Robert Morrison was the youngest of eight children. As a youth, he read missionary magazines and dreamed of being a missionary someday. But his mother wanted him to stay near his family in England. So he promised he would not become a missionary as long as she was alive. Sadly, she died a few short years after he made the promise. At the age of 20, Morrison began preparing to be a missionary.
He prayed that God would send him to a place where difficulties were the greatest.
God answered his prayer. Morrison arrived in China in 1807. For the next 25 years, he faced obstacles and problems while he worked to bring the good news of Jesus to people in China.
He lived part of that time in Macau, a colony in China ruled by Portugal. In Macau, he baptized a new Chinese Christian, and translated the Bible into Chinese. After his time serving the Lord on earth, he was buried in Macau.
Today Macau is ruled by China. Chinese and Portuguese are the official languages. In the past, most of the people were Christians. However, over time, it became “the first Christian territory in Asia to become non-Christian.” (Operation World)
Much of the money in Macau comes from people who travel to Macau to gamble. Macau has been called “the City of Sin.” During times when Macau brings in less money, some of the citizens are worried about losing their riches.
(Sources include: CIA Factbook, Operation World, and From Jesus to Irian Jaya)
To Talk About
- What are some reasons parents might not want their children to become missionaries? What are some reasons other parents might want their children to become missionaries?
- What do you think are some of reasons a Christian country might become a non-Christian country?
- “Gambling is a religion” in Macau (Operation World). Pray that people in Macau will seek Jesus instead of uncertain wealth.
- Ask God to strengthen those who are spreading the gospel in Macau in spite of obstacles and problems.