BIBLE SOCIETY NEWS | Suzanne Schokman
Thursday 30 July 2015
Three years after being healed from cancer, Yan Cuiling found herself in a plaster cast after breaking her leg. Unable to move, Yan asked her son to attach a Bible to the ceiling so that it dangled in front of her. It took her six months to finish reading it, and by then she was healed and her heart was on fire for God.
Motivated to put her love for the Lord into action, the young widow in China started a fellowship in her home, and led her four children and four grandchildren to Christ. Realising she had the gift of teaching, she started a Sunday school in 2004 which has since helped many children to know about a Jesus who loves them.
Yan, 70, has now passed the task of running the Sunday school to eight younger teachers. They teach about 40 children each week, but Yan still goes early every Sunday to get the classroom ready, sweep the floor and write out Bible verses for the classes. If any of the teachers is not available, she steps in.
“I teach the children to love the Lord and the church,” she says. “My hope is that from these children will rise our future generation of church leaders and pastors.”
This year Bible Society Australia is seeking donations for a programme to reach thousands of young people in China with God’s life-changing word in a relevant format. At least 1,500 copies of Scripture materials tailored to the needs of young Chinese people will be distributed free. Because the under-25s in China are avid consumers of comic books, there’ll be Scriptures in comic format, pictorial story Bibles as well as bilingual Bibles to aid in learning English.
Importantly, this project includes the setting up of 165 Sunday School classes, with about 80 children in each class, which will run for three hours at a time over 12 weeks. Sunday School teachers just like those working with Yan Cuiling will be trained and supplied with Scripture materials. 15,000 children and youth, and 150 adults are expected to benefit from the programme.
Yang Yue Ming, who serves full-time with Sunday School ministry at a church in Nanjing, points out that students in Chinese schools are exposed to various philosophies and become sceptical about absolute truth and the idea of one true God.
“The young nowadays are very much exposed to the influences of the world. So we hope to put God’s word in their hearts so that they can carry it with them as they grow up … The world and people will eventually fail them, but God will never fail them.”
Will you help plant seeds of faith among China’s young?