A QUAPvTER of a century has passed away since the col¬
ored Baptists began to live under their new and changed
conditions. From a few hundred thousands they have be¬
come a million and a quarter in number. As a rule, great
loyalty to the denomination characterizes them. If there
be any irregularity in doctrine or practice anywhere, it is
the result of ignorance rather than of erroneous convic¬
tions. The great need, therefore, of our colored churches,
is instruction in our denominational principles. They
need to understand fully why they are Baptists. Many
of them understand this in part only. They believe in
baptism, and hence are Baptists, just as though baptism
were the only tenet of our faith.
The present, and for many years to come the great
work of our ministry must be that of development, par¬
ticularly along the line of Baptist doctrine and work.
Much has been done by the living voice to train and lead
the people, but the time has come when the pen must also
be employed. Our trained leaders must write.
This book, therefore, makes no apology for coming into
existence. It is needed. The various parts have all