Document of the month - February 2010

The document of the month for February 2010 is a piece of art, a watercolor painting in a letter from China missionary Ragna Holthe to her family in Norway.

The painting has been scanned and enlarged to size A3+, and alongside the painting there are two sheets of information about the document and its creator.

The original painting is about 7x11 cm, placed in the upper right corner of the letter paper. Source: Mission Archives, collection A1091.[ Click for larger version ]
[ Click for larger version ]

The following texts are displayed:

About the document:

The water color painting presented as the document of the month for February 2010 is taken from a letter by Ragna Landmark Holthe, written in Taohwalun, Hunan, China, 16 March 1948. It is found in our archive collection, "A1091, Holthe, Ragna", which is not yet catalogued. Several similar pieces of fine art are found in the bound volumes of her letters.

Ragna Holthe is adressing her loved ones in Norway, "Mine inderlig kjære!". She tells about her life and work on the mission field of the Norwegian Mission Society in Hunan province. The missionary ministry is associated with the Lutheran Church of China and its institutions. In her letter the Chinese evangelist on the painting is identified as Cheng, and the characters on the poster are "Shang-di ai", i.e. the love of God.

About the creator

Ragna Landmark Holthe (1920-1965) was born at Tienchaoping, China. Her parents were Eva Marie (b. Landmark) and Peder Olaus Holthe, NMS missionaries in China 1909-1926. Ragna was educated as a teacher and graduated from "Misjonsskolen for kvinner" (the NMS training center for women missionaries) in Oslo 1946. In 1947 she went to China and was appointed headmaster of the Norwegian School for missionary children in Taohwalun. From her letters we understand that she also was involved in evangelistic outreach in the area. Her ministry in China lasted until 1950, and from 1952-1963 she was a missionary in Japan. She died in Trondheim, Norway, at the age of 45.


Published: 2010‑02‑17