Archive for the 'China' Category


Made in China

I love this image that I came across on Tumblr. [sorry don’t know the source]
How appropriate for our current political, economic atmosphere and for ABCPastor.

Chinese Born American?
First thoughts?

Newly found blog friend and missional church planter Wayne Park has some thoughts.


Feeling Sichuan, One Week Later

Yesterday at 2:28PM (1428 (0628 GMT) in the first of three days of national mourning a week after the earthquake struck south western Sichuan Province, there was a three-minute observance of silence. A nation of 1.3 billion people paused. I wish I could be there to experience some of this. Air-raid sirens and the horns of cars and buses sounded in memory of the dead. During these three days, flags are to fly at half-staff and public entertainment is canceled — it’s the first time China has declared a national mourning since Mao and Deng Xiaoping. Some people have commented at how remarkable it is that the government is honoring average citizens and not some great leader. This is a much softer and compassionate image of China isn’t it?

Together they also rallied great cries of rebuilding China, “Long live China.” Even, “Let’s Go Team China!” in light of the olympics. This was real national pride and unity if we’ve ever seen any. Regardless of what position or class they were in the streets of Chinese cities they cried out in unison. Some have started calling May 12 their 9-11. This of course has stirred up a bit of criticism from some but in regards to a national response to a tragic event regardless of the cause you can’t deny the emotional similarities.

We can witness regular Chinese mourning traditions such as the pervasive use of black and avoidance of red. Newspapers will be doing this on the front pages. I wonder if it’s happening here with the Chinese newspapers. No celebration or entertainment for at least a month I think. So radio stations and music programs will be suspended. This is a very interesting time for China especially for their media.

As a church in Philadelphia’s Chinatown we responded over the weekend as many other organizations had as well. Every corner in Chinatown had some group raising relief support and awareness for the earthquake. Our Cantonese congregation got right out there and did an amazing job after Sunday service and in the rain.

Here’s an article from Benjamin Chan (Area Director of East Asia and India International Ministries, ABCUSA),

“We love China. Please help our fellow people.” Chinese-American Christians spoke a loud voice in the Philadelphia Chinatown last Saturday and Sunday.The Elim Fellowship of the Christian Church and Center in Philadelphia conducted a two-days fund-raising campaign in Philadelphia Chinatown for the earthquake relief in China. They raised more than US$12,000. The money will be sent to the Amity Foundation via American Baptist International Ministries/ World Relief Office to support the relief effort.

Dr. Eugene Young, Chair of the Elim Fellowship who initiated the campaign, praised Elim members of how they mobilized their families and friends in the fund-raising “You are a role model for them.” Daisy Wong, an Elim member, reflected on the experience, “My whole family is involved, and there is no greater joy than serving God and helping the people who are in such a desperate situation.”

Alice Hau, another key player in the campaign was touched by the overwhelming support of the donors of different ethnical backgrounds, and said, “We are thankful that God uses us. The love in the donor’s heart shines across to the other side of the planet.” Another two members of the church who sent the first check shared their thought, “Sometimes we take everything for granted, especially our good health and all the blessing in our life while staying in our comfort zone but still complaining most of the time. Pray that we all treasure what we are given and give to help the needy with a heart of thanksgiving.”

Dr. Michelle Sun, another Elim member, shares a poem “Sky Howls” to tell the terrible situation of the earthquake affect areas, and yet shows the light when we extend help and love to the victims. (See the English of the poem below)

Rev. Leslie Leung, pastor of the Cantonese speaking congregation of the church supported the campaign, and encouraged the church members to continue the effort. “The need is great, and we welcome every dollar to bring hope to the earthquake victims.”

View pictures of the fund-raising campaign here.

