38. Religious Performances
Religious Lantern Shows Inspire
Religious lantern shows came in many forms. Michael Paget Baxter’s illustrated lecture on Coming Prophetic Events toured the U. S., predicting the end of the world on April 23, 1908. Baxter was author of Future Wonders of Prophecy, and editor of the Christian Herald. His lectures probably contained the same images as those in his book, like this lion, symbolizing what he saw as a corrupt Catholic Church.
The page from India: Her Heritage and Handicaps shows the script and slide images for a missionary’s illustrated lecture on India. The book and slides were meant to circulate to churches in order to broaden the mission’s reach. This particular page bemoans the fate of a child bride.
Lectures like this were sponsored by many Christian missionaries. (There were 10,000 missionaries in China alone.) Illustrated lectures were an excellent way of educating church audiences back home, and of raising money for further missionary work.
What Would Jesus Do?