Looking Back to Move Forward

The ancient texts include scores of reasons and contexts for why God calls on his people to remember. Often, the vistas before us become clearer only after we have taken time to look back and reflect on how we came to this place. As we have now entered the Lenten Season, I am once again reminded of one of my favorite passages in Scripture:

Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God, and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. John 13:3-4

Remembering who he was and from where he came, Jesus got up and washed the disciples’ feet and went on to sacrifice his life for us. And so it is that our Lord is very gracious to put things in context for us, to help us remember our identity, and move forward by remembering the seasons that brought us to the present.

Welcome to a special issue of ChinaSource Quarterly (CSQ) which comes to us just after the completion of 20 years of publication and at the beginning of a new season for ChinaSource. As I am so new to the ChinaSource team,[1] I have been looking forward to this issue which will focus on looking back, as we consider a collection of “best of” articles which have amazingly stood the test of time and are relevant to this day, hear from our contributors and readers, and review a bit of the story that brought us here.

I hope you’ll join me in traversing the following:

  • An introduction by the ChinaSource staff which includes a brief history of CSQ while looking forward to what God may have in store for us in the future.
  • A compilation of articles we sense will continue to be applicable for years to come.
  • The top five issues of CSQ and the top five articles that have been most read (indicated by page views on our website), plus the most read article reprinted in full.
  • An interview with Mary Li Ma and LI Jin, mainland scholars who have guest edited four issues of CSQ and will be doing their fifth this year on ethics in leadership.
  • Two short essays by ChinaSource readers sharing what they have found most valuable in CSQ.
  • A review of Fenggang Yang’s Atlas of Religion in China: Social and Geographical Context.
  • Resource Corner: The new ChinaSource ebook, View from the Wall: Essays on a Changing China by Huo Shui.

Since I am only ten days into my new role with ChinaSource I can’t wait to dive in and I hope you feel the same way!


  1. ^ Editor’s note: Kerry Schottelkorb was appointed president of ChinaSource in March 2019
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Kerry Schottelkorb

Kerry Schottelkorb

Rev. Kerry Schottelkorb is the president of ChinaSource. For twenty years Kerry was involved in local church planting and youth ministry, both in the US and Hong Kong. He was the founding pastor of the Cle Elum Alliance Church in Cle Elum, Washington and one of two founding pastors of Evangelical …View Full Bio