In this collection, the authors of Chapter 1 begin by discussing the Qing government which banned the introduction of any new religion into imperial China and expelled any persons caught proselytizing. The policies of this Canton system, established in the 18th century to limit Sino-Western trade, also prevented any close communications between the Chinese and Westerners. It was, therefore, extremely difficult for missionaries to spread the Gospel. In earlier years, the government had required missionaries to perform some other service or provide other goods in order to proselytize. As a result, missionaries in Guangzhou thought the remarkable possibility of a missionary hospital was an excellent example of Christian philanthropy. Next, the authors of Chapter 2 discuss how missionaries have impacted their home and host societies by enacting various cross-border resource exchanges and promoting cultural interactions. To host societies, missionaries have provided medical, agricultural, educational, and spiritual resources, while to their home society they have served as an intermediary between the “knowns” and “unknowns” of other cultures. The authors explore the societal role of missionaries in relation to worldwide education, and narrate the generativity of two transnational missionaries, Joe Hale and Dennis Lugar, in leading the Oasis International School network through its internationalization process. In Chapter 3, the authors aim to show how a diverse group of Christian missionaries from the First World brought skills in medicine, technology and communication that helped to establish their acceptance by and outreach to those whom they served. Missionaries endured many physical and sociological hardships, but in each community they left a legacy of selfless service and achievements of great value to the inhabitants. (Nova)
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