Ecumenism in Local Place
Last week, we had attended an event hosted by Paiwan Presbytery of Presbyterian Church of Taiwan. We met a “kina” (mother in Paiwanese), who gently asked us “is it going well in your ministry?” “Nothing to worry!”, I replied. The kina continued to say that, few weeks ago, she had come to our church, and prayed for our elder who was in pain. The elder told her, “Please come to our place and pray for our pastors. They need much mercy.”
However, if we have no experience of local pastoring, we cannot truly understand the differences happened in Taiwan. We cross over our familiar places, broaden our vision, and train ourselves to much possibility.
Recently, I’ve read a report from Cosmiccare, named “The Real Needs from Rural Places”. In this article, it said that even if there is a weak community with poverty, a good teacher and a couple might become a help and serve the needs of community. When the writer of this article think of Jesus, he said, Jesus takes care of people’s needs at first sight: being forgiven, being healed, full pack of fishes, and delicious wine in the banquet. After fulling people’s needs, the Gospel of God came to them. God sent Jesus to the earth because of people’s needs. I have to say, if anyone wants to donate to rural places, please come and take walk around these places.
We all want to follow Jesus; however, we also know that following Jesus doesn’t mean “staying in comfortable places, enjoying a feast, and talking about people’s suffering and repression”. What Jesus had done is to lead His disciple, pay a visit by foot, to heal the sick, and teach His students. He had watched those in suffering with His merciful eyes. Jesus is truly ecumenical and local. Just as scribed in Matthew 25:40: “And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me’.”