Category Archives: asian-american

The Dragon Awakes at San Diego Asian American Leadership Conference

On April 4-5, 2008, a group of San Diego pastors and ministry leaders (mostly from the area’s InterVarsity chapters) hosted the San Diego Asian American Leadership Conference. What stood out about this conference for me was the level of creativity, contextualization, and going above-and-beyond to serve the attendees (and to bring glory to God). For instance, Saturday’s buffet dinner had not only a wide range of pan-Asian cuisines but the dining room was decked out in beautiful candle-lit decor and ambiance! This really raises the bar for Asian American conferences!

L2 Foundation’s contributing writer, Cindy Hong, wrote up this excellent report about what happened there. This is an excerpt from “The Dragon Awakes”:

“Hoping to Awaken the Sleeping Dragon.” Such was the desire of the planning team in the conference brochure welcome message. For a generation that thinks, lives, and is inspired by metaphors, the image of a sleeping dragon waking up aptly describes the 2008 Asian American Leadership Conference. With 200-plus in attendance, the energy and excitement matched the fire of a roaring dragon: Asian Americans living kingdom-minded lives, making a difference for Jesus Christ, knowing that God has called and positioned them to change the world.

Read the full article online (in PDF format).

The audios from the plenary sessions are online for free listening and download, including talks from Dave Gibbons, Peter Cha, and Ken Fong. Also see the photo gallery.

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the future of religious charities

Chronicle of Philanthropy hosted an online discussion last month on the future of religious charities. These 3 panelists fielded questions:

  • William O’Keefe, the senior director of advocacy for Catholic Relief Services, in Baltimore, an organization that receives federal money to provide overseas development aid.
  • Paul Lichterman, an associate professor of sociology and religion at the University of Southern California, in Los Angeles, and co-editor of the book Civic Life in American Religion.
  • Joshua Hale, executive director of the Big Shoulders Fund, in Chicago. The fund has raised more than $155-million to help defray tuition and operating costs for 93 of Chicago’s most-needy inner-city Catholic schools.

Read the chat transcript online.

Conversation about Homosexuality & the Asian American Christian Church

I just got word of this special event from Pastor Ken Fong of Evergreen LA . This conversation is especially for Southern California Asian American evangelical churches and they are making a short film about this for release in the coming year.

Saturday, May 10, 7:00 p.m. @ Sanctuary of Evergreen Baptist Church of Los Angeles www.ebcla.org

WE NEED TO TALK: A Conversation about Homosexuality & the Asian American Christian Church. Sponsored by the Christian Social Issues (CSI) group, an informal gathering of Asian American Christians who discuss wide-ranging social issues and how they relate to our Christian faith. Join three old friends – two straight and one gay – who will engage in a conversation that needs to happen more often in order to dispel ignorance, quell fear and hatred, and foster greater understanding. Debate about scriptural interpretation or scientific evidence is not within the scope of this dialogue. It is not our intent to resolve this highly complex issue. Though we may ultimately arrive at different conclusions, at the very least, we need to break the awful silence in our churches surrounding this subject. We really need to talk.

If you have a friend or loved one who is gay, or you are gay yourself, or you are a Christian who is concerned about this issue, please join us in this much needed and long-awaited dialogue.

why God made you an Asian American

Russell Jeung (Associate Professor of Asian Studies at San Francisco State University) gave 4 talks at the first Asian American conference hosted by Bread of Life Church in Torrance, California, March 7-9. We recorded the first talk from Friday night. (Videos from all the talks may be made available later, but no guarantees.)
Russell Jeung
With permission from Russell Jeung, we are grateful for being able to post the first talk online. Here’s the audio (mp3, running time = 75:41) and slides from his March 7th presentation titled, “Daniel 2: Asian American Values of Wisdom, Community, and Humility” >>


Religiosity in Asian America: Spiritual Vitality, Secularism, and Racialization

Sat in parts of the Symposium on Religion in Los Angeles, a 2-day event jointly hosted by Cal State University Los Angeles and Claremont School of Theology. Fascinating conversations and presentations that exemplified the growing interest in the sociology of religion, and most of the presentations explored the inter-relationship of religions and ethnicities.

Russell JeungRussell Jeung, Associate Professor of Asian Studies at San Francisco State University, made an insightful presentation titled “Religiosity in Asian America: Spiritual Vitality, Secularism, and Racialization.”

With permission from Russell Jeung, we are grateful for being able to post yesterday’s talk online. Here’s the audio (mp3 – run time = 42:17) and slides from his March 6th presentation about Asian American religious affiliation >>


I thought slides #3 and #4 were most interesting, charting out the religious affiliation of Asian Americans, with respondents identifying as Protestant, Catholic, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, other, none, or refused. These charts are very timely, as the major survey results by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life was just released last week, and has been highlighted in 300+ news articles. Several other conversations at the symposium responded and interacted with these Pew Forum’s extensive survey results. (also, see video overview about the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey)

Russell would very much like to get your feedback and thoughts about this presentation — please add a comment below.

Talks on Asian American Religiosity and Christianity

Just got word of this lecture series from Russell Jeung, Associate Professor of Asian Studies at San Francisco State University. Via the Yahoo Group for Asian American Christians for Justice::

Hi all:

If you’re in Los Angeles, I’m speaking at CSU LA and at Bread of Life Church in Torrance this week. You’re welcome to come.

CSU LA is hosting a symposium, “Religion in Los Angeles, in the Americas, in the Era of Globalization” on Thursday 3/6. I’ll present a paper on the latest poll data on Asian American religious affiliation and changes in the last two decades.

Bread of Life is hosting me to present a series, “Asian Americans in the Lions’ Den: A Study of Daniel” in which I compare the Jews in exile to Asian American Christians. The series discusses how being Asian American relates to our faith. The titles are:

Fri 3/7 @ 7:30pm: “Exam of Death: Daniel 2 and Asian American Values of Wisdom, Community and Humility
Sat 3/8 @ 9:00am: “Saving Face and Asian American Achievement: Daniel 4 and 5”
Sun 3/9 @ 9:00am: “Confessions of a Boba-Bobo: Daniel 1, Asian Americans and Culinary Resolve”
Sun 3/9 @ 11:15am: “Resident Aliens: Asian Americans in Bobo-land Daniel 3 and 6”

I’d be happy to share the paper or the talks if you’re interested.

Peace,
Russell Jeung

[update 3/6] times for talks at Bread of Life added – hope to see you there!

[update 3/7] view and hear Russell Jeung’s presentation here >>

The Next Generation of Asian Americans Reaches Out

In the Jan/Feb 2008 issue of REV Magazine, DJ Chuang wrote a brief snapshot of 5 innovative churches being led by next generation Asian American pastors in this article titled, “The Next Generation of Asian Americans Reaches Out: Taking the best of both worlds from their Asian family heritage and their American surroundings, innovative Asian-American pastors are shaping multi-Asian and multi-ethnic churches.” The article can be viewed online or you can download PDF. The article is reprinted here by permission, Rev! Magazine, Copyright 2008, Group Publishing, Inc., Box 481, Loveland, CO 80539.

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The article featured these 5 innovative churches: