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Timeline of Christian missions

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This timeline of Christian missions chronicles the global expansion of Christianity through a listing of the most significant missionary outreach events.

Apostolic Age

Earliest dates must all be considered approximate

Early Christianity

  • 100 – First Christians are reported in Monaco, Algeria; a missionary goes to Arbela, a sacred city of the Assyrians that the Christian church is katholikos ("universal")
  • 112 – Pliny the Younger reports rapid growth of Christianity in Bithynia[7]
  • 140 – Hermas writes: "The Son of God ... has been preached to the ends of the earth"[1]
  • 150 – Gospel reaches Portugal and Morocco[1]
  • 166 – Bishop Soter writes that the number of Christians has surpassed the Jews[8]
  • 167 – At the request of Lucius of Britain, missionaries Fuganus (or Phagan) and Duvianus (or Deruvian) were sent by Pope Eleuterus to convert the Britons to Christianity[9]
  • 174 – First Christians reported in Austria[1]
  • 177 – Churches in Lyon and Vienne (southern France) report being persecuted[10]
  • 190 – Pataenus of Alexandria goes to India in response to an appeal for Christian teachers[11]
  • 196 – In Assuristan (Parthian ruled Assyria) Bar Daisan writes of Christians among the Assyrians, Parthians, Bactrians (Kushans), and other peoples in the Persian Empire[12]
  • 197 – Tertullian writes that Christianity had penetrated all ranks of society in North Africa[13]
  • 200 – First Christians are reported in Switzerland and Belgium[1]
  • 206 – Abgar, the Syriac King of Edessa, embraces the Christian faith[14]
  • 208 – Tertullian writes that Christ has followers on the far side of the Roman wall in Britain where Roman legions have not yet penetrated[15]
  • 250 – Denis (or Denys or Dionysius) is sent from Rome along with six other missionaries to establish the church in Paris[16]
  • 270 – Death of Gregory Thaumaturgus, Christian leader in Pontus. It was said that when Gregory became "bishop" there were only 17 Christians in Pontus while at his death thirty years later there were only 17 non-Christians.[17]
  • 280 – First rural churches emerge in northern Italy; Christianity is no longer exclusively in urban areas
  • 287 – Maurice from Egypt is killed at Agauno, Switzerland for refusing to sacrifice to pagan divinities[18]
  • 300 – First Christians reported in Greater Khorasan; an estimated 10% of the world's population is now Christian; parts of the Bible are available in 10 different languages[19]

Era of the seven Ecumenical Councils

  • 327 – Georgian King Mirian III of Iberia converted by Nino[23]
  • 330 – Ethiopian King Ezana of Axum makes Christianity an official religion
  • 332 – Two young Roman Christians, Frumentius and Aedesius, are the sole survivors of a ship destroyed in the Red Sea due to tensions between Rome and Aksum. They are taken as slaves to the Ethiopian capital of Axum to serve in the royal court.[19]
  • 334 – The first bishop is ordained for Merv / Transoxiana (area of modern-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and southwest Kazakhstan)[24]
  • 337 – Emperor Constantine baptized shortly before his death[25]
  • 341 – Ulfilas begins work with the Goths in present-day Romania[26]
  • 343 - The Council of Serdica, or Synod of Serdica [27] (also Sardica), was a synod convened in 343 at Serdica in the civil diocese of Dacia, by Roman dominate Emperors Constans I, augustus in the West, and Constantius II, augustus in the East. It attempted to resolve the Arian controversy, and was attended by about 170 bishops. It was convened by the two augusti at the request of Pope Julius I.
  • 350 – Bible is translated into Saidic, an Egyptian language[28] It attempted to resolve the Arian controversy, and was attended by about 170 bishops.[4][b] It was convened by the two augusti at the request of Pope Julius I.[5]
  • 354 – Theophilus "the Indian" reports visiting Christians in India;[12] Philostorgius mentions a community of Christians on the Socotra islands, south of Yemen in the Arabian Sea[29]
  • 364 – Conversion of Vandals to Christianity begins during reign of Emperor Valens[30]
  • 370 – Wulfila translates the Bible into Gothic, the first Bible translation done specifically for missionary purposes
  • 378 – Jerome writes, "From India to Britain, all nations resound with the death and resurrection of Christ"[19]
  • 380 – Roman Emperor Theodosius I makes Christianity the official state religion[31]
  • 382 – Jerome is commissioned to translate the Gospels (and subsequently the whole Bible) into Latin.[32]
  • 386 – Augustine of Hippo converted[33]
  • 397 – Ninian evangelizes the Southern Picts of Scotland; three missionaries sent to the mountaineers in the Trento region of northern Italy are martyred[34]
  • 400 – Hayyan begins proclaiming gospel in Yemen after having been converted in Hirta on the Persian border; in starting a school for native Gothic evangelists, John Chrysostom writes, "'Go and make disciples of all nations' was not said for the Apostles onlyu, but for us also"[19]
  • 410 – New Testament translated into Armenian[26]
  • 420 – A Pre-Islam Arabian Bedouin tribe under sheikh Peter-Aspebet is converted[35]
  • 425 – The first bishops are ordained for Herat (Afghanistan) and Samarkand (Uzbekistan)
  • 432 – Patrick goes to Ireland as missionary[36]
  • 450 – First Christians reported in Liechtenstein[19]
  • 496 – Conversion of Clovis I, king of Franks in Gaul, along with 3,000 warriors[37]
  • 499 – Persian king Kavadh I, fleeing his country, meets a group of Christian missionaries going to Central Asia to preach to the Turks
  • 500 – First Christians reported in North Yemen; Nairam becomes Christian center
  • 720 – Caliph Umar II puts heavy pressure on the Christian Berbers to convert to Islam
  • 716 – Boniface begins missionary work among Germanic tribes[53]
  • 724 – Boniface fells pagan sacred oak of Thor at Geismar in Hesse (Germany)[54]
  • 732 – Muslim advance from Spain and southern France stopped by Charles Martell at Tours and Poitiers
  • 740 – Irish monks reach Iceland[55]
  • 771 – Charlemagne becomes king and will decree that sermons be given in the vernacular. He also commissioned Bible translations.[56]
  • 781 – Nestorian Stele erected near Xi'an (China) to commemorate the propagation in China of the Luminous Religion, thus providing a written record of a Christian presence in China[57]
  • 787 – Liudger begins missionary work among the pagans near the mouth of the Ems river (in Germany)[58]

