Missioner's Blog: Is There a Place for Diverse Voices in the One Church?

There are many voices in the world---and in the church---and none of them is without significance.

The core mission of Episcopal Asiamerica Ministry is listening and giving shape to the voices of diverse Asian communities. Whether it be in planting new immigrant congregations, renewing older ones, recruiting-advocating-training Asian leadership or connecting Asian peoples with ministry resources, the goal is to help the Church become ‘a diamond with many facets.’

Ethnic ministry is hard and sometimes lonely. Aside from pastoral roles, ethnic clergy often serve as immigrant advocates, employment agents and cultural advisers of their constituencies. Many ethnic and new immigrant clergy work overtime in often-hostile environments with less than full time pay.

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Asians and colleagues from other cultures joined the Symposium on Asian American Christianity held last May 1, 2010 at St. George Episcopal Church in Flushing, New York. Speakers Russell Moy and Andrew Lee engaged the participants in a lively discussion on the history, theology and vision of ministry among 1.5 and second generation Asian Americans.

Jointly Sponsored by the EAM and the Pacific Asian American Canadian Christina Education (PAACCE), the symposium promoted a new resource, “Asian American Christianity Reader” edited by Viji Nakka-Cammauf and Timothy Tseng and published by the Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity (ISAAC). As a result of this Symposium, the EAM, PAACCE and ISAAC will be collaborating in producing a “Primer for Asian American Ministry.”


The Episcopal Asiamerica Ministry Commission of the Diocese of Long Island is planning a diocesan-wide Asian Festival on October 2, 2010 at the Cathedral of the Incarnation, Garden City, New York. The festival will include a multicultural worship, ethnic foods, cultural exhibits and educational opportunities showcasing Asian congregations. The convener is the Rev. Joseph Pae and the Asian clergy leaders include: Dario Palasi, Kris Lee, Peter Lai, Peter Lam, Vivian Lam, Anandsekar J. Manuel, Debbie Low-Skinner, Paul Xie, Christopher Sigamoney and Fred Vergara.


Catholicity and Brief History of the Episcopal Church in the Philippines is the amazing story of the Episcopal mission in the Philippines which began from the marginalized Igorot tribes in the Cordillera Mountains and matured into an integral part of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. As the newest and youngest Province in the worldwide Anglican Communion, the ECP story is an incredible journey to self-reliance, self-government and self-propagation.

In the Foreword, the Most Rev. Edward Malecdan, prime bishop of the ECP wrote, ”This work is one of the very few historical studies on the ECP and therefore makes a giant contribution to the eventual writing of a “complete” History of the Episcopal Church---a challenge that could not be ignored.”

For a free copy, order directly from Episcopal Books and Resources or email wvergara@episcopalchurch.org.


New York Queens district, one of the most ethnically diverse neighborhoods in the world was the site of a “pan Asian concert” last April 10, 2010. Held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in the city of Woodside, the event draw people from Indian, Indonesian, Filipino, Chinese, Korean, English, Latino backgrounds. Dancers from South Asia and singers from Philippines and Indonesia joined in an evening of music and dance reminding one of “American idol” and “Dancing with the Stars.” The event was organized by St. Paul’s multi-ethnic team led by Anandsekar J. Manuel.



Twenty years ago, as I look back, I was wearing my “rose colored glasses.” I had a wonderful husband; beautiful healthy children and we had just bought our home. Life couldn’t get any better. But then, again, as I look back, it was time to remove my glasses.

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On Saturday, June 5, 2010, there will be a service of thanksgiving and celebration at Christ Episcopal Church in Alameda, California to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of the Rev. Dr. Fran Toy, the first Asian American female Episcopal Priest in The Episcopal Church.

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May 20-22, 2010, Seattle, WA
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EAM Southeast Asia Convocation


June 25-27, 2010, St. Paul, MN
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EAM Korean Convocation


July 5-8, 2010, Chicago, IL
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EAM Filipino Convocation


July 16-18, 2010, San Diego, CA
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EAM South Asian Convocation


Date and Location TBD
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EAM Combined Leaders Gathering


October 27-30, 2010, Los Angeles, CA
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