A Short Visit To Yunnan

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The following is an introduction to the Slide-Show: "Visit to Yunnan South China"


SAM POLLARD AND THE LEPERS.
At the end of the 19th century, Sam Pollard a Wesleyan Methodist Missionary, from England Was working in the remote city of Zhaotong in South West China. One day ten lepers walked into his clinic, seeking a cure for their leprosy. These lepers were from the Miao Tribe, with their flowery dress. He told them he had no cure for leprosy, but if they stay and listen to the preaching in the hall, they would learn about God's gift for eternal life. The lepers remained for about ten days and then left. Some time later there a arrived a group of Miao village leaders, who insisted that he come with them to their village. He tried in vain to explain that he was a busy man with all the work in Zhoatong. They were insistent saying they were all prepared to become Christians and were waiting for him to teach them from the book.
Finally he gave in to their persistence and pack up and went with them. It was a weeks trip walking day after day. In the region of Weining Guizho Province. They finally arrived at the Miao village. Everybody was out to greet him and there in the village they had collected all their idolatrous paraphernalia to do with spirit worship, ready to burn it all and turn to Christ. They explained to him that in their ancient legends they had a story that some day a white man with a big nose would come and teach them about God from the book. ( This legend is common to many of the ethnic minorities of Myanma (Burma) and Nagaland and Vietnam. Where great numbers have become Christians.) So when the lepers had returned from Zaotong telling about the white man with a big nose teaching from the book about Jesus and God. They knew this was the fulfilment of their legend.
The outcome was that Sam Pollard had to leave his Chinese work and spend all his time teaching the crowds of Miao who had become Christians. Some years prior to this. There had been numbers of Miao from Guizho that had emigrated to the mountains of Yunnan. Soon their relatives told them the Gospel, These people also in great numbers were seeking to become Christians. Sam Pollard approached the CIM if they could send a missionary to Yunnan. So Arthur.G. Nicholls an Australian was sent. After a time Arthur Nicholls found seekers from other tribes were crowding in to be taught. Soon he found himself with 7 language groups of seekers. He appealed for other missionaries to be sent to join him. The mission sent George.E.Metcalf It took him 9 months to walk to Wuding. Mr Metcalf took on 3 language groups the Eastern Lisu (Lipo), Laga, and Yunnanese Thai. Later Mr Gladstone Portuous came taking on the work among the Yi Tribe.
There was great comradeship among these pioneers and Sam Pollard devised The Pollard Script, to put the Miao language to writing. The pioneers then worked on adapting this script to their varying tribal languages. This picture taken in 1911 was on one of those occasions when they got together to share mutual problems and discuss the growth of the churches.
In 1938 Dr and Mrs Howard Taylor visited Yunnan to write a book on the Life of Arthur G. Nicholls. On their voyage back to England, the sad news of The Home call of J.O.Frazer was relayed to them. This resulted in the book "Beyond the ranges" (The Life of J.O.Frazer being written in its place.)