Imatges de pÓgina
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Jan. 19th, To Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth in advance of a misson To Mr. Levi Parsons for a mission to the County of Onondago, State of New York

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Feb. 6, To Rev. Alvan Sanderson for a mission to the Northwesterly parts of the State of Vermont

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12th, To Rev. Azel Washburn for a mission to the northerly parts
of the County of Berkshire

March 20, To Mr. Levi Parsons, for missionary services in the western
Counties in the State of New York

38,50

28,75

· 80,00

- 28,00

31,25

- 23,00

July 1, To Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth for missionary services in the Counties of Wayne and Luzern, Pennsylvania 20th, To Mr. Oliver Sergeant for missionary services Sep. 15, To Rev. Dr. West, expense of advertising the meeting of

the Trustees

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To Rev. Thomas Allen, expense of transporting Books
Oct. 5, To Rev. Oliver Ayer for a mission to the western parts of

the State of New York

To Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth for missionary services in the Counties of Wayne and Luzern, Pennsylvania Dec. 30, To Rev. Aaron Kinne, for a mission to the northern parts of the County of Berkshire

1808, Feb. 4, The Balance of money in the Treasury

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5,00

1,00 0,50

- 90,00

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$802,51

WILLIAM WALKER, Treasurer.
SAMUEL SHEPARD, Auditor.

Hon. BARNABAS BIDWELL, Esq.
Rev. SAMUEL SHEPARD.
Rev. SAMUEL SHEPARD, Auditor
of accounts.

COMMITTEE OF TRUSTEES.
Rev. STEPHEN WEST, D. D.
Rev. ALVAN HYDE.

Rev. SAMUEL SHEPARD.

The next annual meeting of the Society will be holden at the meeting house in Lanesborough the 3d Tuesday in Sept. 1808, at 2 o'clock P. M. Rev. Jonathan Nash of Middlefield is appointed to preach on the occasion, and in case of his failure, Rev. John Morse of Green River, ALVAN HYDE, Secretary.

INTERESTING.

INDIA.

RELIGIOUS AND LITERARY INTELLIGENCE.

THE Secretary of the London Missionary Society has received a letter from the Rev. Mr. Ringeltaube, dated Palamcotta, Feb. 7, 1807. This Missionary has acquired the language of the country, so as to write it correctly, and speak it with but little hesitation.

Mr. Ringeltaube has also sent his journal, from Sept. 12, 1806, to Feb. 6, 1807. He mentions that Dr. Buchanan had requested the loan of his Bible in the Tamul language, as he was about to commence the Malaya

lam translation of the scriptures ime mediately, there being 200,000 Christians in Malayalam, who are ready to receive it. Even the Romish bishop, it is said, signified his consent to the circulation of the scriptures among his people. The Doctor observes in his letter to Mr. Ringeltaube, that he has had singular success in obtaining ancient manuscripts, in Hebrew, Syriac, &c. Mr. R. greatly rejoiced at this good news; and sent him his only copy of that Bible without delay.

Ecclesiastical Antiquities in India.

[We have been favoured by a respectable Correspondent in India, with a copy of a REPORT, presented by a pious clergyman, at the request of the Governor of Madras, concerning the state of the ancient Christians in Cochin and Travancore. This Report is so curious and so interesting, that we shall give the whole of it to our readers, assured that they will esteem it, as we do, a most valuable and important document. It is followed by an account of the Rev. Dr. Buchanan's Discoveries.]

REPORT

Of the Senior Chaplain of Fort St. George, to the Right Honourable Lord William Bentinck, governor of Madras, on the state of the Christians inhabiting the king.

doms of Cochin and Travancore; with an article of interesting literary intelligence, containing an account of the discoveries made by the Rev. Dr. Buchanan, in the course of his investigations undertaken by order of the supreme government in Bengal.

"Public Department. "To the Rev. Dr. Keer, Senior Chaplain of Fort St. George.

