Two couples and two single men left along with Adoniram and Ann Judson in February of 1812. The eight were sent out by the newly organized American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. Here is what happened to the others who sailed to India (on two different ships) that month.
Samuel & Harriet Newell
Forbidden to remain in India by the British East India Company, Samuel and Harriet ("the Belle of Bradford") sailed for Mauritius with plans to establish a mission there and possibly to Madagascar. After a long and perilous voyage, they reached the Isle of France (French name for Mauritius), where Harriet soon died, at age 19, after childbirth ten months after departing Salem. Grief-stricken, Samuel went on to Ceylon, finding it favorable to open a mission there. In January 1814 he joined Samuel and Roxana Nott and Gordon Hall in Bombay. He ministered seven years before his life was cut short by cholera on May 30, 1821, being violently attacked while ministering to the sick. He was greatly endeared to the friends of the mission by his devotedness and amiable character. more >>
Rockdale County in Georgia is being sued for zoning restrictions that are discriminatory against small churches unable to afford the three-acre property size requirement to function, say attorneys for the Alliance Defense Fund.
Lawyers for the Christian-based ADF, who filed the lawsuit on Thursday, said Rockdale County is refusing New Generation Christian Church access to several different properties for its worship services because the properties are less than three acres. The restriction does not apply to nonreligious groups.
"Government officials should not use zoning restrictions to close down religious services of small, start-up churches," said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley. "Not only is it irresponsible to target small ministries dedicated to serving the community, it's unconstitutional and violates federal law." more >>
A Southern Baptist college will soon be opening its doors in New England, a region known for having some of the least churched communities in the United States.
Northeastern Baptist College, located in a former Ramada Inn hotel building in Bennington, Vt., intends to begin training church planters in August 2013.
Mark Ballard, president of NEBC, told The Christian Post that for years he had sought to found a Christian college in the American Northeast for the sake of training evangelists. more >>
"This is such a dark place."
The irony stopped me in my tracks. The speaker was Jonas Kouassi-Zessia, an African émigré to Europe who had planted a church there.
In the 19th and 20th centuries Europe – and America – was sending missionaries to Africa. Europeans and Americans referred to Africa as the "Dark Continent." Now, in the eyes of an African Christian leader, it was Europe shrouded in darkness. more >>
SANTA ANA, Calif. – Pastors from Seattle-based Mars Hill Church are struggling to understand why conducting worship services by way of rotating into the weekly schedule of an active rock concert venue in Orange County on Sundays is a problem with city officials.
Irrespective of their thinking, Santa Ana's building and planning department says the church is operating in a no-church zone and has served an eviction notice. Mars Hill Orange County may become homeless at any moment, say church leaders.
The church has been holding services at The Observatory (formerly known as The Galaxy) for little more than half a year under a special contract with its owners that allows them to use the facility to setup, conduct, and breakdown church every Sunday. The rest of the week, the venue, which seats several hundred people, is used for nightly concerts, mostly from the rock genre. more >>
While some church planters struggle to get their ministries up and running, others have seen their church plants grow from nothing more than a vision to megachurches that are attended by thousands of people every weekend.
But just because a church is large doesn't mean it hasn't seen its fair share of trouble, as Mark Driscoll, founding pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Wash., shared with The Christian Post via email this week. Mars Hill began in Driscoll's living room in 1996 when he was just 25 years old, and today is regularly attended by 19,000 people across four different states each weekend.
Driscoll has wondered at times whether or not his church could overcome the obstacles it was faced with, but when doubt begins to set in, he turns to Jesus, he shared. "My identity is not in my performance, but in Jesus ... My goal is to honor Jesus and do the best I can. If we fail, we fail. If we die, we die. I'm only a kite, He's the hurricane. If the wind don't blow there's not a thing I can do to keep our kite up," said Driscoll. more >>