Builders of the Chinese Church: Pioneer Protestant Missionaries and Chinese Church Leaders

By G. Wright Doyle (editor)

A collection of biographical studies of nine key figures, European and Chinese, in the growth and development of the Protestant Church in China.

ISBN: 9780718894054


From 1807, when the first Protestant missionary arrived in China, to the 1920s, when a new phase of growth began, thousands of missionaries and Chinese Christians laboured, often under very adverse conditions, to lay the groundwork for a solid, healthy, and self-sustaining Chinese church. Following an Introduction that sets the scene and surveys the entire period, Builders of the Chinese Church contains the stories of nine leading pioneers: seven Western missionaries and two Chinese. Here we meet Robert Morrison, the heroic translator; Liang Fa, the first Chinese evangelist; missionary-scholar James Legge; J. Hudson Taylor, founder of the China Inland Mission; converted opium addict Pastor Hsi, Overcomer of Demons; Griffith John and Jonathan Goforth, both indefatigable preachers; and the idealistic advocates of education and reform, W.A.P. Martin and Timothy Richard. Readers will be inspired by their courage, devotion, and sheer perseverance in arduous work, and will gain a better understanding of the roots of the two “branches” of today’s Chinese Protestantism.

Additional information

Dimensions 229 × 153 mm
Pages 254

Trade Information LPOD

About the Author

G. Wright Doyle is the English editor of the online Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Christianity (; co-author of China: Ancient Culture, Modern Society; editor/co-translator of Wise Man from the East: Lit-sen Chang (Zhang Lisheng); and editor of and, which feature articles and book reviews about Chinese culture and religion, especially Christianity. His other works include Carl Henry: Theologian for All Seasons and Christianity in America: Triumph and Tragedy.



1. Robert Morrison: Missionary Mediator, Surprising Saint
     Christopher D. Hancock
2. Liang Fa (Liang A-fa): Leader in Chinese Indigenization
     Jonathan A. Seitz
3. James Legge: Linking Chinese Evangelical Spirituality with Cross-Cultural Engagement
     Lauren Pfister
4. Griffith John: Faithful Pioneer Missionary
     Noel Gibbard
5. J. Hudson Taylor: Advocate for China’s Inland Millions
     G. Wright Doyle
6. William A. P. Martin: Pioneer of Progress in China
     G. Wright Doyle
7. “Pastor His” – Xi Shengmo: “Overcomer of Evil” through Prayer and Preaching
     Yading Li with G. Wright Doyle
8. Timothy Richard: A Missionary Who Impacted the Late Qing Dynasty
     Wenzong Wang
9. Jonathan Goforth: Tireless Evangelist and Revivalist
     G. Wright Doyle

Index of Subjects
Index of Names


Endorsements and Reviews

A wonderful collection of excellent biographies of some most important figures in the history of China mission, written by the leading experts in the field.
Kevin Xiyi Yao, Associate Professor of World Christianity and Asian Studies, Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary

With so much attention paid to the explosive revival of Chinese Christianity today, G. Wright Doyle masterfully contributes a historical piece to the discussion, namely the ‘Great Century of Missions’ in that nation. This edited collection highlights both indigenous and expatriate Christians, and both official and underground churches. It is a 1 Cor. 3:6 type of book, showing that while many people have contributed various parts to the Christian enterprise, it was God who made it grow.
Allen Yeh, Associate Professor of Intercultural Studies and Missiology, Cook School of Intercultural Studies, Biola University