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Taiwan Church News
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Taiwan Church News

3369 Edition

September 19 - 25, 2016

Headline News

 

After Typhoon Meranti Swept Across Taiwan, Let Us Rebuild, Concern And Pray For The Devastated Churches

 

Reported by Chen Yi-fan

 

On September 14, when typhoon Meranti swept across Taiwan, the southern counties and cities, including Kaohsiung, Ping-tung, Peng-hu, Kinmen and Taitung, were most seriously battered. Innumerable trees and electric poles were broken down at Pingtung's Heng-chung penninsula due to this ever strongest 16th-grade-wind in the past 120 years. In the meantime, over one million household were in black out because electric poles and wires were almost destroyed.

According to a statistics released from PCT's Church and Society Committee, about 18 PCT churches were seriously damaged during this Meranti Typhoon: 1 in Bunun presbytery, 4 in east Bunun presbytery, 3 in Paiwan presbytery, 6 in Pingtung presbytery, 1 in southern Bunun presbytery, 2 in Kaohsiung presbytery and 1 in So-shan presbytery. In addition, the sign board of Kaohsiung Aboriginal Student Center and several flats of laity believers were heavily impaired.

As the first aid materials, like water, food, temporary shelter and etc., were enough donated or supplied from the churches and all walks of lives, PCT's Church and Society Committee urged the public to wire money into Taiwan post-office account numbered as "1956-6285" and register especially "For the reconstruction use after Typhoon Meranti"!

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

In the early morning on September 15, at Hon-yeh village of Yen-ping Township in Taitung County, an aborigine was trying to get across of a dangerous river full of running mud-slides.

Photo by PCT's Bunun Presbytery

 
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Taiwan Church News

3364 Edition

August 15 - 21, 2016

Church Ministry

 

The Past Is Never Simply The Past! - Mr Martin Eberts Shares How Transitional Justice Is Done In Germany

 

Reported by Chiu Kuo-rong

 

On August 13, Mr Martin Eberts, Director Of German Institute Taipei, was invited by PCT's General Assembly to share how transitional justice was done in Germany at Chi-nan Church of Chi-hsin Presbytery.

Mr Eberts pointed out, among such unprecedented job to proceed a transitional justice across the whole country, that the German government had confronted a very gigantic challenge as two kinds of transitional justice had to be solved in one battle: One was the investigation of the war crimes committed by the Nazi ; the other was to deal with the totalitarian evils done by East Germany communist regime.

"The past is never simply the past. It always has something to say to us; it tell us the paths to take and the paths not to take", quoting the speech of Pope Benedict XVI addressing at his 2006 visit to Auschwits-Berkenau concentration camp, Eberts reminded the audience that the first step to transitional justice is to open the government archives, reveal the truth and face the history honestly!

Eberts expressed, up to now, the tasks of transitional justice in truth finding, legislature of laws, legal revisions, compensation and care for victims have never been stopped in Germany. "Forget or beautify the mistakes of the past is not acceptable at any democratic country", emphasized Eberts.

After the collapse of East Germany communist regime, the secret files hidden in those police or intelligence unit were disclosed for every German citizen to check who were the informers and who were the victims, said Eberts.

The purpose of such a disclosure of the archives under Nazi or East German regime was not for revenge, but for the people's rights to know and for next generations to reflect further, he said.

Except investigating the crimes committed by the former officials of East German communist regime, an "innocence statement", pledging innocence or admitting wrong doings in East German regime, from personnel to serve in public service was also stipulated by current German government. "This act shows the officials would not be judged by a collective concept of crime in the future, but would be brought to trial or assessed by an individual standard", said Eberts.

The engineering of transitional justice in Germany is comprehensive, remarked Eberts, these tasks or responsibilities are not only limited to government, private institute or specific groups of people. Not even are such jobs constrained at a level of material compensations.

"Mutual care and understanding are as important as legal and material support", said Eberts, "If the whole society had such painful memory of the past and repentant culture, people would not be divided during the process of transitional justice!"

