By Yaron Perry
Yaron Perry's account unearths, with no bias or partiality, the tale of the "London Society for selling Christianity among the Jews" and its distinctive contribution to the recovery of the Holy Land. This Protestant association have been the 1st to take root within the Holy Land from 1820 onwards.
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Extra resources for British Mission to the Jews in Nineteenth-century Palestine
But Dalton did not live very much longer. On 3 January 1826 he expressed great satisfaction at being joined BRITISH MISSION TO THE JEWS 23 by ‘the new Englishman’—a London Society missionary, John Nicolayson (1803–56), who had to spend the three weeks of their acquaintance at Dalton’s sick bed. 36 STRIKING ROOT A new era dawned in the history of the London Society in Palestine with the arrival of John Nicolayson (his original name was Hans Nicolajsen). There was no longer any need for exploratory expeditions to learn about the country and its inhabitants, nor failed attempts to set up a permanent mission station, but it was finally possible for the society to strike root in Jerusalem and to open the way for building a mission house.
Nicolayson felt that the discovery of the wall, which fitted in almost exactly with the plans drawn up for the mission buildings, was a sign from heaven, and he naturally used it as a ready-made foundation. At the beginning of February 1840 the excavation work and exposure of the wall was completed and on the 10th of the month the cornerstone was laid. 74 At the end of March 1840 the general assembly of the London Society sent its blessings on the completion of the first floor of the mission’s building complex in Jerusalem and instructed Nicolayson to cancel his original plan to assign the second floor as a prayer hall, and instead to prepare immediate plans for the construction of a separate church building.
At the age of 11 he left his home in Württemberg and began wandering through Europe in search of a new faith. 20 In 1819 Wolff arrived in England, contacted the directors of the London Society and went through a two-year training period at various institutions. During the course of his studies he displayed outstanding talent and devotion to the missionary society doctrine. 21 In April 1821, before he had completed his training, he decided to set out on a travelling expedition among the Jewish communities in the East.
British Mission to the Jews in Nineteenth-century Palestine by Yaron Perry