4-Minute Coffee with UR: My childhood hero David Livingstone.
与曾叔叔喝四分钟咖啡: 我童年的英雄大卫.利文斯顿
( JJ 翻譯)

My most fascinating childhood hero… I had many childhood heroes. Usually their heroic deeds were in foreign lands far, far away, in exotic, even near-impossible situations.

我小时候最敬仰的英雄… 从我孩童时期起,我心目中就有许许多多的英雄。他们的英勇事迹往往发生在遥远的异国他乡,甚至是在令人难以置信的情境之中。

You can get exciting stories of missionaries on YouTube. See https://reggietales.org/vbs/

One of these heroes was definitely David Livingstone, whom I read about, even in Asia, when I was really young. So after I knew that I was going to be a doctor at age 7(!), his story fit right into my glamorized view of missionary doctors, and how one doctor “discovered a continent and changed the world!” (1)

其中的一位英雄就是大卫·利文斯顿。在亚洲时虽然我年纪很小, 但那时我就读到过关于他的故事。所以在我7岁时就知道自己将来要做一名医生后(!),他的故事完全跟我对服事医生的美好印象,以及一位医生如何“发现了新大陆并且改变世界!”相吻合。(1)

Key inspiration for Vacation School…  Years later, when we started the vacation bible school (VBS) program in our Cincinnati congregation, one of the first things I did was to share stories of great mission leaders. Which of course immediately included David Livingstone.

度假学校的关键灵感…  多年以后,当我们在辛辛那提的团契开始举办圣经假期学校(VBS)时,我最开始做的一件事就是分享那些伟大的传道领袖的故事。其中就包括大卫·利文斯顿。

I re-enacted his story on many occasions, with great vigor and slight embellishment. Slight because it really wasn’t that necessary. The stories had enough content to fill many books and movies! (2)


The famous lion scene, from Wikipedia, David Livingstone.

Hero reactivated by movie…  In fact, we recently watched an excellent 1939 movie on reporter/journalist Stanley, who went on a one-year trek on foot through Africa in search of the missing and presumed dead Livingstone, whom Stanley eventually discovered was actually fully alive.

电影重新激活了英雄形象…  实际上,最近我们观看了一部出色的1939年的电影。这部电影主要讲述了记者/新闻工作者斯坦利(Stanley)花了一年的时间徒步穿越非洲,寻找失踪并被推定已死的利文斯顿,最终发现利文斯顿其实还在世的故事。

When he finally found Livingstone, half the movie was already over, meaning the movie spent as much time on Stanley as on Livingstone, but still managed to weave together a great story about Livingstone even as Stanley was trying to find him.


Since they had never met before, the movie included the classic understatement, “Dr. Livingstone, I presume” when they first met. A greeting that was splashed over every major newspaper headline in the West.

由于他们以前从未见过面,剧中在两人首次相遇时有一句经典台词:“利文斯顿博士,我想。” 这一问候语出现在西方各大报纸的头条新闻中。

World-famous Victoria Falls discovered by David Livingstone, courtesy of Steve Stuk, Cincinnati. I’m jealous that my good friend Steve photographed this, my unfulfilled life dream.

Lasting names…  There are towns named after these two heroes, Livingstone in Zambia and Stanleyville in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Even minerals named after each of them, and even a biologic name for a snail, named after Stanley. All reflecting their great discoveries.

永存的名字…  有一些城镇以这两位英雄的名字命名,利文斯顿在赞比亚,而斯坦利维尔在刚果民主共和国。甚至还有以他们名字命名的矿物质,连一种蜗牛的生物学名称也用斯坦利命名。所有这些都反映了他们的伟大发现。

Actually, it’s quite uncommon for mission leaders to be remembered in these ways, in spite of their often extraordinary contributions. They are far more likely to be remembered deep in the hearts of many.