Relief updates are posted in
1. Amity Foundation homepage (Chinese and English versions):
2. International Ministries East Asia and India homepage:
3. Judy Sutterlin (American Baptist personnel in Nanjing) homepage:
4. International Ministries homepage:

Sky Howls
Michelle Sun

Sky howls from the quake
Sichuan bleeds still
Scenic Sichuan bleeds still

Sichuan at shock bleeds still

Cuehe* has its waterway barred
Wenchuan* faces all collapsed homes

A town mourns with no next generation
School children with red scarves buried alive
Schools, villages, cities
All buried, fallen, sieged and dead
No more hate and strife

Look, dear ones breathed their last, still holding hands

Fingers interlocking tight at the loss of hope
Gripping tight, didn’t let go
Clutching tight, didn’t let go
Grayish black, ice-cold palms
Wouldn’t let go

Rubble mountain-high, in valleys and up the peaks
Yet a twilight of life’s there
Lost children in lonely tents wait for Mom and Dad
Amidst the chills the sun comes and cares
Devouring earth sends kindred love
Arms of strangers show up from afar, from all paths
Descend from the sky, come with winds, dart over
God of providence grabs you tight
From the arms of Death
Pulls you to Him

Chinatown CCCNC (Elim Fellowship) Earthquake Relief Fundraiser


Feeling Beichuan, Day 5

Sichuan Earthquake
Photo: Andy Wong/Associated Press

The relief effort has entered the most desperate phase now. Trapped survivors can only hold on so long. Beichuan is utterly gone being so close to the epicenter. There is no more Beichuan just mountains of rubble in what was once one of the world’s most beautiful valleys. The death toll is quickly climbing towards 50,000. The good news today is that the government has allowed international relief teams to enter into the disaster. [As Time Runs Out, Survivors Pulled From Quake Rubble, NYTimes]

What’s interesting is the government investigation on why so many schools were leveled by the quake. Neighboring buildings fared much better. It appears that those who built the schools used cheap materials. Go figure. China has long allowed short cuts like this for things going out but we can see that they’re paying the price for doing it within as well. What I find interesting is that even though there’s been mass destruction and loss of life they will probably execute those builders.

Whole graduating classes gone.

Members from our community/congregations are crying out for our church to do something. We feel responsible to take the lead in Chinatown to respond to the relief work. This is our moment to be a community leader. Pray that we will respond well.

Myanmar Survivors
Official Toll in Myanmar Reaches Nearly 78,000. Things haven’t gotten better in Burma. Many say the conditions have worsened. British officials saying the total dead and missing could be more than 200,000. [BBC News]


Feeling Sichuan, Day2

Warning: Graphic Image

I feel the need to post this one picture, not for sensationalism but so that we may mourn with those who mourn. That our hearts may break. That we may try to pray. That we may turn to God in our powerlessness.
Sometimes I just need to know if my heart still works.

Sichuan Earthquake
Rescuers carry the body of students found in the debris of a collapsed school building in Dujiangyan. Credit: Reuters

The Austrailian has a gallery of very graphic pictures showing the aftermath of the earthquake in China.

Regularly Updated News: Shanghaiist
In the U.S., anxious Chinese immigrants follow news of quake


Feeling Sichuan

Sichuan Earthquake

Over 8,500 feared dead. 10,000 injured.

The world has witnessed a lot of destruction and loss of life in the past few weeks on the other side of the world but unlike the response in Myanmar, China has been quick to provide leadership to the devastation. It appears that the army has a good record of mobilizing and getting people to safety. This has been declared a level 2 emergency [out of 4]. But hey no Olympic venues were damaged by the earthquake…

In reading the reports first thing this morning I guess my heart quickly responded to the news regarding the children buried under collapsed schools. There were pictures on some sites and that really disturbed me. Children are precious in any culture. Perhaps slightly different from the West however, Chinese culture may closely resonate with what we see in Scripture regarding children representing hope, income and reputation for a family. So for a family to lose a child as devastating as it is anywhere, in Eastern culture especially with a one-child policy economy the loss carries deep and wide results. Yesterday we celebrated mothers as a nation. May our hearts take shape and pour forth accordingly.

