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2024/6/1
An Oral History of Gi-Kong Church Launched by Academia Historica

Taiwan Church News

3769 Edition

May 20 ~ 26, 2024

Weekly Topical

An Oral History of Gi-Kong Church Launched by Academia Historica

Reported by Chiu Kuo-rong from Taipei

In the afternoon on May 18, the Academia Historica held a book launch for four new books, including an oral history, entitled asInterviews with of some members of Gi-Kong Presbyterian Church, to witness of the genesis of Gi-Kong Church, and present historical archives on the heinous murder case of Lawyer Lin Yi-Hsiong ‘s beloved mother and twin daughters in February 1980.

Dr Chen Yi-shen, president of the Academia Historica, paid tribute to the contributions offered by the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan (PCT) in Taiwan’s social reform, commitment to its Christian faith, audacious resolve to stand by and care for the Taiwanese people.

The very history related to Gi-Kong Church needed to be studied continuously by the younger Taiwanese historians, Dr Chen stressed, and in future Academia Historica will also carry on to cooperate with the PCT to publish important historical archives to witness the PCT’s passionate accompanion to Taiwan’s democracy.

Dr Chen recalled that in January 2023, he and several colleague-editors went to Taimali, Taitung, to visit the late Rev Kao Chun-ming, Mrs Kao Lee Lih-chen, and then interviewed the successive pastors of Gi-Kong Church since Rev Chen Fu-chu inaugurated. They found that the lively stories and experiences of these elders were amazing crystals of Taiwan history from the 1980s upto date, i.e. an encyclopedic compact witness to modern Taiwan’s human rights development and political movements.

Rev Chen Fu-chu, who served as the moderator when he helped establish Gi-Kong Church from the scratch, said in his speech that the massacre of Lawyer Lin’s beloved family on February 28, 1980 was actually meant to be the second “228 Massacre” in Taiwan’s history. He emphasized that the murder was maliciously intent to crush Lawyer Lin, his family and even the Taiwanese in general, but the PCT quickly stepped in, expressed care and launched domestic and international support and fundraising to protect the traumatized.

These pastoral care and support finally led to the establishment of Gi-Kong Church at the original homicide site of Lawyer Lin’s house on April 11, 1982, which was also the Easter Day, symbolizing the Church’s never-let-go commitment to stand by the souls of the suffered, and a firm resolve to fight against the evils of KMT in power then. Quoting the biblical verses, “Blessed are the peacemakers, they will be called children of God”(Matt 5:9), Rev Chen encouraged all the Taiwanese people to pursue peace together.

Rev Lu Chi-ming, director of the PCT’s Historical Archives, was invited to the book launch and paid his salute to Gi-Kong Church’s persistence to engage in community service. He remarked that Gi-Kong Church’s social care and humble mindset are not only worthy of being recorded by Academia Historica, but also should be published to let the public understand its historical significance.

Reflecting the suffering and its meanings, via the murder case occurred to Lawyer Lin’s family, allows people to promote social reconciliation, build political consensus in the light of God’s justice and righteousness and achieve true and in-depth historical understandings, Rev Lu concluded.

Rev Wang Ming-che, current pastor of Gi-Kong Church, said in interview that this new book showcases KMT’s brutal rulings and gluttonous exploits versus Taiwanese people’s obstinate struggle for freedom and democracy. Through the publication of an oral history of Gi-Kong church, Rev Wang reminded, brothers and sisters could come to know God again and afresh, understand the founding pioneers of the church, and how the PCT’s faith and confession prompts the congregation to respond on many social issues.

Rev Wang affirmed that this new book not only allows Gi-Kong Church to have a deeper understanding of the history and mission of the PCT, but also allows non-Christians to learn the PCT’s ministries more thoroughly. Based on the PCT’s pledge and service to care for Taiwan in the spirit of justice and peace, Rev Wang sincerely wish Taiwan society could respond and take actions to stand by the needy in an era full of challenges and difficulties.

Academia Historica published a total of four new books in this book launch. The other three books includes:Interviews with Leaders of the Overseas Taiwanese Movement,Selected Translations of U.S. National Security and Taiwan Policy Archives (3), (4), andState, Political Parties and History: Academia Historica in Taiwan.

Translated by Peter Wolfe


Submitted by:Taiwan Church Press
 
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