Mcall, Robert Whitaker, Dd, Fls
McAll, Robert Whitaker, D.D., F.L.S.
a Congregational minister, was born at Macclesfield, Cheshire, England, December 17, 1821. He first studied architecture, but afterwards turned his attention to theology, and became a pastor in 1847, in which relation he continued until 1871, when he went to Paris with his wife for the purpose of viewing the scenes of the Franco-Prussian war. While he was standing on a street corner and distributing tracts to the passers-by, a man stepped from the throng and said "Sir, I perceive you are a clergyman; if any one like you is ready to come over here and teach us a gospel, not of superstition, priestcraft, and bondage, but of simplicity, liberty, and chairity, there are many of us ready to hear; but we have done with priests." Mr. McAll and his wife considered this a divine call and accordingly rented a room in Belleville, and on January 17, 1872, held the first meeting, twenty-eight were present. Mr. McAll could not speak French readily, but he could say; "God loves you," and "I love you" and that won them. The work has grown from this humble beginning until, in 1889; there were 126 stations and 27 missionaries, employed, not only in Paris, but in the provinces. The income of the mission is from private donations and legacies, and has amounted to £17,408 12s. 3d. The mission is administered on a very economical plan, spending for the year £16,480 16s. 10½d. Meetings to the number of 14,083 were held for adults, and 5320 for children. The aggregate attendance of adults was 919,925; of children, 235,927; 26,131 visits were made, and 500,307 Bibles, Testaments, tracts, etc., circulated. There is also a medical mission and two dispensaries. Each station has a small free lending library. Dr. McAll died May 11, 1893. The work is now carried on by his widow. There is an office of the mission at Room 21, No. 1710 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia. See Bonar, White Fields of France (N.Y. 1879); Missionary Review of the World, August, December 1889; July 1890; (Lond.) Cong. Year-book, 1890, 1894.