"REV. SIR,

"THE Rt. Hon. the Governor in Council, being desirous of availing himself of your vicinity to the Malabar coast, to obtain every possible information in regard to the establishment, &c. of the Christian Religion in that part of the peninsula, I am directed by his lordship in council, to desire that so soon as the state of your health and the season will permit, you will proceed to the provinces on that coast; and you will forward to me, for the information of government, such accounts as you may be able to collect, of the first introduction of Christianity into India-of the arrival of the different sects who have been, or may be, in existence-of their general history, and of the persecutions to which they may have been exposed-of their success in making proselytes-of their church establishment, and of the source from

which they are maintained, and with all other circumstances connected with this important subject.

I have the honour to be, Rev. Sir, Your most obedient humble Servant, (Signed) G. G. KEBLE,

Sec. to Government.

Fort St. George, June 28, 1806.”

"To the Right Honourable Lord William C. Bentinck, Governor in Council, &c. &c.

"MY LORD,

"WHEN at Mysore, I was honoured by the receipt of Mr. Secretary Keble's letter, dated the 28th June last; and finding my general health much improved, I resolved to proceed to the Malabar coast, in search of the information required by your lordship in council, regarding the Christians inhabiting that part of the peninsula :-an investigation which I have found as interesting as it is important, whether it regards humanity at large, or as it is connected, in a political view, with the British interests in this country.

"To view the extensive field pointed out for my inquiries minutely, would require much more of my time than could be well spared from my other public avocations; and as I learned that the Rev. Dr. Buchanan was nominated by the government of Bengal, to travel over the same ground, for purposes somewhat similar, I did not think it incumbent on me to take up more than a general view of the subject, and I directed my attention accordingly, not so much to details as to matters of comprehensive import.

"The first object to which the orders of government refer, is, to an account of the introduction of Christianity into this country.

"There can be no doubt whatever, that the St. Thome Christians settled on the Malabar coast at a very early period of the Christian church; from whence they, at one time, spread in various directions as far even as Mileapoor, and St. Thomas's Mount :but to derive authentic information as to the time of their arrival, is at present no easy task.

"From the confusion arising from the imperfection of Hindoo chronology, from the desire which these Christians have to derive their origin from

the earliest possible times, (which may perhaps have introduced false traditions amongst them) and as all their authentic records are reported to have been destroyed during the persecutions of the church of Rome; from all these circumstances, whether we refer to the Hindoo accounts, to the St. Thome Christians themselves, or to their persecutors, the Roman Catholics, we are not likely to arrive at any certain conclusion as to the exact time of their establishment in Malabar. Some circumstances, however, may be collected from undoubted authority, by which it may be inferred, that they have been for nearly fifteen centuries established in India; for we find, in ecclesiastical history, that at the first council at Nice, in the year 325, a bishop from India was amongst the number composing that memorable synod; and, in the creeds and doctrines of the Christians of Malabar, internal evidence exists of their being a primitive church; for the supremacy of the pope is denied, and the doctrine of Transubstantiation never has been held by them; and they regarded, and still regard the worship of images as idolatrous, and the doctrine of purgatory to be fabulous-moreover, they never admitted as sacraments, extreme unction, marriage, or confirmation: all which facts may be substantiated on reference to the acts of the synod established by Don Alexis de Meneses, arch. bishop of Goa, at Udiamper, in the year 1599.

"The history of this council will be found most ably detailed in a work printed in French, and entitled, "The History of Christianity in India," published at the Hague, in the year 1724, by La Croze, the celebrated librarian to the king of Prussia.

"The object of this work was to deduce, from authentic materials, the rise, progress, and establishment of Christianity in the East; and to hold up to disgrace, and to merited indignation, the bigotted and unworthy conduct of the Roman Catholic church, in the persecution set on foot by her emissaries, under her avowed sanction, against the primitive Christians, who were found settled on the coast of Malabar; and La Croze seems to have discharged his duty to

the public in a most faithful, interesting, and able manner.

"When the Portuguese first arriv ed in this country, in the beginning of the sixteenth century, they found a Christian church using the SyrioChaldaic language, established in the neighbourhood of Cranganore; and, though it was published to the world many centuries before that period, that such a church existed, yet we find their ignorance expressed in the wonder which it excited.

