Nanjing Union Theological Seminary Host “100th Birthday Party” for the Retired Honorary President Professor Chen Zemin
By Yi Yang, October 25, 2016 00:10 AM
On the morning of Oct 4, Nanjing Union Theological Seminary(NUTS) hosted "100th Birthday Party" for the retired Honorary President Professor Chen Zemin, which over 40 people attended, including relative national leaders, the national and provincial CCC , Amity Foundation, YMCA and Professor Chen's family.
According to the website of NUTS, this thanksgiving party was host by President Pastor Gao Feng, and prayer was led by Standing Vice President Pastor Chen Yilu. Deputy Director of State Administration for Religious Affairs, Chen Zongrong, made a speech on behalf of the United Front Department of CPC Central Committee, State Administration for Religious Affairs and its Director Wang Zuoan, giving Professor Chen warm congratulations on his 100th birthday, and highly commended his contribution to the theological education, Christian church music, theological construction of thoughts, personnel training and many other departments for China Church.
And to celebrate his contributions, Nanjing Union Theological Seminary specially published a book , which discusses around Professor Chen's theological theories.
Professor Chen is an old-timer Chinese church pastor and theologian, who used to be the Vice President of China Christian Association, Vice President of Nanjing Union Theological Seminary and recipient of a special allowance of the State Council in 2008.
Professor Chen was born in Shantou, Guangdong province in 1917; he graduated from the institution of higher learning Hujiang College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1941; then graduated from research department of Nanjing Seminary with a Bachelor of Theology degree in 1944; then received the doctor's degree in theology from the University of the Philippines in 1955. He began his teaching in NUTS from 1952, including systematic theology, historical theology, church music, and so on. He was the Dean and Vice President of Nanjing Seminary, also the Senior Pastor of St. Paul's Church in Nanjing.
Christianity runs 3 generations in Professor Chen's family, and growing up in a strongly faithful family has deeply influenced Professor Chen. His grandfather was one of the first preachers in Chaoshan area, Guangdong Province, and his mother wished that one of her kids would grow up to be a preacher. When he was young, by an odd chance Chen Zemin heard the fully spiritual preach by Dr. Song Shangjie, so he determined to become a preacher after graduating junior high. And according to Chen Ruoping, the son of Professor Chen, he was exposed to foreign missionaries at a very young age, and he volunteered to help them since primary school and junior high.
In 1950s, Prof. Chen brought up a new theological theory that theological thought is like an oval, with one focus as human, the other as God. When he was interviewed, he pointed out that the church should emphasize theological practice to fulfill the needs of believers and church itself, by which implements its basic functions. He also advocated "Reconciliation Theology".
Chen Zemin loves music too, so he created many popular hymns with the Chinese flavor, and he not only plays Chinese guqin music on zither but also plays western hymns on piano or pipe organ.
In 2007, his book was published, which collected his lifetime knowledge and fully expressed his Christian theology.
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