Why Failure is an Option

“by then I’d figured out the gift of failure, which is that it breaks through all that held breath and isometric tension about needing to look good: it’s the gift of feeling floppier.” – Anne Lamott

By Ann Chen

As a Chinese-American, I’ve grown up in a culture that values “saving face” and rewards perfection and success. I’ve seen this play out not only in my academic/professional life, but in my ministry and in my personal relationships.

One thing that I’ve grown to embrace more is a willingness to fail.

Or perhaps it’s not the willingness. It’s the acceptance that I’ve failed. Many times. And I continue to fail.

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ISAAC to Honor Roy Sano with Legacy Award

Bishop Roy I. Sano. Photo Credit: Felipe Castillo

Bishop Roy I. Sano. Photo Credit: Felipe Castillo

Bishop Roy I. Sano will be presented with the ISAAC Legacy Award at ISAAC’s 5th Symposium on October 5th. [1] The Legacy Award honors pioneers and leaders from the Asian American Christian community. Past recipients include Rev. Dr. Hoover Wong and Eleanor Huang, LCSW.

Bishop Sano is being recognized as an invaluable and long standing leader in the community. His CV includes degrees from UCLA, Union, GTU and Claremont Graduate School. Ordained in 1957, Bishop Sano served the United Methodist Church on the U.M. General Board of Global Ministries, the U.M. General Board of Church and Society and the General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns.

Perhaps more importantly, Bishop Sano carries with him the deep and compelling wisdom that only experience and reflection can cultivate. As a survivor of FDR’s Executive Order 9066, Sano — along with 110,000 other Japanese Americans — was forced to relocate into internment camps after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. These early experiences have shaped Bishop Sano’s conviction for both grace and justice.

Sano describes those early trials as “a wound that has healed, but the scars of a wound remain… a scar as a reminder: ‘never again’ if I can in any way prevent that or oppose that.” [2] This understanding has no doubt served him in his positions as President of the UMC Council of Bishops and its first Executive Secretary. Bishop Sano comments that these appointments “say a lot about the graciousness of my Episcopal colleagues who deeply disagreed with me on some missional participation.”

Speaking on his call to the ministry, the Bishop describes his decision “to work for this island of acceptance in this turbulent ocean of hate.” It is his lasting impact in this work that ISAAC recognizes and honors with the 2013 Legacy Award.

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[1] ISAAC’s 5th Symposium: Healing of Memories, Healing of Finances will be held on October 5th at Evergreen Baptist Church, San Gabriel Valley.

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Registration Now Available HERE.

[2] “Wartime Internment Teaches Bishop The Importance of Grace” by Cecile S. Holmes

 

A Quest for Questions

“Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.”

-R.M.Rilke

By Eun Joo Angela Ryo

It was another typical Friday night at the Korean church where I serve.  I hung out with the youth group and my kids were at their children’s Bible study.  After church, we were headed home when I asked them about their Bible study. 

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ISAAC’s 5th Symposium

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ISAAC’s 5th Symposium revisits the theme of “Healing of Memories.” In addition to psychological wounds, we also address an unspoken voice of the church and seminaries – finances. When we discuss money, heated emotions erupt from wounded memories that block us psychologically and financially. By unmasking them, we can find inner healing by reframing them in the light of God’s abundant love and become better stewards of our body, mind, and finances.

FORMAT: Panel discussions and workshops exploring: 1. The healing of memories and relationships 2. The healing of memories and finances. In addition, we will attend to the creative movement of our bodies, acknowledging the body as a storyteller for unspoken voices.

LEGACY LUNCHEON: We will honor the pioneer Japanese American pastoral theologian, Bishop Roy I. Sano. Bishop Sano has been a bridge between church and academy. His legacy has reached countless Asian American spiritual leaders.

Early Bird Registration is now available. $50 for general admission. $30 for students.

REGISTER FOR SYMPOSIUM V HERE

Pastor Albert Hung Preaches on Faith and Money

The collective financial health of Christians, the Church and American society at large has suffered from a lack of knowledge and accountability. In response, a growing movement of Christian leaders has sought to turn the tide of this problem. Among them is Pastor Albert Hung of Trinity Church of the Nazarene. Recently he preached a sermon series titled “Lifestyles of the Rich and Faithful.”

This four part series includes talks on:

  1. How to Be Rich
  2. Live to Give
  3. Show Me the Money
  4. Why Money Matters 
Pastor Albert running for charity

Pastor Albert running for charity

Generally regarded as a fine teacher with a modest and considerate preaching persona, Pastor Albert discusses financial issues with unusual candor.

Devoting an entire month to the topic, each sermon takes on a different aspect of finances, money and faith.

“How to be Rich” looks at the biblical rational for a non-consumerist lifestyle.

In a show of transparency, Albert shared his family’s 2012 budget (income and expenses) during his “Live to Give” message.

In “Show Me the Money,” Albert shares 6 simple pointers to responsible money management [1] in the context explaining the layered lessons from Matthew 25.

“Why Money Matters” explores the Christian role as stewards of money, instead of owners. In this light, money is seen as an energetic potential to be actualized by Christians in service of higher goals and ideals. Significant commentary is also made regarding the immense portion of wealth that American Christians hold.

Audio files of this series is available at the Trinity Church website: http://www.trinitychurchmp.com/

The upcoming ISAAC Symposium will devote the morning session to “Healing of Finances” (Saturday October 5). Christian leaders in the financial sectors will elaborate on Christian life in and about financial systems. “More than ever,” says ISAAC Director Young Lee Hertig, “we all need to increase our financial knowledge and the toolbox so that we may exercise healthy stewardship within our interdependent relationships of family, church, society and eco-systems that we rely on for our sustainability.”

More Symposium updates coming soon.

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[1] “The six things you must do to make sure you never get lost: 1) Be willing to work; 2) Spend less than you earn; 3) Avoid (consumer) debt; 4) Build an emergency fund; 5) Set long term goals; 6) Plan with eternity in mind.”

Francis Chan and Jeremy Lin to Speak at “Identity Unleashed”

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On September 7th, Linsanity meets Crazy Love at the Cow Palace in Daly City, CA. For one night, Jeremy Lin and Francis Chan will share the stage to lead attendees in an exploration of who we are and what our purpose in life is at Identity Unleashed.

Lin became a global celebrity following his unprecedented 2012 performance as point guard for the New York Knicks. Lin became the first player to record 20+ points and 7+ assists in his first five starts. Chan is a widely recognized pastor, preacher and author. His bestselling Crazy Love has inspired countless believers to live in a more passionate relationship to God.

This event is free, but registration is required.

Register HERE

Blogroll Update

Here’s the latest from the Asian American Christian Blogroll.

Andrew Alojipan. Photo Credit: Kept On Hold

Andrew Alojipan. Photo Credit: Kept On Hold

Andrew Alojipan from the Christian indie band We Are Leo blogs at: http://andrewalojipan.tumblr.com/

Professor Grace Kao of Claremont (CST and CGU) blogs at: http://www.drgracekao.com/blog/ She is the author of Grounding Human Rights in a Pluralist World. Grace is also a regular contributor at: http://feminismandreligion.com/

Baylor University Sociologist, Jerry Z. Park blogs at: http://jerryzpark.com/ Jerry is widely published, including his article, “Assessing the Sociological Study of Asian American Christianity,” in SANACS Journal 1.

Theology Professor Grace Ji-Sun Kim of Moravian Theological Seminary blogs at: http://gracejisunkim.wordpress.com/ Grace has written several books on Asian/ANA Christian Theology, including The Grace of Sophia.

See the whole Blogroll HERE.