Page:The Chinese Empire. A General & Missionary Survey.djvu/321

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some extent in course of fulfilment. This has been due, no doubt, to the increase of prayer which has been called forth for the work in every part of China by the dreadful experiences of 1900. There is certainly a greater willingness on the part of the people to hear the Word preached and to welcome friendly intercourse.

At present there are five centres which are being worked by the members of the China Inland Mission: Bhamo, opened in 1875; Tali Fu, opened in 1881; Yunnan Fu, opened in 1882; Kutsing Fu, opened in 1886; and Pingyi Hsien, opened in 1904.

The conformation of the country renders it necessary that a number of other centres should be opened if there is to be any widespread evangelisation of the province, for the mass of the population reside in plains which are divided from each other by high hills or mountain ranges. Thus a great deal of valuable time and strength are necessarily wasted in efforts to itinerate from one plain to another, and the work done in one of these plains cannot affect the people in another.

It is desirable that medical missionary work should be largely increased; indeed the ideal plan would be to have a medical missionary for each large centre. At present the China Inland Mission has only one medical missionary for the whole province ! When it is remembered that it takes twenty days of travel to reach Tali from Bhamo, that from Tali to Yunnan Fu would need thirteen days, and five more days would be needed to reach Kutsing Fu from Yunnan Fu, it will be seen how impossible it would be for the medical man to do more than attend to those who come to him for advice in his own district.

There is also special need for the work of Christian women. No prosperous work can be looked for if the mothers and daughters are neglected, and this can only be accomplished by Christian women. The need for such workers will be evident when it is mentioned that for more than a year there has been only one unmarried lady and only three married ladies for all the women for whom