International Symposium on Thirty Years’ Research on the History of Christian Colleges in China held

Date: Tuesday 15 Oct 2019

More than 50 scholars from greater China and around the world participated in this historic meeting marking thirty years since the first such conference in 1989.  Organized by 93 year-old professor Zhang Kaiyuan and his team at the university’s East-West Center for Cultural Exchange, papers were presented on many aspects of the history and legacy of the Christian colleges, including Shanghai’s St. John’s University, closely related to the Anglican-Episcopal Church in China. HKSKH Archivist the Rev’d Professor Philip L. Wickeri presented a paper on Prof. M. Searle Bates (1897-1978), with whom he had worked as a graduate student in the 1970s. Bates was Professor of History at Nanking University (1920-1950) and Professor of Mission at Union Theological Seminary in New York (1950-1968). The conference was a gathering of scholars and friends, many of whom have done research on Anglicanism in China at the HKSKH Archives in Hong Kong.  Prof. Zhang had a special two-hour meeting with Rev’d. Professor Wickeri and Ms. Kristen Naomi Bates-Scott, the grand-daughter of Prof. Bates, to discuss the life and work of Bates during his later years in Nanjing.  


In his closing remarks, Prof Ma Min, Director of the Institute of Modern Chinese History oat CCNU observed, “The Chinese Christian colleges made an enormous contribution to the modernization of higher education in China.  Research on the Christian colleges over the last thirty years has helped to develop the spirit of openness, reform and modernization in China.” [end]