Pastor Su Huaduo, who served the longest term of office in Kinmen Church history, was forced to separate from his family for decades due to the confrontation across the Taiwan Strait.
Pastor Su Huaduo was born with the name of Su Tiliu in 1887 in Shihou Village, Jiandu Township, Hua'an County, Zhangzhou City, Fujian Province. His father was from a poor family and had to quit school after first grade to do farm work. He then made a living selling plasters.
Pastor Su decided to study medicine under his father's influence and achieved great accomplishments after years of hard working. He encountered the Gospel when he was 12. He often volunteered at the church and was praised for it.
In 1905, at age 18, Su was recommended to Gulangyu Seminary by the church. He was there for six months with great results. After graduation, he worked 17 years in churches in Hua'an County, Anxi County of southern Fujian, Zhangping, Xiamen, and other areas. He met his wife Chen Meigui while preaching in Anxi and had two sons and four daughters.
Other than preaching, Su also worked as a doctor. Because he had noble medical ethics, he gave free medicine to poor families and help people with their problems. His kind gestures were praised by people.
The War of Liberation broke out shortly after World War II. The pastor at the time in Kinmen Church, He Yousan, retreated to southeast Asia, leaving the church without a shepherd.
On July 13, 1949, Pastor Su, 64, despite his family's opinion, followed the order of Southern Fujian Church and traveled by sea to take office in Kinmen. Only his wife accompanied him; his children and grandchildren all stayed in Xiandu, Hua'an. Su officially became a pastor in Kinmen Church.
However, three months later on October 16, Xiamen was liberated. The tension across the Taiwan Strait began and the relations between Xiamen and Kinmen were cut off. Southern Fujian Church could no longer pay Pastor Su. Life was very difficult for the couple.
Under the circumstance, Su worked hard and continued his work in Jinmen for 24 years. He was keen to help others, cared for public welfare, and defended the church's property.
He was very good at calligraphy. His writing on the wonderful faith is still preserved on the pillar of today's Kinmen Church.
By borrowing money from everywhere, he built the first Christian cemetery in Kinmen. He also bought land in Shanwai with others and turned a house fellowship into a church in 1968. This was a church that lasted the shortest time in Kinmen history.
Pastor Su Huaduo was called an "independent, self-supporting servant of God in Kinmen." Every year, believers from churches in Kinmen would visit their graves on Tomb Sweeping Festival to commemorate him.
The couple never fulfilled their wish of seeing their offspring. In August 1971, Mrs. Su died in Kinmen. In January 1973, Pastor Su passed away in Taipei due to illness. They're now buried together in Kinmen Christian Cemetery. 60 years later, Su's third daughter, Su Chunxi finally took their grandchildren from Hua'an to Kinmen in order to pay respects.
-Translated by Grace
Editor's note: Kinmen is an island associated with Taiwan, but is located only a few miles off the coast from the Mainland Chinese city of Xiamen.