1805 – 1898
This man was one of the founders of the Brethren Movement, out of Bristol, England (although he was born a German). He is best known for starting orphanages that housed over 10,000 children over his lifetime, during a time when there were a very large number of undisciplined and unloved street-children.
This simple man of a simple and powerful faith “did follow up work for D. L. Moody, preached for Charles Spurgeon, and inspired the missionary faith of Hudson Taylor.” He worked tirelessly as a preacher (preached over 10,000 times), manager of an orphanage, and travelled to 42 countries. It is said that over 3 million people heard him preach.
Perhaps the most striking moment of his life happened when his wife, Mary, whom he loved dearly, died. He prayed that God would save her life, but trusted God, and his response shows it: “I fell on my knees and thanked God for her release, and for having taken her to Himself, and asked the Lord to help and support us.”