Sichuan Earthquake

Thousands dead in Chinese quake [BBC]
US Geological Survey
Quake kills thousands, traps hundreds [CNN]

Here’s a first hand account from a student in Sichuan University

Associated Press


On Chinese Nationalism

Beijing Olympic Torch Relay Ceremony Chinese FlagsNo doubt times have changed and China has most definitely changed but have our attitudes and ideas about her and her people changed with her? What exactly are the attitudes and ideas of those in the Chinese church and American born/raised children? The Chinese church is already such a complex creature. Now we’re starting to see something different, a devotion to the motherland that’s not about missions or the growing church. In recent weeks with a monumental election in Taiwan, riots in Tibet, and talk about boycotting the opening ceremony of the Olympic games amongst other things the fires of this devotion has been stoked. Generally I think we do tend to focus on the oppressive government and cast China as an evil force – perhaps even a bunch of “goons and thugs?” We think persecuted church. Nonetheless creating a dichotomy between the government and its people.

How do we reconcile the two?

I admit I’ve never really had warm fuzzies about China. Hong Kong perhaps but not big mama. Those outside of the US may very well see us in a similar light, an evil capitalistic government and its lovely diverse people.

Those who come from China to study here in the US and attend our churches have a different view of China but we probably have not noticed in the years they’ve been here until recently. A couple of weeks ago there were disputes between congregation members about Tibet and Chinese nationalism. It just struck me as something new and odd.

Last year, there were more than 42,000 students from mainland China studying in the United States, an increase from fewer than 20,000 in 2003, according to the State Department.

China is their home not simply a mission field. They will return home once they’ve completed their coursework. They have also lived and benefited in the progress China has made in being an economic force. They’re pro-China and now they’re more vocal about their devotion to the motherland.

Did I think people would not have this kind of love and devotion for China?

The NYTimes report about this rising voice across the country on college campuses.
Here are some excerpts:

“But after I come here, my professor told me that I’m nationalist.”
“I believe in democracy,” Ms. Jia added, “but I can’t stand for someone to criticize my country using biased ways. You are wearing Chinese clothes and you are using Chinese goods.”

“We’ve been smothered for too long time,” said Jasmine Dong, another graduate student who attended the U.S.C. lecture. By that, Ms. Dong did not mean that Chinese students had been repressed or censored by their own government. She meant that the Western news media had not acknowledged the strides China had made or the voices of overseas Chinese. “We are still neglected or misunderstood as either brainwashed or manipulated by the government,” she said.


China: Photo Exhibition of Chinese Inmates in Asylums

Photo Exhibition of Chinese Inmates in Asylums
[BBS Sina][via]

Here are some images from an exhibition of photos of Chinese inmates in asylums. No details on where and when. I can’t read Chinese but these images are haunting, unsettling with their eyes just staring at you. It makes me wonder what the conditions must have been like, does anyone knows them or if anyone cares for them?

For navigation, click 后面还有14页精彩回复,点击进入下一页 in order to scroll through 4 pages of photos or just click: Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4



WOW. How easy it is to allow time to pass by.
I know. I know. I’ve gotten messages wondering what happened?
It’s been over a month and a brand new year boys and girls. Other than the busyness of the holidays I’ve been engaged in ministry and rethinking some things about Sometimes we just need to press pause.
I promise there’ll be some exciting updates coming. Thanks for being faithful readers. Hang on for more.

ACHTUNG! **************************************************************************************
What’s really kept me completely occupied is a little labor of love called, ACHTUNG! the youth program of the Chinese Mission Convention (CMC) by Ambassadors for Christ (AFC). I have been privileged to coordinate this program for the third time. It’s just a blast for me to work alongside good friends like Peter Ong and Joseph Tsang. Also artist friends Neah Lee, Tim Be Told, and Victor Lin. Other stars include Philly natives, Hoon Kim and Dean Trulear. All phenomenal leaders that I had the pleasure of partnering with in challenging a new generation towards the cross. In ACHTUNG, we attempted to do things differently than your average youth conference. We don’t want the students to just sit in a convention center listening to talking heads, as good as they are, we try our best to take them to the streets.

