Gibson, John Campbell, Scottish missionary to South China, born Glasgow, 10 January 1849, died Glasgow 25 November 1919. After education in Glasgow and training for ministry in the Free Church of Scotland in 1874 he went to Swatow (Shantou) in South China as Presbyterian Church of England missionary. He advocated the use of romanized script translations and contributed to the Easy Wen-li translation of the New Testament. He supported the union and independence of Chinese churches and his Duff lectures were published as Mission Problems and Mission Methods in South China (1901). He was joint chair of the 1907 Shanghai Mission Conference and chaired the Edinburgh 1910 Commission on the Church in the Mission Field. He was moderator of the Presbyterian Church of England in 1910 and of the first General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in China in 1919.
BDCM

 

Jaffray, Robert Alexander, Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) missionary in Asia, born Toronto, Canada, 16 December 1873 died Celebes, Netherlands East Indies, 29 July 1945. Converted under the ministry of C&MA founder, A. B. Simpsom, Jaffray trained at the New York Missionary Training Institute and was sent to Wuzhou South China. He helped found the Alliance Bible School (now the Alliance Seminary in Hong Kong) and his Chinese language Bible Magazine circulated around the world. In 1916 Jaffray opened a station in Tourane (now Da Nang) Vietnam and the Evangelical Church of Vietnam remains the largest Protestant church body in Vietnam. In 1928 he sent Chinese missionaries to Borneo and in 1931 he and his family settled in Makassar (now Ujung Pandang) in the Celebes. He was arrested by the Japanese in 1942 and died in captivity.
BDCM

 

Martyn, Henry East India Company chaplain and translator, born Truro, Cornwall, England, 18 February 1781, died Tokat, 16 October, 1812. A prize-winning student at St John’s College, Cambridge (MA, 1804, BD, 1805), he was influenced by Charles Simeon. Ordained deacon in 1803 at Ely, family financial obligations prevented him being a missionary, but not from accepting a chaplaincy in India (Dinapore, 1806-1809, Cawnpore, 1809-1810). There he met with the Baptists at Serampore and translated Scripture into Urdu, Arabic and Persian. In late 1810 he left India for Persia to improve his health and test his Persian translation. The Persian New Testament was presented to the Shah, but Martyn died in north Turkey before he could return to England and his other hope, that of persuading Lydia Grenfell to marry him. He was nursed and buried by the Armenian Church.
BDCM; ML

 

Neill, Stephen Charles, Bishop, missionary, scholar, born Edinburgh, 31 December 1900, died 20 July 1984. A brilliant student at Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1824 he went to Dohnavur, India, fell out with Amy Carmichael, learnt Tamil and engaged in teaching. He was ordained deacon at Tinnevelly in 1927 and accepted by the CMS while in Britain in 1928. He returned to Tinnevelly as a district missionary and was elected Bishop in 1939. Forced to resign in 1944 he worked for the WCC (1947-1954), editing with Ruth Rouse the History of the Ecumenical Movement 1517-1948 (1954) among other projects. He was professor of mission at the University of Hamburg (1962-1967) and of philosophy and religious studies at Nairobi (1969-1973). He retired to Wycliffe College Oxford, to travel, write and speak. He was a sensitive scholar, a troubled spirit, a beautiful writer and a great missionary.
BDCM; ML

Nevius, John Livingston, Presbyterian missionary to China, born 4 March 1829 Seneca County, New York, died Chefoo (Yantai), China, 19 October 1893. After study at Princeton (BD, 1853) in 1854 he arrived in China with his wife Helen Coan. In 1861 they based themselves in Ningpo, Shandong Province. He promoted self-propagating, self-governing, and self-supporting churches using a Manual for Inquirers which included instruction on Bible study, prayer, the Apostles’ Creed and Scripture passages to be memorized. He was involved in famine relief in 1877 and developed an annual pattern of itineration and the convening of a residential Bible school at their home each June to August. The “Nevius Plan” was widely followed in Korea after he was invited to explain his methods to Presbyterian missionaries there in 1890.
BDCM, ML

