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Asian Liberation Theology…

If you’ve been following Barack Obamamania, you may have seen Reverend Jeremiah Wright’s latest speech. I think he’s quite the communicator and offers some profound insights, but I can’t say I quite agree with a lot of what he says, or the arrogance he sometimes projects.

What caught my attention was his discourse on Black liberation theology. Wright’s passion, and the narrative behind it is quite powerful. Which of course makes me wonder if there is any type of corresponding Asian theology that we can speak of with such pride???

The Chinese immigrant church has been booming in Toronto that past decade. I’ve had ‘white’ pastors tell me a number of times how enamored they are with the life they find in the growing Chinese church. They also ask when the Chinese church will start reaching back out to the rest of culture.

All the while, I know many 2nd generation Chinese Jesus-followers are a bit embarrassed by the mostly ‘ethnic’ church that they’re a part of. They’d love to reach out to others, but can’t get passed the initial ethnic barriers. Is there a story in the Chinese or Asian context with which we can uniquely proclaim as the Black church does?

I know there must be one, my seminary even offers courses specifically on Chinese theology and spirituality. I can’t say I’ve heard much in my time in Chinese church circles though.

I do know that when great oppression meets the liberating Gospel of Christ, revivals are often stoked. This of course is a huge part of the narrative in the black church. It’s also an integral part of the church in China that is exploding, which everyone seems to be raving about these days.

As for Chinese or Asian Christians in the west, I can’t say I hear a unifying story being shouted from the rooftops.

I’m sure part of it is due to a cultural inferiority complex along with some model minority issues, but someone please educate me on this one before I make something up… is there a uniquely Asian theology we should be cherishing? Or is there really a need for one?

{ 3 comments… add one }

  • Parke April 30, 2008, 9:27 pm

    I’m curious about this as well though maybe for different reasons 😉

  • Anonymous half-Asian May 20, 2009, 5:30 pm

    I’d be careful with “asian theology” and “liberation theology.” As Christians we want to welcome all races because they will all be in heaven. As for liberation theology, be careful with that too. Liberation theology is basically the poor people trying to get rid of their rich capitalist oppressors. Given the fact that most of us Asians are middle-class, we don’t need to overthrow the rich. Black liberation theology puts the blacks as poor people, whites as rich ones. Where would we fit in as Asians?

  • Lon May 20, 2009, 11:16 pm

    thanks for chiming in – anonymous half-asian…hilarious.

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