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2023/10/7
Proclaiming Love and Non-Violence in Darkest Days, Prof Albert Lin Remembered by Taiwan Society

Taiwan Church News

3734 Edition

Sept 18 ~ 24, 2023

Weekly Topical

Proclaiming Love and Non-Violence in Darkest Days, Prof Albert Lin Remembered by Taiwan Society

Reported by Lin Yi-ying and Dalul
Translated by Peter Wolfe

To commemorate Prof Albert Lin’s monumental contributions to shape Taiwan’s democracy through his words and deeds, his memorial service was held at the Shuan-Lien Church of Chi-Hsin Presbytery in Taipei on September 16th. A second memorial service was held at the Song-Yin Hall of Tainan Theological Seminary and College in Tainan on Sept 17th.

The memorial service in Taipei on Sept 16th was hosted by Rev Chen Fu-zu with a sermon, entitled “RIP, Albert, Dear Friend”. Rev Zeng Kuo-chong reported the chronicles of Prof Lin. Rev Peng Zhi-hong , G.A. moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan offered his prayer and blessings. Mr Kuo Chong-chi, Prof Lin’s brother-in-law, led Prof Lin’s family to pay tributes and give thanksgivings to the assembly. The attendees expressed their condolence to Prof Lin’s family, and laid flowers before the portrait of Prof Lin.

President Tsai Ing-wen attended the memorial service and paid her tribute to Prof Lin’s contributions. She spoke in the speech that Prof Lin insisted on proclaiming non-violent democracy and grass-root movements throughout his life; his thoughts and actions are an important cornerstone for Taiwan to march toward freedom and democracy; he championed the “Urban and Rural Mission” (URM), emphasizing non-violent struggle of love and justice movement against the authoritarian regime, and inspired many people to fight for Taiwan democracy and the lifting of martial law. Prof Albert Lin’s life, president Tsai lauded, was impeccably loyal to Taiwan society as said in the Bible, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”(2 Timothy 4:7).

President Tsai also indicated that there are still many challenges lying ahead in the future, “But as long as we stand together and advocate the values of justice and freedom, Taiwan’s democracy will continue to march forward till the day when the fruits of success are ripe,” concluded president Tsai, “Thank you Prof Albert Lin, and May God Bless Taiwan!”

During his speech, Rev Chen Fu-zu recollected that he went to Canada in 1980s to receive the third level training of URM, and the URM methods was immediately introduced to implement in the church after his returning back to Taiwan. He pointed out that Prof Albert Lin was a loyal servant of God with firm faith to promote URM and never sought his personal interests, just like the apostle Paul engaging in evangelical mission to the gentile relentlessly. Rev Chen firmly believes that Prof Albert Lin is “Taiwan’s Paul” and can meet the Lord candidly without blame.

Mrs Ellen Huang, former National Assembly Representative, said that she had acquainted Prof Lin since 1996. As a poor professor, Prof Lin was very frugal in living just to provide students with URM stipends, Mrs Huang said, and the most touching thing was that Prof Lin’s wife, Mrs Kuo Che-chi, never regretted to support her husband’s mission for Taiwan independence.

Mrs Huang recalled once she asked Prof Lin, “Albert, why don’t you shave your beard to look younger?” Prof Lin replied then, “I will shave it off after Taiwan becomes independent.” Mrs Huang noted that Prof Lin’s tremendous contribution to Taiwan’s achievement of freedom and democracy, is the reason why everyone gathers here to remember him.

In the memorial service, many famous leaders in Taiwan democracy movements had attended, including Ms Chen Chu, president of the Control Yuan; Mr Chiou I-jen, former general secretary of the presidential office; Mr Cho Jung-tai, former general secretary of the Executive Yuan and many others.

A second memorial service of Prof Albert Lin was held in Tainan on Sept 17th, Elder Huang Chao-kai reported the story and contributions of Prof Albert Lin. In order to describe the thoughts and actions brought by Prof Lin’s advocacy of URM, Elder Huang used images of Prof Lin’s past participation in democratic protests, such as the photos related to the protests of KMT’s confiscation of “Taiwan Church News” in 1987 and the images of URM members pulling down the bronze statue of Wu Feng, a KMT-fabricated Han hero, which was located before Chiayi railway station 1988.

Elder Huang pointed out that Tainan and Chiayi are two important sites to promote URM courses. Most of the participants in Taiwan democratic events were recruited from URM courses. Among them, Ko-Pi Church of Tainan Presbytery is an outstanding site for the URM training, Elder Huang expressed, in addition that from these photos and video records, Prof Lin’s influence could be appreciated by the public. He sincerely hoped that Prof Lin’s passion for democracy could carry on to the future generation in Taiwan.

Rev Huang Pek-ho, director of the Academy for Contextual Theologies in Taiwan, took 1 Kings 19: 8 ~16 as the reference scripture and preached with the title “Dancer of Hope, Prophet in Wilderness”. He compared Prof Lin’s love for Taiwan as a lonely prophet in the wilderness. Even though he was politically oppressed, tracked in KMT’s black-name-list, forced to be exiled in foreign lands, and could not return to the Formosa which he loved most, he was still loyal to his calling to love and serve Taiwan society. Through the URM education, Prof Lin proclaimed love and non-violence to fight against injustice of KMT in Taiwan’s darkest hour and delivered the historic witness to the struggling path of Taiwan democracy.

Rev Huang pointed out that just like the prophet Elijah, although bound to face an oppressed and exploiting empire, his love and care for his people and country finally found its way out through a faithful dialogue with Jehovah. Through the historic presentation of the fighters and resisters, Rev Huang said, we can appreciate Prof Albert Lin’s efforts and contributions from the past political persecution, which have created innumerable URM disciples and democratic fighters. Although Prof Lin had died, his words and deeds, as our indispensable historical legacy, would carry on to witness Taiwan’s resolve toward independence and democracy, Rev Huang concluded.


Submitted by:Taiwan Church Press
 
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