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Christians. Most of them could read the Bible, and between four and five hundred had been united in church-fellowship. This number has been increased to five hundred, who are walking in the ordinances and commandments of the Lord blameless. Agriculture has since increased, and some acres are now planted, or preparing for the culture of coffee.
Such was the state of general improvement in Huahine, when we paid our last visit, in the close of the year 1824; and although the subsequent accounts have been at times of a chequered complexion, they have not been more so than might be expected, and have, upon the whole, been such as to afford matter for sincere gratitude to the Most High, and encouragement to all interested in the moral and spiritual improvement of mankind.
Efforts of the natives to propagate Christianity-Amount of early contributions-Effect of annual meetingsExertions of the first converts-Description of the Paumotus, or Dangerous Archipelago-Visits of the people to Tahiti-Their reception of Christianity-The number and situation of the Marquesas-Their appearance and productions-Population, dress, and figure of the natives -Tatauing-Disposition-Government-War and cannibalism-Attempts to introduce Christianity among their inhabitants-Pitcairn's Island-Descendants of the mutineers of the Bounty-Waihu or Easter IslandCape Horn-Juan Fernandez-Alexander Selkirk.
CHRISTIANITY universally received, and, we have reason to believe, firmly established in the Georgian and Society Islands, having overcome the combined opposition of idolatry, priestcraft, interest, and pride, with the barriers of depravity and abomination, which so long despised its authority, and resisted its appeals and having survived the more fatal treachery of the enemies that have adopted its name, and assumed its garb -has not been confined to those islands.
Acknowledging the command of Christ to "teach all nations, and preach the gospel to every creature," to be obligatory on all his disciples imbibing somewhat of the true spirit of Chris
tianity, which is not restrictive and selfish, but expansive and communicative-animated by the spirit of the primitive Christians, and, imitating their example the members of the first Polynesian churches no sooner enjoyed the advantages of religion themselves, than they adopted vigorous measures for imparting them to others.
Some notice of their efforts to communicate a knowledge of Christianity to other tribes in the Pacific, of the islands to which they have sent their Missionaries, and others more or less connected with these, will, it is presumed, not be unacceptable, as presenting a more distinct view of the relation these islands bear to Tahiti and the adjacent group.
An account has already been given of the formation of Missionary societies in Tahiti, Eimeo, and Huahine. Others were afterwards established. Their first remittance to London was in 1821, and amounted to nearly £1900. The Raiatean society, besides maintaining at its own expense six native Missionaries, sent to England, in 1827, £300. This sum, and the liberal contributions from other associations, would have been greatly increased, could the productions, in which the native subscriptions were furnished, have been disposed of to the best advantage.
The anniversaries of the native societies, and their public Missionary meetings, continue to prove to the inhabitants seasons of delightful satisfaction. At these meetings their pleasure has been heightened by the details of native Missionaries who have returned from distant islands, and the exhibition of rejected idols from countries where formerly they had been worshipped. Inhabitants of remote islands have appeared at their meetings,