Brother Andrew (real name: Andy van der Bijl)                   

Born May 11, 1928 in Sint Pancras, Holland. 4th of 2 sisters, 4 brothers. Father: blacksmith. Parents both lived beyond his adolescence. Raised in Dutch Reformed church. Schooling ended 1940 due to Nazi occupation. Childhood distinctions: long-distance running and daredevil attitude. Commando in Dutch army in East Indies 1946 to 1949. Severely wounded 1949. Studied at World Evangelization Crusade school in Scotland 1953 to 1955. First trip behind the Iron Curtain into Poland in 1955 sparked idea to 'smuggle' Bibles into Communist countries. Married 'Corrie' June 27, 1958 in Alkmaar (with whom  he had five children). Daredevil exploits told in
God's Smuggler earned him an international reputation after 1966 but virtually stopped his own participation in smuggling. Expanded organization - called 'Open Doors' - into Latin America. Severely injured in 1971 plane crash. In 1970's developed bases in Africa and Asia. Project Pearl in 1981 smuggled one million Bibles into Red China. 1990's added focus on Muslim countries. 1995 stepped down as president of Open Doors, which had 20 offices in five 'battle zones': Eastern Europe, Latin America, Africa, Asia and the Muslim countries. Honored by World Evangelical Fellowship in 1997 as 'legendary'.

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Brother Andrew founded 'Open Doors'.

Gladys Aylward or 'Ai-weh-deh' (Chinese for 'Virtuous One')

Born February 24, 1902 in outskirts of London, England. Oldest of 2 sisters, 1 brother. Father: mailman. Parents lived well into her adult years. Raised in Anglican church. Schooling adequate. Childhood distinctions: play-acting and service. Never married. Went into 'service', attaining level of parlor maid in rich West End manors before being 'born again'. At 26 failed school of China Inland Mission. 1930 took train across Russia to China to help aging missionary Agnes Lawson found an inn. 1932 Mandarin appointed her 'foot -inspector', a job she used to evangelize villagers all over his province. Prison riot valor in 1933 cemented her reputation as holy person and miracle worker. 1936 became Chinese citizen. 1940 wounded by Japanese soldiers, only months before she shepherded 100 orphans across mountains to safety. Nearly dead she 'recovered' to evangelize until Communists evicted her in late 1940's.
The Small Woman won her fame in 1957, increased by inaccurate but popular movie version 'Inn of the Sixth Happiness'. Founded orphanage in 1958 in Taiwan, where she died January 3, 1970.

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John Bunyan                       

Christened November 30, 1628, in Elstow, Bedfordshire, England. Oldest of 1 sister, 2 brothers. Father: tinker. Mandatory attendance of Anglican church . Schooling limited but adequate. Childhood distinctions: delinquency, athletics. In 1644 mother and sister died, father remarried. Same year John at 16 joined Army of the Parliament in the Civil War against King Charles I. Left army 1647, married 1648 and began to tinker in Elstow. Wife led him into Bible study. 1650 mystical experience (first of several) on Elstow village green. Breezy attitude and foul habits changed when exposed to pious nonconformists. 1655 began to preach. 1656 published tract against Quakers. 1658 wife died, leaving four children. 1659 remarried (Elizabeth, with whom he had two children). 1660, reputation for caustic writings and scathing sermons - mostly aimed at the privileged - marked him for trouble with ascendancy of Charles II. Refusal to stop preaching kept him in prison for 12 years! 1666 spiritual journal,
Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, signaled growing genius. Release from prison 1672 followed by prison on and off again. 1678 Part 1 of Pilgrim's Progress was an international sensation. Final 10 years was as a celebrated writer and preacher. Died August 31, 1688, in London. Buried Bunhill Fields (London).

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William Carey

Born August 17, 1761, Paulerspury, Northampton, England. Oldest of 2 sisters, 2 brothers. Father: schoolteacher, parish clerk. Parents lived well into his adult years. Raised Anglican church. Schooled until 12. Childhood distinctions: nature-lover, studious. 1775 apprenticed to shoemaker. 1779 became Dissenter. June 10, 1781, married Dorothy Plackett (with whom he had five sons, two daughters). 1782 first preached. 1785 dreamed of missionary work. 1787 ordained Baptist minister. 1792 published
Enquiry, the classic delineation of missions, and helped found Baptist Missionary Society. 1793 arrived India. 1794 left deadly Sundarbans for indigo plant at Mudnabati. 1795 Dorothy mentally ill. 1797 completed New Testament in Bengali language. January 1800 opened base in Serampore, near Calcutta. 1801 began teaching at Fort William college (Calcutta) 1802 printed New Testament in Bengali. 1802 infanticide banned (for which he was partly responsible). 1805 began 'free schools' 1807 Dorothy (insane) died. 1808 printed New Testament in Sanskrit (key to all subsequent translations). 1808 married Charlotte Rumohr. 1812 Fire destroyed presses. 1818 founded Serampore College. 1820 founded Botanical Society. 1821 Charlotte died. 1822 married Grace Hughes. 1827 broke with B. M. S.. 1829 Sati (widow burning) banned (for which he was partly responsible). 1830 reunited with B. M. S.. June 6, 1834, died and buried at Serampore. Hailed as 'Father of Modern Missions'.

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Amy Carmichael                 

Born December 16, 1867 Millisle, Northern Ireland. Oldest of 3 sisters, 4 brothers. Father: mill owner. 1885 father died. Raised Presbyterian church. Private tutoring. Childhood distinctions: poetic, tomboyish. Never married. 1885 mystical experience Belfast street. 1887 heard China Inland Mission founder Hudson Taylor, met widower Robert Wilson (Keswick sponsor). 1889 founded 'Welcome Hall', moved to Manchester to found another. 1890 persuaded to be 'lady' of Wilson's Broughton Grange. January 13, 1892, heard God say 'Go ye.' 1892 rejected by C. I. M. for frailty. 1893 served Japanese mission as 'Keswick missionary'. 1894 serious health problems. 1895 arrived India. 1896 joined fiery Rev. Thomas Walker of Tinnevelly District. 1897 formed evangelizing 'Woman's Band'. 1898 took in first woman 'refugee'. 1899 took in first girl refugee. 1900 moved to Dohnavur. 1901 rescued first 'Temple child', started mission, at first an orphanage, eventually 'Dohnavur Fellowship'. 1903 Amy's
The Way Things Are published. 1903-1912 decade of growth, but pariah with officials. 1912 Walker died. 1912 recognition from Queen Mary began 'respectability'. 1916 founded 'Sisters of the common Life', spiritual support group. 1917 bought 'Gray Jungle' retreat. 1918 took in first baby boy. 1919 Kaiser-i-Hinds Medal for service to India. 1925 broke ties with all mission societies after takeover attempt by English family. 1929 hospital added. 1931 crippled by fall. 1932 Gold Cord, Amy's D. F. history, published. 1933 Poignant Rose from Brier. 1935 health worsened, bed-ridden. 1937 Windows, D. F. update. 1943 Though the Mountains Shake, D. F. update. 1948 fall immobilized her. January 18, 1951, died. Buried at Dohnavur.

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Gladys Aylward was the subject of the movie 'Inn of the Sixth Happiness'.

John Bunyan Evangelist Writer

William Carey

Amy Carmichael Missionary


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