Missionary Stories

Values you Call Us to Embrace

Prayer of Intercession
Kowloon Union Church
May 7, 2017

Lord of Life, justice, peace, love, compassion and kindness are the values that you call us to embrace through the teachings and ministry of your Son to live together in community. These values though are sadly in short supply in our world today.

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Earth Day in Hong Kong

Prayer of Intercession
Kowloon Union Church
April 23, 2017

Lord, last Sunday we celebrated your resurrection and life that springs from death during Easter.

Today we continue to celebrate life with yesterday’s commemoration of Earth Day as we give thanks for the gifts of clean air, water and soil that you have given us to sustain our lives. We often take these gifts for granted, however, and abuse this inheritance of life that has been given to us. We even deny that we are playing a role in altering the balance of life of the planet. Lord, we pray that we will be worthy stewards of this gift we have inherited from previous generations and that through a less consumption-oriented lifestyle and other modified behaviors we can pass these gifts to our children and to our children’s children. We ask that the leaders of the world’s nations will implement policies and laws that protect these gifts you have given us so that future generations will enjoy air and water that is free from pollution and soil without toxins. We especially pray that the environmental degradation found in China after decades of so-called development will be addressed by its leaders and people and that the increasing emphasis on generating power from renewable energy sources will continue.

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Staying Connected

Japan_-_J_Mensendiek_Spr_2017_P1102798.JPG“Life is never about being correct, but only and always about being connected. Just stay connected. At all costs stay connected.”   Richard Rohr

These words give me a framework for God’s mission and how I want to live out God’s love for this world. If only we would stop building walls and dividing people. If only we could discover ways to cherish our common humanity, or to appreciate the inter-connectedness of all living things. Our calling is clearer than ever; to reach out and connect, and to celebrate in doing so.

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Fukushima Still Fighting

Japan_-_M_Mensendiek_Spr_2017_Terumi.JPGThis past year has been a tumultuous year for the world in so many ways. Japan has had its share of issues that are cause for deep concern. At the Bazaar Café, (our church’s coffee house ministry) we continue to be a venue for lectures and forums to inform about urgent and pressing social justice issues, as well as a place for people to come together in solidarity.

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Seeds of Peace in Asia

Hong_Kong_-_Bruce_Spr_2017_UCC5_Int_08_02-03-17_Photo_1.jpgOur interfaith youth network for justpeace, Interfaith Cooperation Forum (ICF), held our annual program committee meeting for several days in January in Siem Reap, Cambodia, to plan our activities for this year. The main activity once again will be the School of Peace (SOP) for three months beginning in July that will be held near Yogyakarta, Indonesia, for up to 20 youth between the ages of 20 and 30 from throughout Asia. SOP is the program that binds all of the ICF network members together as everyone in our network of 115 young people in 17 countries has been a participant.

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Breaking Down the Walls of Division

Hong_Kong_-_Chan_2017_Walls_that_divide.jpgOne of the busiest seasons for the Hong Kong Christian Council is during the month of January. This is the time when we celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity together with churches all over the world. The theme for 2017 is “Reconciliation: The Love of Christ Compels Us” based on 2 Corinthians 5:14. The materials were prepared by Christians in Germany in commemoration of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation.

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A Year of Vibrant and Creative Activities

Philippines_-_Fernandez_Spr_2017_pic1.pngIt has been a year of vibrant and creative activities. Let me highlight a few.

In line with UTS’s goal of making theological education more accessible, portable, and affordable, we have pursued and fined tuned our hybrid (online and face-to-face) offerings, which include both degree and certificate programs. For our Innovative Theological Education Program (a certificate program), we conducted two seminars for two groups: (1) Southwest Philippines Annual Conference (UMC) in Silang, Cavite (June 27-July 1, 2016) and (2) Bicol Philippines Provisional Annual Conference (UMC) in Daet (November 21-23, 2016).

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Migranteng Pilipino, Ngayon ay Lumalaban! (Filipino Migrants, We Fight!)

새해 복 많이 받으세요  Happy New Years!  Lunar New Year’s Day, also known as Korean New Year’s or Seollal, marks the first day of the Korean lunar calendar.  It’s one of the most important and widely celebrated national Korean holidays. This year, the year of the red rooster (정유년), the holiday was celebrated over 4 days, January 27- 30.  Businesses and ecumenical offices were closed, and subway trains and streets were a little less crowded. Therefore, to the joy of many of foreigners, one could easily find a seat on the buses and subway trains.

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To Embrace and Love

As we prepare for Easter this year, we cannot jump into a spirit and atmosphere of celebration and thanksgiving for the grace that has brought us salvation without acknowledging the pain and suffering around us. We cannot prostrate at the foot of the cross without looking up to see the viciousness of the nails that tore through our Savior’s flesh. How then can we worship God freely and truly when vicious human desire tears through humanity as a whole?

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A Familiar Christmas

Korea_-_Cannon_Dec_2016_IMG_7838.JPGIt’s that time of the year!  Thermal underwear, heavy winter coats, and hot chocolate... The freezing, cold temperatures, coupled with a strong gush of wind and the occasional slight snow, signals that winter is here!  With the presence of winter, it begins to look a lot like Christmas.

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