Posts Tagged ‘Jonathan Tran’

Report on the Asian American Symposium at Fuller Seminary: Young Lee Hertig

November 23, 2009 1 comment

November 16, 2009
Apologies to Young Lee Hertig for the delay in posting this report… Tim Tseng

The Inaugural AAES Epiphany
By Young Lee Hertig, Director of ISAAC-SoCal/AAWOL (Asian American Women On Leadership)

The dream of gathering one of the most scattered group, Asian American Christian leaders, came true when the inaugural Asian American Equipping Symposium kicked off on November 2-3 at Fuller Theological Seminary.  Initial idea came from ISAAC’S Executive Director, Timothy Tseng, who began lectureship circuits in Northern California with various Universities.  In implementing the vision, as fellow African American pastors would say, “When you don’t have teeth to chew, gum it” relying on daily divine whispers and riding along the whimsical wind of the Spirit.

The first whisper in implementing the dream came through a meeting with Howard Loewen, Dean of School of Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary.  When the Dean announced his fall Sabbatical, the new partnership emerged with Fuller’s Office of Alumni/ae and Church Relations turned  dream possible.  Tirelessly everyone in Mary Hubbard Given’s office devoted their time to the details of the two-day event—lecture, panel, breakout session, banquet, and luncheon.

The Program Highlights

The keynote speaker, Dr. Jonathan Tran, an Assistant Professor of Christian Ethics,  framed the lectures of the past and future of Asian American churches with “both and” paradigm, not “either or.”  It was the right frame to contain multiple facets of bridging the inaugural AAES aimed.  Bridging both theologies with the Asian American churches, the past with the future, and diverse intra Asian American ethnic groups, Tran walked us through the interpretive path that was so rich in its contents and candor in delivery.  Participants were captivated by vivid biblical narratives resonant with Asian American journeys.  The panel responses on Monday included three school faculty and Asian American pastors: Jehu J. Hanciles, Mark Lau Branson, Miyoung Yoon Hammer, Ken Fong, and Michael Lee.   We are so grateful for panelists taking their busy time off to deliver their insights.

Monday evening was the Asian American Leadership Banquet  and 160 people filled the room, Payton 101 at Fuller Theological Seminary.  At the 11th hour, the Women of Four (Mary Hubbard Given, Bert Jacklitch, Bonnie Stevens, and Young Lee Hertig) decided to change the banquet venue from the Rose Tournament House to Payton 101 to accommodate everyone who wanted to come to the banquet.  We apologize for those who didn’t have time to check the last minute email sent out when we changed the venue for the banquet.  At the banquet, President Rich Mouw almost turned his keynote address, Theological Imagination With Asian American Churches” in interpretive dance after Ashley Thaxton’s liturgical dance to the song, “In This Very Room,” sung by Debra Williams.  We almost believed that he might since Mrs. Phyllis Mouw was present

On Tuesday Tran covered why Asian American Churches are the Future.  The panelists were Charlene Jin Lee, Timothy Tseng, Charles Lee, Melanie Mar Chow, and Benjamin Shin.   Gender issues in Asian American Churches, addressed by Charlene Jin Lee, in particular captivated everyone.  Tran continued dialogue by email exchanges with Jin Lee even after his return to Texas.

The breakout sessions with Jonathan Wu and Melanie Mar Chow’s leadership, were divided into four To let you know, we will have four topics for discussion and strategic thinking:
1.  The future of AA pastoral leadership
2.  The future of AA women in ministry
3.  The future of the intergenerational AA church
4.  The future of theological formation in AA churches

Jonathan and Melanie expressed their appreciation of the deep level of engagement and learning happening in all of the groups as Jonathan Tran and the panelists paved the way for some serious interactions in our breakout groups.  We are grateful to you all for navigating the direction toward constructive conversations and substantive outcomes.  We deeply appreciate participants recommendations with the clarity to keep traction and momentum going forward.

Last but not the least, the inaugural AAES was possible through sponsorships of local churches, para-church organizations and friends.  ISAAC appreciates all of your financial support that made our collective dreaming possible.

Asian American Equipping Symposium at Fuller Theological Seminary (Nov. 2-3, 2009)

September 30, 2009 4 comments



Some highlights from Dr. Young Lee Hertig (scroll down to view updated schedule)

October 22, 2009

Dear Participants,

We are so excited about your participation in the first Asian American Equipping Symposium co-sponsored by Fuller Theological Seminary and ISAAC (Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity) on November 2-3, 2009.  On Monday November 2, onsite registration will start at 1:00pm just outside of Payton 101 at Fuller.  On Tuesday, we will meet at the University Club on campus.

Let me share with you some highlights of the AA Equipping Symposium:

1)    Dr. Jonathan Tran will offer us inspiring lectures on both challenges and hopes of Asian American Christianity which will generate wider discourse both in Academia and Asian American churches.

2)    Panelists will be followed by Dr. Tran’s lecture interacting with the themes covered in his lecture.  The panelists include faculty from Fuller’s three schools and local Asian American Pastors.  On Monday the panelists include Dr. Jehu J. Hanciles (School of Intercultural Studies), Rev Dr. Mark Lau Branson (School of Theology), Dr. Miyoung Yoon Hammer (School of Psychology), Rev Dr. Kenneth Fong (Evergreen Baptist Church LA), Rev Dr. Michael Lee (YoungNak Celebration Church).  On Tuesday the panelists include Dr. Charlene Jin Lee (Faculty at SFTS), Rev. Dr. Timothy Tseng (Executive Director of ISAAC), Rev. Melanie Mar Chow (USC Campus Pastor for JEMS), Rev Benjamin Shin (Talbot Seminary, and EM Pastor of Open Door Church), Rev. Charles Lee (the lead cultural catalyst and pastor for New Hope South Bay Church and Los Angeles).

