Temple Parade Outside our Apartment

Dear Friends,

Taiwan is a really strange place at times. Mostly we don’t think so as we’ve gotten very used to the place, but some days you see something and just end up going “What in the world??” Today was one of those days. I was sitting in our apartment reading a book, when…

Local temples will go on big parades around the neighborhood once a year or so in celebration of certain temple holidays. Maybe it’s the god’s birthday or a commemoration of some important event in the life of a good person who later became venerated as a deity.

Please continue praying with us for Taiwan’s Revival, and for everyone to experience freedom from oppressive belief systems!

 

A Surprise Party!!

 

We have said it before, but we’ll say it again- God has truly given us family-like friends here in Taiwan. Last Sunday night was another example of just how blessed we are. Our friends conspired together to throw us an early surprise birthday party. Our housemates returned to England this week, and they wanted to celebrate with us before they left, hence the reason for having the party 4 weeks before our actual birthday. We thought we were going to have a dinner with them, and another couple who are dear friends, but when we got to the place we were greeted by 30 of our closest friends shouting and singing “Happy Birthday!”

The night was full of fun-together we played a quiz game to see how well our friends knew us, there was a ton of delicious food and drinks, and the biggest surprise of all was that our friends all joined together and gave us a gift called “Erich and Kel’s Vacation Fund” in which they contributed enough money to send us away on a real vacation (I say “real” because usually due to time and finances we just spend a night or two away somewhere on island). But, due to their generosity we are going to Boracay, Philippines for 5 days at the end of July!! I’m already so excited for this time we’ll get to have to rest, un-wind, re-charge, and just have fun together! God is so good to us!!Β 

Check out the video below to see the ‘surprise’:

 

HD Video Post: Chinese New Year Celebrations

Dear Friends,

For Chinese New Year this year we got invited to our friend Robin’s family. We met up with him and then drove to his grandma’s apartment on the north side of Taipei (close to the National Palace Museum, if you’ve ever been there :). Robin’s whole family is Christian, which is very unusual for Taiwanese families. We celebrated the new year with a big feast, prepared by his grandma and aunties. After dinner we played Mahjong and watched TV until we left for home after midnight.

The whole night was marked by God’s love and Christian family harmony. Please pray with us for more Taiwanese families to know our God, who is the truest source of all family peace! The video below shows a neat part of Taiwanese family tradition, in which the children bless their elders, and then receive red envelopes stuffed with money in return! Even us guests received several red envelopes – how kind!

The video is inΒ High DefinitionΒ quality, so you might need to let them load for a little while before playing, depending on your internet speed. But then you can play them on “full screen” mode!

Blessings,
Erich and Kelley

 

ALPHA Week 10 Game and Song HD Video

Dear Friends,

We wanted to share some impressions from ALPHA Week 10 with everyone. The first video shows part of a lively game that the ALPHA groups played. The game started with all 10 groups, after which groups that responded too slowly were eliminated. So you’re seeing the final competition between the best groups. Notice our foreigners John, Caty, Kalan, and Joe participating, although they might have no idea what’s going on πŸ˜€

Both videos are in High Definition quality, so you might need to let them load for a little while before playing, depending on your internet speed. But then you can play them on “full screen” mode!

This video shows a song that one of the ALPHA groups was leading. About half of the girls on stage are not yet Christians, and it’s neat to see them involved in this way!

Thanks for continuing to pray as the regular ALPHA season ends. From what we can tell, most groups will continue meeting as regular church cell groups even after the season is over!

Blessings,
Erich and Kelley

Video of Aug 20 Transition Art Market Pre-ALPHA Event

Dear Friends,

Our last major Pre-ALPHA event occurred just yesterday. It involved several outdoor mini-concert by the band Transition (whose members attend our cell groups), along with an Art Market featuring hand-made jewelry, photographs and postcards for sale, as well as lots of hand-baked cookies made by our 2 international cell groups. Our Zone* at Truth Church had especially been praying for fair weather that afternoon, as it often rains here during the day this time of year. The Lord responded graciously by giving us a wonderfully clear sky, along with some some cloud cover to protect us from direct sunlight! Beyond this, He brought lots of passers-by to stop, listen to the great music, and chat with the Christians present. As a result of these encounters, over 25 Taiwanese people signed up for our upcoming Bilingual ALPHA Course on the spot, and we heard lots of people sharing about ALPHA with new friends.

Below is a short video to bring the event nearer to you. May we all catch the ALPHA Spirit, which is the generous Spirit of Jesus, inviting all of us to know the Father more!

