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Luther Rice

1783-1836. American missionary to India and promoter of missionary interest among Baptist churches. Born in Northboro, Massachusetts, he was one of the group of students who sparked the formation of the first American foreign mission society. When the American Board appointed its first four missionary couples in 1812, Rice's name was added a few days before sailing, on condition that he secure his own support. Ordained a Congregational minister, after reaching India he experienced the same change of mind about baptism as did Adoniram Judson,* and became a Baptist. To stimulate missionary interest among Baptists, they decided he should return temporarily to the USA. He helped start the Baptist foreign mission society and was so effective in gaining support for the mission that he never returned to the Orient.