Middle Ages

1000 to 1499

  • 1000 – Christianity accepted by common consent in Iceland by parliament (Alþingi). Leif the Lucky introduces the Gospel to Greenland, possibly Vinland (Newfoundland)[73]
  • 1003 – The Hungarian king sends evangelists to Transylvania[74]
  • 1008 – Sigfrid (or Sigurd), English missionary, baptizes King Olof of Sweden
  • 1009 – Bruno of Querfurt is beheaded in Prussia where he had gone as a missionary[72]
  • 1015 – Russia is said to have been "comprehensively" converted to the Orthodox faith;[75] Olaf II Haroldsson becomes the first king of the whole of Norway. Over the next 15 years he would organize Norway's final conversion and its integration into Christian Europe.[76]
  • 1017 – Günther tries to convert the inhabitants of Vorpommern; the mission is not successful.[77]

1500 to 1600

  • 1500 – Franciscans enter Brazil with Cabral[98]
  • 1501 – Portuguese explorer João da Nova builds a chapel at Mossel Bay, the first one in South Africa
  • 1501 – Pope Alexander VI grants to the crown of Spain all the newly discovered countries in the Americas, on condition that provision be made for the religious instruction of the native populations
  • 1502 – Bartolomé de las Casas, who will later become an ardent defender of the indigenous peoples of the Americas, goes to Cuba. For his military services there he will be given an encomienda, an estate that included the services of the Indigenous Peoples of the Americas living on it.
  • 1503 – Mar Elijah, Patriarch of the East Syrian church, sends three missionaries "to the islands of the sea which are inside Java and to China."[106]
  • 1506 – Mission work begun in Mozambique[105]
  • 1508 – Franciscans begin evangelizing in Venezuela[107]
  • 1509 – First church building constructed on Puerto Rico[105]
  • 1510 – Dominicans begin work in Haiti[53]
  • 1511 – Martin de Valencia came to believe that Psalm 58 prophesied the conversion of all unbelievers. While reflecting on the Scripture passage, he asked, "When will this be? When will this prophecy be filled . . . we are already in the afternoon, at the end of our days, and the world's final era." Later that same week, while reading aloud from the prophet Isaiah, he reportedly saw a vision of vast multitudes being converted and baptised. He began to pray to be chosen to preach and convert all heathen. He would die 20 years later as a missionary to Mexico.[108]
  • 1512 – Dominican missionary Antonio de Montesino returns to Spain to try to convince King Ferdinand that all is not as it should be in the new western colonies. He reported that on the islands of Hispaniola (now Dominican Republic and Haiti) and Cuba, the indigenous peoples were rapidly dying out under the system of slavery used by the colonists.
  • 1513 – In Cuba, Bartolomé de las Casas is ordained (possibly the first ordination in the New World). Soon thereafter, Las Casas will renounce all claims to his Indian serfs
  • 1515 – Portuguese missionary Francisco Álvares is sent on a diplomatic mission to Dawit II, the Negus or Emperor of Abyssinia (an old name for Ethiopia)
  • 1515 – Portuguese missionaries begin work in Benin, Nigeria[109]
  • 1517 – The Mughal Rulers of Delhi opened the door of Bengal to Christian missionaries[110]
  • 1518 – Don Henrique, son of the king of the Congo, is consecrated by Pope Leo X as the first indigenous bishop from sub-Saharan Black Africa[111]
  • 1519 – Two Franciscans accompany Hernán Cortés in his expedition to Mexico[112]
  • 1520 – German missionary Maximilian Uhland, also known as Bernardino de San José, goes to Hispaniola with the newly appointed Bishop Alessandro Geraldini.
  • 1521 – Pope Leo X grants Franciscan Francis Quiñones permission and faculties to go as a missionary to the New World together with Juan Clapión
  • 1522 – Portuguese missionaries establish presence on coast of Sri Lanka and begin moving inland in the wake of Portuguese military units
  • 1523 – Martin Luther writes a missionary hymn based on Psalm 67, Es woll uns Gott genädig sein. It has been called "the first missionary hymn of Protestantism."[113]
  • 1524 – Martin de Valencia goes to New Spain with 12 Franciscan friars
  • 1525 – Italian Franciscan missionary Giulio Zarco is sent to Michoacán on the western coast of Mexico where he will become very proficient in some of the indigenous languages
  • 1526 – Franciscans enter Florida;[114] Twelve Dominican friars arrive in the Mexican capital