VBS story “dramatizations”…  I dramatized the highlights of Livingstone’s life to our VBS children, because I really wanted to stir their interest and enthusiasm with this highly memorable story. I purposely chose the most exciting and vivid parts, which I’m sure even for adults was fascinating, even exhilarating. My “cliffhanger” six-part stories were indeed met with wild enthusiasm. (1)

圣经假期学校故事的戏剧化… 我将利文斯顿一生中的亮点戏剧化地呈现给我们圣经假期学校的孩子们,因为我真的想用这个令人难忘的故事去激发他们的兴趣和热情。我有意选择了最激动人心和生动形象的部分,我相信即使对成年人来说,这些部分都非常令人着迷,甚至令人振奋。我的“悬念”六部分故事确实引起了热烈的反响。(1)

Children’s views are sacred…  When I told stories to the children, I felt my responsibility to be even sacred, because childhood is such a great time for important imprints in the children’s minds, just as I had had strong imprints in my own mind as a child. I wanted to leave unmistakably good imprints and thoughts in those lively formative minds.

孩子们的眼光是圣洁的…  当我给孩子们讲故事时,我感到自己有责任做到圣洁,因为童年是在孩子们在心灵中留下深刻印记的重要时期,就像我自己心中有小时候的深刻印记一样。我希望在那些充满活力而又成长中的心灵上留下美好的印记和思想。

Lion’s mouth horror…  A huge lion once attacked Dr. Livingstone, even grabbing his arm to shake his body, and breaking his arm. Africans jumped in to shoot the lion and literally save him from its huge jaws, permitting Livingstone to continue creating history. A story I really loved to share.

狮子嘴的恐怖…  一只巨大的狮子曾经袭击了利文斯顿博士,甚至抓住了他的胳膊摇晃他的身体,并折断了他的手臂。非洲人跳进来射杀了狮子,确确实实挽救他脱离了巨大的狮子嘴,使利文斯顿得以继续创造历史。这是我非常喜欢分享的一个故事。

1939 movie, Stanley and Livingstone, on YouTube, Livingstone on left says goodbye to Stanley (played by star actor Spencer Tracy), who is inspired later to continue Livingstone’s work.

A way to marriage…  Because of this attack, Livingstone got to know Mary, the daughter of a missionary in Africa, who helped nurse him to recovery. He subsequently married her, as befitting the drama of great stories.

通往婚姻的路…  由于这次狮子的袭击,利文斯顿认识了玛丽,一位在非洲的传道人的女儿,她给他提供护理,帮助他康复。后来,他与她结婚了,这与伟大故事的戏剧性相称。

No DNA identification…  After Livingstone’s death, his body was shipped back to Britain, where the doctors used the broken arm to confirm that it was indeed the famous mission leader and explorer. No DNA confirmation in those days!

没有DNA技术做身份认定…  在利文斯顿去世后,他的遗体被运回英国,医生们利用他的断臂确认了这确实是那位著名的传道领袖和探险家。在那个时代没有DNA鉴定技术!

Heart unquestionably in Africa…  Three African leaders made the touching and unique decision to bury Livingstone’s heart in Africa under a tree. Together with the rest of his internal organs. They knew that Livingston’s heart was always in Africa, in her vast jungles. He had refused many times to leave even after terrible trials and illnesses. A full life in Africa and a heart (and guts!) still there!

心毫无疑问留在了非洲…  三位非洲领袖做出了一个令人感动而又独特的决定,将利文斯顿的心脏,连同他的其他内脏一起,埋在了一棵非洲的树下。他们深知利文斯顿的心一直在非洲,在她那辽阔的丛林中。即使经历了很多次艰难的考验和疾病,他也拒绝离开非洲, 在那度过了充实的一生,而他的心(和胆!)仍然留在那里!

Slave traders hated him…  Slave traders hated Livingstone because he was a persistent and very vocal advocate for stopping them wherever he could. They would have killed him had they had a chance, and they had many angry encounters with him.

奴隶贩们憎恨他…  奴隶贩们憎恨利文斯顿,因为他是一个坚持不懈、积极发声的贩卖奴隶的反对者,无论在哪里,他都会努力制止奴隶贩卖。如果有机会,那些奴隶贩们早会把他杀了。他们与利文斯顿有过许多紧张的对峙。

Their atrocious behavior all over Africa resulted in horrendous pain, suffering and illnesses in the land. Slave trading meant men, women and children were treated as animals or worse, by any African, Arab or Western buyer, anyone who paid.