Only when the transitional justice could be solidly built up from the base of education and law, a culture of national memory from a holistic consciousness well established, every generation of this country are able to learn, recognize and face what had been happened in this country and the prayer of "the past is never simply the past" will ring true, concluded Eberts.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

Mr Martin Eberts, Director Of German Institute Taipei, was invited by PCT's General Assembly to share how transitional justice was done in Germany at Chi-nan Church of Chi-hsin Presbytery on August 13, 2016.

Photo by Umav

 
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Taiwan Church News

3364 Edition

August 15 - 21, 2016

Church Ministry

 

Korean Samil Church Youth Sent To Assist A Children Summer Camp Held At Chung-lu Church

 

Reported by Chen Yi-hsuan

 

From August 8 to 12, a team of Korean youth from Samil Church were sent to Taiwan assisting a children summer camp at Chung-lu Church of Kaohsiung Presbytery. This is a part of an annual mission event to Taiwan from Samil Church and her third short term mission cooperated with Chung-lu Church.

Rev. Hwang Hsin-dien, pastor of Chung-lu Church, remarked that such a short term mission with Samil Church had opened up his congregation's eyes to learn the meanings of mission. He hoped next year it would be available for his church youth to serve a short term mission for some rural churches located at Tong-hae area in Korea.

The pious prayer and a joyful life practiced by these Korean youth, before or after their every service, won the hearts of his congregation, and many teenagers of his church were truly touched by such enthusiastic passion about faith, said Rev. Hwang.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

Youth of a Short Term Mission from Seoul Samil Church shared at the children summer camp held at Chung-lu Church in Kaohsiung, from August 8 to 12, 2016.

Photo by Chung-lu Church

 
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Taiwan Church News

3364 Edition

August 15 - 21, 2016

Headline News

 

Tominun Utof! God Is Knitting Launches A Second Printing

 

Reported by Chiu Kuo-rong

 

A second printing of God Is Knitting, a Japanese missionary story at Taiwan's high mountains, was launched at Taipei's East Gate Church on August 14. This book was originally written by Mr Inoue Inosuke, praised as the father of medical missions at Taiwan's high mountain for aborigines, and revised under a joint effort by Avanguard Taiwan, Historical Archive Center of Taiwan Theological College and Seminary(TTCS) and translator Mrs Ishi Reiko. The first printing was launched by Ren-kwang Printing House under Taiwan Church Press in 1997.

Due to a furious attack by Taiwan's Tayal-Sediq protesting Japan's avaricious grabbing for camphor resources in 1906, Mr Inoue Inosuke's father  - Inoue Yanosuke - was tragically killed together with the other 35 Japanese victims. Filled with the mood of revenge, though, after learning his father's death, Mr Inoue Inosuke then 24-year-old as a theological student decided to preach the love of Christ into Taiwan's high mountains and lead aborigines to know God's blessing, kindness and love.

Rev. Cheng Yang-en, Professor of Church History at TTCS, suggested the reader to read personal life into this book as a reliable framework of modern Taiwan's history and try to locate the critical values worthy to pursuit. "As we are now living under an age of post-colonialism, it would be a very interesting question that how to read these stories happened about 80 years ago? Especially, it was written in the forms as diaries and miscellaneous notes", said Rev. Cheng.

Rev. Supina Nakaisulan, Education Secretary of PCT's Indigenous Mission Committee, affirmed this book is a great help for the indigenous to learn their own cultures and the Christian faith. But she also frankly admitted that, when Mr Inoue described some tribal habits of aborigines as "bloody and barbarous", some inner struggles fought severely within her heart. Yet after her personal reflection and discussion with friends, she decided to accept Mr Inoue's sincere and objective historical witness because God's servants are never saint or complete.

Translator Mrs Ishi Reiko, member of Chung-lun Presbyterian Church in Chi-hsin Presbytery, remarked that she was deeply impressed by Mr Inoue's un-discriminated mentality, especially when he insisted his first child to be delivered in the aboriginal tribe as the aboriginal women did without any assistance of modern medicine. Mr. Inoue Inosuke saw himself and aborigines were equal brothers and not in class confict, said Mrs Ishi.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

A second printing of God Is Knitting, a Japanese missionary story at Taiwan's high mountain, is launched on 14 August 2016.