  • 1527 – Martyrs' Synod — organized by Anabaptists, it is the first Protestant missionary conference
  • 1528 – Franciscan missionary Juan de Padilla arrives in Mexico. He will accompany Coronado's expedition searching for the Seven Cities and eventually settle among the Quivira (now called the Wichita)[115]
  • 1529 – Franciscan Peter of Ghent writes from Latin America that he and a colleague had baptized 14,000 people on one day[116]
  • 1531 – Franciscan Juan de Padilla begins a series of missionary tours among Indian tribes southeast of Mexico City[13]
  • 1532 – Evangelization of Peru begins when missionaries arrive with Francisco Pizarro's military expedition[105]
  • 1533 – The Pechenga Monastery is founded in the Extreme North of Russia to preach Gospel to the Sami people; Augustinian order arrives in Mexico; First Christian missionaries arrive in Tonkin, what is now Vietnam[117]
  • 1534 – The entire caste of Paravas on the Coromandel Coast are baptized—perhaps 20,000 people in all[118]
  • 1536 – Northern Italian Anabaptist missionary Hans Oberecker is burned at the stake in Vienna.[119]
  • 1537 – Pope Paul III orders that the Indigenous peoples of the Americas of the New World be brought to Christ "by the preaching of the divine word, and with the example of the good life."[98]
  • 1538 – Franciscans enter Paraguay[112]
  • 1539 – The Pueblos of what is now the U.S. Southwest are encountered by Spanish Franciscan missionary Marcos de Niza[120]
  • 1539 – Together with two friends Ignatius of Loyola forms the Society of Jesus which is approved by Pope Paul III one year later.
  • 1540 – Franciscans arrive in Trinidad and are killed by cannibals
  • 1541 – Franciscans begin establishing missions in California
  • 1542 – Francis Xavier goes to Portuguese colony of Goa in West India;[121]
  • 1543 – Anabaptist Menno Simons leaves the Netherlands and begins planting churches in Germany[122]
  • 1544 – Franciscan Andrés de Olmos, leads group of Indian converts to Tamaulipas
  • 1545 – Testifying to the power that letters back home from missionaries have had, Antonio Araoz writes about Francis Xavier: "No less fruit has been obtained in Spain and Portugal through his letters than has been obtained in the Indies through his teaching."[123]
  • 1546 – Xavier travels to the Indonesian islands of Morotai, Ambon, and Ternate
  • 1547 – Wealthy Spaniard Juan Fernández becomes a Jesuit. He will go to Japan as a missionary.
  • 1548 – Xavier founds the College of the Holy Name of God in Baçaim on the northwest coast of India
  • 1549 – Dominican Luis Cancer, who had worked among the Mayans of Guatemala and Mexico, lands at Tampa Bay (Florida) with two companions. They are immediately killed by the Calusa.[124]
  • 1549 Jesuit missionaries led by Xavier arrive in Japan and built a base in Kyushu.[125] Their aggressive proselytizing was most successful in Kyushu, with about 100,000 to 200,000 converts, including many daimyōs.[126]
  • 1550 – Printed Scriptures are available in 28 languages[105]
  • 1551 – Dominican Jerome de Loaysa founds the National University of San Marcos in Lima (Peru) as well as a hospital for indigenous peoples
  • 1553 – Portuguese missionaries build a church in Malacca Town, Malaysia
  • 1554 – 1,500 converts to Christianity are reported in Siam (now called Thailand)[105]
  • 1555 – John Calvin sends Huguenots to Brazil[127]
  • 1555 – The first, failed, attempt to set up a Christian mission in Cambodia, by Dominican Gaspar da Cruz.[128]
  • 1556 – Gaspar da Cruz spends a month preaching in Guangzhou, China.[129][130]
  • 1557 – Jesuit bishop André de Oviedo arrives in Ethiopia with five priests to convert the local Ethiopian Christians to Catholicism.[131]
  • 1558 – The Kabardian duke Saltan Idarov converts to Orthodox Christianity
  • 1559 – Missionary Vilela settles in Kyoto, Japan
  • 1560 – Gonçalo da Silveira, a Portuguese Jesuit missionary, visited the Munhumutapa Empire, where he rapidly made converts
  • 1562 – Diego de Landa burns the libraries of the Maya civilization[132]
  • 1563 – Jesuit missionary Luis Frois, who will later write a history of Jesuit activity in Japan, arrives in that country; Ōmura Sumitada becomes the first daimyō (feudal landholder) to convert to Christianity
  • 1564 – Legazpi begins Augustinian work in Philippine Islands[133][134]
  • 1565 – Jesuits arrive in Macau.
