the mainland to recruit the Kiungani ranks, which once
consisted entirely of freed slave boys.
Now that the Mission had spread on the mainland, how
well it was that a Bishop who could travel was at the
helm ! He visited this district, the next year, both in
going up for his third Nyasa visit and in coming down.
In going up in June, he made peace between two Yao
In coming back he held a conference at Newala, where,
among other things, the custom known as unyago was
discussed. The custom varies in various tribes. The one
constant feature is certain dances, with singing. Much
that is heathen and very objectionable is mixed up with
these customs. Hence they are incompatible with the
acceptance of Christianity. A good chief can stop the
worst features, but even so the songs are abominable.
Something very interesting now happened. Bamaba
Matuka's uncle, Nakaam, a powerful paramount Yao
l8o HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
chief, died. Barnaba was chosen to succeed him over
the heads of several senior men. His elder unchosen
brother said that the chiefs chose him because the breadth
his Christianity had given to his character had made him
quite the leading man in the district. Barnaba had a
difficult time. His confirmation was fixed for the time
of his investiture with the name and dignity of Nakaam.
Moreover, he, a Christian chief, found himself, to his
horror, legally possessed of several wives, his predecessor's
being by custom inherited. Till he had made legal and
honourable provision for them, he could not be confirmed.
But he came through it all well, was invested at Masasi,
and managed to get to Newala in time for the confirma-
tion. His sons and stepson were also confirmed.
The next year there was again a war scare. The Ma-
gwangwara did, in fact, visit the country, and the natives
fled. Cecil Majaliwa, who had just brought his wife and
four children to Chitangali, put them in safety on the
hills, and remained himself at his post till danger was
over. This was really courageous, for all the Newala
natives absconded to the Makonde plateau, dwelling in
booths like the Jews at the Feast of Tabernacles. The
Magwangwara will not climb a hill, so they were safe
there ; but the desperate fear with which they went
about was instanced by a little scene witnessed by Mr.
Wathen, of Newala. The plateau rises i,ooo feet of sheer
wall above the lowlands, and only by precipitous goat
paths could the people scramble down for water. As
Mr. Wathen and his men were passing near this water,
they were taken for Magwangwara, and heard a yell of fear
as a boy dashed down the gully and ran a mile or two
without stopping ; after him ran his father, wishing he
CHRISTIAN VILLAGES ON THE ROVUMA i8l
could go as fast as the boy ; after him a grandmother
tumbled down the path and started at a good run ; but
the two last heard reason, and thankfully stopped when
they recognized a white man.
When the Magwangwara came, they marched as far
as Machemba's, who fortunately defeated them, and the
invincible warriors left about fifty shields on the field of
This inroad occasioned one of those migrations of a
whole village so puzzling to a geographer ; for when one
traveller has given latitude and longitude, the next
discovers a serious discrepancy in the site. But if puzz-
ling to the geographer, it is worse for the missionary, who
must follow his people and lose all his buildings. Now
was seen the wisdom of the temporary buildings at
Newala. The move was only to the dense undergrowth
of the Makonde table-land, just above old Newala ; the
reason being that the Magwangwara are lost without
the huge Zulu shields they still carry, and they cannot
drag them through the thick underwood. Feeling that
even this migration might not be final, more temporary
buildings were put up, and probably the entire Mission
buildings at Newala have never been worth more than^^ioo.
Here the Bishop found them in May 1889. He had
visited Chitangali, and had been delighted with Cecil
Majaliwa's work, who, after a year and a half, was able to
present twelve candidates for baptism, the chief's wife
among them, making twenty-two Christians under his
care ; and when all the twenty-two were confirmed, the
good chief, Nakaam, interpreted the charge. His step-
son, Yohana, now came to take the school under Cecil.
It will be remembered that in 1887 the Bishop met
l82 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
near the Rovuma the only Masasi Christian woman who
had not been ransomed from the Magwangwara, and
that he failed at that time to obtain her release. The
next year Mr. Porter managed to recover her ; after
six years of slavery Lilla Mawezai had kept her Christian
faith, so that the Bishop now had the happiness of
confirming her at Masasi, before going on to the lake.