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"These Christians met the Portuguese as natural friends and allies, and rejoiced at their coming; but the Portuguese were much disappointed at finding the St. Thome Christians firmly fixed in the tenets of a primitive church and soon adopted plans for drawing away from their pure faith this innocent, ingenuous, and respectable people: however, after using for nearly a century, all the customary arts and abominable persecutions of the church of Rome to no purpose, Don Alexis De Meneses, the archbishop of Goa, appeared amongst them; and, by his commanding influence, his zeal, and his learning, and on the authority of what he called the Council of Udiamper, forced the Syrian Metropolitan, his priests and people, into the Roman pale. The Archbishop, however, had not long quitted the scene of this triumph of bigotry, ere the people sighed for their old religion, and cherished it in private; but on the 22d of May, 1653, they held a congress at Alingatte, and great numbers, headed by their Metropolitan, revolted publicly from the Romish communion; nor has all the influence of the Roman Pontiff, and the kings of Portugal, been able to draw them away again from their old faith.

"Leaving the history of this interesting people, which is affectingly delineated in La Croze's Book, I shall, in this report, confine myself more particularly to the existing state of Christianity in Malabar and, in order that your Lordship may have the subject clearly before you, I shall consider each sect of Christians by itself, under the head of, 1st, St. Thome, or Jacobite Christians;-2dly, The Syrian Catholics, who have been forced from the Jaco

bite Church into the Romish pale; and, 3dly, The Latin Church.

St. Thome, or Jacobite Christians. "These people, who still retain their ancient creed and usages, consider themselves as the descendants of the flock established by St. Thomas, who is generally esteemed the Apostle of the East. Their ancestors emigrated from Syria; and the Syrio-Chaldaic is the language in which their church service is still performed. They admit no images within their churches, but a figure of the Virgin Mary with the child Jesus in her arms, which is considered merely as an ornament, and not a subject for idolatrous worship. They are generally denominated by the country people, Nazarance Mapilles. Nazaranee is obviously derived from Nazareth: but the origin of the word Mapillah is variously accounted for; by some it is ingeniously supposed to refer to the Virgin and Child, the only image admitted within their churches; as Ma implies Mother, in various languages, derived from the Sungscrit; and Pillah, Child. Others again, construe the term to indicate the rank originally conferred on these Christians by the sovereign of Malabar. Poolah signifies a class, in a state synonymous with our secretaries. Ma or Maha signifies great or superior. The term Mapillah is indiscriminately applied to Jews and Musselmen as to these Christians, distinguishing each by the prefix of the Jew, Syrian, or Nazaranee, or Musselman.

"It is certain that grants of honour and emolument were formerly possessed by these Christians, given to them by a king of Malabar, named Peremaul, engraven on copper, five of which engravings are still in existence; a fac-simile of which I have seen in the possession of the Resident of Travancore.

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It has been long believed, that these Christians held the tenets of the Nestorian heresy, and that they were obliged to leave their own country in consequence of persecution: however, it appears that the creed which they now follow denies that heresy, and seems to coincide in several points with the creed of St. Athanasius, but without its dammatory clauses.

"Baron Von Wrede has written a memoir on the subject of these Christians which appeared in the seventh volume of the Asiatic Researches, and which has the merit of calling our attention to these people; though it is no better than a lame transcript of information, which may be fully and satisfactorily obtained in La Croze's book, from whence every material part of that memoir is obviously taken indeed, wherever the Baron departs from his author, he becomes less interesting, or misleads his reader.

That the Christians in Malabar were early taught the tenets of Nestorius, is proved by La Croze, on the direct authority of Cosmas, an Egyptian merchant, (himself a Nestorian) who published his voyage to India in the year 547. It seems, however, not improbable that Christians had been planted in these shores long before the time of Nestorius; and, I am inclined to regard the tradition of its having spread hither in the age of the Apostles, as very far from fabulous.*

"With respect to their religious tenets, writers may and will disagree upon such subjects human reason avails nothing. The disputes which on these points have agitated the world, are in general no better than the perverse offspring of verbal differences.

