236 i'lliSSIONARY WORK IN JAPAN. The year 1881 opened more brightly. The gov­ernor of Kyoto had resigned, and his successor proved to be a man of liberal ideas. "I am informed," writes Mr. Neesima, "that he intends to call upon me soon. He will then be quite different from the former one. When I see him I shall try to present to him a phn to revolutionize the system of education in this city. My aim is to start a Sunday-school for the teachers of the primary schools." One of the immediate re­sults of this change in the local government was the permission granted to hold religious meetings in the large theatres of the city. The first of these was at­tended by fom· thousand persons, and was addressed by twenty different speakers. These meetings pro­duced a profound impression. In an editorial, of which the following is a translation, the " Osaka Nippo," one of the most influential daily papers of Japan, asked:-"Is it the hand o£ man or of Heaven, or is it the inevitable tendency of the age, or is it the freedom o£ the human mind that has advanced to such an extent, that, in the very heart of Kyoto, the original Head and Holy Seat of Shintoism and Buddhism, a great meeting for the preaching of the Jesus Way has been held without any opposition? We need not go back to the utter destruction of the Christians in the war of Shimabara, but confining ourselves to what we have observed, it seems like the things of yesterday, that law rigidly prohibiting Christianity, written in eleven characters, and posted high in air before all the people; and that other law of religious examina­tion that required every one to be enrolled once a year as either a Buddhist or Shintoist. Now such laws have become the dreams of fourteen years ago,