in at least the elements of education must precede either citizenship in the State or permanent membership in the church. All education for these despised races should be religious, and all religion educational. Religion alone runs into superstition ; education alone into secularism. It tears down the walls of superstition without erecting in their place the temple of a rational faith. Missionaries, therefore, must be teachers, and teachers, missionaries. The teacher's desk must be a pulpit, and the pulpit a teacher's desk. This seems to be the matured conviction of all missionary workers after years of experience. The American Board, in the light of eighty years of service, and after many mistaken views on this point, have settled down to the conviction that it is necessary to combine school and church work. The same is true of the Presbyterian and other denominational boards, both at home and abroad.
The other fact wbich seems sometimes to be overlooked by those who favor a divorce of church and school is this : That secular schools alone do not necessarily improve a sin-cursed race. The infinite evil which lies upon the people where our missionaries are at work, is not chiefly ignorance, but sin. That cannot be removed by the spelling book and multiplication table alone. These may stimulate the mind and increase personal influence, but may, by that very means, increase the power of evil. He is not a wise teacher who trains a man's hand and eye and brain, and thus puts a club within his grasp, unless he can, at the same time, put a clean heart under his blouse. It is of the very first importance, therefore, that races just rising from ignorance and degradation should be impressed at every step with the idea that intelligence and Godliness must be indissoluble. A noble object lesson to all our despised races on this point, is the church and the school.house standing side by side, or even combined in a single building, and operated by the same Christian society. We believe that this is both the Congregational and Christian policy on this subject.
3. As to Harmony, we are decidedly of the opinion that to give all church work to one society and school work to another on the same field, would bring such societies into closer contact with each other than now exists, without at all unifying the work, and this would greatly increase, rather than diminish the liability to friction. The remedy for friction lies, not chiefly in organic changes, but in personal consecration. We suggest that the way to get on harmoniously together in Christ's work, is not by having one party withdraw from the field and the other stand alone. The conditions of peace are a clearer understanding of each other's mission under God, and-a more catholic and Christlike spirit. Some three years ago there was on foot in the interest of both harmony and economy a movement to have a joint superintendent of the work of the Home Missionary Society and the New West Education Commission. In Utah, for what seemed to be good reasons, that arrangement failed. But the work of the two organizations in that field is now being vigorously prosecuted on the old basis with far less of friction and more of harmony than ever before. The existing basis of agreement between the Home Missionary Society and the American · Missionary Association, approved by the Executive Committee and adopted by the annual meeting of each, and endorsed by the National Council, will, in our judgment, if carried out in good faith, secure the harmony desired, and release us all from that uneasy state of the public mind which results in the election of so many expensive committees.
4. Recommendation. While not believing in the utility of any standing committee of reference outside of the societies, we would heartily recommend that there be held at stated times, say semiannually or annually, a joint meeting of the officers of all our benevolent societies ; or that in some other way there be instituted a systematic and constant, not accidental and occasional, conference as to their work. This would naturally lead to co-ordinate plans and concurrent measures which would promote the employment wherever practicable, of common agents and superintendents. By such conference, moreover, there would naturally come about closer relations and a better understanding, and ultimately a federation of societies, as distinguished from organic union.
We earnestly recommend that this idea be carried out by all our societies.
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REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON DEFICIENCY IN
REV. WM. KINCAID.
Your Committee upon Deficiency in Ministerial Supply beg " leave to report that, soon after the adjournment of the Council at which they were appointed, a consultation was held by correspondence. The importance of the subject, the gravity of the situation, and the necessity that measures be immediately set on foot to increase the supply of ministers of the gospel were deeply felt by all. The fourth of the resolutions by which the committee was constituted reads as follows:
Resolved, (4) That we suggest to this committee to consider the relations of the American College and Education Society to this undertaking, and, if they think it wise, to propose to the directors of that society to assume the responsibility of it.”
This resolution was considered in all its bearings, and the conclusion unanimously reached that the American College and Education Society would, under God, be the most appropriate and effective agency for reaching the desired result. A memorial, therefore, signed by all the members of the committee, was addressed to this society, and a favorable response being received, the whole matter was left in its hands. What has since been accomplished in the direction sought will fully appear in the statement of the society to be laid before the council.
REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON CHRISTIAN UNITY.2
At the last National Council, which met at Worcester, Mass., a series of resolutions on the subject of Christian Comity were adopted. These resolutions, we are happy to say, were taken up and adopted, without change, by the Presbyterian General Assembly, at its meeting in New York in the following May.
The National Council at Worcester constituted a committee on the subject of Christian Unity. The undersigned, members of this committee, beg leave to submit the following report with the accompanying resolution :
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