Johan Peter Rottler
Johan Peter Rottler, was a European missionary who served in India for close to sixty years. He grew up under the able guidance of Dr. Lorenz and completed his studies at Strasbourg University. On Dr. Lorenz’s prodding, he joined the Danish Lutheran Tranquebar Mission (the Halle mission) and was ordinated in Copenhagen. Shortly thereafter, he set sail for India and arrived on the Tranquebar coast in 1776 along with another companion.
Rottler arrived in India to find the people here suffering from starvation due to poverty and no one to comfort them. He decided to comfort these people with the love of Christ and lead them to the truth.
He earnestly learned Tamil and is said to have preached his first sermon in vernacular language after less than a year’s study.
Johan Peter Rottler ministry in India
He made several missionary tours with fellow missionaries as far as Ceylon in Sri Lanka. To alleviate the people’s poverty, he focused on providing education to women and children and made efforts to improve the educational system. In 1803, Rottler was sent to take charge of the Vepery Mission in Madras. Later he also took charge as a chaplain in a female orphan asylum in Madras.
Despite the physical and financial struggles there, he never neglected his flock. His exhortations and counseling at a personal level added many souls to the church. During this time, he did extensive research on Tamil literature and published a dictionary of Tamil and English languages, which helped the subsequent missionaries.
He also translated a book of Common prayers into the Tamil language. He was a botany enthusiast even from his youth and studied several plant species collected from southern India. He used his knowledge in botany to induce discussions among the people about nature and encouraged them to experience God and recognize His Glory through nature.
Rottler, a man of prayer, an empathetic pastor, and a venerable servant of God who demonstrated the love and power of God all through his life, went to be with Lord in 1836.
Beloved, have you experienced God’s glory in nature?Take away from the article
“Lord, how great is Your power of creation! I bow down and worship You. Amen!”Word of Prayer
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Johan Peter Rottler