Many thanks for standing behind all of us in prayer as we prepare for the upcoming ALPHA Course!

For, as 20th century pastor S.D. Gordon put it so rightly,

“Prayer is the real work of the ministry.
Service is just gathering in the results of prayer.”

* What do we mean by “Truth Church Zone”? Well, we happen to attend an unusually large church by Taiwanese church standards. Over 2,500 Taiwanese people attend 4 weekend services at Taipei Truth Church. Because of the size, the church is sub-divided into 10 Zones, each one headed up by a Zone Pastor and Pastor’s Wife – in our case, Pastor Moses and Joyce. About 200 people call our Zone ‘home’, including the 20-ish Foreigners (mostly British and American) that attend Truth Church. We love our Zone because the smaller group allows us to get to know our Taiwanese Sisters and Brothers more closely. These dear friends have over the years become our family, and a home away from home.

 

Kelley as Translator

Dear Friends,

As our Chinese has been improving over the last 2 years, we have been gradually moving into translation roles. Recently, Pastor Moses asked Kelley to begin translating the Sunday service from Chinese into English for the benefit of the Western foreigners in our Taiwanese congregation who don’t understand Chinese. Besides this, we often have the chance to translate for people during outings and other church events.

The video below is of Kelley, translating for our new missionary arrivals, Dillon and Caty.

Thanks so much for your ongoing prayers for our Chinese language learning. It’s a long process, but each step along the way allows us to more effectively communicate God’s love to our Taiwanese friends!

And when you come visit us, we’ll be pleased to translate for you as well πŸ˜€

 

Quick Update, with Pictures and Short Video

Dear Friends,

First off, many apologies for letting our blogging slide for a while! In the past we’ve been trying our best to post new content to our blog once a week, and we’ll try hard to get back into this routine!

We just wanted to send out a quick update on how we’ve been doing, and what we’ve been up to. Since we leave to pick up Moni from the airport soon we’ll have to use short bullet points to bring you up to speed:

  • Finished our second-to-last quarter of Chinese classes last Friday, with good grades on our final exam. As we have a 1-week break now, we took a trip to Taizhong (Taiwan’s 3rd largest city, located in central Taiwan) over the long weekend to get out of Taipei, relax, and pray about our future after language school. There are several exciting options open to us, but we really want to seek the Lord’s will and guidance before making any decisions. As the Lord clarifies things through prayer, we’ll keep you updated on our future!
  • ALPHA is ramping up over the summer, with several pre-ALPHA activities being planned by our Zone. The course fill officially begin in September, when our Western co-workers are back in country. We’ll post new information on our ALPHA Blog (http://www.crossing7.com/taiwan) when we have news!
  • The Sunday before last our church went on a march for ‘Family Values’ together. We started downtown and walked to the Taipei City Hall, where our Truth Church head pastor (Pastor Yang) gave a short message, followed by various Taiwanese Christian artists performing and sharing testimonies. Even the president’s wife was on stage! Please pray for the growing fire of Revival to burn more and more brightly in Taiwan!! Below are some pictures from the march. You might recognize John, who is one of our cell group members, and a geology professor at the National Taiwan University.

 

 

 

 

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Surprise Birthday Brunch Video

Dear Friends,

Yesterday morning we had a surprise birthday brunch for our housemate and dear friend, Hannah. She thought the plan was that the 5 of us (herself, her husband, Niall, baby Eden, Erich, and I) were going out for brunch at an American diner to celebrate, but little did she know while she was getting baby Eden fed and ready, a house-full of friends showed up to surprise her. It was a great morning of being together with friends and celebrating Hannah’s special day, and not a bad way to start off a new week! You can see her reaction below. Enjoy! πŸ˜€

For His Glory,
Erich and Kelley

Joyce and Hannah
The gang waiting quietly for Hannah to appear

 

ALPHA Song: “Oh Happy Day”

Dear Friends,

During this season of ALPHA we teach a new English song each week. Last week’s song was “Oh Happy Day”, connecting with the topic of the night, which was about the death and resurrection of Jesus.

As you can see in the below video, everyone really got into the song πŸ˜€ Towards the very end you can see us English co-workers coming around.

Please keep praying for our Lord to open the hearts of our new friends in this season of Bilingual ALPHA!

For His Glory,
Erich and Kelley

 

Video of Craig and Connie’s Visit

Dear Friends,

 

Wow, it’s been a while since we last posted – sorry about that! The reason for the delay is that Kel’s parents have been here to visit us. We have been enjoying every minute together, playing cards, touring around Taipei, meeting friends… And since they planned their visit the same week we had a break from Chinese classes, we took a few days to visit the south of Taiwan, for a much-needed vacation.

