Motivated by a patriotic zeal for the national salvation of China, in the 1910s, US-trained Chinese intellectuals like Francis Wei and T. C. Chao embraced a progressive version of Protestantism. While Christian colleges established by liberal missionaries during this time initially contributed greatly to nurturing a generation of intellectual elites for China, its institutionalization of progressive ideas, and its tolerance and protection of revolutionary mobilization under extraterritorial rights, also unintendedly helped invigorate indigenous revolutionary movements. Meanwhile, in the 1920s, anti-Western and anti-Christian student movements radicalized in China’s major urban centers. When the communist revolution showed more promise of granting China independence, Francis Wei and T. C. Chao became optimistic supporters. However, neither of them foresaw the reversal of China missions under the Three-Self Patriotic Movement in the 1950s.
Ma, Li and Li, Jin, "The tragic irony of a patriotic mission" (2020). University Faculty Publications and Creative Works. 147.