|Oldest Scottish church 1940, Nagpur, India. timesofindia.indiatimes.com|
Founded by Sir Stephen Hislop, a young missionary from Scotland with support from other Scottish missionaries to fulfill the spiritual needs of the Scots working for the East India company and others, it is one of the oldest churches of Nagpur. Presently standing across the Life Insurance corporation (LIC) square in the prime area of this big city, it is not an impressive church. Nor does it have strong Gothic architectural features or tall spires with bell tower as one would in the early colonial churches. The most attractive feature of this church is its simplicity, no embellishment.
|Nagpur location map, Maharashtra.ayesh906.wordpress.com|
As racial segregation was adopted in some places across India, this church was built to cater to the Europeans and only after India's independence in August 1947, Indian Christians were allowed to attend the mass, etc. Because of time factor and ageing this old church was restructured in 1920 and divided into two parts, so that it could survive much longer and suit the present needs Yet another reason is the near-by Agnes Henderson Memorial Church looked very much similar to this church; For unknown reasons, this heritage church 's altar had remained not renovated since 1840 that is roughly 180 years.
Scottish Missionary Stephen Hislop, Nagpur
|Postal stamp, Sept. 2018 Hislop College,Nagpur. istampgallery.com|
Stephen Hislop (1817–1863), was a Scottish missionary, educator and an earth scientist. He landed in Nagpur on February 13, 1845 after travelling 580 miles from Bombay on horse back with some camels to carry his baggage. His main mission was to concentrate on humanitarian work. He carried on his missionary and educational work for 18 long years in the Vidarbha Region (region around Nagpur) along with one Robert Hunter, editor of the Encyclopedic Dictionary. Besides, he also studied the coal fields near Nagpur. His enthusiasm coupled with motivation led him to start a Boy's school in 1846 in Sukrawara area, old Nagpur (now in Maharashtra), then part of Central provinces and later Hislop College in 1883. In 2009, the college celebrated its 125th anniversary. He took the initiative and with other like-minded missionaries started the Scottish Church. The biography on Stephen Hislop was published in 1888 by George Smith..