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Linda M. Carter

missionary and founding father of the state of Liberia, was born in Hicksford, Greensville County, Virginia, the elder son of John Day Sr., an affluent furniture maker, farmer, and landowner, and Mourning Stewart Day. The Days were free African Americans, and Day's father, as early as the 1789 election, was accorded voting status.

In an era when formal education for African Americans was rare, Day reaped the benefits of being the offspring of two prominent families. His father arranged for him to board in Edward Whitehorne's home, and Day, along with the Whitehorne children, attended Jonathan Bailey's school. While residing with the family, Day received some level of religious instruction from Whitehorne. In 1807 Day's father, who had been residing in Dinwiddie County, Virginia, purchased a plantation in Sussex County, Virginia, near the Whitehorne residence, and Day then attended William Northcross's school.

At the age of nineteen ...

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Julian  

Salim Faraji

Monophysite priest sent by Theodora, empress of the Byzantine Empire and wife of Justinian I, to the kingdom of Nobadia, where he began his missionary endeavors in 543 CE. He was the first Christian missionary sent to Nubia in connection with an official Byzantine mission. Christianity had begun to encroach upon Lower Nubia as early as the middle of the fourth century, through the efforts of Coptic monks, as recorded in the hagiographical tradition. Julian was part of a Monophysite (the doctrine of Christ’s purely divine, as opposed to both divine and human, form) faction that included the Byzantine Empress Theodora, exiled Alexandrian Patriarch Theodosius, and the bishop and missionary Longinus.

Julian had been a priest under Theodosius in Egypt and was quite familiar with the ecclesiastical intrigues of his time including the theological debates between the Orthodox Chalcedonians who held that Christ s nature was dual both human and ...

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Richard J. Boles

minister, teacher, missionary, and abolitionist, was born free in New York City during the spring of 1793. His parents and the circumstances of his childhood are unknown. Around 1800 Levington relocated to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he spent most of his adolescence and worked in the bookstore of Sheldon Potter. There he became a friend and protégé of Sheldon's brother, Alonzo Potter, who eventually became the Episcopal bishop of Pennsylvania and who helped secure Levington's entry into the Protestant Episcopal ministry. In 1819 Levington moved to Albany, New York, under Potter's mentorship. Potter became a professor at Union College and he unofficially instructed Levington part-time there until he returned to Philadelphia in 1822 In Albany Levington was employed as a teacher in a school for African American children and he attended St Peter s Church It was likely through his teaching position that ...

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Milton C. Sernett

pioneering Baptist clergyman and émigré to Jamaica, said of his slave origins, “I was born in Virginia, my father's name was Liele, and my mother's name Nancy; I cannot ascertain much of them, as I went to several parts of America when young, and at length resided in New Georgia” (Baptist Annual Register, ed. John Rippon [1793], 332). Liele's master Henry Sharp took him to Burke County, Georgia, as a young man. Liele wrote that he “had a natural fear of God” from his youth. He attended a local Baptist church, was baptized by Matthew Moore, a deacon in the Buckhead Creek Baptist Church about 1772 and was given the opportunity to travel preaching to both whites and blacks Liele preached as a probationer for about three years at Bruton Land Georgia and at Yamacraw about a half mile from Savannah The favorable ...

Article

Allen J. Fromherz

known in Latin as Raimundus Lullus, Ramon Llull was a Catalan intellectual, translator, doctor, mathematician, theologian, and missionary born in 1232 or 1233 in Palma, the capital of the island of Majorca in the western Mediterranean south of Barcelona. The Catalans had almost suddenly become masters of the western Mediterranean, and the conquest of Majorca by King James I from the Berber North African Almohad Empire in 1229 three years before his death was still fresh in 1232. Ramon Llull would spend most of his life at a crossroads between the Christian powers of Europe and the Muslim powers of North Africa, absorbing the influence of Jewish, Muslim, and Christian traditions. Having experienced an Augustinian conversion from a life licentiousness to one of spiritual contemplation, the first decades of his life from a biography, Vita coaetanea are described as given to ...

