Shanghai Faithful : Betrayal and Forgiveness in a Chinese Christian Family
Overview - Within the next decade, China could be home to more Christians than any country in the world. Through the 150-year saga of a single family, this book vividly dramatizes the remarkable religious evolution of the world's most populous nation. Shanghai Faithful is both a touching family memoir and a chronicle of the astonishing spread of Christianity in China. Read more...
More About Shanghai Faithful by Jennifer Lin
Within the next decade, China could be home to more Christians than any country in the world. Through the 150-year saga of a single family, this book vividly dramatizes the remarkable religious evolution of the world's most populous nation. Shanghai Faithful is both a touching family memoir and a chronicle of the astonishing spread of Christianity in China. Five generations of the Lin family--buffeted by history's crosscurrents and personal strife--bring to life an epoch that is still unfolding. A compelling cast--a poor fisherman, a doctor who treated opium addicts, an Ivy League-educated priest, and the charismatic preacher Watchman Nee--sets the book in motion. Veteran journalist Jennifer Lin takes readers from remote nineteenth-century mission outposts to the thriving house churches and cathedrals of today's China. The Lin family--and the book's central figure, the Reverend Lin Pu-chi--offer witness to China's tumultuous past, up to and beyond the betrayals and madness of the Cultural Revolution, when the family's resolute faith led to years of suffering. Forgiveness and redemption bring the story full circle. With its sweep of history and the intimacy of long-hidden family stories, Shanghai Faithful offers a fresh look at Christianity in China--past, present, and future.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
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Lin, a former journalist, weaves the history of her familythrough success and persecution, family relationships and separationinto the wider history of 19th- and 20th-century China, with a focus on the role and influence of Christianity. She begins with the conversion of her Chinese great-great-grandfather to Christianity and traces his descendants through her grandfather, a minister educated in the United States, and her father, a Philadelphia-based doctor. Lins family story is unique, providing a view of recent and contemporary Chinese life that differs from the standard histories, and its emotionally compelling, particularly when she describes the years Lins father spent separated from his parents and siblings with little insight into their experiences of the Cultural Revolution and emigrating to the U.S. Lin writes with a novelists narrative flair and grace and a historians fine eye for detail, and as she sketches the personalities, dreams, and life circumstances of her relatives, her thorough research and compassion for her subjects are evident. Scholars and lay readers interested in China will enjoy this vital work. (Mar.)