Growing Healthy Asian American Churches, 10
As we wrap up this blog-based book discussion of Growing Healthy Asian American Churches, we finish with the last full chapter, Chapter 9, titled Households of Mercy and Justice, in which the chapter’s author recalls the prophets’ voices throughout Scriptures about social justice and compassion. Special thanks to the many who participated in this online discussion — this series of blog posts shall have its comment section open, so others who pick up the book later can also jump in and add to the discussion.
Unfortunately, the Social Gospel movement of the early 20th century in America splintered Protestant Christians into mainliners (aka liberals) and fundamentalists (aka evangelicals), with the former only concerned for social justice and the latter only concerned with spiritual salvation. This chapter exemplifies a course correction among a growing number of evangelicals that the Gospel is for the whole person, both social justice and personal salvation.
On another note, the chapter’s author, Soong-Chan Rah, has also recently written an article titled The Emerging Church, prophetically calling forth ethnic minorities into leadership roles in the emerging church, which will no longer be majority Caucasian in our generation. Plus,
North Park Theological Seminary has appointed Soong-Chan Rah as Assistant Professor of Church Growth and Evangelism; congratulations to the new post, Soong-Chan!
Discussion questions for Chapter 9:
- The immigrant Asian American church does its part to serve the immgrants new to America, providing compassionate care to those getting settled into a new country and culture. How can this compassion for kin be extended further to the second generation as well?
- The Bible calls God’s people to show mercy and justice to all peoples. How can the Asian American church do that in its immediate neighborhood and community? In the nation? In the world?
- mezuzah: I got to the point where they mention that these ideas need to be preached to and led from the pulpit..That to institute these ideals into an AA church would take pastoral leadership and preaching to do this. Makes sence…this truism hangs out there…A Church only goes as far as a Leader can take them.
- The contributors to this book just had a reunion and commissioning service. Al Hsu blogged about it briefly, and talked more about food. Helen Lee blogged it and shared 3 brilliant observations about the next generation of leaders (who were invited to this forum):
But I found the new breed of Asian American church leaders that I met this week fascinating for several reasons: 1) how they resist being boxed into any particular category, such as “Asian American leader”, and how they seem to feel similarly about their churches–you’ll hardly find any who characterize their churches as “Asian American” anymore, and even those in immigrant church contexts recognize the need to have open doors to any who might cross their threshholds; 2) how their ministries have such distinct flavors and qualities, resulting from their individual ministry passions and interests, and 3) how confident and secure they are in doing ministry their own way. Despite a dearth of mentors in general in the Asian American church, these new leaders are figuring things out and doing so with great intentionality and skill.
CoconutGeneration.com is a ministry to the emerging generation of Americanized Asian Indians.
Eric: I’m currently reading “Following Jesus Without Dishonoring Your Parents” written by an Asian American team (primarily Japanese, Korean, and Chinese) partially in preparation for a workshop that I’ll be doing this month for my Youth Group “How To Deal With Your (Asian) Parents” and partially to see what are the current thoughts/steps people are taking to address the difficulty of the Asian culture to the American culture, and even further to Christian culture. … There is a need for Asian churches world-wide (and especially American-wide) to re-evaluate what the purpose of their church. … What I have seen as the purpose of most Asian churches and fellowships is simply summed up as this: We who are “Asian Christians” have tried to “glorify God” by taking Christian values/standards and twisted them so it fits well into our Asian culture. In other words, the emphasis and lifestyle of Asian Christians is focused more on