The church in China is a rich tapestry made of many strands differing in texture and color. In our content over the years, ChinaSource has sought to show the depth, breadth, and beauty of the Chinese church. We have looked at the Three-Self church, various strands of the unregistered church, and the Catholic church. But a key strand and its colors have been missing in our display of the beauty of the Chinese church tapestry. In this issue of the ChinaSource Quarterly we take our first in-depth look specifically at the Pentecostal church in China. To help us weave this strand into the tapestry, we are honored to have contributors who have been active participants in and observers of the Pentecostal church in China.
It has been a particularly rewarding experience for me personally to work with Dr. Robert Menzies and interact with the papers his writers have contributed as we put this issue together. I am not charismatic in my theology or practice, but I have interacted with many who are, including during the many years my husband and I served in Hong Kong and China. At times those interactions were challenging—it’s much easier to serve with those who think, work, and pray in the same way—but I thought more, learned more, and grew more in my faith because of those opportunities to work and worship together. This issue of the Quarterly has been a further opportunity for me to hear and interact with the history, experiences, and theological reflections of my Pentecostal brothers and sisters—a further opportunity for me to grow and I am thankful.
It’s also a fitting way for me to conclude my decade-long involvement in gathering and weaving the strands that make up the ChinaSource Quarterly. In my first month at ChinaSource I was given the finished articles for the summer 2012 issue, “Chinese in Today’s World,” to put on the website and create the email notification for subscribers. From that issue until now I’ve been involved in various ways, to different degrees, and with many editors—both guest editors and staff—to produce the four issues per year we strive for. It’s been challenging at times but always rewarding to work with the people God has brought to us—each one has been a gift.
This is the last issue of CSQ that I will see to completion but the autumn issue on digital engagement in the Chinese context is already in the works. I look forward to reading those articles when they come out in September. The weaving continues both in displaying the beauty of the Chinese church and in gathering the wisdom and perspectives of God’s servants who serve with that church. May we all continue to listen, learn, and grow.
Narci Herr and her husband, Glenn, lived for just over 30 years in Hong Kong. They were first involved in working with the church in Hong Kong and then for the last 20 years of their time in Asia they served workers living in China. During that time Glenn traveled extensively throughout China and Narci …View Full Bio