  • 1566 – The first Jesuit to enter what is now the United States, Pedro Martinez, is clubbed to death by fearful Indians on the sands of Fort George Island, Florida
  • 1567 – Missionaries Jeronimo da Cruz and Sebastiao da Canto, both Dominicans, arrive at Ayutthaya, Thailand
  • 1568 – In the Philippines, Diego de Herrera baptizes Chieftain Tupas of Cebu and his son
  • 1569 – Jeronimo da Cruz is murdered along with two newly arrived missionaries
  • 1570 – Ignacio Azevedo and 39 other Jesuit missionaries are killed by pirates near Palma, one of the Canary Islands, while on their way to Brazil
  • 1571 – Capuchin friars of the 'Strict Observance' arrive on the island of Trinidad with conquistador Don Juan Ponce of Seville.
  • 1572 – Jesuits arrive in Mexico
  • 1573 – Large-scale evangelization of the Florida Indian nations and tribes begins with the arrival of Franciscan friars; Augustinian order enters Ecuador
  • 1574 – Augustinian Guillermo de Santa Maria writes a treatise on the illegitimacy of the war the Spanish government was waging against the Chichimeca in the Mexican state of Michoacán
  • 1575 – Church building constructed in Kyoto. Built in Japanese architectural style, it was popularly called the "temple of the South Barbarians"
  • 1575 – Spanish Augustinians Martín de Rada and Geronimo Martín spend four months in Fujian, China, trying to arrange for long-term missionary work there. The attempt ends in failure due to unrelated events in the Philippines.
  • 1577 – Dominicans enter Mozambique and penetrate inland, burning Muslim mosques as they go[135]
  • 1578 – King of Spain orders the bishop of Lima not to confer Holy Orders on mestizos
  • 1579 – Jesuit Alessandro Valignano arrives in Japan where, as "Visitor of Missions", he formulates a basic strategy for Catholic proselytism in that country. Valignano's adaptationism attempted to avoid cultural frictions by covering the gap between certain Japanese customs and Roman Catholic values.[136]
  • 1580 – Japanese daimyō (feudal landholder) Arima Harunobu becomes Christian and takes the name Protasio
  • 1582 – Jesuits, with Michele Ruggieri and Matteo Ricci as the pioneers, begin mission work in mainland China; introduce Western science, mathematics, astronomy[137]
  • 1583 – Five Jesuit missionaries are murdered near Goa (India)
  • 1584 – Matteo Ricci and a Chinese scholar translate a catechism into Chinese under the title Tian Zhu Shi Lu(天主實録) (A True Account of God)
  • 1585 – Carmelite leader Jerome Gracian meets with Martin Ignatius de Loyola, a Franciscan missionary from China. The two sign a vinculo de hermandad misionera—a bond of missionary brotherhood—by which the two orders would collaborate in missionary work in Ethiopia, China, the Philippines, and the East and West Indies.
  • 1586 – Portuguese missionary João dos Santos reports that locals kill elephants to protect their crops in Sofala, Mozambique.
  • 1587 – All foreigners ordered out of Japan when the shōgun fears they are as divisive and might present the Europeans with an opportunity to disrupt Japan. They stay but persecution escalates.
  • 1587 – Manteo becomes the first American Indian to be baptized by the Church of England
  • 1590 – A book by Belgian pastor Hadrian à Saravia has a chapter arguing that the Great Commission is still binding on the church today because the Apostles did not fulfill it completely[138]
  • 1591 – First Catholic church built in Trinidad; First Chinese admitted as members of the Jesuit order
  • 1593 – The Franciscans arrive in Japan and establish St. Anna's hospital in Kyoto; they dispute with the Jesuits.
  • 1594 – First Jesuit missionaries arrive in what is today Pakistan
  • 1595 – Dutch East India Company chaplains expand their ministry beyond the European expatriates[139]
  • 1596 – Jesuit missionaries travel across the island of Samar in the Philippines to establish mission centers on the eastern side
  • 1597 – Twenty-six Japanese Christians are crucified for their faith by General Toyotomi Hideyoshi in Nagasaki, Japan.[140] Full-scale persecution destroys the Christian community by the 1620s. Converts who did not reject Christianity were killed. Many Christians went underground, but their communities died out. Christianity left no permanent imprint on Japanese society.[141]
  • 1598 – Spanish missionaries push north from Mexico into what is now the state of New Mexico .
  • 1599 – Jesuit Francisco Fernandez goes to what is now the Jessore District of Bangladesh and builds a church there

