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Taiwan Church News

3347 Edition

April 18 - 24, 2016

Church Ministry

 

Causeway Bay Books Disappearance Is A Warning To Taiwan's Stance On 1992 Consensus, Says The Chinese Exile Writer Yu Jie


Reported by Chen Yi-fan

 

In the evening on April 15, the famous Chinese exile writer Yu Jie, invited by Southern Taiwan Society, delivers a speech on the decline about Hong Kong's human rights and the prospect between Taiwan and China in a distinguished forum - Nan Zhe Loh Toh Seh -  at Kaohsiung. Yu Jie is accompanied by Rev. Lin Kuo-chang of Hong Kong's Sen Lok Christian Church.

Yu Jie laments that Taiwan's mainstream media seem to have a very closed mind, especially on the international event of Causeway Bay Books Disappearance, though the democracy has been practiced in Taiwan for some decades. As the event of Causeway Bay Books Disappearance was seldom reported in Taiwan media, observes Yu Jie, it seems Taiwanese don't think there is a strong relationship between Hong Kong and Taiwan.

As a matter of fact, Hong Kong's freedom is a critical index for Taiwan, and if Taiwan could stand with the people of Hong Kong, it could be a valuable asset for Taiwan society, says Yu Jie.

Yu Jie mentions the dictator mindset of Xie Jing-ping, China's president, behind this Causeway Bay Books Disappearance. There are too many absurdities and illogical things, when those five missing staff or related persons of the Causeway Bay Books shown up to confess their crimes on China's TV station. All these strange phenomenon suggest Xie Jing-ping wants to play an omnipotent dictator and control the media across China, says Yu Jie.

In this particular milieu, "every Taiwanese is likely to become a Lee Bo, who is a British citizen and a regular co-worker in Mighty Current bookstore at Causeway Bay but secretly abducted to Shenzhen, if Taiwan is forced to submit to 1992 consensus(i.e. surrendering to one China policy) ", warns Yu Jie.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 
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Taiwan Church News

3347 Edition

April 18 - 24, 2016

Headline News

 

Dr William Sia, Taiwan's Albert Schweitzer, Is Commemorated At His Centenary Birthday

 

Reported by Lin Yi-yin

 

If Dr William Sia, whose birthday was 2 March 1916, is still alive today, he should be a centenarian. Lived only with a short life-span, though, he was 55-years-old when he died in a car accident during a medical service trip on 17 June 1970, his spirit of devotional sacrifice - "Rather be a fool"- is still compellingly felt and deeply appreciated by many Taiwanese people today.

In Dr William Sia's early medical practice, he voluntarily served those patients with lung diseases in those far-away rural villages in Taichung and Nan-tou areas; he also served those poor patients with polio and black foot disease among the coast areas in Changhua and Tainan.

In 1955, Dr. Sia inaugurated as an Adjunct Superintendent of Puli Christian Hospital; in 1956, he established the first psychiatric center for lung disease patients in Puli; in 1960, he became the first Christian doctor to operate for black foot disease patients in Tainan; in 1964, he established Er-lin Christian Hospital which was the first hospital independently run by Taiwanese.

To commemorate Dr. William Sia's centenary birthday and his contribution to Taiwan, both a press conference and a premiere of Dr. Sia's DVD animation picture was held at Tsai Ray-yueh Foundation of Culture in Taipei on April 14.

This was an activity jointly held by many institutes, including Changhua Christian Hospital, Er-lin Christian Hospital, Puli Christian Hospital, Nan-tou District of Taichung Presbytery, Nan-tou Presbyterian Church, YMCA of Changhua County, Youth and Pine Life Ministry Committee of PCT and William Sia Memorial Youth Camp.

Dr Yang Chong-ing, widow of Dr William Sia and a 95-years-old lady now, also showed up at the conference for the premiere of Dr. Sia's DVD animation picture. She expressed her special thanksgiving to God's comfort and care during that very difficult period, when Dr William Sia suddenly died in the car crash, because she had to raised up four young children single-handed even though she was a doctor then."

Pledging to carry on Dr William Sia's spirit of medical missionary into those far-away rural villages, many invited guests, including Rev. Sudu Tada(PCT Moderator of General Assembly), Rev. Chen Hsin-liang(Chairman of Changhua Christian Hospital), Dr Kuo So-ren(Superintendent of Changhua Christian Hospital), Dr Chen Yong-hsin(Chairman of Taiwan Peoples News), Dr Chen Hen-chang(Superintendent of Puli Christian Hospital) and the families of Dr William Sia, stood by Dr Yang Chong-ing after a minimized model of Dr William Sia's childhood playing-ground among house stairs blossomed with heart-shaped cards of virtues.

