What are you doing right now for the kingdom of God? Are you actively involved in missional living and reaching people around you?

Maybe you need a little placement, context for you to see that you are smack dab in the midst of a great cloud of witnesses. [CLICK TO TWEET]

Here’s a look at those who have gone before you, pioneering the way from ages past to present to where you are now.

I see the bigger picture, the overall narrative of what God has been doing to reach every nation. God has called simple men and women throughout history to leave a mark of his glory upon his storyline, and you are an integral part.

King David said, “All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

Now, with simple faith, let us go too, leaving a mark of righteousness for generations to come.

Here’s a look back through the years at what happened in missions history in the month of November. [CLICK TO TWEET]


November 1, 1998 — In thick fog and a torrential downpour, a Living Water Teaching plane crashes in southwestern Guatemala, killing 11 including the organization’s founder Jim Zirkle. The organization, founded in 1979, focuses on Bible schools and medical and evangelistic campaigns in Central America.

November 2, 1982 — Almost 8,000 “missionary bottles” are launched from the “Loarraine W.” 50 miles off the California coast. The bottles contain gospel tracts. A year earlier the same organization had launched 20,000 “missionary bottles” stuffed with Christian literature. A letter from the Philippines was the only response received from the thousands of “missionary bottles” launched into the Pacific Ocean on three occasions.

November 3, 1784 — Thomas Coke lands in New York with instructions from John Wesley to ordain the first elders and bishops for the Methodist movement in the U.S. One of the first to be ordained was Francis Asbury.

November 4, 1859 — Dutch-born, American-trained Guido Fridolin Verbeck arrives in Nagasaki, Japan. In 1871 the Japanese Emperor took the extraordinary step of conferring on this missionary the Order of the Rising Sun.

November 5, 1858 — John and Mary Paton land on the island of Tanna in the New Hebrides (now called Vanautu). Earlier he had been warned that he might be eaten by cannibals on the island. His response: “If I can but live and die serving and honoring the LordJesus, it will make no difference to me whether my body is eaten by cannibals or by worms.”

November 6, 1832 — Melville Cox sails for Liberia aboard the Jupiter as the first missionary sent to a foreign field by America’s Methodists.

November 7, 739 — Willibrord, a missionary monk who was trained in Ireland and traveled over northwestern Europe, dies. Called the “Apostle of Frisia,” he was highly instrumental in the conversions of Germany and Scandinavia.

November 8, 1741 — David Brainerd receives a letter from Ebenezer Pemberton of the Scottish Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge asking if he will consider becoming a missionary to the American Indians.

November 9, 1793 — William Carey lands in Calcutta, India to begin his missionary career

November 10, 1890 — The Central American Mission is founded by C. I. Scofield in Dallas, Texas. In 1975 it changed its name to CAM International because of expansion into Spain.

November 11, 397 — Martin of Tours, a bishop responsible for the evangelization of Gaul (modern-day France), dies.

November 12, late 500’s — Day for celebrating Machar (also called Mochreiha or Mochumma), a Irish missionary companion of Columba in 561 when he founded a training center at Iona to use as a base for evangelizing Scotland. In 580 Machar was sent by Columba to found a church at Aberdeen, Scotland.

November 13, 877 — Death of Devenick, a missionary sent from Whithorn in southern Scotland to the Picts of the Dee Valley and Caithness. He founded churches at Lower Banchory and Methlick (Scotland).

November 14, 1998 — At an evangelistic rally on the steps of a government building in Montevideo, Luis Palau speaks to a crowd of 20,000, calling the nation of Uruguay to Jesus Christ.

November 15, 1893 — Missionary to India and prolific writer Charlotte Tucker makes the last entry in her diary (she died on December 2). Her nom de plume or pseudonym was A.L.O.E. (A lady of England).

November 16, 2002 — A religion law goes into effect in Belarus forbidding unregistered religious activity. It requires censorship of religious literature, does not allow foreign church leadership and puts tight restrictions on what organizations can be registered.

November 17, 1634 — Giordano Ansalone, missionary to Japan, is martyred in Nagasaki.

November 18, 1882 — Kate and Frank Mills, American Presbyterian missionaries, arrived in Shanghai on the steamer Hiroshima Maru. From there they traveled to Hangchow (now called Hangzhou), where they began their missionary work.

November 19, 1827 — Johann Gottlieb Christaller, West African missionary and Bible translator, was born in Wuerttemberg. Sent to the Gold Coast by the Basel Mission Society, he served in what is now Ghana from 1853 to 1868. He founded the scientific study of West African languages and translated the Bible into Twi (Tshi).

November 20, 1839 — John Williams is martyred on on the island of Erromanga (Vanuatu) by cannibals.

November 21, 1866 — African missionary-scholar Tiyo Soga finishes an adaptation of Pilgrim’s Progress into the Xhosa language. He believed that the book, with its vivid imagery, would do more to win souls than any other he could prepare.

November 22, 1939 — Nurse Dorothy Davis is appointed as a Nazarene missionary to Swaziland. After six weeks at sea crossing the Atlantic, which was then a World War II battlefield, Davis would arrive in Africa on June 4, 1940. Because of her role in training Swazi nurses, she will become known as “the Mother of Swazi Nurses.” One of her former students, Martha Zubuko, said, “Dorothy was not only a nurse; she was a preacher.” For her service, by order of Queen Elizabeth II, Davis — though an American citizen — was honored with the Member of the British Empire award.

November 23, 615 — Irish scholar and missionary Columbanus dies in Bobbio, Italy. One of the greatest missionaries of the Middle Ages, he established monasteries in Anegray, Luxeuil, and Fontaines.

November 24, 1965 — A Lutheran Social Service Center in Taipei, Taiwan, is officially dedicated.

November 25, 1742 — The New York correspondents of the Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge approve David Brainerd as a missionary. By April, Brainerd will be working among Native American Indians at Kaunaumeek, about 18 miles southeast of what is now Albany, New York.

November 26, 1705 — The Lutheran Mission to East India is founded through the persuasive efforts of a preacher in King Friedrich IV’s court in Copenhagen

November 27, 1900 — The first American Protestant missionaries arrive in Guam

November 28, 1978 — Independent Baptist missionary James Dearmore is ambushed in Rhodesia by about 50 terrorists. Though suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, he will survive.

November 29, 1847 — Missionary physician Marcus Whitman, his wife, and 12 others are killed by American Indians in Washington’s Walla Walla valley. Whitman had recently returned from a 3,000-mile journey where he had convince the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions not to close down one of his three mission stations. However, when he returned to Washington, he unfortunately (and unknowingly) brought with him the measles virus. Many Indians died of the disease, some because Whitman gave them vaccinations. Accusing Whitman and other missionaries of black magic, the Indians put them to death.

November 30, 1846 — Presbyterian missionary John Geddie and his family set sail for Polynesia. When Geddie died in 1872, his memorial tablet said simply: “When he landed in 1848, there were no Christians here, and when he left in 1872 there were no heathen.”



Article by Howard Culbertson. For more original content like this, visit: http://home.snu.edu/~hculbert

David Joannes
Founder/President at Within Reach Global
David Joannes is the co-founder and president of Within Reach Global, Inc, which serves the advance of the Gospel in some of Southeast Asia’s most difficult places. He is the author of The Space Between Memories: Recollections from a 21st Century Missionary. David has a love for language, culture, and creative writing, and for the last 20 years, he has witnessed God’s Kingdom established in forgotten parts of the globe. David lives in Chiang Mai, Thailand, with his wife, Lorna, and their daughter, Cara.
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