We celebrated Easter Sunday at New Life Bilingual Church, a Southern Baptist church plant here in Kaohsiung. It’s the church that my sisters and I have been attending this year. We love the pastor and the people. The preaching is great, the music is encouraging, and the fellowship is rich. This year, Easter was extra-special for my sisters and me because our mom is here visiting for two weeks, so we were together for Easter Sunday. Continue reading “A Multicultural Easter”
As you know, I am involved in a ministry called Taiwan Xi En (formerly His Hands Taiwan) that serves women and children in Taiwan. One of the ways I volunteer with this ministry is by writing and/or revising brochures, website content, letters, etc. Recently, I had the privilege of helping to write the story of a dear little child who taught us the hope and love of Christ through her life and death. Several friends contributed to this piece, but I was tasked with weaving together the full story of baby Sunshine. I asked the director of Taiwan Xi En if I could share this story on my blog because I want as many people as possible to hear about Sunshine and about God’s hand at work in Taiwan. You can visit the original Taiwan Xi En post to view more photos of Sunshine’s life.
Today’s is a blog update via photos. Charles has been here in Taiwan for Christmas vacation, and we’ve had a superb time together so far. We’ve spent time relaxing at home, sightseeing and eating out with friends, and connecting with family (here and afar). Since we have only these three weeks together between now and the wedding this summer, I’m savoring every waking moment. Continue reading “Memories for a Lifetime”
Time to buy Christmas presents for others and create our Christmas lists. Time to check out the holiday sales and shop ’til we drop. Time to snatch up the best deals of the season on the perfect gifts for others (and maybe even ourselves).
But wait. Is that what Christmas is all about?
Because of living in Taiwan, my holiday shopping is somewhat limited to online purchases. No pre-dawn lines that wrap around the store for me! This year, I found it interesting though that the typical one-day, doorbuster, holiday sales lasted for, not one day, but a week each online. Amazon (my online retailer of choice) advertised Black Friday Deals Week, Cyber Monday Deals Week, and now (I just checked) the aptly titled “Holiday Flurry Deals Week” is going on. I wonder what next week’s AMAZING deals will be titled. :)
Like many people, I got caught up in the craze of Christmas shopping and sales over the last couple of weeks. This was compounded by the fact that my wonderful parents are coming to visit me and my sisters in Taiwan for Christmas–they’ll be here in just 12 days!!–so this was our chance to have them special deliver much-sought-after-and-not-found-in-Taiwan items. It wasn’t all bad; I was able to find some great deals on gifts for my family and friends. I even did pretty well at not going overboard on my purchases. Yet it was my mindset that was polluted by consumerism. I found myself gazing longingly at pictures of iPads and digital cameras and wondering just how much my budget could be stretched to purchase that on-sale season of Psych or Michael Bublé’s smooth new Christmas album.
In the midst of this greediness of my heart, our school launched its Christmas offering project, and I was reminded about the true meaning of Christmas: giving. After all, Christmas is when we remember the greatest gift ever given, the gift of God’s Son to mankind. Isn’t it appropriate that we take time to focus on sacrificial giving at Christmas time? What are you prepared to give to others this Christmas season? Continue reading “‘Tis the Season to be Giving”
Search for “Taiwan + abortion” on Google, and you will find titles like “Taiwan’s Astonishing Abortion Rate,” “Abortions Exceed Births,” and “Taiwan has up to 500,000 Abortions in 2010“–titles that depict a culture where choosing death is an astonishingly ordinary occurrence. Most of these online articles were published in the last six months; in fact, a year or more ago when I learned by word of mouth about Taiwan’s high abortion rate, I could find very little data online about it. This is because until last summer, the most recent statistics were from over a decade ago. But on July 17, professor and pediatrician Lue Hung-chi announced in a public forum that he estimates there are 300,000 to 500,000 abortions every year in Taiwan. One article comments that if his estimate is true, “it has to be one of the highest per-capita abortion rates in the world” (“Taiwan’s Astonishing Abortion Rate“). Lue’s announcement began a long overdue discussion in Taiwan about the low birth rate and high abortion rate of recent years; rightly, these issues are of growing concern and alarm among leaders of the country.