1877  — 1958

Abbe Livingston Warnshuis

Reformed Church in America missionary in China and International Missionary Council administrator.

Born in Clymer, New York, Warnshuis was educated at Hope College, Michigan, and New Brunswick (New Jersey) Theological Seminary. He served in the Amoy mission from 1900 to 1920. He constantly advocated strengthening the indigenous church in China and was instrumental in writing the first book of church order for the South Fukien Church.

After five years as national evangelistic secretary of the China Continuation Committee, he served as cosecretary with J. H. Oldham for the International Missionary Council (IMC) from 1925 until his retirement in 1942. With William Paton, Warnshuis carried chief responsibility in the arrangements for the IMC World Missionary Conferences held in Jerusalem (1928) and Tambaram, India (1938). In 1944 he represented American churches in planning interchurch aid and relief in Europe, and became the first executive vice-chairman of Church World Service.

He brought to each area of mission service the superb skill of an administrator, the vision of a statesman, and the insight of one whose life is centered on God’s revelation for redemption, peace, justice, and service to the victims of war and poverty.


This article is reprinted from Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, Macmillan Reference USA, copyright (c) 1998 Gerald H. Anderson, by permission of The Gale Group; Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Michigan. All rights reserved.


  • Abbe Livingston Warnshuis, Heidelberg Catechism in Chinese (1907), Lessons in Amoy Vernacular (coauthor, 1911), The Church’s Battle for Europe’s Soul (1945), and Church Growth and Croup Conversion (coauthor, 1956). Norman Goodall, Christian Ambassador: A Life of A. Livingston Warnshuis (1963).

About the Author

Eugene Heideman

Formerly Secretary for World Mission, Reformed Church in America, New York, New York