With Christians All Around the World – A Chinese National Ministering to Internationals

Editor’s note: How can Chinese nationals bless the American church? By helping us reach internationals in our own communities! This interview was conducted with a Chinese man who works with Second Presbyterian Church to reach the broader international community in Memphis, Tennessee. Global missions today often looks very different than it did fifty years ago; the call of the church is no longer simply to send workers overseas, but to think creatively to work with international communities in our cities to help reach out with the gospel and serve in Christ’s name.

1. Why did you start getting involved in serving internationals? 

I had been serving in Chinese ministry at Second Presbyterian Church since 1996. In 2005, as more and more Christians from other countries came and joined the church, the Chinese ministry was turned into a multinational, diverse group called International Christian Fellowship. While reaching out to Chinese was always my main focus, the Lord opened my eyes to see the needs of internationals, and most importantly helped me to understand the big picture of global mission. As a result, I decided to serve internationals in the American church context since then. 

2. What does your church do to minister to internationals?

We spend lots of time and effort to build relationships with internationals. For example, we partner with InterVarsity to host a welcome dinner for new University of Memphis international students. We also invite internationals to become involved in our church activities, for example picnics and retreats, and even local community service projects. During the Thanksgiving holiday, our dear American Christians open their homes and invite the internationals to be part of this American tradition. At Christmas, we share the gospel with them and let them know why we celebrate Christmas. English class (ESL) is a platform we offer for internationals who want to learn English and for us to get to know them and build relationships. Our ICF Sunday school is like a big family – we study the Bible with internationals and pray for their specific needs. 

ICF also has vital connections with local internationals groups, like the Sudanese refugees and those with a Muslim background. I’ll tell you Ba’s story. Ba was a Muslim. He was involved in a car accident almost nine years ago and became disabled as a quadriplegic since then. One church family first heard the news and was moved by God to show love and to take care of him. They and other ICF helpers became good friends with Ba. Every year we celebrate his birthday at the rehab center or at the church. We regularly visit him and invite him to participate in ICF outdoor activities if possible. At the beginning of his sickness, brothers and sisters visited him and prayed for him. Gradually God changed Ba’s heart. He started to read the Bible and scheduled a bus to take him to church to worship God on Sundays. By God’s grace, Ba professed his faith and now has become a believer of Jesus. Praise the Lord! 

Personally, I have had many opportunities to serve internationals with practical needs. The Lord has led me to visit them in the hospital and pray for health issues and family issues. I have given students rides to church and social activities. This often gives rise to sharing the gospel. We have also had a regular Friday night fellowship for students and visitors that included food, hospitality, music, and Bible study.

3. How do you get volunteers involved?

We invited people who are interested in international ministry to be part of outreach programs. The church volunteer ministry also plays an important role in recruiting volunteers and provides serving opportunities to support local international ministry partners.

4. How has serving internationals impacted your church?


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When people from different counties and ethnic backgrounds worship together in my church, we get a picture of what it looks like in heaven. God provides us opportunities to connect local internationals and bring them to God’s family. Some of them are already believers in their own countries. We have seen unity fostered among believers which encourages the congregation to actively involve global mission with Christians all around the world. 

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LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN CHINA

With rising pressure and persecution in China, there are two challenges imperative for church leaders. The first challenge is for current leaders to love Christ above all else, and not to stray into legalism or love of the world. The second challenge is to raise up the next generation of leaders, who will humbly model Jesus even if current leaders are arrested.

WILL YOU JOIN US IN PRAYING FOR LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN CHINA? PRAY FOR:

  1. Current leaders to grow in their daily walks with Christ
  2. Current leaders to shepherd and raise up new leaders
  3. New leaders who love Christ and will model him to the world
  4. New leaders to love and care for the church

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ABOUT LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT

About Shenyang

Shenyang is a city located in northeastern China and is the capital of Liaoning Province. It is known for its rich history and cultural heritage, including the Shenyang Imperial Palace, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Shenyang is also a hub for China’s heavy industry, with companies such as the China First Automobile Group and the Shenyang Aircraft Corporation having their headquarters in the city.

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About Qingdao

Qingdao is a city located in eastern China and is famous for its beaches, beer, and seafood. The city is home to several landmarks, including the Zhanqiao Pier and the Badaguan Scenic Area. Qingdao is also a major port and has a thriving economy, with industries such as electronics, petrochemicals, and machinery.

