(Formosa). Is. ca. 90/110 mi. off the coast of Fukien province (SE mainland China). Taiwan (ca. 240 mi. long N to S, 85 mi. at its greatest width) is the seat of the Rep. of China (also known as Nationalist China), whose govt. uses the name Taiwan to include 13 or 14 other nearby islands and 64 more comprising the Penghu (Pescadores) group. Quemoy and Matsu, near the mainland, are also under control of the Rep. of China. Taiwan was ceded by China to Japan 1895, returned to China as a province 1945. Taiwan is a Chinese name meaning Terraced Bay. Formosa is shortened from Ilha Formosa (Beautiful Isle), 16th-c. Port. name.
Religions include Confucianism, Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Christianity. Christianity was brought to Taiwan by Dutch, who controlled the island from the 1620s to the 1660s. Eng. Presbs. began work 1865, Can. Presbs. 1872. RCs claim 23% of the pop. The Mustard Seed, Inc., HQ Glendale, California, was organized in the 1950s to support certain interdenom. work. LCMS work began 1951 (see Gruen, Olive Dorothy); a sem. was est. at Taipeh 1952, moved to Chia Yi 1954, combined with efforts of the Taiwan* Luth. Ch. (related to The ALC) in formation of a Federated Luth. Sem. at Taichung in the early 1970s. The 1st gen. conf. of The China Ev. Luth. Ch. (related to LCMS) was held September 1966; a const. was adopted 1968. Conc. Middle School was est. by LCMS at Chia Yi in the late 1960s. HRR
See also China, 9.
Li-wu Hang (Hah Lih-wu), Taiwan Today, rev. ed. (Taipei, Taiwan, 1952); (The) Taiwan Christian Yearbook (Taipei, 1960, 1964, 1968); H. K. Tong, Christianity in Taiwan: A History (Taipei, 1961); K. L. Wilson, Angel at Her Shoulder: Lillian Dickson and Her Taiwan Mission (New York, 1964).
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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