From the desk of the guest editor.
Changes and Issues for Chinese Ministries in a New Context
Changes in China over the past ten years are dictating changes for the church in China. Kim reviews the main areas of change and the ways these have affected the churches. Then he looks at new roles for both workers from overseas and China’s churches.
China has switched to a totally different track that has become a main ideological thread: nationalism—with a whole generation following it. New NGO regulations and other laws leave little space for internationals, especially Westerners, to operate in China as before. Is it possible to present the gospel without a Western format?
China’s New Era and New Media
The author explores the opportunities as well as negative effects brought by increased freedom of speech allowed in China in recent years. He then discusses why communication ethics and public theology need attention. Finally, he addresses the more recent, stringent regulations and overall tightening of freedom of expression and what is being done to respond to these changes.
Lee explains the three main reasons why the Communist Party is wary of Protestants: their faith is seen as an ideological threat to the Party, churches can bring foreign influence, and they are a collective action threat. She then explains the various ways pastors are dealing with the actions the Party is using to hold them in line.
Bryant’s interview with a Christian family that has lived through the open era in China and is now experiencing increasingly restrictive days, provides a realistic view of what this new era in society means for everyday Christians.
A review of A Reader in Chinese Theology edited by Chloë Starr, the best reader on Chinese theology available in English.
Chinese pastors and ministers are often under tremendous pressure—from the state, their congregations, and family issues. While believers in the global church cannot be physically present in China, we can support these workers through intercessory prayer.