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Salim Faraji

Monophysite priest and the first ordained bishop to the Christian church in Nubia, was the successor of Julian, the first Byzantine Christian missionary sent to Nubia. Longinus was originally based in Egypt before residing in Constantinople and was appointed by the exiled Alexandrian patriarch Theodosius to serve as Nubia’s first bishop. He lived during the middle and late sixth century; his missionary activity commenced in Nobadia in 569 CE and concluded in 580 CE with his sojourn to Nubia’s southern kingdom Alwa—also known as Alodia in Greek texts. He is considered to have led the longest and most successful missions to Nubia and thereby provided the ecclesiastical foundation for the emergence of medieval Nubia.

Longinus has been characterized by scholars as being a member of the Monophysite Triumvirate of the sixth century which consisted of himself Empress Theodora of Byzantium and the Patriarch Theodosius Empress Theodora the wife of the ...

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Milton C. Sernett

Baptist minister and community leader, was born in Exeter, New Hampshire. The names of his parents are unknown. Converted and baptized at age sixteen Paul began preaching when he was about twenty-eight and conducted an itinerant ministry. In 1804 he settled in Boston. He was ordained on 1 May 1805 at Nottingham West, New Hampshire, and later the same year married Catherine Waterhouse. The couple had three children.

A number of African Americans in Boston attended white Baptist churches, but they were assigned seats in the galleries and could not vote on church affairs. Recognizing their desire for more religious freedom Paul conducted nondenominational meetings for them first in Franklin Hall on Nassau Street and later in historic Faneuil Hall.

In 1805 these black Baptists decided to form an independent congregation that became known variously as the African Church and First African. Twenty-four members met on 8 August ...

Article

Edward E. Andrews

also referred to as “Quaum” or John Quamine, slave, African missionary in-training, possibly the first African to attend college in the American colonies, and Revolutionary privateer, was born near Annamoboe, on the Gold Coast of Africa. He came from a wealthy family, and in the mid- to late 1750s he was sent by his father to receive a Western education. However, the captain who agreed to take him reneged on this agreement and sold him into slavery.

By the mid-1760s Quamino had become a slave to Captain Benjamin Church of Newport, Rhode Island. The historical record does not detail exactly what Quamino did under Church's ownership, but he converted to Christianity after his arrival in Newport. Quamino attended the First Congregational Church, which was taken over by Jonathan Edwards's avid protégé, Samuel Hopkins, in 1769. In that same year Quamino married Duchess Quamino then a ...

Article

Christopher J. Anderson

licensed minister and Methodist missionary, was born in Powhatan County, Virginia, to parents of African and European ancestry. His mother and father, whose names and occupations are not known, were practicing Baptists of noted reputation. Nor is it known whether Stewart had any siblings. During his childhood Stewart received religious instruction from his parents and attended a winter school for African American boys. He was an excellent singer and worked as a dyer. In adulthood those acquainted with Stewart described his physical appearance as light-skinned, five feet eight inches and one hundred forty pounds (Love, 338).

In 1806 or 1807 at age twenty one Stewart left Virginia for Marietta Ohio During his travels Stewart was robbed of all personal belongings and upon reaching his destination struggled with poverty and with being away from his family Stewart eventually found work as a sugar maker which helped him earn money ...

Article

Barbara Bennett Peterson

educator and missionary, was born in slavery of unrecorded parentage. As a child Betsey was given by her owner, Robert Stockton, as a wedding gift to his daughter when she married the Reverend Ashbel Green, the president of the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University). Most of Betsey Stockton's early life was passed as a slave domestic in the Green home at Princeton, except for four years that she spent with Green's nephew Nathaniel Todd when she was an adolescent. At Todd's she underwent a period of training intended to instill more piety in her demeanor, which had not been developed in the affectionate, indulgent Green household. Stockton returned to the Green home in 1816 and was baptized in the Presbyterian church at Princeton in 1817 or 1818 having given evidence through speech and deportment of her conversion to Christian ways At the time of ...