Photo by Chiu Kuo-rong

 
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Taiwan Church News

3363 Edition

August 8 - 14, 2016

Church Ministry

 

To Build Up Fellowship And Care For Community, Basketball Game As A Media Uniting Aboriginal Youth

 

Reported by Chiu Kuo-rong

 

On August 1, hundreds of aboriginal youth from around 60 churches of Tayal presbytery gathered at the gymnasium of National Ilan University to kick off the 29th round of the renown tribal basketball game - "Tayal Youth Cup".

Rev. Tuluan Muni, commissioner of youth ministry of Tayal presbytery and pastor of Maliguang Church, expressed that this basketball game played an important role of reconciliation trying to tear down the parochial barriers favoring denominational divisions long established within Tayal tribe. The aboriginal Tayal youth, no matter from which denomination he or she came, is always welcomed to join this renown basketball game, said Rev. Tuluan Muni.

The goal of "Tayal Youth Cup", through annual basketball games with dynamic interaction and mutual acquaintance, is to restore among aboriginal youth the Tayal culture of cooperating in team work and sharing resources, and encourage them to concern kinds of social issues that would endanger Tayal community, remarked Rev. Tuluan Muni.

Rev. Tuluan Muni took the government's dangerous project of planing to build Kao-tai Dam near Maliguang tribe in a near future as a live example, which desperately required the whole Tayal community and their youth to give their grave concern. And this annual basketball game will be the best platform to consolidate the tribe and next generation to face the challenges ahead!

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

The 29th round of the renown aboriginal basketball game, "Tayal Youth Cup", was kicked off at at the gymnasium of National Ilan University on August 1.

Photo by Chiu Kuo-rong

 
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Taiwan Church News

3363 Edition

August 8 - 14, 2016

Obituary

 

Rev. Chow Lien-hwa, A Peace Maker For Taiwan Church And Society, Dies At 96

 

Reported by Lin Yi-yin

 

At 6:10 p.m. on August 6, due to a heart failure after 50 minutes of first aid treatment, Rev. Chow Lien-hwa passed away at Cheng Hsin General Hospital. Before he was sent to the emergency room, Rev. Chow felt ill and pulled over to the side on his way after a gathering on Yangmingshan in Taipei, the hospital said.

Rev. Lyim Hong-tiong, General Secretary of PCT General Assembly, called PCT members and pastors to make an intercession to God for comforting his families and friends.

Rev. Kao Chun-ming, former PCT General Secretary, expressed his deep sorrow and loss for learning the death of Rev. Chow. Rev. Kao especially pays tribute to Chow's role as a true peace maker, when PCT declare "Public Statement On Our National Fate" (1971), for not only delivered his full support based on his faith but also agreed that Taiwan should stay in UN.

Rev. Chow's extraordinary courage to speak out truth and advise Christian values to KMT's dictatorial leaders, Chiang Kai-shek and Chiang Ching-kuo, is also affirmed as "one of the true voices of Taiwan church" by many church leaders.

In 1960s, Rev. Chow was recognized as the most sympathetic church leader to support PCT's engagement in ecumenical movement; Rev. Chow was also invited by PCT's Rev. Shoki Coe and Rev. Hwang Wu-tong to promote ecumenical movement together and encourage more churches to join in.

In 1990s, when the social movement of searching 228 truth and reconciliation was initiated, Rev. Chow and Rev. Won Hsiu-kon jointly hosted a commemorative service for peace. Striving to reach a mutual respect among different peoples in Taiwan, Rev. Chow used Taiwanese in his sermon and Rev. Won spoke mandarin to deliver his message. Both pastors gave up their fluent mother tongues and used the unfamiliar languages of their neighbors to symbolize inclusiveness and peace.

Mr Won Tsuan-kien, President of Chinese Christian Literature Council(CCLC), described Rev. Chow's contribution as a biblical scholar focusing on biblical interpretation from a stance of the Chinese people. In order to develop the Chinese theologies with local characteristics, Rev. Chow as a CCLC editor had started to invite biblical scholars from Taiwan, Hong Kong and South Eastern Asia to re-interprete the Bible from 1980s, says Mr Won.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

Photo by World Vision

 


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