A Tale of Religious Persecution and Heroic Faith
This is the deeply moving story of the home life of the Bunyan family, as John, the father, languished in prison as a result of his preaching as a Baptist pastor in England during the 17th century. The account is historical fiction, told largely from the vantage point of his blind daughter, Mary, his first-born child and constant joy.
Mary became Bunyan's loyal, constant companion on every occasion when the authorities would permit her to visit her father at the prison, and his persistent petitioner for mercy and release before King Charles. This stirring account of how a young girl's faith in God grew, rather than diminished, during times of persecution, is an inspiring example of peculiar beauty for all believers today.
Sallie Rochester Ford, the teller of Mary Bunyan's story, originally titled it MARY BUNYAN, The Dreamer's Blind Daughter: A Tale of Religious Persecution. Ford's focus on this one girl and the life of her family has left us one of the most moving stories of suffering for the Christian faith ever penned. She has done a masterful job...Mary Bunyan will leave the reader with a greater appreciation not only of those who have suffered for the faith before us, but may well catch you off guard when it stirs you on an unexpected point: to realize the devotion called for from the rest of us when one member of the body suffers. For, as the Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Cor. 12:26, when one member of the body suffers, it is fitting that all the members suffer with him. Mary Bunyan--already bearing more than enough afflictions of her own--made that choice, and made it for years. For this, the memory of her life is cherished, exemplary, unforgettable. -- Dennis Gundersen, Grace and Truth Books
Sallie Rochester Ford (1828-1910) was a courageous, and even controversial, leader in the late-nineteenth-century drive to create a woman's missions organization. Ford's efforts to establish the Baptist woman's voice in what would become the Woman's Missionary Union would secure her place as, in Catherine B. Allen's words, "the best-known women's leader between 1882 and 1888." Ford actually built her fame in the 1850s as co-editor of the Christian Repository, a leading Baptist periodical of the West. In her section of the Repository, she edited and personally contributed didactic articles and serialized religious stories. One of these stories, Grace Truman, eventually proved so popular with readers that Ford published it in book form in 1857, and it made her famous in Baptist circles, passing through numerous editions. In 1860 she published Mary Bunyan which was reprinted by Solid Ground Christian Books.