The Influence of W. Carl Hunker on Taiwan Baptists
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If cross-cultural missionaries, and the local churches who send them, are to be faithful to the Great Commission, a reemphasis on the importance of long-lasting church-planting fruit must occur. One example of a missionary whose work remains decades later is former Foreign Mission Board (FMB) missionary to Taiwan, W. Carl Hunker. This dissertation examines what made Hunker an influential leader in the life and history of Taiwan Baptists. Hunker served with the FMB for forty years, spending thirty-four of those years in Taiwan. He was a pastor, church planter, convention founder, and seminary president. Sixty-five years after his work in Taiwan began, Hunker’s efforts still impact the ministry in that country. This dissertation argues that Hunker was an influential leader in the history of Taiwan Baptists due to his care for people, passion for the lost, understanding of culture, and commitment to indigeneity. Five primary chapters explore why Hunker was influential in the life and history of Taiwan Baptists. With chapter 1 serving as the introduction, chapter 2 provides a brief life sketch of Hunker’s life before, during, and after his time in Taiwan. Chapter 3 explores how Hunker’s care for people garnered trust and built influence in Taiwan. Chapter 4 explains how Hunker’s passion for evangelism impacted his Chinese disciples in Taiwan. Chapter 5 explores how Hunker’s understanding of Chinese culture helped him remove cultural barriers and minister to nationals. Chapter 6 explains how Hunker’s commitment to indigeneity equipped him to identify, develop, and empower national leaders. The concluding chapter draws twelve missiological reflections based on Hunker’s ministry principles.