Moyer, Samuel Tyson (1893-1972)

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Samuel Tyson Moyer, b. 10 April 1893,  was reared on the farm of his parents, Samuel Clymer and Emma Tyson Moyer of Lansdale, PA. He earned a BS degree in agronomy from Pennsylvania State College (1914) and after a few years attended Witmarsum Seminary (1917-1919). He married Metta Habegger on 20 April 1920, and they left for India 25 October 1920.

In India the Moyers were assigned to open a new mission station (the fifth General Conference station) in the Deovri-Phuljhar area ca. 65 miles south of the original General Conference Mennonite mission field. For the next three years the Moyers lived in tents and other temporary housing surrounded by wild animals and opposed by some of the local people. By 1927 Moyer had baptized 400 people and established what was later called the Jagdeeshpur station. At home on furlough the Moyers adopted an infant boy, Theodore.

During their second term Moyer continued to develop an innovative method of evangelism, planting an indigenous church. He prepared a series of Bible stories and Indian gospel songs designed to fit into the life situation of the villagers. Volunteer workers and paid evangelists memorized these stories and songs and divided into groups to spend at least a month teaching in chosen villages. During this time Moyer wrote, "The Self Supporting Church at Basna, C.P." published in the Indian Witness. This gave him recognition in missions throughout northern India. By the end of the second term more than 1,000 members had been added to the church in that area.

Moyers spent their third term at Janjgir. During S. T. Moyer's tenure as principal of the Janjgir Bible School it became the Union Bible School under a "board" which had representatives from nearby missions. During their fourth term, Moyer was principal of the Janzen Memorial Higher Secondary School in Jagdeeshpur.

The Moyers left India in 1956 after which they pastored the Bethel Mennonite Church, Pekin, IL, until retirement in 1967.  Samuel T. Moyer died 9 January 1972.


Juhnke, James C. A People of Mission: A History of General Conference Mennonite Overseas Missions. Newton, KS: Faith and Life, 1979: 37-43, 234.

Moyer, Samuel T. With Christ on the Edge of the Jungles. Jubbulpore, C. P. India, 1941.

Moyer, Samuel T. Twenty-Five Years with God in India. Berne, IN: Mennonite Book Concern, 1929: 195.

Moyer, Samuel T. They Heard the Call. Newton, 1970: 106-57.

Ratzlaff, Ruth, ed. Fellowship in the Gospel India: 1900-1950. Newton, KS: MPO, 1950: 91-95, 129, 151-157.

Warkentin, A. and Melvin Gingerich, compilers. Who's Who Among the Mennonites. North Newton, KS: Bethel College, 1943: 176.

Author(s) Harold Ratzlaff
Ruth Ratzlaff
Date Published 1987

Cite This Article

MLA style

Ratzlaff, Harold and Ruth Ratzlaff. "Moyer, Samuel Tyson (1893-1972)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1987. Web. 20 Jul 2024.,_Samuel_Tyson_(1893-1972)&oldid=90251.

APA style

Ratzlaff, Harold and Ruth Ratzlaff. (1987). Moyer, Samuel Tyson (1893-1972). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 July 2024, from,_Samuel_Tyson_(1893-1972)&oldid=90251.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 5, p. 604. All rights reserved.

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