Chinese in the West

Dear Praying Friends:

In my letter on “Old Strategies for New Realities,” I said that we should focus on “Chinese in the West, especially students and scholars and their families, but also restaurant workers.”

The Numbers

At present, in the United States alone, there are: 
- Almost 400,000 Chinese undergraduate and graduate students, plus visiting scholars and their families. These represent “the best and the brightest” of China’s educated elite.
- At least 23,000 Chinese high school students, almost 60% of whom attend Christian schools, even though most of the parents are atheists.
- About 200,000 Chinese employed in more than 40,000 Chinese restaurants.
- 600,000 Chinese who have obtained “green cards,” that is, legal permanent residents, 
- An estimated 268,000 illegal immigrants.

Even if we subtract, say, 500,000 from these numbers to account for overlapping categories, there are over one million recently arrived Chinese living in the United States alone. 

The Opportunity

Many studies have shown that people who have recently moved to a new country are not only struggling with adjustments of all sorts, but also open to new ideas. Thousands of Chinese have expressed faith in Jesus Chris while in the West, and many more have been exposed to the gospel.

A Strategic Group

More and more students are returning to China after earning their degrees since they have a better chance of finding a good job there. They become leaders in all domains of society.
Even those who stay in the West remain in close communication with their families and friends back home. Students stay up late at night, talking to people in China by WeChat or telephone. Vacations and holidays see thousands making the trip across the Pacific. Families visit from China whenever they can, often for six months or more.

In other words, your Christian witness to a Chinese person here may impact many more in Asia, with incalculable effects.

The Obstacles

Sharing Christ with Chinese in the West is not easy, of course. For uneducated ones, language remains a huge barrier. Students and scholars feel overwhelmed with their work and have little extra time. The younger people seem much less interested in spiritual things than previous generations were. Restaurant employees generally must work on Sundays, work ten or more hours a day, and have irregular days off.

Ways and Means

God has given us proven methods of communicating his truth and love:

Prayer: Every time you see someone who looks Chinese, pray for that person. Intercede, also for those who work among Chinese.

Literature: You can obtain excellent tracts and books from Ambassadors for Christ (800-624-3504).

Collaboration: Find out how you can assist with the outreach of your local church, a Chinese church, or a campus ministry to Chinese.

Friendship: Ask God to show you how you can befriend a Chinese person. Genuine love has real power!

For more about how to reach Chinese all over the world, including the West, see my book, Reaching Chinese Worldwide.

Over the past 28 years, Dori and I have related to hundreds of Chinese in the U.S. We have seen more than 60 receive baptism, and many more have grown in Christ.  ( Attached is a picture of a recent child dedication at our church.) Quite a few have become close friends. We thank God for them.

Please Pray for Us

At present, I lead a fortnightly Bible study for people in a local Chinese restaurant. Three Chinese families come to our church. We also have intermittent contact with a graduate student from Taiwan. I regularly relate to Chinese in the U.S.  by phone and Skype.

All our colleagues living in the West-  in England, Canada, and the U.S. - minister among Chinese.

Please ask God to use us to bring many to know Christ and to help Christians follow the Lord.

Your fellow pilgrim (Hebrews 13:14),