Friday, January 29, 2010

A Wish for a Thousand Lives to Give

An excerpt from a letter by Lottie Moon, missionary to China from 1873 to 1912, to Henry Allen Tupper, the Corresponding Secretary of the Southern Baptist Foreign Mission Board. Miss Moon constantly appealed for more workers to be sent to China, especially for women who could assist in work to the Chinese women. One of her oft repeated messages back home, found also in this letter was, “If only our people would wake up!” Here she pleads for more workers to be sent. The letter was written August 27, 1888.

I should be most heartily glad of ten women for the P’ingtu region. Nobody who has not seen can imagine the wide field opened there for woman’s work. I would I had a thousand lives that I might give them to the women of China! As it is, I can only beg that other women & many of them be sent. Above all, we need mature women. The Chinese have a high respect for such, but, for many reasons, I think young women had best not be sent. It would not be proper, in Chinese eyes, for young women to go out in the independent way necessary in doing rough country work in the interior. Besides, it seems to me too hard on the young ladies themselves. Of course, there may be exceptional cases.

Send the Light: Lottie Moon’s Letters and Other Writings, edited by Keith Harper, Mercer University Press, 2002, pp. 131-32.

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