To promote friendship among Protestant churches in China and Russia, Dr. William Yoder, a member of the Russian Evangelical Alliance (REA), embarked on his official visit to the Chinese Christian community.
On November 4, Rev. Wu Wei, president of the China Christian Council (CCC), welcomed Dr. William Yoder. They exchanged views on future contacts among the Protestant churches in both nations.
During the meeting, Rev. Wu briefed the guests on the three self-principles and history, as well as the ministry of sinicization of Christianity in progress. Meanwhile, Wu said that churches in China have been willing to connect with churches across the world under the three-self principle.
Dr. William Yoder pointed out that churches in Russia have barely engaged in exchanges with Chinese churches for the past decades. Therefore, he hoped the REA would organize a delegation to visit churches in China, promoting mutual exchange and friendship. Rev. Wu also addressed inquiries from the guests regarding ministries in Chinese churches.
Before the trip to CCC, Dr. William Yoder first visited Shanghai Municipal CC&TSPM and the East China Theological Seminary from November 2 to 3.
On November 2, Rev. Zhang Aili, secretary general of Shanghai CC&TSPM, and Rev. Guo Feng, deputy secretary general of Shanghai CC&TSPM, received Dr. Yoder. At their meeting, Rev. Zhang introduced the current development of the Christian community in Shanghai.
Dr. Yoder also visited the East China Theological Seminary (ECTS) on November 3 to share their individual circumstances, seminary enrollment, and sacred music education.
President Xie Bingguo of the seminary introduced not only the historical development, personnel training, and educational features of ECTS but also a series of explorations it has made in the sinicization of Christianity in recent years, according to ECTS. He also recounted the achievements of the church in China in adhering to the "three-self principle.".
Dr. Yoder introduced the situation of the churches under REA as well as the school-run Protestant seminaries in Russia. The two sides also discussed and shared the enrollment of the seminary, sacred music education, and the students’ career development after graduation.
Finally, the guest visited the seminary’s electric piano classroom, patriotic educational research room, and library.
Founded in 2003, the Russian Evangelical Alliance became a member of the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) and a representative union organization of Christian Protestants, which encompasses the Russian Union of Evangelical Christians-Baptists (RUECB), the Russian Church of Christians of Evangelical Faith/Pentecostal Union (RACEFP), and seminaries in Moscow and Saint Petersburg.
- Translated by Poppy Chan and Cassie