Amy Carmichael (1867-1951)

Miss Amy Wilson Carmichael was born on 16th December 1867 in Millisle, Northern Ireland. She was the first missionary sent out by the Keswick Convention. After a few years in Japan she came to Southern India and served for 56 years. She founded the Dohnavur Fellowship and remained there till her last breath, without ever returning to Ireland. She obeyed by laying down the evangelistic work that she loved, and that God had so blessed. She went on obeying, although at first she had to face much opposition and danger, and many of the first babies she rescued died. As she learnt more of the plight of innocent children, her heart burned with God’s own love and indignation, and she wrote words which stirred others to come and join her in Dohnavur, the tiny village tucked far away near the tip of South India, where the children had their home.

From the beginning it was a family, never an institution. Amy was the mother, loving and loved by all.

As the family grew, its activities grew too. Baby nurseries led on to cottage homes, schools for all ages from toddlers to teenagers, a dairy farm, rice lands, fruit and vegetable gardens, tailoring departments, kitchens, laundries, workshops, and building offices with teams of builders, carpenters and electricians. From the small beginning of one obedient woman and one small child came a ‘model village’, complete with its own simple Indian facilities and even a hospital to serve the sick and in which to preach the Gospel to the thousands from the villages who flocked to it for help.

The story of her life, and the legacy of her own writings, still inspire people throughout the world today.