Shanghai Sunday Afternoon Excursion 1933, page 2

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Dong Jing’an and Frank White

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Dong Jingan was born circa 1875 in Yin County (鄞县), Zhejiang. While a young child he was a precocious student at a local school. At age 8 he entered the school of Northern Baptist missionary, the Rev. Josiah Ripley Goddard (1840-1913) in Ningbo, who singled him out for his outstanding ability. He was taught English by Mrs. Goddard and attained a mastery of the language. He converted to Christianity in 1888. He graduated from the school at age 18, and taught for 5 years at the primary school, after which he was appointed as teacher at the Yimen Yangzheng school. He associated with local scholars, and received the distinction of Xiucai in the Confucian examination system, although he failed to obtain a government post. After arriving in Ningbo, the Northern Baptist missionary Francis Johnstone White (1870-1959) started Ningbo Baptist Secondary School, and Mr. Dong became vice-principal and teacher at this school from 1901 to 1904.

Mr. White was then appointed to the Shaoxing theological seminary from 1904 to 1906, and Mr. Dong joined Mr. White as an instructor in Shaoxing.

In the August, 1906, Dong was invited to become an instructor in the Chinese department of the Shanghai Baptist Seminary, a position which he held from 1906 to 1911. In October 1906, Southern Baptist missionary Principal Robert Thomas Bryan, Dong, and Northern Baptist professor Francis Johnstone White, along with a Mr. Wu were the founding faculty of the Shanghai Baptist Seminary, which held classes at North Sichuan Road in Shanghai. Mr. Dong and Mr. Wu were primarily responsible for teaching the compulsory Chinese language courses in the three-year program as well as the courses of the preparatory year. In the following year, the campus in the northeast part of Shanghai was occupied…

 While teaching at the Shanghai Baptist College and Theological Seminary and conducting evangelistic work among the villages near the campus, Dong became particularly interested in the Christian education of illiterate Chinese. He developed pamphlets of Christian doctrine and Bible exposition that were written with a limited vocabulary of 600 Chinese characters. Dong described his plan to develop 9 tracts: 1. Primer teaching the 600 characters. 2. Reader on Hygiene. 3. The Relations of Man. 4. The Country. 5. Ethics. 6. Physical Geography. 7. Farming and Mechanics 8. Reform of Customs. 9. Letter Writing. He also gave the following four suggestions for missionaries, pastors and teachers to educate the common people: 1. To start evening schools at every station to teach men or women, especially inquirers, 1-2 hours per day. 2. To enlist pastors and teachers, or special teachers who are strongly patriotic to do such work without little or no pay; 3. To use chapels, boys school or Christian homes as class rooms; 4 To obtain books from himself, who was prepared to provide needed assistance….

About the Author

By Thomas G. Oey 黃美樹Independent Scholar.

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Our Mokansan House

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A Sunday Afternoon Excursion, Shanghai 1933

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