Five Stories of God at Work Throughout 175 Years

The IMB has shared stories celebrating God at work on the mission field since the very beginning of the organization’s history. We celebrate how God continues to work through IMB missionaries on the field and through the generosity of Southern Baptists.

First Southern Baptist Missionaries Commissioned: originally published in 1846

“We had assembled to commemorate a new era in the history of missions. God, in his wise providence, having called Southern Baptists to occupy the vast empire of China as the inviting field of which to bestow their labors, we were about sending from our midst those who were to sow the seed of eternal life.” Read the full story here.


Interactive Map: Journey to the Orient (from the 1900s)

In September 1907, Foreign Mission Board executive leader Robert J. Willingham embarked with his wife on a seven-month journey across the world to visit Southern Baptist mission stations. Though initially reluctant to undertake such an extended absence, Robert eventually considered the trip a blessing and returned with a renewed enthusiasm and burden for evangelism and missions. Read the full story and view the interactive map of the Orient here.


Missionaries Scatter from China to New Mission Fields: originally published in 1952

“Southern Baptist missionaries are out of China, and like the early Christians who were scattered by persecution, they have opened up new frontiers for Christian witnessing. The Bible says: ‘Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled … And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed and turned unto the Lord.’”

Read the full story here.



Aid Workers in Iraq Faithful unto Death: originally published in 2004


“It had been a good day in Mosul, Iraq. Five Southern Baptist workers were making progress toward a water purification project. They had met with officials and laughed with new Iraqi friends. They were headed home for a night’s rest before starting again the next morning. But they never made it home.” Read the full story here.



Refugees Seek Hope in Europe: originally published in 2015

Insulation and paper clung to the rafters of the former factory like clothes drying on a line. On the concrete floor, shards of glass were mixed with piles of trash. Old desks held overused pots and gritty pans while filing cabinets stored clothes. Long-forgotten cisterns, a plastic bucket and a rope provided somewhat fresh water. Here, just feet from a lively port, more than one hundred Sudanese refugees live in abject poverty. Next door, another abandoned facility is home to Afghan migrants. Read the full story here.