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Arabian Mission Historical Timeline

Arabian Mission Historical Timeline.   Here are the outline of events leading to the establishment of American Mission Hospital in the Middle East.

In 1888 – at the Theological Seminary of the Dutch Reformed Church, John Lansing, teacher and his three students,  Samuel M. Zwemer, James Cantine and Philip T. Phelps had the calling to begin their work as Arabian Mission. . Dr. John G. Lansing had inherited his interest in Arabia from his father, a pioneer worker in Syria and Egypt.

On May 23rd 1888 – the group signed their plan, and work began to get approval from the Board of Foreign Missions.

October 12, 1889 – Received the first donation to the Arabian Mission helped bring missionaries who founded American Mission Hospital.

On June 26th – the board passed their acceptance and the Arabian Mission was born. Through the personal donations of several people, the Arabian Mission finally had enough money to send their first missionary out.

On October 16th, 1889  – James Cantine was sent out to begin language study in Syria.

On  June 28th 1890 – Samuel Zwemer followed and met up with Cantine in Beirut. Subsequently, Cantine travelled to Suez, Aden, Belhaaf, Muscat, Bombay, Bandar Abbas, Bushire, Bahrain and Basra, where the Arabian Mission first made its base.

On December 7, 1892 – Samuel Zwemer, who followed after Cantine on his travels through Arabia, decided to stay permanently in Bahrain.

1883 – opened a medical dispensary in the Old Souk. This is how one man, Samuel Zwemer, ignited the vision of a health service for Bahrain with a single step.

1900 –  Operating were done as the courtyard of the Mission House.

Jan 26, 1903 –  the Mason Memorial Hospital was dedicated to God and Arabia.

1904 –  Operating done at the Mason Memorial Hospital operating room.

1910 –  “The Little Traveller” Ambulance, a model T Ford use by missionaries to visit patients who are unable to travel to the hospital


A famous Arab proverb symbolises the struggle: “A journey of a thousand miles starts with one step”. By the grace of God, one man’s desire of providing modern medical care in the Arabian Gulf has produced today’s American Mission Hospital. As a non-profit healthcare institution, the hospital has flourished with strong community support for a century and is preparing for a bright future ahead.



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