How grateful I am to serve together with Peter Arneson, our donor relations manager. Still in his first year with ChinaSource, Peter has already become a close friend, encouraging colleague, vital teammate, and one who helps to make each one of us better and the team as a whole, much stronger.
Please remember to keep Peter, his wife Megan, and their twin sons Jonas and Oskar (who will soon celebrate their first birthdays) in your prayers.
A Word from Our Donor Relations Manager
While I am no longer the newest staff member, I consider myself to still be on the learning curve and I continue to be impressed with what I am learning about ChinaSource. Most people will know ChinaSource best for the content provided on the website, and there are some fantastic things out there. Two that are rolling around in my mind right now are this blog post by Brent Fulton and the latest webinar featuring Jesse Ciccotti. These are amazing examples of the thoughtful, in-depth approach with which our content team produces material.
ChinaSource staff are also helping those serving the Chinese church with introductions to new ministry partners and resources for research on important trends in China, while also providing valuable context for organizational leaders through advisory relationships. All of this moves us closer to a vision where “the church in China and the global church are learning and growing together, engaging in ministry that powerfully advances the kingdom of God.”
The behind-the-scenes work is no less impressive; in mid-June, the staff and board teams met to talk about the future of ChinaSource. It was a fascinating multi-day gathering full of prayer, discussion, and planning at all levels of the organization. ChinaSource is a healthy organization in a unique position but like all organizations, there is always a need to continue discovering new ways to remain faithful to our mission and to continue building new friendships that can challenge and support our work. In some ways, the meetings in June have only concluded the beginning of the strategic planning process (and you will be hearing more about it in coming weeks).
Even before the strategic planning meetings, there had been conversations about how the work of fund development could become something in which the whole organization is more invested. As part of exploring how ChinaSource might adapt to meet future needs, the staff team read a book together that challenged our ideas on work and measuring results in the faith-based non-profit context. One application of reading and discussing the book layered onto the conversation around fund development has been that ChinaSource is seeking to better articulate fund development as a vital ministry; not simply the work that funds the ministry of ChinaSource.
We are currently clarifying the ChinaSource fund and friend-raising perspective, and are building a theology of fund development, which will be the foundation of our calling in this area. Critically reflecting on the perspectives we hold helps us avoid traps of wrong thinking. In the fundraising world these traps can include seeing God’s resources as limited, valuing the gift more than the donor, or carelessly strengthening someone’s idol of money as security, power, or identity. Obviously, any of these traps would influence our interactions with our supporting friends, certainly contributing to how they perceive the organization but ultimately defining whether we have honored God in each days’ work by impacting how we care for others, not only as donors to an organization, but as sisters and brothers in Christ.
I am just over six months into my position at ChinaSource and someone asked me recently if I like working here. My answer: yes I do. ChinaSource is a thoughtful organization working hard to be faithful to God in all things while continuing to be your “trusted partner and platform for educating the global church on critical issues facing the church and ministries in China, and for connecting Christians inside and outside China to advance the kingdom of God globally.”
Donor Relations Manager
News and Notes
ChinaSource Quarterly, 2021 Summer Issue
Student Ministry in China, guest editor Tim Brookings.
In his editorial, Tim Brookings writes:
In this edition of ChinaSource Quarterly, we hear from several writers who have been intimately involved in the campus ministry there. Two of the writers (including the guest editor) are foreigners who have lived in mainland China for many years, partnering with local believers in the campus ministry there. The other three writers are all mainlanders who are key leaders within campus ministry networks there… I am grateful that these writers have shared their perspectives about the campus ministry that has been happening in mainland China for more than one hundred years.
To read this compelling issue of the ChinaSource Quarterly, go to Student Ministry in China.
ChinaSource Team News
- Brent and Jasmine Fulton hosted a retreat on June 14-17 for the core team of Gathering 11:23, a network of church and agency leaders focused on member care for mainland Chinese cross-cultural workers.
- The ChinaSource board and staff met together in Denver in June. This was our first in-person meeting in well over a year .
Ways to Pray
From the ChinaSource Team
- Praise the Lord with us for the fruitful ChinaSource board/staff meetings that took place in Denver and virtually on June 21-23. The staff meeting that followed on June 24 was also a very edifying time. The Lord kept us all safe and well, and strategic planning decisions were made in a spirit of unity.
- Pray for the ChinaSource team as we seek to do the hard work of applying the strategic plan. We look forward to sharing more about this with you.
- We are praising the Lord that he is guiding us into a new season of growth. Despite increasing restrictions, whether because of COVID-19 or other regulations, our Lord has positioned ChinaSource to be of timely and vital service to the Chinese church in the mainland as well as the Chinese diaspora.
- Please be in prayer for Brent and Jasmine Fulton who will be moving from Southern California to Sacramento in the first week of August. We rejoice with Brent and Jasmine that the move will enable them to live closer to their extended family. Pray for strength and health in the days ahead.
From the 2021 summer issue of ChinaSource Quarterly
- Pray for churches and church networks that are placing a major emphasis on campus ministry as they have come to understand that student ministry has historically fueled many great mission movements
- Pray for wisdom for those working with students in minority groups as many challenges are faced in ministry of this nature.
- Pray for foreigners involved with student ministry in mainland China as they evaluate their current roles and make adjustments to their participation.
- Pray for students who answer God’s call as they prepare to present the gospel in cross-cultural situations.
- Pray for churches and agencies as they provide for the training and needs of students who will be involved in missions, many working cross-culturally.
In Case You Missed It
A selection of recently published items:
- Returnees—A Topic Worth Revisiting, ChinaSource Blog, July 21.
- Why Do Chinese Come to Faith? An Infographic, ChinaSource Blog, July 19.
- Take Language Learning Seriously: A Book Recommendation, ChinaSource Blog, July 16.
- Prepping for the Olympics, ChinaSource Blog, July 14.
- The Party’s Party: A Reading Roundup, ChinaSource Blog, July 12.
- 100 Years of God’s Protection and Guidance (Part 2): Policies and Plans in Favor of Christianity, ChinaSource Blog, July 09.
- Student Ministry—Too Much for One Issue, ChinaSource Blog, July 07.
- Returning Home—The Chinese Church in Transition, ChinaSource Blog, July 05.
- 100 Years of God’s Protection and Guidance (Part 1): Turning Adversities into Blessings, ChinaSource Blog, July 02.
- Chinese Communist Party Centennial—Struggle and Flexibility, ChinaSource Blog, June 30.
- WeChat and Chinese Christians, Part 2: The Challenges, ChinaSource Blog, June 28.
- Webinar Recording: Christian Theology in a Chinese Idiom, ChinaSource Blog, June 25.
- Finding Themselves in China, ChinaSource Blog, June 23.
- The Midwives of Egypt, ChinaSource Blog, June 21.
- The Future of the House Church, ChinaSource Blog, June 18.
Image credit: Jonathan E. Shaw via Flickr.
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