Rev. M. P. Hunt:
I have been very busy lately trying to get my country work in shape to start on this new year. There were nine applicants for baptism when I was at Chaug Kia Kin and quite a number of enquiries. There were some applicants for baptism during my last visit to Saling. Eighteen of the Saling members received letters to organise a new church four miles North of Pingtu City, This is the third time Saling has been called upon to give up some of her members to form another church. I hope it will be called upon thirty times if it will prove as effectual as it has been thus far.
Last Sunday the missionaries, with about 20 members from the other churches helped to orgnagaize the Hwoa San (River Mountain) church. The new church starts off with 18 members and under very promising circumstances. They have their own rented house, hired helper or evangelist and enough money promised among the natives themselves to pay for them, I have given them a contribution, but mine will be used for other purposes.
The other two churches of which I am pastor have almost enough of their own giving to have an evangelist a piece, I will give the rest. We have never called on the Board for any help thus far in our Pingtu work. Our whole North China mission is striving toward self-support.
Besides the three country churches we have five out-stations, which are run almost entirely by the natives, in fact I don't visit them more than twice a year. I have invited the deacons and officers of the three churches to meet here Friday and discuss the best plan of working these stations. They will, no doubt, be divided between the churches who will be responsible for the preaching every Sunday.
I have been trying for sometime to get someone to come io Pingtu to help, as we certainly need help, but still we are doing the best we can. Dr. Randle and Mrs. Randle go home this fail and that will leave Mrs. Sears and myself alone. We want to go home in 1900 and that will leave no one here. I wish the Board was able to send us a co-worker.
Remember me to Mrs. Hunt and your little missionary daughter.
Chefoo, China, March 23, 1898
[From The Baptist Argus, March 23, 1898, p. 12. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]
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