After an exciting and exhilarating two week visit to the church in China several highlights now emerge. The first has to be the excellent work the Amity Foundation is doing. Their understanding of how to express Christian faith has led them to reach out to the poorest, most vulnerable and disadvantaged and to involve them in deciding what the priorities are in each situation. Amity then works with each community, providing expertise, some funding, training and organisation so that they can work with the people to transform their lives and communities. Truly, this is this Gospel in action.
If poor is a relative term, when we visited Shanghai, Beijing or Nanjing each with more glass skyscrapers than the eye could comprehend, we began to understand both the vastness of the country and the Church in China faces. While the church here is growing at a phenomenal pace – 9,000 new believers’ annually in Beijing, for example, – the Church struggles to meet the demand for adequate Church buildings and well trained pastors.
We met with senior officials from the Chinese government State Administration for Religious Affairs and the British Embassy. Both complimented the Church of Scotland on its understanding and engagement with the Church in China.
We flew out of Beijing with the full knowledge of a warm relationship with our partners in China that we look to build upon and continue to learn from.