Making Sense of Another Time and Another Place: The Mid-Twentieth Century Letters of Two Missionaries to Arabia

Student Author(s)

Emma Zagar

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Donald Luidens

Document Type


Event Date



Edwin and Ruth Luidens were Christian Missionaries in the Middle East from 1944 to 1964. Commissioned by the Board of Foreign Missions and working for the Arabian Mission of the Reformed Church, Edwin and Ruth provided educational and evangelistic mission work in various places in the Middle East. This span of twenty years in Arabia was a time of tremendous change and uncertainty. Edwin and Ruth documented their entire trip in the form of very detailed, personal letters written back to their parents living in the States. The thousands of letters provide a unique insight into the daily experiences of Edwin and Ruth as well as the reactions of their family. Included with descriptions of their work, Edwin and Ruth write thoughtfully about every person they encounter from all levels of society. The missionary journey of Edwin and Ruth greatly contributed to the overall Christian influence in the Middle East and it is of great importance to preserve their history.

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