Chinese church

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This article is about churches outside China catering for ethnic Chinese people. For churches in China, see House church (China) and Chinese Church in Christ

The term Chinese church refers to Christian churches that currently or historically have ministered to predominantly Chinese congregations in the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and other places outside of China. In the United States, such churches raise the debate over "assimilation" versus "identity" in a similar fashion with other ethnic churches. The debate mostly revolves around the preservation of the Chinese culture while keeping the religious purpose of worship.[1] Most ministries have the purpose of worshipping in the Chinese language. However, while the older generations tend to be non-English speakers, many churches find themselves being "multi-congregational" by the fact that an English-speaking younger generation is typically served under the same roof. The problem occurs when the Chinese speaking congregation shrinks and leaves behind the larger non-Chinese speaking members. Failure to attract new members usually means the end of the church as churches function as businesses. The original purpose of worship is lost.[2][3]

Origins

Many Chinese churches originate with the purpose to serve Chinese immigrants who recently arrived from China. The services are usually done in the Mandarin Chinese or other dialects of the Chinese language with the purpose of spreading the gospel to those who cannot understand the English language. Further purposes of Chinese churches are also to support missionaries to China by helping them with the Mandarin Chinese language and Chinese cultural challenges that he or she may face.[2]

Notable churches

References

  1. Fenggang Yang. Chinese Christians in America: Conversion, Assimilation, and Adhesive Identities. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Matthew Richard Sheldon Todd. English Ministry Crisis in Chinese Canadian Churches: Towards the Retention .. 
  3. Training American-born Chinese Pastors to Minister in a Predominantly ...