New York: Published by The Society, 1879, 1880, 1882. [Three Annual Reports for first, second, and fourth year of The Church Society for Promoting Christianity Amongst the Jews] . . . 1879, 1880, 1882. 8 1/8” x 5 3/8”. Thin paper wrappers. First Annual Report, pp. 52; Second Annual Report, pp. 48; Fourth Annual Report, pp. 42. Generally good plus or better: some dampstaining, some dust soiling to covers, and a few wavy pages; Second Annual Report with some cover staining.
These three annual reports describe the yearly activities of The Church Society in its efforts to promote Christianity and conversion of Jewish people. Beginning in 1842, the Episcopal Church collaborated with the London Jews Society, an Anglican missionary society, to further their cause, but it wasn't until 1878 that The Church Society for Promoting Christianity Amongst the Jews officially organized in New York.
In the First Annual Report, the Reverend Noah Hunt Schenk spoke at a gathering for The Society's first anniversary and reminded attendees of why they must invite Jewish people into the Christian faith:“It is a very remarkable thing that the average Christian mind does not take in the idea that the primitive Christian Church really was a Jewish Church...But where is now the Jewish element? It seems, in the history of the church, to have eliminated the Jewish element to make way for the Gentile...and that in every sense, there is indeed no difference between the Gentile and the Jew.”
With religious promulgation the driving force, and the desire to do God's work by bringing Jewish people home to the Christian church, the report details the activities used to further their objectives. Of primary focus was the religious education of Jewish children aged five through sixteen. In addition, an Industrial School was conducted where attendees practiced hymns and read Scripture while learning crafts like embroidery, sewing, and drawing. Additionally, Hebrew Mission Sunday School took place each Sunday providing the standard Christian instruction. The Society furthered their mission by coordinating missionary outreach across the country, and mailing publications to Jewish households in order to spread the word.
Reports contain detailed Treasurer's accounts of diocese donations indicated by state. At the end of each report, a catalog of bibles, prayer books, and tracts are listed with some translated into other languages. Each annual report lists the names in its governing body, but only the Fourth Annual Report includes a list of names for Missionaries of the Society in select locations.
An informative set of source material for the study of a little known organization that made Jewish conversion to Christianity its sole mission.
OCLC lists nine entities with annual reports. Three of the nine institutions list specific years. Of those three, three have the First Annual Report, two have the Second, and one has the Fourth. None in the trade as of July 2019.
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