Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892) was born in Essex, England. Converted at age fifteen, Spurgeon preached his first sermon at age sixteen and became a pastor the following year. By his early twenties he was preaching to more than ten thousand persons for each service. His thirty-eight years of ministry at the New Park Street Chapel and the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London resulted in the enduring ministries of the Stockwell Orphanage, the Pastors' College for the training of evangelical ministers, and some sixty-three volumes of published sermons.
"Analyze the gifts of that powerful evangelist as accurately as you can; measure, as closely as may be possible, the secret of his influence; but I do not believe that you will find any other teacher whose printed sermons would be read week after week, year after year, by tens and hundreds of thousands, not only all over England, Scotland, and Wales, but in the backwoods of Canada, on the prairies of America, in the remotest settlements of Australia and New Zealand, wherever an English newspaper can reach, or the English tongue is spoken. The thing is absolutely unique. It has no parallel...
"What was it that gave [Spurgeon] a religious influence so unparalleled in our day, and made his name a household word all over the wide world? No doubt he had rare gifts. He was courageous, resolute, and lively in these times of the faint heart, irresolution and dullness. He had that genuine eloquence which is all the more effective because of its directness and simplicity. He had a matchless voice, powerful and vibrating with every quality of earnestness and variety. He had humor, tender pathos, and never failed to be interesting. He was utterly untrammeled by the questionings of criticism. But it was, above all, the splendid completeness, the unswerving strength, the exuberant vitality of his faith in God's revelation to man through His Son Jesus Christ, combined with the width and warmth of his zealous love for souls, that gave him that unbounded power which he exercised so loyally for Christian belief..."
- Archdeacon Sinclair of St. Paul's Cathedral on the impact of Spurgeon's ministry