Also in the press conference on April 14 , the William Sia Social Service and Care Association, established on 18 March 2016, was officially launched into operation with a purpose to serve the marginalized in Changhua County and the neighboring areas.

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

Pledging to carry on Dr William Sia's spirit of medical missionary into those far-away rural villages, many invited guests stood by Dr Yang Chong-ing(widow of Dr William Sia stood at the center in white sweater) after a minimized model of Dr William Sia's childhood playing-ground among house stairs blossomed with heart-shaped cards of virtues, on an press conference and premiere of Dr William Sia's animation DVD at Taipei on 14 April 2016.

Photo by Lin Yi-yin

 
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Taiwan Church News

3346 Edition

April 11 - 17, 2016

Editorial

 

Now Jesus Is Standing By Us

 

Many Taiwan cities and counties set up April 7 as a Freedom of Speech Day, in order to commemorate the self-immolation of Mr Cheng Nylon 27 years ago for his martyrdom of pursuing the ideal of "100% freedom of speech". When Mr Cheng endured an unspeakable pain in the burning flames, his resistant body still stretched straight without bending to surrender. Though his burnt down body was dead then, no body left the blazed site without tears or shocks.

In the news or coverage of contemporary mainstream media, which were no less different from the government propaganda, this self-immolation event was described as an event of rebel. United Evening News wrote in a wishful guess, "After Cheng Nylon ignited a gasoline bomb, he seems run out of his mind. Except attacking the police, he also assaults his colleagues of the magazine". Carrying with kinds of unbelievable conspiracy stories, rumors then always hinted that this blazing event was started from Nylon's attack of the police.

But, the paradox of history just lies in this story. Even though KMT government firmly gripped the state machine and media for decades, Nylon's pursuit of freedom cannot be stopped eventually. A defiant protest in flame, though, this fiery thrust broke down the iron-hands of an authoritarian regime and woke up the mind of those aspiring freedom yet in slumber. Now, what Nylon most insisted and treasured as our basic rights - "freedom of speech" and "Taiwan independence" have become Taiwan's most important spiritual assets.

In contrast with a totalitarian but failed KMT, overwhelmed by Taiwan's democracy, PCT seems to receive a mock by our Lord God. In Taiwan's pursuit of democracy, most PCT churches actually do not perform well on their duty. What they have successfully done are just living a quiet and mediocre life inside church walls! Only a few PCT pastors are called to step into Taiwan's history. Maybe this is a historical coincidence, or maybe this is a decision after their deliberate thought. Whatsoever, these brave PCT pastors take up their cross, and such decisions impress deep into the heart of Taiwanese people. Now, if Taiwan's democratic success is mentioned, the contribution of PCT will never be forgot.

Even though PCT's modern engagement in a democratic Taiwan is described as a black humor joked by our Lord God, as a matter of fact, it is a proof of the power of our Almighty God. Because even most PCT church live a mediocre life in Taiwan's modern history, the cross is raised high anyhow. The remained problem are, whether today's PCT is conscious about such amazing grace or how can PCT carry on such good witness in the future? Of what kinds of legacy could we still boast, except the missionary glories left by our forebears in faith?

Diverse voices and opinions seem inevitable for a huge institute like PCT, which has over 1,000 local congregations across Taiwan. And PCT's leadership in collegiate council, a cooperative management being held by the elders, is basically different from those traditional hierarchy system or linear leadership in charisma. Initially, in order to search the Lord's will in diverse points of view and avoid the danger of idolization, it was a good-will for PCT to practice a council system in church management. It also demonstrates PCT's theological roots in faith: a confession of our sins and weakness. But, it seems the tide turns, some PCT churches do not even remember their stance and start to  play the old game of hierarchy leadership. Even worse, there comes the crisis of dictatorship in the church leadership, expelling all people with different opinions as heretics and boasting the leaders themselves as the prophet of the Lord.

At this very moment, when Mr Cheng Nylon is commemorated for his extraordinary sacrifice for Taiwan's freedom of speech and PCT is also remembered for her past contribution to Taiwan's democracy, let us be humble again and do not forget we are just the pardoned sinners! In his own time, Jesus was also judged as a trouble maker who had to be removed anyway. Maybe now he is standing by us and reminding us something very hard to digest!

 


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