Samuel Zwemer (1867 – 1951), was the thirteenth of 15 children born in Michigan, America, to Dutch immigrant parents. His father was a pastor of the Reformed Church. Four of Samuels’ five surviving brothers became missionaries, and one of his sisters was a missionary in China for 40 years.
The Power of the Printed Page
From his earliest years, Samuel preferred books to sports. Throughout his distinguished missionary career, he was to attach great importance to the distribution of the Scriptures. One of his earliest ministries was as a colporteur for the American Bible Society.
Theology, Medicine and Ministry to the Poor
At age 20, Samuel entered a Theological Seminary in New Jersey, where he simultaneously began to study medicine. He also played a full part in local Church activities and worked in the neighbourhood among the poor and disadvantaged. He attended Student Missionary Conferences and himself organised one of these conferences.