1600 to 1699

1700 to 1799

  • 1700 – After a Swedish missionary's sermon in Pennsylvania, one Native American posed such searching questions that the episode was reported in a 1731 history of the Swedish church in America. The interchange is noted in Benjamin Franklin's Remarks Concerning the Savages of North America (1784).[168]
  • 1701 – Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts officially organized[154]
  • 1702 – George Keith, returns to America as a missionary of the newly organized Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts
  • 1703 – The Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts expands to the West Indies[169]
  • 1704 – French missionary priests arrive to evangelize the Chitimacha living along the Mississippi River in what is now the state of Louisiana
  • 1706 Bartholomäus Ziegenbalg, German missionary, arrives in Tranquebar
  • 1706- Irish-born Francis Makemie, who has been an itinerant Presbyterian missionary among the colonists of America since 1683, is finally able to organize the first American presbytery
  • 1707 – Italian Capuchin missionaries reach Kathmandu in Nepal. Maillard de Tournon makes public, in Nanjing, the Vatican decisions on rites, including the stipulations against the veneration of ancestors and of Confucius.
  • 1708- Jesuit missionary Giovanni Battista Sidotti is arrested in Japan. He is taken to Edo (now called Tokyo) to be interrogated by Arai Hakuseki
  • 1709 – Experience Mayhew, missionary to the Martha's Vineyard Indians, translates the Psalms and the Gospel of John into the Massachusett language. It will be a work considered second only to John Eliot's Indian Bible in terms of significant Indian-language translations in colonial New England
  • 1710 – First modern Bible Society founded in Germany by Count Canstein[170]
  • 1711 – Jesuit Eusebio Kino, missionary explorer in southern Arizona and northern Sonora, dies suddenly in northern Mexico. Kino, who has been called "the cowboy missionary", had fought against the exploitation of Indians in Mexican silver mines.
  • 1712- Using a press sent by The Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, the Tranquebar Mission in India begins printing books in the Portuguese language
  • 1713 – Jesuit Ippolito Desideri goes to Tibet as a missionary
  • 1714 – New Testament translated into Tamil (India);[171] the Royal Danish College of Missions is organized in Copenhagen
  • 1715 – Eastern Orthodox Church missionary outreach is renewed in Manchuria and Northern China[65]
  • 1718 – The establishment of the Alamo Mission in San Antonio is authorized by the viceroy of Mexico. The mission was to be an educational center for Native Americans who converted to Christianity.
  • 1717 – Chen Mao writes to the Chinese Emperor about his concerns over Catholic missionaries and Western traders. He urgently requested an all-out prohibition of Catholic missionaries in the Qing provinces.
  • 1718 – Bartholomäus Ziegenbalg constructs a church building in India that is still in use today
  • 1719 – Isaac Watts writes missionary hymn "Jesus Shall Reign Where'er the Sun"[172]
  • 1720- Missionary Johann Ernst Gruendler dies in India. He had arrived there in 1709 with the sponsorship of the Danish Mission Society
  • 1721 – Mission San Juan Bautista Malibat in Baja California is abandoned due to the hostility of the Cochimi Indians, as well as to the decimation of the local population by epidemics and a water shortage. Chinese Kangxi Emperor bans Christian missionaries as a result of the Chinese Rites controversy. Hans Egede goes to Greenland under the dual auspices of the Royal Mission College and the Bergen Company.
  • 1723 – Robert Millar publishes A History of the Propagation of Christianity and the Overthrow of Paganism advocating prayer as the primary means of converting non-Christians[172]
  • 1724 – Yongzheng Emperor bans missionary activities outside the Beijing area
  • 1725 – Knud Leem arrives as a missionary to the Sami people of Finnmark (Norwegian Arctic)
  • 1726 – John Wright, a Quaker missionary to the Native Americans, settles in southeastern Pennsylvania
  • 1728 – Institutum Judaicum founded in Halle as first Protestant mission center for Jewish evangelism[173]
  • 1729 – Roman Catholic missionary Du Poisson becomes the first victim in the Natchez revolt. On his way to New Orleans, he had been asked to stop and say Mass at the Natchez post. He was killed in front of the altar.
  • 1730- Lombard, French missionary, founds a Christian village with over 600 Indians at the mouth of Kuru river in French Guiana. A Jesuit, Lombard has been called the most successful of all missionaries in converting the Indians of French Guiana
  • 1731 – A missionary movement is born when Count Nicolaus Ludwig Zinzendorf attends the coronation of King Christian VI of Denmark and witnesses two of Egede's Inuit converts. Over the next two years, his Moravian Church at Herrnhut will begin its missionary outreach with work among the slaves in the Caribbean and the Inuit in Greenland.[174]
  • 1732 – Alphonsus Liguori founds the Roman Catholic religious institute known as the Redemptorist Fathers with the purpose of doing missionary work among rural people[175]
  • 1733 – Moravians establish their first mission in Greenland[176]
  • 1734 – A missionary convinces a Groton, Connecticut church to lend its building to the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe for Christian worship services.
  • 1735 – John Wesley goes to Indians in Georgia as missionary with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts[177]
  • 1736 – Anti-Christian edicts in China; Moravian missionaries at work among Nenets people of Arkhangelsk