The year 1890 was troubled, owing to some of the chiefs
not submitting kindly to the German power, to which
this district had been assigned as a " sphere of influence
in the general mania for possessing Africa." Great dis-
trust of the new European power was naturally felt at
first, travelHng was interrupted, and the Mission work
hindered, not by the Germans, but by the natives
unfriendly to them. This was only temporary, and of
course our missionaries in the German sphere act loyally
to the German authorities, teaching their people to look
to the Emperor as their great chief.
This year was marked by the third milestone to a native
ministry. The first was when John Swedi and George
Farajallah definitely offered themselves for the ministry
by being made sub-deacons. The second was reached
when John Swedi was made a deacon, and now, on the
day of the Apostle of the Gentiles, the first native priest
of the Mission was ordained in Christ Church.
Here in Zanzibar, afar from the cradle of Christianity,
afar off in time and place and customs, knelt Cecil Majaliwa,
first of all his race to be called to the Christian priest-
hood. Four chaplains of the British Navy took part in
the laying on of hands, and Archdeacon Jones-Bateman
preached on the text, " This is the day which the Lord
CHRISTIAN VILLAGES ON THE ROVUMA 183
" Two days' whole holiday was given in honour of the
event in all schools throughout the Mission. It is not easy
to estimate what this day will become in the annals of the
East African Church, nor what must have been the feelings
of any present who could remember the old sad scenes that
used to take place in that very spot where now one rescued
from actual slavery thus received his heavenly Master's
commission to loose the captive bonds of sin from the hearts
of his fellow-countrymen."
A touching example of the way in which an African
viewed the immense significance of this ordination is
found in a letter which Cecil received from St. Mark's
Mission, Transkei, Kaffraria, written by the Rev. T. K.
Masiza, the first South African native priest, to express
his rejoicing sympathy on hearing the joyful news.
The want of English lady workers for the Rovuma
district was much felt. The boys, as they grew up, had
to take heathen wives, and thus fell under heathen in-
fluence, for an African literally leaves father and mother
and cleaves to his wife and to her people. Mothers-in-law
are stem realities in Africa. For it is a curious outcome
of polygamy that the children obey the mother before the
father, feeling her to be their own parent. The father,
who divides his affection between many wives, has a
divided authority over his children. One mother-in-law
in this district even took away a catechumen's wife,
because he did not work hard enough for her.
In this year died a convert, whose history illustrates
the ups and downs of mission work.
Charles Sulimani was the first free Makua to come to
school at Masasi in 1876, and the next year he came under
the influence of the Rev. Chauncy Maples, he being then
184 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES'- MISSION
eighteen years old. Charles was a singular exception to
the Makua don't care attitude of mind. Mr. Maples,
whom he loved dearly through all vicissitudes, says of
him : —
" His contrition for his sins was as deep, and his devotion
for our Lord as tender, as any it has been my privilege to
Baptized on Whit Sunday, 1878, he was, two years later,
brought to Zanzibar for confirmation by Mr. Clarke. Mr.
Maples, who arrived from England just after, took him to
Magila, where, with earnest preparation, he received his first
Communion. Returning to Masasi, he married one of
the Christian colonists, and, working as a reader, sowed
much good seed in the villages round.
In the Magwangwara raid (1882) he behaved like a
Christian hero. His wife was among the captives, and
he at once gave himself up for her, lest she should suffer
dishonour. The Magwangwara asked why the Christians
did not fear those who could kill them. With deep
reverence Charles made answer, " Because it is only our
bodies you can kill with your spears ; it is our souls that
we care a.bout, and you can't touch them." It is said
that the savages were awestruck, having never realized
there was that in a man which they could not kill. A
man giving himself for his wife impressed them much.
Next day Mr. Porter ransomed him.
After this Charles worked on at Masasi, staying there
with Mr. Porter, when the emigration to Newala took
place. Then came his temptation. He had worked
hard, out of kindness, to ransom his relations and friends,
but instead of handing them over to their natural chiefs
CHRISTIAN VILLAGES ON THE ROW MA 185
he kept them under himself. The lust of power awoke
in him, and he began to make himself a petty chief. No
advice would he take, and he became involved in much
that was sinful ; and in his sin he remained for about
five years, till, in 1888, his conscience awoke, and he
wrote to Archdeacon Maples at Nyasa, asking to come
and see him, saying, " Though I have had many masters
in Christ yet I have only one father." The next year
(1889) he joined the Bishop's caravan when going up for
his fourth visit to Likoma, and Charlie acted as cook.
