Visiting Churches

Mandarin Worship Service: Different Language, Same God

Discussing Church 20

This week is another doubleheader, but with a twist. First is a Mandarin worship service and English Sunday school, followed by an English worship service and Mandarin Sunday school.

The 52 Churches Workbook, by Peter DeHaan

Consider these four discussion questions about Church #20

1. We email to ask if non-Chinese are welcome. We are. Some non-Chinese attend the Mandarin service. 

How well do you embrace people of different races and cultures?

2. For worship, they display the words in Mandarin, with the English translation underneath. I read the words in English as I enjoy the melodic beauty of a different tongue. 

How well can people who speak another language engage in your service?

3. We don’t see the minister until he stands to give the message—until now, the laity has led the service. Speaking in Mandarin, the minister is dynamic, animated, and at times funny. I laugh with everyone else even though I don’t know why. 

If people don’t know your language, how might they perceive your nonverbal communication?

4. Afterward several people invite us to stay for lunch. Sharing a meal is important to them. They do this every Sunday. 

How important is sharing a meal at your church? In what other ways can you foster community?

[See the prior set of questions, the next set, or start at the beginning.]

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Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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