I went on a package tour to Hong Kong and Macao in mid-December. During the two-day trip, I got a passing glance at local churches and staff in the two places.
I summarized seven characteristics of the churches in Hong Kong and Macao after the visiting:
There were many churches that could be seen everywhere in some areas.
Churches were not hard to find in Hong Kong and Macao. They were common in local residential neighborhoods or downtown areas. Apart from megachurches, some of the local churches were small, ordinary, and located in residential districts.
Church schools were common.
I saw an elementary school and another middle school both run by the church in the same street. Situated less than 200 meters apart, they both had buildings and playgrounds in a city where land was precious.
The names of some church schools in Hong Kong and Macao contained the words "Chinese Christian". Others were named after the Bible and Christian denominations like Catholicism.
Churches could be publicly advertised.
Church billboards could be seen from the road in Hong Kong. It showed that Hong Kong and Macao held a tolerant attitude towards Christianity and guided it in a reasonable and legal way.
People share the gospel in public places in a cultured and orderly way.
You would never meet Christians who stuffed gospel tracts into your hands there. I saw some evangelists standing in downtown areas and there were simple iron bookshelf filled with Bibles and Christian material beside them. They talked courteously to anyone who wanted counsel, never dragging people aside.
At the Ruins of Macao St. Paul Church, Chinese and foreign workers received newcomers. If you wanted to take a picture of them, they would hold Bibles in their arms for the shot. In addition, Bibles were given out for free.
The content of evangelization was humanized.
Gospel tracts and booklets concerned inches of people's lives, like happy families and truth. However, some people spread the message in Mainland China that non-Christians should be cursed and that Christians would go to heaven, but unbelievers are destined for hell.
Church receptionists had high qualities.
I went to Rosary Catholic Church, which sits opposite the Hong Kong Museum of History. A church worker speaking Cantonese received me, but we couldn't understand each other. Then he found a worker speaking Mandarin to talk with me and warmly guided me in the church.
Church engaged in community charity services.
Some Christian community service centers had street frontages in Hong Kong and Macao. One of the centers was named "St. Jame's Settlement Urban Renewal Social Services Team".
- Translated by Karen Luo