One night something happened which made a great
impression on him. He and another man were lying on the
edge of the darkness by the camp fire, when a lion came
up suddenly, without roaring, and made a mistake for
the first and probably the last time in its life — passing
by Charles he seized the Bishop's saucepan of porridge.
Finding this uneatable, he dropped it, again passed by
Charles, and was startled and driven off by the other man,
who was saying his prayers. Charles felt that God had
saved him from the paw of the lion to give him space to
repent. At Likoma the joy of full confession and abso-
lution awaited him. Surely his father and guide must
have felt that happiness of which John Coleridge Patteson
spoke when as a little child he longed to be able to
say the absolution, " because it must make people so
After this Charlie was advised to enter the service of
the Germans at Lindi, and he remained stedfast for the
little time left him. In the following October, as he was
guiding the Germans through Machemba's district, they
fell into an ambuscade, and Charles Sulimani was shot
dead, and buried the same evening. A little cross
l86 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES'^ MISSION
afterwards marked the spot where his body rests, under the
sign of Him who had brought back and forgiven His
erring child, " for he loved much."
By the end of the year the Christian chief, Barnaba,
had brought about a good understanding between the
Germans and the natives, and all was quiet.
For the next two years there is little to record. The
Bishop visited the Rovuma district in 1891 and 1892,
and found all well. In the first he spent Whitsuntide
and Trinity Sunday at Lindi and ChitangaU. At the
latter he baptized the first Makonde, and also baptized
Nakaam's nephew and heir ; and he visited Miwa, a
sub-station entirely begun by Cecil. In the latter year
he spent Ash Wednesday with Cecil, and, noticing a
peculiar collection of rice, beans, etc., round the font,
inquired the meaning. " Oh ! " said Cecil, " being a fast
day, no Christians would think of eating their midday
meal. They have brought it to offer to God. This food
will be sold for the poor and given to the Church."
There were great changes among the workers at this
time, but, roughly speaking, Mr. Porter and Mr. Hains-
worth occupied Newala, and their place was taken by
the Rev. R. F. Acland-Hood when they took their holiday.
The Rev. T. L. Taylor had died in charge of Masasi.
The Rev. E. Bucknall Smith, who attended his deathbed,
was building a new Masasi, the Rev. Alfred Camon
(ordained 1891) remaining at old Masasi. By the end of
1892, however, the Rev. William Porter was once more at
Masasi, with a deacon — the Rev. J. C. Haines — under
him. At Newala, Mr. Acland-Hood was joined a little
later by the Rev. James Grindrod ; while Cecil was still
at ChitangaU, which, in 1891, had undergone a migration.
CHRISTIAN VILLAGES ON THE ROW MA 187
There were also a large body of native teachers working
under the clergy, some of them occupying sub-stations.
When the Bishop came in 1893, his reception was even
more joyful than usual. At Chitangali the natives came
out to meet him, firing guns, and throwing dust on their
heads, which, contrary to Jewish use, is a sign of gladness.
Little more than five years ago there had been only
two Christians, now it was a Christian village. Better
still, Cecil could ask the Bishop to make two of his friends
readers. These were Cypriani Chitenji and Hugh
Mtoka — both since in Holy Orders. For this the waiting
time of thirty years was worth while, and worth while,
too, the precious lives poured forth like water for love
of the lost sheep of the Good Shepherd. The African,
it was proved at last, can teach and understand the
At Newala, too, the Bishop's was a happy visit. For
in the school were over one hundred boys ; on Whitsun
Eve thirty-six candidates were baptized, while on Trinity
Sunday seventy candidates were confirmed.
In Whitsun week the Bishop visited Lumanga, a
village lying in dense Makonde bush, about twenty-five
miles from Newala. The Bishop entered riding on his
donkey, which, as he said, caused about as much sensa-
tion as Womb well's menagerie in an English village.
Here the native teacher was taken away to pursue his
studies at Kiungani, and another was left in his stead.
