Tuesday, February 22, 2011 • 12:01 am
Thank you so much for your partnership in the gospel.
I am so proud to be one of your pastors and to have had the honor of planting Quest Church almost 10 years ago. This past Sunday, while Pastor DeAnza was preaching a spirited message at Quest from our ongoing study through Philippians, I had the joy of visiting and preaching at the Burmese Karen Churchplant in Kent, Washington. On their behalf, I pass on their sincere greetings.
Several years ago, Quest helped plant this church and it is in part because of your prayers and generosity that allowed us to have a small part in birthing this beautiful church through our Quest Churchplanting Foundation.
This church and community did not exist 3 years ago. In fact, the majority of them are recent refugees and have entered this country in the past couple years. This past Sunday, I asked – before my sermon – how many of them had arrived to the United States in the past year and it appeared that over half of the nearly 150 people raised their hands! Many of them were living in refugee camps…and how amazing it must be that a church community was here to be their fellowship and support.
But for a second, I want to encourage you to think Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: , burma, churchplant, karen, quest church, refugee, seattle
Friday, November 21, 2008 • 11:57 pm
I had the privilege today to give a short chat in a class at Princeton Theological Seminary on the topic of justice and compassion and it’s intersection with the church. The challenge of the church and its leaders is to raise the consciousness of the larger world – including the church – to a calling and purpose towards the reconciliation and restoration of ‘Shalom.’ We have to remind people that there are suffering and injustice in our cities and larger world - because many choose not to believe. We know it’s there but we choose not to believe.
We are competing against the principalities and forces of the world – compounded by the simple issue of human depravity – that prefers and chooses the stories of gossip and entertainment rather than the ways of Mercy, Justice, and Compassion. The church struggles also with the church. We struggle with ourselves and our temptation to build up the Institution, Fame, and Programs of the church rather the elevate the Trinity and the work of the Larger Kingdom.
Amongst many things that we can do, one that is absolutely critical is to put a “Face” to the other – or, to put a “story” to the other. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: quest church, religion, burma, myanmar, seattle, world aid
Tuesday, May 6, 2008 • 4:21 pm
Update [5/9]: Pray, Act, and Give. And then pray more.
This is a brutal picture [from the NY Times] that conveys the gravity not only of what has transpired but a glimpse of the difficult weeks ahead as they deal with outbreaks of diseases such as cholera, malaria, etc. in addition to the dilemma of starvation and water issues.
From the NY Times article entitled, “U.N. Pressures Myanmar to Allow Aid.” Shocking that after almost one week, the first two U.N. flights just arrived yesterday.
With up to 1.5 million people in Myanmar now believed to be facing the threat of starvation and disease and with relief efforts still largely stymied by the country’s isolationist military rulers, frustrated United Nations officials all but demanded Thursday that the government open its doors to supplies and aid workers. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: health, religion, burma, myanmar
Tuesday, March 18, 2008 • 1:44 am
My worldview is dramatically impacted by my story as an immigrant. My parents [w/o telling me] took my brothers and I to the United States when I was six years old. A week later, I was up and running as a first grade student at Sherman Elementary School in San Francisco. Struggling with language, identity, and sheer terror, I struggled in the early years as a student including episodes of wetting my pants in school because I was so afraid to raise my hand and ask to go to the restroom. I was six. My brothers were 9 and 12 – I can’t even imagine how much more difficult their experiences were.
Now imagine living your whole life without a home in your own country - an internally displaced person [IDP], a refugee living in an overcrowded United Nations camp, or moving from place to place in the jungles while fleeing away from an army ordered to kill you Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: religion, burma
Thursday, October 4, 2007 • 2:00 am
Less than a year ago, I was crossing a river from Thailand to Burma. Less than a year ago, I was preaching at a church in a Karen village in Burma. Less than a year ago, I was playing and laughing with kids in a small village in Burma…Laughing and playing must be strangers to that land right now. By now, many of you [hopefully] are aware of what’s going on with the anti-government protests in Burma or Myanmar. The painful reality is that such grave injustices have been going on in Burma for years. In recent days, the situation has turned for the worse. The larger global community and governments must hold this regime and those that support the Burma/Myanmar government accountable… Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: justice, burma, free burma, myanmar