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3129 Edition
February 13~19, 2012
Headline News

Exiled Tibetans remember fallen heroes and urge world action on oppression in Tibet

Reported by Chiou Kuo-rong

Written by Lydia Ma

According to reports from Tibet, 1 person died from self-immolation in 2009 in Tibet as Tibetans fought for their human rights but the number surged to 13 in 2011. Now, barely two months into the year 2012, there are reports that 7 Tibetans have already set themselves on fire and died in their attempt to fight for freedom in Tibet.

For exiled Tibetans around the world, February 8 is a day set aside to commemorate Tibetans who sacrificed their lives for the cause of freedom and Tibetans around the world either held a vigil or a rally to raise awareness about martial law and oppression in Tibet under the hands of China’s People Liberation Army.

Exiled Tibetans living in Taiwan held a candlelight prayer service in the evening of February 8, 2012 at National Taiwan Normal University Park to raise awareness in Taiwan about the dire situation in Tibet and in support of other Tibetans doing the same around the world.

Commenting on this event, Taiwan’s Regional Tibetan Youth Congress Chairman Tashi Tsering fired a broadside at Taiwan’s newly-reelected president for reneging his promise of speaking out on behalf of oppressed Tibetans to express his concern. According to Tsering, President Ma Ying-jeou has remained silent in spite of stories of self-immolation in Tibet and such a gesture is an intentional act from Ma’s part to please and side with Beijing.

Just 2 days before this vigil, there was news that 3 more protesters had set themselves on fire as a protest against Chinese repression. Their quest for cultural and religious freedoms and their stories finally caught the attention of many world leaders and average citizens who spoke up. In contrast, the Taiwanese government has remained silent, said Tsering, a tell-tale sign of either a China-leaning government or a government that doesn’t know much about human rights.

According to reports, a few governments around the world have already spoken out for Tibet. The Italian legislature passed a bill on February 8, urging Beijing to stop the clampdown. Meanwhile, the Canadian parliament has urged Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to address this issue in an upcoming 4-day visit to China.

Commenting on the unrest and the large number of self-immolations in the past 2 years, Tibet’s exiled government representative in Taiwan. Dawa Tsering, said that Tibet is currently under Martial Law and all communication with the outside world has been interrupted. His sources tell him that 21 people have already died this year by setting themselves on fire and at least 6 or 7 of them were shot while immolating themselves. He predicted that the number of casualties now is most likely higher.

 
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3129 Edition
February 13~19, 2012
Church Ministry

Vacation Bible School curriculum integrates Taiwanese culture into Biblical principles

3129 Edition

February 13~19, 2012

Church Ministry

Vacation Bible School curriculum integrates Taiwanese culture into Biblical principles

Reported by Chen Yi-hsuan

Written by Lydia Ma

Dong-Ning Presbyterian Church in Tainan held a “Vacation Bible School Curriculum Seminar” on February 11, 2012, The church invited Rev. Lu Jun-yi from East Gate Presbyterian Church in Taipei to speak about ways of integrating Taiwanese culture and Taiwanese stories into Biblical teachings.

“The Bible is the main lesson or feature while the Taiwanese stories serve as supporting background or analogy,” said Lu. He encouraged churches to create their own teaching materials for Vacation Bible School or Children’s Camp. He also said that as long as teachers pay attention to recent developments in Taiwanese literature, language, history, and philosophy, they will be able to find stories that can match their lesson theme or Bible story.                                                                            

During the seminar, participants used East Gate Church’s children camp curriculum as reference and learned about renowned Taiwanese heroes in various disciplines such as literature, language, history, and philosophy and their amazing stories. Lu first gave an overview of the main theme of each lesson and its corresponding Bible passage before proceeding to tell these stories to highlight his main theme based on the Bible. All the themes in this curriculum are geared toward instilling good moral characters in children.

Responding to questions about where he gets his inspiration when writing this curriculum, Lu said that besides reading the Bible, he also visits bookstores frequently. It is in bookstores that he discovers many interesting local stories that also support Biblical principles. “I currently have at least 100 stories that can be told!” he said, before underscoring that these stories are meant to support a biblical lesson in a concrete manner that children can grasp.  

                                           

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

 
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3129 Edition
February 13-19, 2012
Headline News

Lancaster Barnstormers’ Lo Ching-lung uses his God-given baseball talent to help CJCU athletes

Reported by Sam Lee

Written by Lydia Ma

Right-handed pitcher Ching-Lung Lo, a native of Taiwan and a youth from Khoa-Sai-Ke Maxwell Memorial Presbyterian Church in Tainan City, will be the first player from Taiwan to wear a Barnstormers uniform when the team opens its eighth season at Southern Maryland on April 26, 2012. Before playing for the Lancaster Barnstormers, Lo played for the Colorado Rockies for 10 years and almost made it to Major League Baseball before losing his contract in August 2011.

During a visit to Taiwan’s Aletheia University on February 10-11, 2012, Lo was invited to give a few pointers to the school’s baseball team. He spent much time going over basic elements and also shared some of his pitching experiences with the baseball team’s pitchers.

Lo will be returning to the USA in March to take part in an independent league baseball spring training. When interviewed, he underscored that his faith in God is what sustained him the most in life. He added that the recent success and testimony of Christian basketball star Jeremy Lin of the New York Knicks greatly encouraged him to persevere in fulfilling his dream as well.

Aletheia University’s President Wu Ming-da expressed his heartfelt gratitude to Lo for taking time out to help the school’s basketball team and underscored that the school’s goal has always been to ensure that students mature in body, soul, and spirit. He added that sports is important at CJCU and the school had received an award from the Ministry of Education last year for being an outstanding school in athletics. The school plans to host a global forum on sports management this April.

Lo said he was honored and happy to share his experiences with Aletheia University’s athletes. As the university is a PCT institution, he was glad serve the church with his skills. He spent most of his time going over basic elements such as warm-up, maintaining body balance, team morale, passing and receiving balls, etc. with the school’s baseball team.

Reflecting on losing his contract after 10 years of playing in the Minor Leagues, Lo’s story is eerily similar to the story of recent basketball sensation Jeremy Lin. “Faith in God is the only way and the most important pillar of strength. If it weren’t for faith in God, I wouldn’t be able to make it.” He wears a W.W.J.D. (What Would Jesus Do?) bracelet as a self-reminder to imitate Christ and printed on the inside of his baseball cap are the words, “Seek God’s kingdom and God’s righteousness. Be thankful. Amen.”

Lo also visited his hometown in Tainan and practiced with Uni-President Lions Baseball Team during his stay in Taiwan.

 

 


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