Having recently marked our 20th anniversary, we at ChinaSource are looking ahead to the future. With this issue of The Lantern, we begin taking an in-depth look at the new vision and mission statements adopted by the ChinaSource board last year. We look forward to sharing with you over the next several months how we envision ChinaSource serving in the years to come.
The month of May is full of anniversaries that mark significant changes for China—May 4th (student movement in 1919), May 5th (200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth), and May 12th . The latter anniversary is the ten year anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Sichuan in 2008 that killed over 69,000 persons and was felt as far away as Beijing and Shanghai. That disaster sparked a huge outpouring of help and assistance by Chinese Christians from around China and has been credited with getting the Christian NGO movement in China started.
Last year ChinaSource celebrated 20 years of ministry. We were encouraged by messages we received and events we sponsored where we were told how important and helpful our work has been to many involved in service to China. One comment we heard repeatedly was whether we could do more. During that anniversary year the ChinaSource board looked to the future to think about the next 20 years. One outcome was a revised vision and mission for ChinaSource.
In this Lantern we will begin sharing our new vision so you can see where we are heading this year and beyond.
For the past few years our vision has been:
To have the body of Christ united in proclaiming the reign of God through holistic ministry in China.
As we look back we can see examples of ChinaSource convening, supporting, and encouraging various groups inside and outside China to work together on issues such as Christian education, generosity, and urban church work.
In China today the posters on the street and the talk on the Internet is about a new era. As we respond to the changes of the past 20 years this is also a new era for ChinaSource. We have a renewed vision for this new season:
China's Christians engaging the society inside and outside of China as they contribute to and influence the global church conversation for the advancement of God’s Kingdom.
Why change our vision when we have received such positive feedback from the work over the past 20 years? We believe that the ongoing changes in China and the church in China have created a new global landscape. As China changes, ChinaSource also needs to change. In this new “landscape” there is a need for a bridge from the world to the church in China and vice versa. In the coming months we will continue to unpack how we plan to be this bridge and what changes you can expect to see. ChinaSource will be connecting more broadly and deeply with believers in China to understand how they see the challenges and opportunities they face in China and as they move out in mission around the world.
As this Lantern was being prepared, far western China was shaken by another earthquake. Fortunately, it was in a relatively unpopulated rural area and no one was killed. This was a reminder that we live in a world where earthquakes happen, a world where our expectations can be shaken. We are working hard to keep current information and analysis coming to you to equip you in your concern, prayer, and service concerning what God is doing in China
News and Notes
ChinaSource Connect in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, USA
Join the ChinaSource team as we talk about what’s been going on in China and share updates on our recent activities as well as ways that you can partner with us in serving with China.
If you know of friends or other organizations involved in or even just curious about Christianity in China, please invite them as well.
Date: Thursday, June 21, 2018
Time: 6:30-7:00pm dinner, 7:00-8:30pm program
Venue: Bethlehem Baptist Church - North Campus, Room C402/404
Address: 5151 Program Avenue, Mounds View, MN 55112
* Attendees should use Entrance A, closest to the McDonalds.
For more information on the venue, visit Bethlehem Baptist Church - North Campus.
Dinner will be provided; please RSVP here by June 7, 2018 so we can prepare food accordingly.
ChinaSource Team News
- On April 16 World Watch Monitor published “China: ‘For Christians, the “grey” area is shrinking’” in which both Brent Fulton and Joann Pittman were quoted.
- Hannah Lau spoke at Diocesan Girls’ School in Hong Kong on April 16 and 23.
- Joann Pittman spoke to a group at CrossPoint Church in Bloomington, MN on April 17.
- On April 23-25 Brent Fulton met with Dr. Todd Johnson, Director, and Dr. Gina Zurlo, Assistant Director of the Center for the Study of Global Christianity.
- Brent Fulton also taught at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Gordon College on April 24.
- On April 26 Brent Fulton met with the Board of the US-China Catholic Association.
- First Chinese Baptist Church, Walnut held a mission fair on May 6. Brent and Jasmine Fulton were there representing ChinaSource booth.
- On May 8 Brent Fulton was interviewed by South China Morning Post on foreigners attending church in China. He was also interviewed on May 9 by the Norwegian Christian newspaper Dagen regarding revival in China.
Jasmine Fulton at First Chinese Baptist Church, Walnut, representing ChinaSource.
Ways to Pray
- As we remember the Wenchuan earthquake on its 10-year anniversary, pray for those who continue to be affected by the tragedy. Pray for churches and faith-based NGOs who seek to help those dealing with trauma and the ongoing ramifications of loss and disability.
- China’s new regulations on religion went into effect February 1. Pray for government officials tasked with enforcing these regulations, that their decisions would not negatively impact the continued development of China’s church.
- We have heard of some who have had to leave their positions in China unexpectedly. Pray for these individuals and families to find their next avenue of service. Pray for leaders of organizations who are grappling with these impacts.
- The ChinaSource staff team will be having a two day face-to-face meeting in Minneapolis in June. Pray for wisdom—we have a lot we want to work on to implement our new vision and mission.
- Pray for the ChinaSource Connect event in the Minneapolis area on June 21, asking that many ChinaSource friends, partners, and supporters will be able to attend for helpful updates on China and ChinaSource.
In Case You Missed It
A selection of recently published items:
- A New Vision for a New Era, ChinaSource Blog, May 16.
- When the Police Come Knocking—A Guide for Churches, ChinaSource Blog (CCV), May 15.
- Christians and Confucians on Human Nature: A Reader Responds, ChinaSource Blog, May 14.
- The Wenchuan Earthquake—10 Years Later, ChinaSource Blog, May 11.
- Persecution or Potential? ChinaSource Blog, May 9.
- What Healthy Churches Ought to Look Like, ChinaSource Blog (CCV), May 8.
- Great Books of China: A Book Review, ChinaSource Blog, May 7.
- Maineland: A Film Review, ChinaSource Blog, May 4.
- Who Is Doing Public Theology in China? A Book Review, ChinaSource Blog, May 2.
- Is a New Door Opening for Churches? ChinaSource Blog (CCV), May 1.
- Public Transcripts and Official Agendas, ChinaSource Blog, April 30.
- Key Issues Impacting Returnees: Pre-return Preparation, ChinaSource Blog, April 27.
- Following the Belt and Road, ChinaSource Blog, April 25.
- Chinese Christians and the Arts ChinaSource Blog (CCV), April 24.
- Religion in China—By the Numbers, ChinaSource Blog, April 23.
- Have You Eaten? ChinaSource Blog, April 20.
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