Timothy Man-kong WONG (Hong Kong Baptist University), Local Voluntarism: The Medical Mission of the London Missionary Society in Hong Kong, 1842íV1923 , English/36 Pages, June 2004.


It is a well-known fact that Sun Yat-sen was a graduate of the Hong Kong College of Medicine for Chinese, the predecessor of the medical faculty of the University of Hong Kong. However, not much has been written about the history behind that medical college, and more fundamentally, the medical mission that made possible the creation of the Alice Memorial Hospital, with which that medical college was closely associated. This paper aims to provide a historical account of this overlooked history. The paper is divided chronologically into three major sections, covering the initial period during the 1840s to 1850s, the revival in the 1880s, and the subsequent consolidation since 1900. In so doing, it sheds light on questions about why and how the medical mission of the London Missionary Society in Hong Kong came into being through different stages. In addition, it argues that local voluntarism through the support of missionaries, affluent merchants, social leaders, and senior government officials became the key to understanding why and how the medical mission prospered since the 1880s, and the way in which its independence became possible in the 1920s.