"The following is a version of the present creed of these people, being a written communication from the Metropolitan to the Resident at Tra

vancore:

"In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, We, the Christians, believers in the religion of Jesus Christ, subject to the jurisdiction of Mar Ignatius, patriarch of Antioch, being loyalt Jacobians, hold the following creed:

* Eusebius informs us, that there qwere Christians in India as early as the year 189, who had the Gospel of St. Matthew in Hebrew, which they declared was received from Saint Bartholomew.

Eastern Christians, who renounce the communion of the Greek church, who differ from it both in doctrine and worship, may be comprehended under two distinct classes. To the former belong the Monophysites, or Jacobites, so called from Facob Albardai, who de

"We believe in the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, three Persons in one God, neither confounding the persons, nor dividing the substance, one in three and three in one.

"The Father generator,-the Son generated, and the Holy Ghost proceeding.

"None is before nor after other in majesty, honour, might, and power; co-equal, unity in trinity, and trinity in unity.

"We do not believe with Arius and Eunomius, that there are three different and separate substances.

"We do not believe, as Sabellius believes, by confusion of substance.

"We do not believe, as Macedonius said, that the Holy Ghost is less than the Father and Son.

elare it as their opinion that, in the Saviour of the world, there is only one nature; while the latter comprehends the followers of Nestorius, frequently called Chaldeans, from the country where they principally reside, and who suppose that there are two distinct persons or natures in the Son of God. The Monophysites are subdivided into two sects or parties, the one African, and the other Asiatic. At the head of the Asiatics is the patriarch of Antioch, who resides for the most part in the monastry of St. Ananias, which is situated near the city of Merdin, and sometimes at Merdin, his episcopal seat; as also at Amida, Aleppo, and other Syrian cities. The government of this prelate is too extensive, and the churches over which he presides too numerous, to admit of his performing himself all the duties of his high office; and, therefore, a part of the administration of the pontificate is given to a kind of colleague, who is called the Maphrian, or Primate of the East, and whose doctrines and discipline are said to be adopted by the eastern church beyond the Tigris. This primate used formerly to reside at Tauris, a city on the frontiers of Armenia; but his present habitation is the monastry of St. Matthew, which is in the neighbourhood of Mousul, a city of Mesopotamia. It is farther observable, that all the patriarchs of the Jacobites assume the denomination of Ignatius.—Mosheim, vol. iv. section xi. page 257. Vol. III. No. 11.

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"We do not believe, as Julianus† said, that Christ was only man.

"We do not hold, as Nestorius, the doctrine of two natures, and two substances in the Messiah.

"We do not believe, as the Chalcedonians said, that there are two natures in the Messiah.

"But we believe, by the doctrine of the Trinity, that the Son is coequal with the Father, without beginning or end; that, in the appointed time, through the disposition of the Father and Holy Ghost, without disjoining from the right side of the Father, he appeared on earth for the salvation of mankind; that he was the means of the Holy Ghost, and born of the Virgin Mary, through that in the union of the divine and was incarnate, God and Man. human nature, there was one nature

So

and one substance. So we believe."

"The service in their church is performed very nearly after the manner of the church of England; and it was hoped that one day an union when the Metropolitan was told that might take place between the two churches, he seemed pleased at the suggestion.

Dionysius, is now old and infirm, "The present Metropolitan, Mar but a very respectable character, and of the most venerable and prepossessing appearance. A person has been sent from Mousul, a city in Mesothe event of his decease; but this potamia, to succeed to his station in stranger, ignorant of the language of the country, with the character of being violent in his temper, and not averse, as it is supposed, to the views ed, will be prevented from ever takof the Romish church, it is to be hopof a pure and valuable people. ing charge of this precious remnant

"The Metropolitan has several archdeacons and deacons under him, have fifty-five churches; and the who act as Vicar-Generals. They

* These I suppose might be Manęs and Marcian.

Perhaps Julian, Bishop of Hali

carnassus.

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