History of Christianity in Arunachal with special reference to Adi Baptist Union and its Partnership with BCM
In Arunachal Pradesh , Adi(Abor) people received Gospel of Lord Jesus Christ, for the first time in the beginning of 20th Century during British rule. Gospel penetration came in the community from two corners Sadia and Balipara division. In the Easter part of Arunachal (then NEFA)had its headquarters at Sadia and Western part had its centre at Lakhimpur. In 1900 the Arthington mission sent Rev.J.Herbert Lorraine and Rev.F.W.Savidge at Sadia and assigned to work among the Adis and misings. They studied Adi and Mising dialects interviewed, compiled with intention to master the local language as first strategy. In the meantime Home mission called them to come to Lunglei, Mizoram (Lushai hills) and they left for Lushai hills on August 1st 1906. However they continued the study of Abor Miri language, retained their hard work and finally published the book “Abor Miri Dictionary” with Roman script in 1908 at Kolkota.
The next missionary after their departure, Dr.H.W,Kirby came in 1901 as medical missionary but soon he was transferred to Jorhat in 1919. A school was opened at Sadia in 1914. In 1921, the new missionary Rev.John Selander along with his wife Mrs.Hilda arrived at Sadia to take up missions among Adis. He was the most popular missionary in Adi community. He opened schools in Adi area in 1935. He also published several books like Padam Primer, some portions of gospel folk tales in Adi language. Finally in the year 1958 he returned to America after 37 years of mission work among Adis.
From the western side Gospel came to Adi area from North Bank American missionaries, centering at North Lahimpur where John Firth Baptist School was established. Gogamukh was a mission sub centre where Rev. Dana Larson American missionary baptized Late Tabong Messar who was the first evangelist in Adi area. Slowly churches of Sili, Telam, Ngorlunbg etc. came under North Bank Association. Like wise Gospel came in our Adi Land and Church started growing bigger and bigger.