3)    At the Monday night banquet, President Richard J. Mouw will address a keynote speech on “Theological Imagining With Asian American Churches.”  Also Drs. Se Yoon Kim and Yea Sun Kim will be awarded the “Asian American Scholarship/Leadership Legacy Award.

4)    There will be special music and liturgical dance at the banquet (Ashley Thaxton and Noah Lau Branson, and Debra Williams)

5)    Closing Worship will take place on Tuesday at 2:15 with a Charge from President Richard J. Mouw.

6)    There will be a Business meeting at 3:00pm on Tuesday, November 3 for those who want to collaborate with next year’s Summer Equipping Program and the second annual Asian American Equipping Symposium in the fall of 2010.

In God’s grace,

Rev Young Lee Hertig, PhD

Director of ISAAC-SoCal and AAWOL (Asian American Women On Leadership)


This year’s symposium, “Living Out the Gospel,” will address continuity and change in the on-going development of Asian American church ministries. It will specifically question the difficult and often painful relationship between innovation and faithfulness in the lives of Asian Americans and Asian American churches. What reconciliation is possible between generations that define themselves by, on the one hand, immigration, tradition, and family, and on the other hand, individualism and autonomy, integration, and friendship by internet? If newly emerging Asian American churches remain loyal to their first-generation predecessors, will they be able to continue to move forward? What are Asian Americans sacrificing by leaving behind their mother churches and striking out on their own? What will “the Gospel” look like within the “living” context of changing Asian American identities, problems, and dreams? Richly theological and deeply personal, this year’s symposium will prove to be constructive.

This year’s lecturer will be Dr. Jonathan Tran (PhD Duke University) who is assistant professor of theological ethics in the Department of Religion at Baylor University, one of the largest Christian universities in the world. A former ministry practitioner with Asian American churches and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, he is author Faith on the Edge (IVP, 1999), The Vietnam War and Theologies of Memory: Time and Eternity in the Far Country (Blackwell, Fall 2009) and Theology and Foucault (T & T Clark International, Fall 2010). Emigrated from Vietnam at an early age, Dr. Tran’s journey into Christianity has been coupled with an ethnic awakening that has thoroughly influenced his theological life.

2009 Symposium Schedule


1:00 pm   Registration

1:30   Introduction and Announcements (Young Lee Hertig and Mary Given)

1:35   Welcoming address by the President Richard J. Mouw

1:45   Dr. Jonathan Tran, lecture 1: “Why Asian American Christianity has no future: The Over Against, Leaving Behind, and Separation from of Asian American Christian Identity”

2:45   Break

3:15   Panel & Q&A

4:15   Break out session

6:00   Banquet at the Tournament of Roses House/Wrigley Mansion

Banquet Schedule­

6:00   Reception at the Tournament of Roses House
6:30   Congregational Songs led by Fuller Asian American Worship Team (Elisa Oh, Elliot Chung, and Rebekah Chang)
6:40   Welcome & Announcements: Young Lee Hertig and Mary Hubbard Given
6:50  Invocation by Rev Dr. Heemin Park
6:55   Dinner
7:30   AA Scholarship/Leadership Legacy Award to Drs. Se Yoon Kim & Yea Sun Kim (Presented by President Richard J. Mouw)
7:35   Dr. Se Yoon Kim’s Response
7:40   Inspirational music and liturgical dance, “In This Very Room” (Ashley Thanxton, Noah Lau Branson, Debra Williams)
7:45   Keynote address, Dr. Richard J. Mouw, President, Fuller Theological Seminary: “Theological Imagining with Asian American Churches”
8:00   Introduction to Lecture II “Asian American Church as Future” (Dr. Jonathan Tran)
8:20   Words of Encouragement & Benediction (Bishop Steven Leung)
8:30   Inspiration music: Ashley Thanxton, Debra Williams, Noah Lau Branson


9:00 am   Dr. Jonathan Tran, Lecture II: “Why Asian American Christianity is the future: Holding it together in Yellow Christianity”

10:00   Break

10:15   Panel & Q & A

11:15   Break

11:30   Breakout session

12:30    Lunch

1:45p    Break out session plenary

2:15p    Closing worship led by (Angel Wu,  Dave Yu, Hannah Lee)

2:15    Congregational songs led by Asian American Worship Team

2:25     Charge by President Richard J. Mouw

2:40    Congregational response

2:45     Announcement and Benediction

2:55    Closing Hymn

3:00    Business meeting (open to all who would like to support ISAAC So. Cal.’s future programs)

Online Registration: CLICK HERE

The Symposium

The Asian American Christianity Symposium has been established in order to address the unique challenges facing Asian American Christians and churches in all their generational, cultural, and theological differences. Co-sponsored by the Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity (ISAAC), the Urban Initiative, Fuller Theological Seminary, and Fuller’s Office of Alumni/ae and Church Relations. Fuller Seminary serves the largest and most diverse Asian American population in the United States, the annual symposium will provide an invigorating series of lectures by leading Asian American voices in theology and ministry.

The Objectives of the Symposium

• To engage in conversation with Asian American theologians and practitioners.
• To investigate and invest in the complex relationships between Asian American Christians, Asian American churches, and predominantly white seminary education.
• To challenge and construct Asian American theologies for the church.