Church Missionary Society

Simeon inspired, advised and supported missionaries such as Henry Martyn in the Near East and Samuel Marsden in New Zealand. Together with like-minded Evangelicals he was a founding member of the Church Missionary Society.

Henry Martyn (1781-1812) was a very bright student who came up to St John’s College, Cambridge where he was impressed and moved by Simeon’s preaching. They became friends and Martyn was so inspired that he became a missionary to India in 1806, where he worked on translations of the Bible into Arabic, Persian and Urdu. From 1810 until his unfortunate early death he travelled in the Near East. He kept in contact with Simeon but struggled against tuberculosis that eventually took his life.

In its bicentennial year (1999) the CMS organised a walk from Oxford to Cambridge to raise funds to support schools for camel-based nomads in northern Kenya. It was particularly appropriate that the walkers were met by dignitaries at the Gibbs arch, directly beneath Simeon’s old rooms. You can learn more about that walk, and about Simeon, in the sermon given by one of the walkers, the Rt Revd Dr Graham Kings, on the King's Divines sermons page. This series was part of the College's celebration of the 500th anniversary of completion of its Chapel. 


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