On December 7, 2019, 100 Christians gathered in Zhejiang's megachurch to transcribe the Bible as an effort to mark the "Bible Day".
In the early 1990s, the second Sunday of December was designated as Bible Day in the Chinese church. To celebrate the occasion, the national China Christian Council & Three-Self Patriotic Movement (CCC&TSPM) launched a series of activities including the handwriting campaign, an award ceremony for copied Bible scripts, a Sunday service, and a symposium.
In Hangzhou Chongyi Church, Rev. Shan Weixiang, vice-president & general secretary of the CCC said that the Bible transcribing campaign was aimed at awakening the love for the Bible and emphasizing Bible ministries. An annual fund of millions of yuan was donated by the United Bible Society to support the production of Chinese Bibles. However, Chinese congregations were inclined not to read the paper Scriptures as Bible software was becoming more and more popular among Chinese Christians. He urged believers to again realize the importance of the paper version.
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Union Version, three months ago the CCC&TSPM initiated the Bible transcribing activity. More than 100 families, fellowships and individuals completed the handwritten scripts of the New Testament in three months. Ten of them received awards.
Rev. Zhang Ling from Urumqi, Xinjiang was one of the transcribers. She shared that she began copying the Scriptures before nightfall, after finishing her daily work in local rural churches. The temperature there was minus ten degrees. She would first clean her hands, then sit before the desk with a calm heart to copy the verses.
In the commemoration symposium, a pastor shared a moving story about Bible transcription. During the handwritten campaign led by his church, participants ranged both in age, from a young student to an elderly believer of 85 years, and in profession, from a housewife to a professor doing calligraphy. Even a believer who was ill persistently copied the word of God.
Some attendees even proposed starting a campaign next year to memorize God's word. It was suggested that brochures on how to read, interpret and exegete of the Bible be produced.
In addition, an idea was put forward that the handwriting could inspire Christians' love for Chinese characters and culture.
In regards to how to offer the Bibles to places in need, a pastor suggested that CCC&TSPM define a specific place of an ethnic minority area that could receive donations and the amount of donations before Bible Day.
On the following day, a Christian book exhibition was held. Five young Christian writers presented and signed their books to be sold.
- Translated by Karen Luo