ZGBriefs | April 21, 2022

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Featured Article

The quest to save Cantonese in a world dominated by Mandarin (April 17, 2022, The Los Angeles Times)
Cantonese is the language of San Francisco Chinatown’s dim sum restaurants and herbal shops, of Northern California towns such as Marysville, where Chinese gold miners settled in the 1850s. But in the U.S. too, Mandarin is what many new immigrants speak and what is taught in classrooms from elementary school through college.

Sponsored Link

Webinar Recording: Chinese Christianity in the Modern Era: Making Sense of the Present in Light of the Past, by Dr. Easten Law (ChinaSource)
In this webinar, Dr. Law provided a historical overview of the different threads running through Chinese Christianity’s modern development including themes of folk religiosity and healing, ethical living, familial belonging, and national salvation. He discussed what can these historical themes tell us about the church’s role amidst China’s current inward, nationalistic turn and how we should orient ourselves in response. Knowing that many foreign workers are mourning the changes that have come about in China’s sociopolitical environment over the past decade, this presentation also contained a pastoral undercurrent, affirming the reality that the Chinese Church in all its forms has been and will continue to be in God’s hands. Also available directly on YouTube.

If you or your company/organization would like to sponsor a link in ZGBriefs, please contact info@chinasource.org for more information.

Government / Politics / Foreign Affairs

Taiwan is part of China, Beijing tells U.S. (April 20, 2022, Reuters)
Taiwan is a part of China and no one can change that, Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe said on Wednesday during a rare phone call with U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, according to a statement from Beijing.

Solomon Islands: China deal in Pacific stokes Australian fears (April 20, 2022, BBC)
Australia, New Zealand and the US have raised concerns on security in the Pacific, after China signed a security pact with the Solomon Islands. The deal was signed this week, fuelling fears China may seek to build a naval base in the Pacific nation. The Solomon Islands had rebuffed last ditch efforts by Australia – its biggest aid donor – to stop the deal.

Anchoring Party Dominance (April 20, 2022, China Media Project)
At a symposium for television and radio anchors and program hosts held yesterday in Beijing, officials from the National Radio and Television Administration (NRTA), a ministry-level executive agency under the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Propaganda Department that oversees television and radio in China, emphasized the need for “loyalty to the party” (忠诚于党) above all other values.


Churches in Shanghai Are Stepping Up During the Latest Lockdowns (April 13, 2022, Christianity Today)
What can Christ’s church do amid such turbulence and facing so many needs? Pastors and church leaders emphasize the importance of prayer, devotions, spiritual growth, and actions of charity.

Memories of Celebrating Easter (April 15, 2022, ChinaSource Blog)
As we prepare for Easter this year, two members of the ChinaSource team share memories of Easters celebrated as they served in Chinese communities.

A Strong Foundation: Pentecostal Revival in Yunnan Province (April 18, 2022, ChinaSource Blog)
In 2015 I was reminded in a powerful way of the strong foundation of Christian faith that exists in Southwest China. Several colleagues and I traveled to visit the parents of a close Chinese friend and to worship together with the church that meets in their small village. I had heard that this dedicated Christian couple received the Pentecostal experience, and, although they were persecuted and ostracized because of this, they have remained firm in their Pentecostal convictions. So, I wanted to meet this resilient couple and learn about their church’s history.

On the Other Side of the Sea (April 18, 2022, Christianity Today)A house church pastor in China shares how the image of the sea of glass in Revelation 15 brings hope and encouragement to the suffering church.

Ministering to Drug Addicts in Myanmar (April 19, 2022, Chinese Church Voices)
The devastation of drug addiction has impacted people around the world, affecting addicts and their families. In this article from China Christian Daily, we learn of the impact of gospel-centered rehabilitation on one addict and his continuing ministry helping others out of addiction through the gospel.

Podcast: What is Chinese House Church Theology? With Hannah Nation (April 20, 2022, Doing Theology. Thinking Mission)
In this episode, we talk about: The House Church of Theology’s upcoming book, Faith in the Wilderness: Words of Exhortation from the Chinese Church,  The common beliefs and differing perspectives between Chinese sermons and American sermons, How we approach the theology of suffering as Americans versus the Chinese perspective.

Society / Life

Podcast: Locked Down in Shanghai (April 14, 2022, Sinica Podcast)
Chang Che, a freelance journalist and business editor for Sup China, shares his insight and experience under Shanghai’s chaotic lockdown.

How the Lockdown Is Remaking Shanghai Neighborhoods (April 20, 2022, Sixth Tone)
Sociologist Sun Zhe has studied Shanghai community organizations for over a decade. He believes the ramifications of the current lockdown will be felt far into the future.

China says black boxes of crashed jet severely damaged (April 20, 2022, Reuters)
Summarising its preliminary crash report, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) suggested little if any information had been recovered from the cockpit voice and data recorders after they were sent to Washington for analysis. “The two recorders on the plane were severely damaged due to the impact, and the data restoration and analysis work is still in progress,” CAAC said in a statement.

Shanghai Lockdown 2022: the Neighbors (April 20, 2022, Sinosplice)
But this comparison to the Cultural Revolution really is over the top. And my experiences with my neighbors have been the exact opposite: rather than turning on each other and “denouncing” each other, relations have turned from chilly and distant (the unfortunate default in this city) to warm and helpful. I’ve honestly never felt closer to my neighbors. 

Chinese police order residents to hand over passports ‘until after the pandemic’ (April 20, 2022, Radio Free Asia)
Police in the central Chinese province of Hunan have ordered local residents to hand over their passports to police, promising to return them “when the pandemic is over,” amid a massive surge in people looking for ways to leave China or obtain overseas immigration status. […] An officer who answered the phone at the Baisha police department confirmed the report, and said the measure is being rolled out nationwide.

Economics / Trade / Business

Apple’s supply chain in China hit hard by lockdowns in eastern China (April 20, 2022, Technode)
Although Shanghai and nearby cities have recently begun to assist manufacturers in resuming operations, analysts still expect major disruptions to Apple’s shipments. China plays a vital role in Apple’s supply chain and its global shipments, with Chinese factories accounting for almost half of Apple’s total supply chain.

Science / Technology

Chinese astronauts land on Earth after China’s longest crewed space mission (April 16, 2022, Reuters)
Three Chinese astronauts returned to earth on Saturday after 183 days in space, state television reported, completing the country’s longest crewed space mission to date. The astronauts landed nine hours after they left a key module of China’s first space station.

History / Culture

A death on Coal Hill (April 20, 2022, Sup China)
By 1644, the Ming dynasty’s Chongzhen emperor faced multiple pandemics, invasion, two internal rebellions, persistent drought, widespread famine, and economic collapse. On Coal Hill that April, he surveyed what had become of his empire one last time.

Travel / Food

The Mixed Blessings of Yunnan’s ‘Ancient’ Tea Boom (April 18, 2022, Sixth Tone)
The price of tea from older trees has skyrocketed, transforming once worthless plants into cash cows — and turning local communities on their heads.


Chinese Theology: Text and Context, Part II – Book Review (Revisited) (April 18, 2022, Global China Center)
In this second “big-picture” chapter, Dr. Starr provides another brilliant overview of the dark days of Roman Catholic and Protestant believers in the 1950s through the early 1970s. During this time, the number of believers and of congregations dropped dramatically, until, during the Cultural Revolution, some opined that Christianity in China was dead and gone.

A Conversation with the Authors of Children of the Massacre (April 20, 2022, ChinaSource Blog)
As a follow up to last week’s book review of Children of the Massacre: The Extra-Ordinary Story of the Stewart Family in Hong Kong and West China, Andrea Klopper spoke with the book’s authors, Robert and Linda Banks. The interview was originally conducted on Zoom on 21 March 2022.

Pray for China

April 26 (Pray for China: A Walk Through History)
The Centenary Conference of the Protestant Missionaries of China was convened in Shanghai on Apr. 25, 1907. The Conference—with 1,170 attendees, including 10 Chinese—celebrated the arrival of the first Protestant missionary to China, Robert Morrison (马礼逊). Pray for foreign Christians to effectively partner with Chinese Christians in the Mission China 2030 goal of commissioning 20,000 cross-cultural missionaries from China by the year 2030. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20  

Joann Pittman

Joann Pittman

Joann Pittman is Vice President of Partnership and China Engagement and editor of ZGBriefs. Prior to joining ChinaSource, Joann spent 28 years working in China, as an English teacher, language student, program director, and cross-cultural trainer for organizations and businesses engaged in China. She has also taught Chinese at the University …View Full Bio