The Chinese Mission Convention (CMC) is a premier tri-annual missions gathering for China following on the coattails of the Urbana Student Missions Conference. This year’s convention highlighted the 200th anniversary of Robert Morrison’s mission to China. CMC does what Chinese ministries do best, reaching the Chinese.

CMC ACHTUNG! 2007 Peter Ong



Wanted: Chinese Creatives

Phillip LimPeter Somanna sui
Photos of fashion designers Phillip Lim, Peter Som, Anna Sui from Patrick McMullan from

By and large Chinese ministries, organizations and culture rarely recognize the role that creatives or creative professionals have in shaping the world around us even when the Asian design aesthetic has been so influential in recent years. Creatives are professionals/workers in art, design, advertising, marketing, and communications. They are the designers, writers, directors, architects, fashion designers and more. They are thoughtful and sensitive to how people think and live. They’re great strategic thinkers. They walk to the sound of a different drum. They design and communicate. What they do serves people.

Great design always connects with people. Designers inspire, provoke, validate, entertain and provide utility for people. To truly connect, designers need to have compassion and empathy for their audiences. Designers need to understand the relationship between what they produce and the meaning their product has for others. And they need to observe the people they are designing for in their own environments. – AIGA

Attach the word “design” or “award winning design” to a product and it instantly becomes a coveted object of desire. Target has really capitalized on this ethos with their mantra, “design for all”. We now believe that we can achieve better living through design.

US companies are quickly realizing that they must adapt cross-cultural strategies with creatives being key to reach key markets in China.

“Being a graphic designer in a global economy requires you to think about cultures and communication in a whole new way. Designers are now required to not only be thoughtful, but also sensitive and strategic in their thinking around cross-cultural design. As China opens up, and the economy there expands, we expect to see more work like this. In other words, we are keeping the Chinese type on our computers.” – Design Student

RED Network is an Asian design collective of creatives with bilingual and bi-cultural backgrounds focused on developing culturally appropriate products and business strategies. The network consists of Kaizor Innovation in HK, Y Studios, and culturalANTENNA in North America. Companies like these are quickly becoming hot resources for Western companies to reach Asian markets both in the hotbed of China and stateside. I’m sure we’ll see many more.

I wish we’d see these type of partnerships and innovative strategic thinking in the Asian Church. I wish more that Chinese churches would embrace and value creatives. In most Chinese families the creative professions or arts are not encouraged as a career choice for their idols, I meant to say children. Typically, it becomes a choice through years of outright or suppressed rebellion, when they’ve had it with their major or day job or when they’ve finally made enough money.

Creatives don’t quite fit in with your traditional immigrant church set up. It’s too stuffy. Second generation creatives most likely leave the immigrant church because they’ve may have been chastised for their non-traditional thinking or worse for their choice of clothing and hair color. Their career choice appear to have little value for the world. Parents offer critical or strange glances in passing. They’re “creative” and traditional church leadership doesn’t know how to work with that. Creatives, your artists, are generally not folks who like to conform but they have very keen insight into life. We need creatives in the church.

What if Chinese churches partnered with the creatives in their congregations? What if they partnered together to reach and shape the culture around them? What if second generation creatives helped immigrant churches with their websites?

What if. Just what if.


NYT Maps China’s Pollution

Mapping the Impact of China's Pollution Crisis
More on China’s roaring growth and the rising of an epic pollution problem.
Check out the NYTimes special on Choking on Growth examining the human toll, global impact and political challenge of China’s epic pollution crisis.

[american born chinese pastor]
seeks to be that third place for those who are american born chinese [abc] in ministry.
here we may explore issues unique to the chinese church and doing ministry in that context
expand the intersection of asian american culture and christian faith
or simply expose what goes on in the mind of this abcpastor

this may be a bit ambitious or even naiive but i do hope that through the posts we can bring together different faith communities, passions for the advancement of the Gospel and the equipping of the body of Christ.

if you are an abc pastor or have any suggestions or would like to contribute to make this space evolve, just comment.


Feed the Ego

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