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About Xiamen

Xiamen is a city located in southeastern China and is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful coastal scenery, including Gulangyu Island, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The city is also a hub for China’s high-tech industry, with companies such as Huawei and ZTE having research and development centers in Xiamen.

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About Chongqing

Chongqing is a city located in southwestern China and is a major economic center in the region. The city is known for its spicy cuisine, especially its hot pot dishes, and is also famous for the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydroelectric dam. Chongqing is also home to several historic sites, including the Dazu Rock Carvings, which are UNESCO World Heritage sites.

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About Nanjing

Nanjing is a city located in eastern China and is the capital of Jiangsu Province. It is one of China’s ancient capitals and has a rich cultural history, including the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, the Nanjing City Wall, and the Confucius Temple. Nanjing is also a modern city with a thriving economy and is home to several universities, including Nanjing University and Southeast University.

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About Changchun

Changchun is a city located in northeastern China and is the capital of Jilin Province. It is known for its rich cultural heritage and is home to several historical landmarks such as the Puppet Emperor’s Palace and the Jingyuetan National Forest Park. Changchun is also a hub for China’s automotive industry, with several major automobile manufacturers having their headquarters in the city.

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About Guangzhou

Guangzhou, also known as Canton, is a city located in southern China and is the capital of Guangdong Province. It is one of the country’s largest and most prosperous cities, serving as a major transportation and trading hub for the region. Guangzhou is renowned for its modern architecture, including the Canton Tower and the Guangzhou Opera House, as well as its Cantonese cuisine, which is famous for its variety and bold flavors. The city also has a rich history, with landmarks such as the Chen Clan Ancestral Hall, the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, and the Temple of the Six Banyan Trees. Additionally, Guangzhou hosts the annual Canton Fair, the largest trade fair in China.

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About Kunming

Kunming is a city located in southwest China and is the capital of Yunnan Province. Known as the “City of Eternal Spring” for its mild climate, Kunming is a popular tourist destination due to its natural beauty and cultural diversity. The city is home to several scenic spots, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Stone Forest, Dian Lake, and the Western Hills. Kunming is also famous for its unique cuisine, which features a mix of Han, Yi, and Bai ethnic flavors. The city has a rich cultural history, with ancient temples and shrines like the Yuantong Temple and the Golden Temple, and it’s also a hub for Yunnan’s ethnic minority cultures, such as the Yi and Bai peoples.

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About Shenzhen

Shenzhen is a city located in southeastern China and is one of the country’s fastest-growing metropolises. The city is renowned for its thriving tech industry, with companies such as Huawei, Tencent, and DJI having their headquarters in Shenzhen. The city also has a vibrant cultural scene, with numerous museums, art galleries, and parks. Shenzhen is also known for its modern architecture, such as the Ping An Finance Center and the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center. Despite its modernization, Shenzhen also has a rich history and cultural heritage, with landmarks such as the Dapeng Fortress and the Chiwan Tin Hau Temple.

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About Chengdu

Chengdu is a city located in the southwestern region of China, and the capital of Sichuan province. It has a population of over 18 million people, and it is famous for its spicy Sichuan cuisine, laid-back lifestyle, and its cute and cuddly residents – the giant pandas. Chengdu is home to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, where visitors can observe these adorable creatures in their natural habitat. The city also boasts a rich cultural heritage, with numerous temples, museums, and historical sites scattered throughout its boundaries. Chengdu is a city of contrasts, with ancient traditions coexisting alongside modern developments, making it an intriguing and fascinating destination for visitors to China. 

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About Beijing

Beijing is the capital city of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of over 21 million people. The city has a rich history that spans over 3,000 years, and it has served as the capital of various dynasties throughout China’s history. Beijing is home to some of the most iconic landmarks in China, including the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the Temple of Heaven. The city is also a hub for political, cultural, and educational activities, with numerous universities and research institutions located within its boundaries. Beijing is renowned for its traditional architecture, rich cuisine, and vibrant cultural scene, making it a must-visit destination for travelers to China.

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About Shanghai

Shanghai is a vibrant and dynamic city located on the eastern coast of China. It is the largest city in China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of over 24 million people. Shanghai is a global financial hub and a major center for international trade, with a rich history and culture that spans over 1,000 years. The city is famous for its iconic skyline, which features towering skyscrapers such as the Oriental Pearl Tower and the Shanghai Tower. Shanghai is also home to a diverse culinary scene, world-class museums and art galleries, and numerous shopping districts. It is a city that is constantly evolving and reinventing itself, making it a fascinating destination for visitors from around the world.

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