有家有福,来到家福,人人得福 – 刘志勇

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「家福」小组成立于本世纪初,虽然没有刻意强调其服务的对象,但毫 无疑问地实现了它的初衷和使命,那就是成为来自于中国大陆兄弟姐妹 和慕道友们热爱的团契。不难想象,漂泊海外的游子们都渴望能与文化 背景相似的同胞们互求心灵慰藉,共建精神家园。当初也正是看到了这 样的需求随着教会中大陆人数的日益增长越来越迫切,段雷和朱瑞军两 个家庭在教会领袖们的支持和指导下成立了家福,黄天赐长老是当时的 辅导。

家福早期成员大多拥有高学历并从事高科技工作。这群知识分子喜欢逻 辑思辨的特点,加上来美前接触圣经和基督教的机会很有限,使得给他 们传道,让他们信耶稣的工作格外困难。但是上帝有他奇妙的作为,这 些看来是阻碍的因素在日后却成了宝贵的优势。

家福这么多年来一直在不断地变化,更新。2005年黄天赐长老蒙召成 为伯克利加大中华归主教会的牧师后,洪海文弟兄接任组长。随着人数 的不断增长,团契聚会的地点也改在教会进行。海文在任期间带领家福 与别的教会有很多交通,尤其是蒙特利的华人教会。这些活动对组内兄 弟姐妹视野的开阔和灵命的增长都非常有帮助。

在2008年,海文弟兄,也是我们教会最近三位新增长老之一,把家福 组长的接力棒传到张雪玲姐妹手中。事实上要论背景,黄天赐和洪海文 二位长老都不算是大陆“土生土长”的。而雪玲姐妹的经历似乎更突 显这个团契的大陆渊源。她凭着丰富的人脉,接任后不久便让家福成员 在数量上又一次得到飞跃。除了传统意义上的知识分子外,更多不同背 景,不同职业的兄弟姐妹和慕道友们加入了这个大家庭,他们也通过雪 玲姐妹的辛勤付出看到了主的爱。

从2012年起,家福又有了一位新组长黄江弟兄。他理性的领导风格给 团契的多元化发展注入了新能量。在黄江组长的很多创新举措中,最引 人注目的是每月一次的见证会。大家通过分享自己蒙受主恩的亲生经历 增进彼此交通,荣耀主的大能。黄江组长也带领家福大力支持AWANA 的事工。

十多年来,家福一步步走向成熟。虽然期间的道路曲折艰辛,上帝的祝 福和爱却一路看顾弟兄姐妹走过最困难的时刻。家福的成长不仅归功于 众多积极的参与者,也得福于教会领袖的扶持和灵命深厚的新老组员们 的不倦耕耘。魏一恒长老十几年来一直参加并指导家福的团契,使大家 受益匪浅。老组员中的林德成弟兄和世祖咏梅夫妇多年在家福侍奉,都 已成长为教会的执事;新加入的寿鸿丽金夫妇也迅速成为教会和组里的 骨干。基于它服务群体的特点,家福和别的团契相比在人员结构上无疑 是变化最多最快的,但其重大深远的意义和影响力也正在于此。多年来 从家福组走出的众多弟兄姐妹们,将追求真理,荣耀神的精神传播到湾 区, 全美,乃至世界各地。

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Jia Fu Fellowship

Zhi-Yong Liu

Ever since the inception of the Jia Fu Fellowship at the start of the millenium, it has been living up to its vision and reputation as serv – ing brothers and sisters and religious investigators from Mainland China, all without making much explicit effort to do so. This birdsof-a-feather effect is probably true with many other Chinese church – es, and the importance of association with similar backgrounds is almost impossible to slight. Indeed, the founding members, albeit all having departed from the group at various times and for various reasons, aimed to fill a gap increasingly felt at the time as a result of the ever growing presence of Mainlanders at CFCCSJ. Under the tutelage and guidance from the governing body of the church, the Duan Lei and Raymond Chu families initiated a gathering that was later to be led by the then church elder Wilson Hwang.

The earliest membership of Jia Fu was strongly characterized by high degrees and high-tech professionals. People with these profiles tend to have elaborate logical thinking, and their previous exposure to the Bible and Christianity is very limited prior to their coming to the U.S. Consequently, challenges of missionary work would rise to an all new level, but again God works in miraculous ways. What appears to be obstacles have been used to the advantages over the years.

Things have changed in Jia Fu over time. In reality, Jia Fu is hardly what it used to look like in its earliest years. In 2005, Raymond Hung took over the lead from Elder Hwang, who was soon ordained as pastor at CFC Berkeley, and since then gatherings have been largely at church to accommodate the rapidly growing membership. During his stint, Raymond was instrumental in leading Jia Fu to step out of our home church and there were constant contacts with out – side churches, most notably the Monterey Chinese Church. This broadened the views of the group members and helped the growth of our spiritual life.

In 2008, Raymond stepped down to pass the baton to Zhang Xuel – ing, in preparation for his own ordainment as one of the three addi – tions to the elders body. Neither Wilson nor Raymond has exactly the same background as the defining characterization of the Fellow – ship, as neither of them have grown up in the present-day Mainland China for lengthy periods of time, and Xueling’s appointment signi – fied the true identification of Jia Fu. The new leader wasted no time expanding the group with the aid of her vastly established social network among Mainlanders. Moreover, Jia Fu has since evolved into a family in Jesus Christ not only for intellectuals but for people from all walks of life. Combining her enthusiasm with sentimental – ity, Xueling extended the love that is the embodiment of our Lord to warm the hearts of many Christians and non-Christians alike.

In 2012, Jia Fu had yet another new leader, John Huang, who remains in post to date. John brings with him a sense of rationalism to the management of Jia Fu, which adds a new dimension to the diversity and dynamism of the Fellowship. Among many other innovative activities is the sharing of testimonies by Jia Fu members, through which God’s Grace is being highlighted in everyone’s life and the Fellowship is strengthened. In addition, John has been the driving force propelling Jiafu’s support for AWANA.

Throughout the past decade, Jia Fu has matured tremendously, but the road has been everything but smooth. Nevertheless, with God’s unfathomable blessings and love, brothers and sisters have managed to see through even the most difficult times. In the course, the Fellowship has been graced not only by frequent attendances of the pastor and church elders and veterans but also by incoming members with inspired Christian spirituality many of whom come directly from Mainland China. Specifically, Elder Wei Yi-hen has been actively participating in our Fellowship, from leading Bible studies to answering questions, and Brother Larry Lin has also lent helping hands in every step of our growth. Furthermore, God works wonders in Jia Fu and we take great pride in recognizing brothers and sisters who have been playing important roles church-wide, such as Li Shizu, Chen Yongmei, Tang Shouhong and Shi Lijin. Their contributions to glorify God are good examples for the rest of us. Although Jia Fu experiences arguably the most dynamic membership amongst all Church fellowships, the influences left behind should not be overlooked, and in turn it has been able to reach out far into the Chinese community that never ceases to seek the Truths, in the Bay Area and beyond.