This past Sunday I had the privilege of serving communion during Sunday service at Evergreen SGV for the first time. It was quite a blessing, being able to assist people in worshiping and having fellowship with God.
Most meaningful for me was watching entire families come up and take communion together. Before partaking of the elements, the family would approach the table, then pray together, take communion, then sometimes pray together again.
A family praying together, worshiping together.
There is something very right about this picture.
I wonder to myself, where was this picture in my own life? Going to bilingual Chinese churches, I always saw families tend to split up. Parents attend the mother tongue congregation, their children attend the youth ministry or English-speaking service. Always seemed like two churches under the same roof. Families are part of the “same” church, but are they really?
God’s design for the family is perfect. Yet we have sacrificed family for the sake of “comfort” when it comes to worship. We want to worship in the language or culture we prefer. The immigrant generation stays in their mother-tongue bubble, resistant to changing their ways to accommodate their younger, more Americanized generation. The American-born generation(s), never seeing of the family worshiping together as a priority (because it was never modeled to them), leave the church or attend English-speaking Asian-American church plants as singles, missing out on mentoring and creating an even larger void between themselves and their parents. Whose responsibility is it?
What will it take for the Asian-American family to worship together?
Will Asian-Americans ever see their worship as a family affair?
Are we going to pass this “me-first” mentality of worship onto our future generations?
What will curb the “silent exodus” of the Americanized generation leaving the Asian church, or sadly, the church altogether?
Is the Asian bilingual/immigrant church beyond God’s redemption?