  • 1737 – Rev. Pugh, a missionary in Pennsylvania with The Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts begins ministering to blacks. He noted that the masters of the slaves were prejudiced against them becoming Christian.
  • 1738 – Moravian missionary George Schmidt settles in Baviaan Kloof (Valley of the Baboons) in the Riviersonderend valley of South Africa. He begins working with the Khoikhoi people, who were practically on the threshold of extinction.
  • 1739 – The first missionary to the Mahican (Mohegan) Indians, John Sergeant, builds a home in Stockbridge, Massachusetts that is today a museum.
  • 1740 – Moravian David Zeisberger starts work among Creek people of Georgia[178]
  • 1740 Johann Phillip Fabricius, missionary, arrives in South India
  • 1741 – Dutch missionaries start building Christ Church building in Malacca Town, Malaysia. It will take 12 years to complete.
  • 1742 – Moravian Leader Count Zinzendorf visits Shekomeko, New York and baptizes six Indians
  • 1743 – David Brainerd starts ministry to North American Indians[53]
  • 1744 – Thomas Thompson resigns his position as dean at the University of Cambridge to become a missionary. He was sent by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts to New Jersey. Taking a special interest in the slave population there, he would later request to begin mission work in Africa. In 1751, Thompson would become the first S.P.G. missionary to the Gold Coast (modern-day Ghana)
  • 1745 – David Brainerd, after preaching to Native Americans in December, wrote about the response: "They soon came in, one after another; with tears in their eyes, to know, what they should do to be saved. . . . It was an amazing season of power among them, and seemed as if God had bowed the heavens and come down ... and that God was about to convert the whole world."
  • 1746 – From Boston a call is issued to the Christians of the New World to enter into a seven-year "Concert of Prayer" for missionary work[179]
  • 1747 – Jonathan Edwards appeals for prayer for world missions
  • 1748 – Roman Catholic Pedro Sanz and four other missionaries are executed, together with 14 Chinese Christians. Prior to his death, Sanz reportedly converted some of his prison guards to Christianity.
  • 1749 – Spanish Franciscan priest Junípero Serra (1713-1784 arrives in Mexico as a missionary. In 1767 he would go north to what is now California, zealously building missions and converting Native Americans.
  • 1750 – Jonathan Edwards, preacher of the First Great Awakening, having been banished from his church at Northampton, Massachusetts goes as a missionary to the nearby Housatonic Indians.[180] Christian Frederic Schwartz goes to India with Danish-Halle Mission[181]
  • 1751 – Samuel Cooke arrives in New Jersey as a missionary for the SPGFP
  • 1752 – Thomas Thompson, first Anglican missionary to Africa, arrives in the Gold Coast (now Ghana)[182]
  • 1753 The disappearance of Erhardt and six companions leads to temporary abandonment of Moravian missionary initiatives in Labrador.
  • 1754 – Moravian John Ettwein arrives in America from Germany as a missionary. Preaching to Native Americans and establishing missions, Ettwein will travel as far south as Georgia.
  • 1755 – The Mahican Indian settlement at Gnadenhutten, Pa. is attacked and destroyed. Moravian missionary Johann Jacob Schmick remains with the Mahicans through exile and captivity despite almost constant threats from white neighbors. Schmick will join his Indian congregation as they seek refuge in Bethlehem, follow them as captives to Philadelphia, and remain with them after they settle in Wyalusing, Pennsylvania.
  • 1756 – Civil unrest forces Gideon Halley away from his missionary work among the Six Nations on the Susquehanna River where he has been working for four years under the supervision of Jonathan Edwards with an appointment from the Society for Propagating the Gospel among the Indians.
  • 1757 – Lutherans begin ministering to Blacks in the Caribbean[183]
  • 1758- John Wesley baptizes two slaves, thus breaking the skin color barrier for Methodist societies[184]
  • 1759 – Native American Samson Occom, direct descendant of the great Mahican chief Uncas, is ordained by the Presbyterians. Occom became the first American Indian to publish works in English. These included sermons, hymns and a short autobiography.[185]
  • 1760 – Adam Voelker and Christian Butler arrive in Tranquebar as the first Moravian missionaries to India
  • 1760 – Methodists first reach the West Indies.[186]
  • 1761 – The first Moravian missionary in Ohio, Frederick Post, settles on the north side of the Muskingum.[187]
  • 1762 – Moravian Missionary John Heckewelder confers with Koquethagacton ("White Eyes") at the mouth of the Beaver River (Pennsylvania)
  • 1763 – The Presbyterian Synod of New York orders that a collection for missions be taken. In 1767 the Synod asks that this collection be done annually.
  • 1764 – The Moravians make a decision to expand and begin publicizing their missionary activity, particularly in the British colonies; Moravian Jens Haven makes the first of three exploratory missionary journeys to Greenland[188]
  • 1765 – Suriname Governor General Crommelin convinces three Moravian missionaries to work near the head waters of the Gran Rio. They settle among the Saramaka near the Senthea Creek in Granman Abini's village where they are received with mixed feelings.
  • 1766 – Philip Quaque, a Fetu youth from the Cape Coast area of Ghana who spent twelve years studying in England, returns to Africa. Supported as a missionary by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, Quaque is first non-European ordained priest in the Church of England