Rouse, Clara Ruth Missionary and ecumenical leader, born Clapham, South London 1872, died, 1956. She studied at Girton College, Cambridge from where she joined the Student Volunteer Movement. She became editor of the British Student Volunteer and a travelling secretary among women students, visited North America and was a missionary in India (1899-1901). John R Mott asked her to visit Europe and she became a WSCF secretary (1905-1924). An effective organizer, speaker, leader, fund-raiser and traveller, she maintained a strong commitment to evangelism. After World War I she helped launch European Student Relief. She was educational secretary of the Missionary Council of the National Assembly of the Church of England (1925-1939) and for decades one of the most influential women in the international Christian community. She was a member of the World’s YWCA Executive Committee (1906-1946) and president (1938-1946). She was widely published and shared with Stephen Neill in editing A History of the Ecumenical Movement (1954). 
BDCM, ML

Schmidlin, Jospeh, Father of Catholic missiology, born Kleinlandau, Sundgau, Alsace, 29 May 1876, tortured and died Schirmeck Concentration Camp, Alsace, 10 January 1944. He gained his doctorate at Strassburg (1906), was professor of theology and patrology in Münster, and was given a lectureship in missiology in 1910. This was raised to a chair in 1914, the first missiology chair in any Catholic university. His prodigious writing including Katholische Missionsgeschichte (1925) and the editing of Zeitschrift für Missionswissenschaft for 25 years from 1911. He developed ideas from Gustav Warneck and was the inspiration behind the “Münster school” of Catholic missiology which emphasized proclamation and salvation over church planting. He was tireless in stimulating students, including many studying for doctorates, speaking, and in establishing mission groups. His pugnacity often led to conflict. He was forcibly retired by the Nazis in 1934 and later imprisoned.
BDCM, ML

Simeon, Charles Anglican Evangelical leader, born Reading, 24 September 1759, died Cambridge, England, 12 November 1836. He was educated at Eton and King’s College Cambridge where he experienced an evangelical conversion in 1779. He was minister of Trinity Church Cambridge from 1782 to his death, despite intense opposition in the early years. In 1799 he helped found what became the Church Missionary Society. He was scrupulous in his churchmanship, coached evangelical students, established a trust to purchase advowsons which still bears his name, and provided some notable chaplains for the East India Company. He had an extensive correspondence and his sermons were widely circulated, including in North America. His biblical focus, moderate Calvinism and model of church loyalty remain important influences.
BDCM; ML 

Ziegenbalg, Batholomäus, pioneer Lutheran missionary to South India, born in Pulsnitz, Saxony, 1682, died Tranquebar, 23 February 1719. He studied at Halle and along with his fellow student Heinrich Plütschau responded to a call to India from King Frederick IV of Denmark. They were ordained in Copenhagen and arrived in Tranquebar, in July 1706 to hostility from Hindu and Danish authorities. Ziegenbalg set up a printing press supported by the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge in London, and published a Tamil grammar, hymnbooks, catechisms and the New Testament. He completed the Old Testament up to Ruth and established elementary schools and a seminary for Tamil clergy. He researched Indian religion and culture, but his Genealogie der Malabarischen Götter was not published until 1867 (ET, 1869).
BDCM

Zinzendorf, Nikolaus Ludwig von, Moravian leader, born Dresden, Saxony, 1700 died Herrnhut, 9 May 1760. He attended August Francke’s Paedagogium in Halle and studied law at Wittenberg and traveled before becoming legal councilor at Dresden in 1721. From 1722 refugees from Bohemia and Moravia began arriving on his family estates at Berthelsdorf, including members of the suppressed Hussite Unity of the Brethren (Unitas Fratrum). With German Pietists they formed the town of Herrnhut and the Moravian Church with Zinzendorf as leader. He was ordained as a Lutheran pastor in 1734, but was forced into exile by Saxon authorities until 1747. He was consecrated a bishop in 1737 and traveled to Moravian communities in Europe, England, the West Indies and the eastern United States.
BDCM

 

BDCM:  Gerald H. Anderson, ed. Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions. New York: Simon & Schuster Macmillan, 1998.

DAC: John Chew, David Wu and Scott Sunquist, eds., Dictionary of Asian Christianity, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans (forthcoming).

DEB: Donald M. Lewis, ed. The Blackwell Dictionary of Evangelical Biography 1730-1860. Oxford: Blackwell, 1995.

DEM:  Nicholas Lossky, et al, eds. Dictionary of the Ecumenical Movement. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans / Geneva: WCC, 1991.

DSCHT: Nigel M. de S. Cameron, ed. Dictionary of Scottish Church History and Theology. Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1993.

IBMR: International Bulletin of Missionary Research

ML: Gerald H. Anderson, et al, eds. Mission Legacies.  Biographical Studies of Leaders of the Modern Missionary Movement, Maryknoll: Orbis, 1994.

 

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