The video below will give you some idea of the things we have been doing together!

As always, thanks everyone for tracking with us!

Blessings,
Erich and Kelley

 

Our daily bike ride to Chinese class

Dear Friends,

In hopes of giving you all a better window into our daily life we have video recorded our daily bike ride to our Chinese school. We apologize up front for the bumpy ride you are about to begin, but hope that riding with us will give you a better idea of our surroundings. Right now we are in Chinese class from 12:00pm – 3:00pm every weekday afternoon, with a few hours of additional homework every day. Studying Chinese at this intensive level is already opening up many doors for ministry among Taiwanese people, and we thank the Lord for our progress!

Thanks for all your prayers and for showing interest in our lives and ministry!

Blessings,
Erich and Kelley

 

Fabiana’s Video

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Dear Friends,

We wanted to share this video with you. It’s from Fabiana, a Taiwanese girl whom we first met while teaching an English Bible club a few years ago. Through the care of Christian friends around her she gave her life to Christ not too long ago. The video was made in appreciation of her friends. We are in a few of the pictures, and thought putting this video up might give all of you an idea of some of the different ministries we have been involved in.

Besides us, some people you might recognize in the pictures are:
– our cell group members Hannah and Julianne, Rhys, and Rosanna
– our pastor’s wife Joyce
– Alicia

Here’s an approximate translation of the Chinese text at the beginning:

“I have been looking for some kind of truth for a while, but it has never appeared to me.
Once you appeared, fullness of life came.”

Enjoy!!

 

 

2010 05 28 Vacation in Yi Lan Ming Chi

This past week we escaped into the mountains of Taiwan for a 3 day mini vacation. We had a week off of classes, so we took the opportunity to get out of the city and recharge, both physically and spiritually. It was a much needed time, as our daily life is very busy and extended times of rest are often far and few between. The place we stayed was on top of mountain in a little wooden cottage. It was refreshing to not hear the noisy sounds of the city, and to be completely surrounded by nature. The time away provided us with opportunities to read for pleasure, talk and pray together, and get lots of sleep! Below is a short video we made of our time away- enjoy!!

2010 Chinese New Year Celebrations

Hi Friends,

Below is a video of a Taiwanese family we spent the Chinese New Year’s Eve with. We had a great time eating, talking, laughing, playing games, and lighting fireworks together. Most of the video is of their second-youngest child dancing πŸ™‚

In the background of the video you will notice a large decorated shelf. This is the family shrine that is used to display the pictures of family ancestors. It is the center of family worship and an important part of every Buddhist home.

Please pray for the love of Christ to penetrate into the many Taiwanese families who adhere to this kind of traditional folk Buddhism.

– E & K

 

2009_07_11 Yong He Bible Club

Dear Friends,

The last two weeks were more busy than usual for us, since we were teaching an English Bible Club to unchurched junior high-school students in a small TEAM church in a nearby suburb of Taipei. Our topic was “Making a Difference”, based on the biblical story of Esther. We had a lot of fun getting to know the kids, practicing English with them, playing games, singing, rehearsing a drama, and just hanging out.

One of the goals of this camp is to invite the kids’ parents to watch a performance on the final day of camp, and get to know Christians in the church. The following video shows part of that performance – enjoy!

Please pray for Fabiana and Liz, two 13-year old girls who are willing to accept Christ, but are facing opposition from their parents.

 

Surprise Party for Hope

This is a short video we took of the surprise party Kelley threw for Hope last Saturday evening, after 3E. As you can tell, there were lots of people at our house, and Hope was quite surprised πŸ™‚

Hope is a good friend of ours who is leaving soon to study art in San Francisco. She will be there for 3 years, and will be dearly missed!

 

3E Outing Video

Hi Family and Friends,

We have hastily put together a short video of the recent 3E Outing for your viewing pleasure πŸ™‚

We hope it can help to detail the different activities that we had planned, and the fun time we had with our 3E Classroom group!

Sadly there is no video footage of the Sunday morning devotional that Erich gave, or the following group times. This was where the deeper spiritual application happened, and where people really began opening up and asking questions about the Christian faith.

Remember that our 3E Classroom is often the very first exposure to Christianity for most Taiwanese people that attend!

Please Pray for our relationships with the Seekers in our 3E Classroom groups. Both of us have about 7-10 Seekers to shepherd for this time.

P.S.: Many thanks to Craig and Connie for the video camera!! It’s working great πŸ™‚