  • 1767 – Spain expels the Jesuits from Spanish colonies in the New World
  • 1768 – Five United Brethren missionaries from Germany, invited by the Danish Guinea Company, arrive in the Gold Coast (now Ghana), to teach in the Cape Coast Castle schools
  • 1769 – Junípero Serra founds Mission San Diego de Alcalá, first of the 21 Alta California missions[189]
  • 1770 – John Marrant, a free black from New York City, begins ministering cross-culturally, preaching to the American Indians. By 1775 he had carried the gospel to the Cherokee and Creek Indians as well as to groups he called the Catawar and Housaw peoples.[190]
  • 1771 – Methodist Francis Asbury arrives in America; David Avery is ordained as missionary to the Oneida tribe[191]
  • 1772 – After visiting Scilly Cove in Newfoundland, Canada, missionary James Balfour describes it as a "most Barbarous Lawless Place"[192]
  • 1773 – Pope Clement XIV dissolves the Jesuit Order;[193] two Dominican order missionaries beheaded in Vietnam
  • 1775 – John Crook is sent by Liverpool Methodists to the Isle of Man
  • 1776 – Cyril Vasilyevich Suchanov builds first church among Evenks of Transbaikal (or Dauria) in (Siberia); The first baptism of an Eskimo by a Lutheran pastor takes place in Labrador.
  • 1777 – Portuguese missionaries build a church at Hashnabad, Bangladesh
  • 1778 – Theodore Sladich is martyred while doing missionary work to counter Islamic influence in the western Balkans
  • 1780 – August Gottlieb Spangenberg writes An Account of the Manner in Which the Protestant Church of the Unitas Fratrum, or United Brethren, Preach the Gospel, and Carry On Their Missions Among the Heathen. Originally written in German, the book will be translated into English in 1788.
  • 1781 – In the midst of the American Revolutionary War, the British so feared Moravian missionary David Zeisberger and his influence among the Lenape (also called Delaware) and other Native Americans that they arrested him and his assistant, John Heckewelder, charging them with treason
  • 1782 – Freed slave George Lisle goes to Jamaica as missionary[194]
  • 1783 – Moses Baker and George Gibbions, both former slaves, leave the U.S. to become missionaries in the West Indies
  • 1784 – First Christians reported in Korea; Yi Seung-hun back home in Korea after being baptized in China
  • 1784 – Thomas Coke (Methodist) submits his Plan for the Society for the Establishment of Missions Among the Heathen. Methodist missions among the "heathen" will begin in 1786 when Coke, destined for Nova Scotia, is driven off course by a storm and lands at Antigua in the British West Indies.[195]
  • 1785 – Joseph White's sermon titled "On the Duty of Attempting the Propagation of the Gospel among our Mahometan and Gentoo Subjects in India" is published in the second edition of his book Sermons Containing a View of Christianity and Mahometanism, in their History, their Evidence, and their Effects. The sermon was first preached at the University of Oxford.
  • 1786 – John Marrant, a free black from New York City, writes in his journal that he preached to "a great number of Indians and white people" at Green's Harbor, Newfoundland.[196] Marrant's cross-cultural ministry led him to take the Gospel to the Cherokee, Creek, Catawba (he called them the Catawar, and Housaw Indians.
  • 1787 – William Carey is ordained in England by the Particular Baptists and soon begins to urge that worldwide missions be undertaken.
  • 1788 – Dutch missionaries begin preaching the Gospel among fishermen in Bangladesh
  • 1789 – The Jesuits establish Georgetown University as the first US Catholic college[197]
  • 1790 – Prince Williams, a freed slave from South Carolina, goes to Nassau, Bahamas, where he will start Bethel Meeting House[190]
  • 1791 – One hundred and twenty Korean Christians are tortured and killed for their faith. It began when Paul Yun Ji-Chung, a noble who had become a Christian, decided not to bury his mother according to traditional Confucian custom.
  • 1792 – William Carey writes An Enquiry into the Obligations of Christians to use means for the conversion of the heathen and forms the Baptist Missionary Society to support him in establishing missionary work in India[198]
  • 1793 – Stephen Badin ordained in U.S. Although much of Badin's ministry was pastoral work among his own countrymen, he did some outreach among the Potawatomi Indians[199]
  • 1794 – Eight Russian Orthodox missionaries arrive on Kodiak Island in Alaska. Within a few months several thousand people have been baptized[200]
  • 1794 – Roman Catholic missionary Zhou Wenmo enters Korea
  • 1795 - Roman Catholic missionary Zhou Wenmo celebrates the first mass in Korea at Easter
  • 1795 – The London Missionary Society is formed to send missionaries to Tahiti[201]
  • 1796 – Scottish and Glasgow Missionary Societies established;[201] In India, Johann Philipp Fabricius' translation of the Bible into Tamil is revised and published[202]
  • 1797 – Netherlands Missionary Society formed;[201][203] The Duff, carrying 36 lay and pastoral missionaries, sails to three islands of the South Pacific;[204] The first Christian missionary (from the London Missionary Society) visits Hiva on the Pacific island of Tahuata; he is not well received.
  • 1798 – The Missionary Society of Connecticut is organized by the Congregationalists to take the gospel to the "heathen lands" of Vermont and Ohio. Its missionaries evangelized both European settlers and Native Americans.[205]
  • 1799 – The Church Missionary Societyis formed by the Clapham Sect in South London, England;[201] John Vanderkemp, Dutch physician goes to Cape Colony, Africa[206]