Masasi also was visited, where a new sub-station,
Mkwera, had been started.
Once again Newala was to see its Bishop. In Advent
he came to the district, and, it seems almost monotonous
to say, he found all in good order. It was here that he
l88 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
heard of the founding of the Unangu Mission by Dr. Hine
(already mentioned), and by an inspiration thought of
sending Yohana Abdallah, Nakaam's stepson, there as
soon as he was ordained.
During this visit the Bishop spoke out on the status
of women as affected by polygamy. He boldly advised
the ladies to take the law into their own hands, and to
refuse to live with husbands who took another wife.
It was absolutely an unheard-of thing for women to take
any action, but he was not without hope that they might
do so. After all it would be a less change than that
wrought in the position of women by the coming of Christ.
Compare their position under Solomon with their position
when a Greater than Solomon had come and touched
the hearts and hands of women, and uttered His Talitha
cumi, making possible the dignity and glory of the Chris-
tian wife and mother, ay, and of the " consecrated
To such a future for African women we confidently
MAGILA IN THE BONDE COUNTRY
Church building at Magila — Bishop Smythies visits Kimweri — Bishop
Hannington's Visit — Fires at Magila — The German Blockade —
Bishop Smythies' Conduct — Herbert W. Woodward.
WE must pick up again the thread of the Magila
story, whose early founding and temporary
occupation, followed by the beginning of Archdeacon
Farler's work, have been told before. i
During the years 1880-1886 the building of the per-
manent stone church takes a prominent place in the
story. Church building is apt to bring out what is good
in the faithful, binding them together for a common
object. It also raises the keenest opposition of the
enemy. And so it was here.
The Archdeacon asked leave of Charlie Kibwana to
quarry stone for the church in his shamba, and several
tons were taken.
" Last week," writes the Archdeacon, " I found that my
people had cut up his shamba a good deal with holes and
hillocks, so I sent for him and offered him a kanzu and a
dollar for his kindness in giving us leave to win the stone.
He indignantly refused to take them, and said, ' What is this
^ See Chapters iv., v., and vii.
igo HISTORYiOF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
for ? Why will you not let me share in the work for God ?
Am I not a Christian ? Shall I take money for this stone ?
God placed the stone there, and shall it not be used to build
a church for His honour and glory ? I will not take a present.
I want to share in building our church.' "
In 1881 a mason had come to Magila, and in two years'
time the station was entirely rebuilt. Church building
had already begun in such earnest that a party of armed
Bondeis arrived to forbid the work, which they were
persuaded was a fort to dominate the whole country.
They cut off communication with the coast, and for a
few days there was actual danger.
" I invited their chiefs over to see what we were doing.
But instead of one or two chiefs they sent a small army of
soldiers, with orders to fight us and destroy the church and
Mission station. I had a sharp attack of fever, when I was
suddenly told that the valley was full of armed men, bent
upon fighting. Our native Christians began to gather their
guns, but I told them to put them away, and we all went
down unarmed to meet these Makumba people. I went up
to the chief man, and asked what he wanted. He said we
must give up building, give up teaching and preaching, and
live like heathens. After a long talk I promised to stop the
church building for a little while ; but the rest of their demands
I utterly refused. With a little patience and tact we got
them to go away. All the people of this country stood round
us splendidly, and this trouble has created a bond of sympathy
between us and the heathen which will greatly aid our work."
For a time, therefore, a smaller temporary church was
The Rev. W. D. Lowndes, who joined the Mission as
a layman in 1881, was now able to relieve Mr. Farler of
a great deal of work of the more secular kind.
MAGILA IN THE BONDt COUNTRY
Next came the lime troubles. Limestone was found
in the wilderness, half a day from Magila, and easily
burnt. But transporting it was a difficulty.
" When I was in Zanzibar I bought seven donkeys to bring
it over, but the donkeys proved a failure. First a lion ate
one, then four died (could not stand the climate), and the
remaining two are laid up."