Statue of David Livingstone at Victoria Falls, courtesy of Steve Stuk, Cincinnati.

Multiple threats to his life…  Apart from marauding lions, there were cannibals and lots of men with guns and spears. Livingstone encountered tsetse flies, mosquitoes, and attack bees. Even just any one of these encounters could have been fatal, so you could say Livingstone lived hundreds of lives, staying alive to strive for another day.

多次的生命威胁…  除了会掠夺的狮子,还有食人族和很多手持枪矛的人。利文斯顿遭遇过茨蝇、蚊子和攻击性蜜蜂。这些遭遇到的任何一种危险都有可能致命,所以你可以说利文斯顿活了数百次的生命,就为了再多活一天。

He had fevers, malaria and dysentery, and many physical injuries during his explorations. But his body was tough and often it seemed he handled his illnesses better than others.


Wife and children reluctantly left him for years…  His family suffered for years with him in Africa. One of their six children died shortly after birth in Africa, and the family especially suffered from the common fevers and dysenteries in Africa. His faithful loving wife didn’t want to leave Livingstone alone in the African jungles, but there was little choice because of schooling and family health concerns; one time he sent his family to Scotland for five years, and another time he sent them to South Africa for four years.

妻子和孩子们不情愿地与他分开多年…  他的家人与他一起在非洲经历了多年的苦难。他们的六个孩子中的一个在非洲出生后不久就夭折了,而且这个家庭还常常受到非洲普通的发烧和痢疾的困扰。他忠心的妻子不想将利文斯顿独自留在非洲丛林中,但出于对学校和家人健康问题的考虑,他们几乎没有选择;有一次他将家人送回到苏格兰五年,又有一次他将他们送到南非四年。

Resisting fame…  David Livingstone resisted fame and fortune, which he could have had in spades, having explored a huge amount of new territory for the world.

抗拒名利…  大卫·利文斯顿抗拒名利和金钱,尽管他本可以通过探索大量新的疆域而获得巨大的名声和财富。

In the movie mentioned above, there was a scene I liked where he could have been tempted by prizes and accolades, but he flatly refused, rather living out his days in simplicity and dedication.


Dying kneeling by bedside…  Dr. Livingstone’s faith journey finally ended at his bedside, where he was found praying in a kneeling position by his bed, as he commonly did every night. In deepest Africa, in the land he loved, in the posture that spoke volumes.

生命中的最后时刻跪在床边…  利文斯顿博士的信仰之旅最终在他的床边结束,人们发现他的时候,他的身体保持着跪在床边祈祷的姿势,就像他每天晚上所做的一样。在非洲这片他所热爱的土地上,利文斯顿博士以这个意义深长的姿势结束了他的一生。

After burying his heart, his three faithful African assistants took his body and salted it. They brought the body on a one-year journey by foot to the nearest port that could ship it to London.


All nation mourns…  All of Britain welcomed him back. All Brittain buried him in the main sanctuary of Westminster Abbey, among kings and queens, such was the awe and reverence the nation and the world had for Dr. Livingstone.

举国哀悼…  整个英国上下都欢迎他回家。英国全体人民将他葬在了西敏寺大教堂主殿内,与国王和女王为伍,这表达了全英国以及世界对利文斯顿博士的敬仰和崇敬之情。

Following in the footsteps of Livingstone, Dr. and Mrs. Peter Pan, our Cincinnati Chinese first medical mission workers, to Nigeria, Africa.

Stanley deeply inspired to change…  A fascinating side story is that Stanley was so inspired by David Livingstone that he changed his whole life from journalism to be the successor in exploration of Africa. Indeed, he accomplished quite a bit after his one-year “subtle mentorship” by Livingstone.

