Why 4Pointes is an Asian American church

Recently sat down to have a chat with Pastor Peter Lim about 4Pointes Church, located near Atlanta, Georgia.

4Pointes Church has a particular aspect that makes it different than most others of its kind. 4Pointes describes itself as an Asian-American church.

Most next-generation independent English-speaking churches that are led or planted by Asian American pastors describes themselves as just a church or a multi-ethnic church. Very few of these churches self-identify as Asian American churches, even though its leadership and/or its attendees may be composed of an Asian American majority.

Listen to our conversation about why 4Pointes Church calls itself an Asian-American church rather than a multiethnic church or community church.

(download m4a audio)

4pointes-church

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The Conservative Silence on Race

How come conservative Asian American believers don’t want to talk about ethnicity and race?

In this conversation with Nate Lee, we explore the following:

  • Defining a conservative Asian American believer – 1) someone who is politically conservative – i.e. values limited government, lower taxes, and traditional values OR 2) someone who is theologically conservative – i.e. evangelical, literal interpretation of the Bible, gospel-centered, traditional view of Christian sexual ethics.
  • Nate’s experience with the “narrowness” of conservatism – how both ends of the political/theological spectrum believe they are correct and don’t want to listen to other people
  • Nate’s journey of discovery in seeing how culturally-defined his faith was/is based on mainstream white evangelical culture
  • How seminary caused me (Fred) to think more broadly about theology and culture and be more open to different points of views, especially concerning God
  • What is the role of “whiteness” for Asian Americans? Is it wrong or inappropriate that we, as Asian American believers, worship in ways influenced by mainstream white evangelical culture?
  • The importance of a group of people having a story – our person-hood, our history, our worship practices
  • Fred’s experience in the immigrant church that many Asian American Christians are fearful of beliefs that might threaten their faith values even though these values may be culturally-derived and derived from the gospel.
  • What we would recommend others do to have a more expansive view of the gospel that is open to other cultures and not simply what we have grown up in

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Reparative Therapy and the Asian American Church

Summary: Making gay people straight is not the most important goal. Brian Hui (pronounced “Who-E” – one syllable) and I riff on the helpfulness of treatment efforts that aim to change a person’s sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual. We talk about celibacy and its relationship with the gospel. Lastly, we segue into how Asian American’s cultural emphasis on family and belonging can help heal the mismanaged sexuality we all suffer from. Plus: a seemingly random connection with Weight Watchers.

No catchy intro music and it took us 5-8 minutes to warm up but we did our first podcast!

Happy New Year!

 

Related Links:

Mark Yarhouse’s popular book  on homosexuality

Christopher Yuan’s website

Robert Gagnon’s website 

Mark Yarhouse’s blog

Notes: 1) I highly recommend Christopher and his mom Angela Yuan’s memoir – cover above. It is ridiculously good and touches on some of the ideas we talk about in the podcast. 2) My upload speed at church is SO slow and it makes me sound like I’m a call-in guest and not the host. I will be working on this.

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