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Bruce Hunt

Bruce Finley Hunt was an American Presbyterian missionary to Korea for 48 years until he completed his final term as a missionary of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church in 1976.

Born in 1903 in Pyengyang, Korea, of missionary parents serving with the Presbyterian Church of the USA, Bruce Hunt attended Wheaton College, Illinois, for three years, and graduated from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey and from Princeton Theological Seminary, New Jersey, in 1928. He went to Korea as a missionary in the autumn of that same year. His wife, Katharine, was the daughter of missionaries William & Edith Blair, and was also a native of Korea, born in Pyengyang in 1904. They were married in Pyengyang in September 1932.

Bruce Hunt spent his first sabbatical at Westminster Theological Seminary during 1935-36, and then left the PCUSA and became a founding member of the PCA (later OPC). As a member of the Presbyterian Independent Mission Board, under the leadership of J. Gresham Machen, he served in Manchuria from 1936 to 1942. During that time, he became a missionary under the OPC Foreign Mission Board. In 1941 he was imprisoned for seven months by the Japanese for his opposition to Shinto (emperor) worship. Repatriated with his wife and children in 1942, he returned to Korea in 1946 and associated with those concerned over compromises with Shinto worship and the growth of theological liberalism. He joined the staff of Koryu Seminary in Pusan, created by Korean leadership to promote renewal.

The Korean War again interrupted his work in 1950, but he was able to return once more in 1952. When the supporting presbytery was ousted by the denomination in 1951, a new denomination, nicknamed the Koryu Group, was formed, and Hunt was associated with this until his retirement in 1976.

His book, For A Testimony, published in 1966, tells of his experiences in prison and of the steadfastness and valour of Korean Christians. Retiring to Abington, Pennsylvania, Hunt continued to preach the gospel, on a weekly basis, to all peoples, especially Koreans in the U.S. and Canada. In 1977, the Trust published The Korean Pentecost and the Sufferings which Followed, a compilation by Bruce Hunt of his father-in-law’s memories of early missionary work in Korea up to the ‘Korean Pentecost’ of 1907, and his own account of the sufferings of the Korean church in the years which followed under Japanese occupation and Communist rule up to the time of the Korean War (1950-53).

Bruce Hunt went to be with the Lord in 1992 at the age of 89. Kathy followed him to glory in 1994.

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