斯坦利深受激励去改变…  斯坦利深受大卫·利文斯顿的启发和激励,以至于他彻底改变了他的人生轨迹,从新闻工作者转向成为非洲探险的继任者。事实上,在与利文斯顿有了一年“微妙的导师关系”之后,他取得了相当大的成就。

Fresh versions of story…  David Livingstone’s story is a great story, retold many times because there are so many ramifications, inspiring people of different ages. An old story, but a lasting legacy!! (4)

故事的新版本…  大卫·利文斯顿的故事是一则伟大的故事,一遍又一遍地被人们传讲着。虽然故事古老,但是却能激励各个年龄层次的人,影响深远,是一份经久的传奇! (4)

Africa today has been hugely impacted… Livingstone’s pioneering and inspirational work drove the hearts of many subsequent explorers, doctors, nurses and teachers, who flooded into Africa in all its intimidating beauty, from jungles to towns. Africa is what it is today, directly or indirectly, in large part because of one dedicated, focused man of faith.

今日的非洲受到了巨大的影响… 利文斯顿的开创先河和鼓舞人心的工作激发了许多后来的探险家、医生、护士和老师们的心,他们纷纷涌入非洲,探索它所有令人生畏的美丽,从丛林到城镇。直接或间接地,非洲今天ok的面貌很大程度上是因为受到了一位专注而又有信仰的人所做出的贡献的影响。

Africa reverse-impacting the West…  And nowadays we see the West impacted by leaders from Africa. Africans tend to have a conservative evangelical bent that has now strengthened British and American Christian denominations! Led often by Nigerians, Ugandans and Kenyans.

非洲对西方影响的回应…  而如今我们看到西方受到来自非洲领导人的很多影响。非洲人往往具有保守的福音派倾向,这种倾向使得现在的英国和美国的基督教教派得到了坚固!这些传统的教义通常被尼日利亚人、乌干达人或者肯尼亚人倡导。

Africans at Chinese congregation…  Even in our Cincinnati Chinese congregation, we had Nigerian Africans. One even became our missions chairman for many years.

在我们辛辛那提的华人团契… 也有尼日利亚裔的非洲人。其中一位甚至是我们多年的宣道主席。

Nigerian African exuberance deeply felt. (3) Even Livingstone would have been impressed, likely dancing.

Africans in Seattle …  I’m impressed that our huge Bellevue Presbyterian Church in Eastside Seattle has a large congregation from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Their trials in the Congo (genocide, racial hatred and reconciliation) have given them deep conviction and faith which inspire us, especially in our USA racial tensions.

非洲人在西雅图…  我们在西雅图东部的贝尔维尤长老会教堂的庞大团体来自刚果民主共和国,我对此印象很深刻。他们在刚果的经历(种族灭绝、种族仇恨以及和解)赋予他们深厚的信念和信仰,这也激励着我们,尤其是在美国的种族紧张的局势中。

Once upon a time…  Most people at our Cincinnati Chinese congregation actually barely remember our first mission workers, Dr. and Mrs. Peter Pan, who were called to Egbe, Nigeria, obviously in the footsteps of Livingstone. It was exciting to hear their reports of living in the heart of Africa, especially at a time when there were rarely ethnic Chinese living there.

从前…  我们辛辛那提的华人团契大多数人几乎都记不得我们的第一批宣道士,彼得·潘博士和潘夫人,他们被召唤到尼日利亚的埃格贝,显然是效仿利文斯顿。他们从非洲中心地带传来的消息总是令人激动,尤其是在那种很少有华人居住在那里的情况下。

We could be a big exuberant global village?…  Recently, my wife and I were invited to fly to Cincinnati for a fully Nigerian annual charity meeting where I was, surprisingly, the award speaker.(3)

我们可以成为一个充满活力的大型全球村庄吗…  最近,我和我的妻子被邀请前往辛辛那提参加一次完全由尼日利亚人举办的年度慈善会议,而我出人意料地成为了领奖发言人。(3)

We were Asians surrounded by Nigerians, Nigerian costumes and Nigerian dancing.


The occasion was so exuberant that we even caught “a touch” of global COVID-19! Global interchanges nowadays definitely include global viruses going multiple ways.  A festive evening at Cincinnati Music Hall which I suspect even my childhood hero Dr. David Livingstone might not have imagined.


2.David Livingstone, Africa’s Trailblazer, by Janet and Geoff Benge, YWAM publishing, 1999
4.The life of David Livingstone, Mrs JH Worchester, Jr, Moody Press, Chicago 1975