1800 to 1849

1850 to 1899

1900 to 1949

1950 to 1999

2000 to present

  • 2000 – Asia College of Ministry (ACOM), a ministry of Asia Evangelistic Fellowship (AEF),[425] was launched by Jonathan James, to train national missionaries in Asia.
  • 2001 – New Tribes Missionaries Martin and Gracia Burnham are kidnapped in the Philippines by Muslim terrorist group; Baptist missionary Roni Bowers and her infant daughter are killed when a Peruvian Air Force jet fires on their small float-plane. Though severely wounded in both legs, missionary pilot Kevin Donaldson landed the burning plane on the Amazon River.
  • 2003 – Publication of Back To Jerusalem: Called to Complete the Great Commission – Three Chinese Church Leaders with Paul Hattaway brings Chinese and Korean mission movement to forefront; Coptic priest Fr. Zakaria Botros begins his television and internet mission to Muslims in North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, and western countries, resulting in thousands of conversions.
  • 2004 – Four Southern Baptist missionaries are killed by gunman in Iraq
  • 2005 – Korean Catholic Bible completed, the first translation of the entire Bible into modern Korean language.
  • 2006 – Abdul Rahman, an Afghan Christian convert, is forced out of Afghanistan by local Muslim leaders and exiled to Italy. Missionary Vijay Kumar is publicly stoned by Hindu extremists for Christian preaching.
  • 2007 – Kriol Bible completed, the first translation of the entire Bible into an Australian indigenous language[426]
  • 2010 – The Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization held in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 2012 – A study by political scientist Robert Woodberry, focusing on Protestant missionaries, found that they have often left a very positive societal impact in the areas where they worked. "In cross-national statistical analysis Protestant missions are significantly and robustly associated with higher levels of printing, education, economic development, organizational civil society, protection of private property, and rule of law and with lower levels of corruption".[427]

See also

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Sources

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  • Tejirian, Eleanor H., and Reeva Spector Simon, eds. Conflict, Conquest, and Conversion: Two Thousand Years of Christian Missions in the Middle East (Columbia University Press; 2012) 280 pages; focus on the 19th and 20th centuries.
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External links

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