Carrying it on men's heads was slow and expensive,
and, worse still, the people, after laughing at the idea
of burning stone for anything less precious than silver,
refused to let it be burnt or taken. The Archdeacon
wrote for soldiers from Zanzibar, to insist on the lime
being carried. The Bishop, however, wrote : —
" The more I think of it, the more it seems to me that the
Mfunti people have a right to interfere with the burning of
lime in the wilderness ... I should think there is no
doubt that they have a right to cut wood and to cultivate
the ground where you have been burning lime. . . . H
says the lime lies within a gunshot of the actual clearings
of the Mfunti people. If anything like this is true, I am sure
we ought to make an agreement with them, and satisfy all
So successful was this course, that two months later
the Archdeacon writes : —
" All our troubles are over. ... A letter came from
Umba to say that the people who had refused to let us burn
lime any more in the wilderness, and demanded fifty dollars
for leave to carry what we had burnt, had now accepted my
offer of thirty dollars to settle all claims in the place where
we burn lime, and also the perpetual right to carry lime
through their country. I am so pleased that I intend, on
192 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
my next visit to Umba, to make them a present of twenty
dollars, to show them that it was not money I contended
for, but justice."
By Easter Day the temporary stone church was
finished, and the Archdeacon wrote joyfully that it was
crowded in every part, though twice the size of the first
church, the chief and all his officers coming in state, and
every confirmed Christian communicating.
" It was a grand sight to see this large congregation
worshipping the Risen Saviour ; not freed slaves, but free
natives, coming of their own accord, because they felt the
need of God. I heard one man say, ' I could never feel
hungr}' here, it is so beautiful.' "
A new stone house had been erected, with bedrooms
upstairs, for the missionaries : a great improvement
on the mud huts where, when it rained, mud below
and mud descending from above were the missionary's
portion by day and night.
As the natives acquired more confidence in the builders
the permanent church went on again. By the end of
1883 we hear of the north aisle being roofed in, and the
next year the church was half finished, and waiting only
for funds ; while the natives said : " Let the missionaries
go where they like, build where they like, teach all the
The spiritual work during these years had advanced
and retreated, but only like the waves of a steadily flowing
tide. This was a true native church. Many people say :
" Where is the difference between free men and freed
slaves ? A slave may be of higher rank, and only recently
taken." But the Christianity of the slave, freed and
MAGILA IN THE BOND& COUNTRY 193
given to the Mission, is more or less a thing of course ;
the free native serves God of his own accord. By the
end of 1882, two native deacons (John Swedi and James
Chala Salfey), three readers (Acland Sahera, Lawrence
Kombo, and Ackworth Songolo), with eight native school-
masters, were at work in the district.
Early in the same year Archdeacon Farler writes : —
" We have been having some little trouble with the
natives. Not our neighbours, they were involved with us,
but people living some distance off, who have been
urged by the coast Mohammedans to drive us out of
the country. I got wind of the matter, and sent a friendly
chief to the meeting with a letter, which nobody could read ;
but as I had coached my friend up in its contents, and he
held it in his hand, as he delivered my message, it did quite
as well. They thought it a great compliment on my part.
Every one took the letter and solemnly looked at it, and
expressed himself perfectly satisfied. We were then voted
with acclamation ' the brothers of the natives.' The coast
people were very angry, but my friendly chief told them they
had tried to breed discord in the land, and told many hes."
In May he writes : —
" The work grows beyond my control. I cannot check
it ; I can only try to guide it. But we must have a doctor,
another musical priest, and a schoolmaster who can play the
harmonium and train the choir."
The first of these wants was soon supplied. Before
Michaelmas, Dr. Petrie, sent by the Guild of St. Luke
as their first medical missionary, arrived at Magila, where
he was resident three years. His cures were the greatest
help to the Mission, taking the place, as the Bishop
remarked, of the miracles in the Early Church,
194 HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES' MISSION
But now, as ever, the tares were among the corn. A
young catechumen, named Mazagija, was cut off from
fellowship with the faithful for taking a second wife.
This a catechumen, of course, promises not to do. True,
there were extenuating circumstances. The first wife
had run away three years before, and he thought her gone
entirely ; but on his marriage she reappeared, demanding
her rights. The second wife had been highly paid for,
and his father would not hear of his giving her up. For
five years he had been held back from baptism previously,
from doubts of his real conversion. Even now he wished to
follow Christ and the desturi (customs) of the land ; so that
when the Archdeacon publicly took away his cross, asking