Why did the Methodist missionaries seek out the full blood tribal yolngu (Aborihinal) of north-east Arnhem Land who fiercely resisted intruders into their practically unknown and untamed country? One answer was the Bible, and another was by the 1920s the plight of the Australian Aboriginee because of contact with Europeans across wide Australia.
What did happen to the yolngu who lived by their own laws at the time of the arrival of the first Europeans, the Christian mission balanda in 1923, when they settled onto their land?
Yolngu from (law) was enforced by the spear throughout their lands until the missionaries with the Bible and the cross of Jesus arrived. The Australian Police then, although the missionaries were only few in number, began to visit to support new western laws that were being introduced to the yolngu where justice was dealt with by the law courts and enforced by the power of the gun, so when the law was broken there was the possibility of imprisonment, and also in those days there was the most deadliest of all western laws - capital punishment.
With the arrival of the Mthodist Overseas Mission with modern conveniences and living conditions for the yolngu, it therefore attracted many other yolngu clans living on the mainland to come and live at Milingimbi,
The mission in particular became a buffer between the yolngu and the outside encroaching western dominant society, so our yolngu communities began to grow and prosper which was contrary to many communities down south where Aboriginals from their first contact with mainstream Europeans became disempowered, and as their lands were being fenced and taken from them they bagan to die off in large numbers and by the 1920s they were looked upon as a dying race with the possibility of extinction.