Dr. Henry Grattan Guinness,  D.D., F.R.A.S.

In the nineteenth century, appeared one H. Grattan Guinness, who became England's greatest prophet. He was born August 11, 1835, in Dublin. He was early impressed by the Gospel, led to it by his saintly mother, Jane. Henry began preaching in 1855, but he was bitterly persecuted by the Church of Rome. He wrote, "One priest threatened that I should be treated like Mr. Sprong, who had been shot at two months previously."

By 1858, Henry had become a powerful preacher. The Daily Express wrote:-- "Mr. Guinness preached yesterday in York Street Chapel. The attendance was greater than on any former occasion. In the evening it amounted to 1600, and if there were a place large enough, five times the number would have been present, to hear this highly gifted preacher. The interest which he has excited has daily increased and probably will continue to do so, during his labors in Dublin. An enormous crowd pressed for admittance. Judges, members of Parliament, orators, Fellows of College, lights of the various professions, the rank and fashion of the metropolis have been drawn out. Among them the Lord Lieutenant, the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Justice of Appeal, etc.

He wrote in his diary, "I do now most heartily desire to live but to exalt Jesus; to live preaching and to die preaching; to preach to perishing sinners till I drop down dead." He was the great evangelist in England in the middle of the 19th Century.

Not only did Dr. Guinness evangelize in Ireland, Wales and England, but he also spent several years in mission work in France, for his heart was always burning for mission work. He made a special trip to Spain where he stood breast deep in the ashes of the Spanish martyrs, in the Quemadero-Burning-place.

In March, 1872 Henry and wife Fanny, started the famous Missionary Institute in East London, with just six students. The renowned Dr. Barnardo was co-director with Dr. Guinness.

By the end of three years, more than 100 students were in training. All who were accepted for training, were definitely pledged for Foreign Mission work. The first place in which the Institute started soon became too small, so Harley House, Bow, was taken and enlarged and the College built, and Cliff College, Derbyshire, was opened. Mission Halls in East London were used and open-air preaching carried on by the students. In 14 years 500 students had been received and were in training.




This site was last updated 01/05/04