We offer Thanks to God
Lila Chiao


In April 2004, we celebrated the 25th anniversary of our church. First of all, we are thankful for God's grace. In the past 25 years we have gone through many hardships and difficult times. Because of God's presence with us, we have overcome them.

In 1980 my mother came to visit from Texas. Because of her age, it was not convenient for her to attend my church in Chinatown. With the invitation of my friend, we came to this church. My two children also attended Sunday school and grew up in this church. They are very blessed by God.

In 1983 Rev. Eson Tse and the congregation decided to buy a property for our own place of worship. In 1983, we raised enough amount of seed money to purchase a private house in Rego Park, which is now where our church is located. In the beginning, I found it inconvenient for me to attend church at this new location. Because of God's love, I have gotten used to it after a while. Then Rev. Tse announced his retirement, it caused a lot of uncertainty among our church members. God is faithful. With the assistance of Rev. Matthew Lui of the First Chinese Presbyterian Church, we were able to sustain our worship and arranged for guest preachers. For a short period of time, we had changed our worship hour from 11 AM to 1 PM. The elders and members have continued to work together faithfully.

We are grateful that God sent Rev. Peter Lam to this church to nurture us. We were fond of him. We shared good times together. However, Rev. Lam had to leave us for a permanent position in another church two years later. We were back to being a flock with no shepherd. In those days, God did not leave us. He sent other servantsto nurture us. I remembered a number of pastors who really cared for us. They are Rev. Hue, Rev. Wan, Captain Ricky Ki and Colonel Maureen Ki. In 1994, Rev. Alfred Chan took office as the minister for our church. We had a good time for a short while. However, he left suddenly for a church in California. We were lost again.

God is merciful. In 1997 He brought Mr. Ching Kwok Ho to us. Our church is lit up by his arrival. We are no longer disheartened. We are very thankful to God. With Mr. and Mrs. Ho's guidance in the past seven years, we have learned to serve each other. I am especially grateful to God for giving me opportunities to serve and grow in Him. It is very wonderful to be part of this church. May His name be glorified. Let us run toward the goal to receive His crown of righteousness.

Finally I like to pay tribute to our beloved sister Betty K.Y. Huang who is now in God's arms. I will always remember her good deeds. It is more blessed to give than to receive. Praise the Lord and may He bl~ss all of you!

STILL THE SAME


The year 1979 was a special year for me. Some of the many things that happened that year were:
  • It was the year I celebrated my 18th birthday, and now I was officially "an adult",
  • It was the year I graduated from the High School of Music and Art,
  • It was the year I moved from Manhattan to my then, new house in Woodhaven, Queens,
  • It was the year I attended this new church which we now call the Queens Chinese Presbyterian Church, and .:. It was the year I started teaching Sunday school for the first time in my life at this new church.
As I look back to 1979 and think of what has happened to me in 25 years; I realized so much has changed but so much, .. has not. This year:
  • I will be celebrating my 43rd birthday although sometimes I act like I'm still "18 years old", .:. I will be celebrating my 25th reunion of the High School of Music and Art in June,
  • I am still living in the same house in Woodhaven, Queens,
  • I am still attending the Queens Chinese Presbyterian Church, but with some added responsibilities these days, and
  • I am still teaching Sunday school at the church.
Of the things that has remained the same, what has given me the most joy is teaching Sunday school. It was, and still remains, a great opportunity for me to share with the children about the Bible and God. As I think back to those early years, many of them were non-Christians and for some, it was their first exposure to Christianity. Now I'm not claiming that I was a great teacher, but I hoped that in the 25 years of teaching, I have at least planted a seed for others to nourish their faith.

I was not much older, and even younger, than some of my Sunday school kids are now when I began teaching in 1979, but what I tried to teach and share with them were some of my knowledge having grown up in the church as a child. How have I done in these 25 years? Only time will tell. But for each and every one of those kids who have gone before and vJho are with me now, I wish them all well an:d hope they are continuing to strengthen their faith in their own way. I also want to thank them for allowing me to teach them.

As we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the founding of the Queens Chinese Presbyterian Church of New York, so much of our church h~s changed that I can't even begin to list them all in this article, but for me so much is ... STILL THE SAME. Amen.
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