Page 13 - PC_Fall2020
P. 13
FALL 2020
To Canada with Love, from Taiwan
  By International Ministries
“Carry each other’s burdens, and you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Ga- latians 6:2).
March 20 was a special day for The Presbyterian Church in Canada. In- ternational Ministries received an unexpected offer of support from the Acting General Secretary of the Pres- byterian Church in Taiwan (PCT), the Rev. Chhoa Lam-Sin. Knowing that the COVID-19 pandemic was caus- ing havoc among their many church partners worldwide, the Rev. Chhoa offered prayers for our safety and health.
Taiwan had experienced the pan- demic, but it was exceptionally well- contained and monitored by the Tai- wanese government and the Centre for Disease Control (CDC). As of July 2020, only seven deaths had been recorded in Taiwan as a result of COVID-19.
Feeling extremely blessed and finding it hard to imagine the impact COVID-19 was having among church friends around the world, and while they continued a “fairly routine sched- ule,” the PCT explored ways for their church to offer encouragement and concrete suppor t. They reached out to their historic par tners, The Presby- terian Church in Canada, the United Reformed Church, the Church of Scotland and the Church of Wales; the latter three being in the United King- dom.
In consultation with their Church and Society Committee, they asked how they could support their global partners and respond to the COV- ID-19 global pandemic. In Taiwan, the PCT has close ties with mission hos- pitals. In Taipei, the Mackay Memorial Hospital is named after the first Cana- dian missionary in the north, the Rev. George Leslie Mackay, who arrived in 1871. The hospital is one of the larg- est medical centres in Taiwan today. It was difficult for them to understand how it is that the PCC does not admin- ister any care homes or hospitals.
The PCT then asked if there was a PCC mission where the participants were directly affected by the pandem- ic. Two missions were considered, and the PCT graciously supported both with “love gifts.”
Evangel Hall Mission in Toronto, Ont., has been serving individuals experiencing homelessness, pov- erty, and mental and physical health challenges in downtown Toronto
since 1913. When the number of COVID-19 cases started to rise in Toronto in March, and the govern- ment began implementing closures, quarantine and isolation measures, Evangel Hall Mission faced some dif- ficult decisions. They provide essen- tial services to Toronto’s homeless, but when confronted with a shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), they had to scramble to figure out how to keep services going with- out putting clients and staff at risk. After a brief pause, they started rein- troducing services. But without PPE, there were limitations as to what could be done. Even though they could not safely receive guests into their space, they served take-away food at the door. Concern grew as To- ronto’s hot summer weather arrived, but with the arrival of many boxes of PPE supplies from Taiwan, plans began to reopen their space safely. Evangel Hall Mission is thrilled with the support from the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan, as it has enabled them to provide all staff and guests with the PPE, keeping everyone safe. These gifts have been a blessing.
Anamiewigummig (Kenora) Fellow- ship Centre also received a love gift, helping them provide healthy meals for people facing food insecurity, a safe space to gather in community and a shelter for people to cool off during an intense heat wave, reducing
the risk of heat stroke and dehydra- tion. The Centre was a safe place to offer food and shelter during this dif- ficult pandemic. The gift was greatly appreciated; an example of two com- munities separated by 10,000 km, helping to suppor t and care for each other’s needs.
The gifts from the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan were accompanied by many boxes of PPE, including iso- lation gowns and fabric disposable face masks, shipped from Taiwan to Canada. Edward Chung, co-chair of the Canadian Mackay Commit- tee, shared the news that 150,000 surgical masks were donated by the Mackay Memorial Hospital to be distributed to Mackay’s hometown in Oxford County, the Scarborough Health Network, the PCC national of- fice and other medical facilities related to former PCC missionaries in Guelph, Owen Sound and Cobourg.
Louise Gamble, PCC mission staff in Taiwan, is completing her work on the PCC mission records in Tai- wan. The students at TamKang High School—where she lives—collected 6,000 face masks for distribution in Canada. These students were creative in finding so many masks! Mackay Memorial Hospital held a donation ceremony in Taipei on June 18, before shipping their gifts to Canada.
In Taiwan, it was not only the church that expressed the need to
respond and suppor t global par tners. President Tsai Ing-wen publicly ex- pressed that out of humanitarian con- cern, Taiwan could not stand by while countries were in need of help. Under her leadership, Taiwan sent medical supplies and millions of face masks to 80 countries worldwide.
The Presbyterian Church in Canada has celebrated the long-standing rela-
tionship with the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan for more than a century. But this outpouring of prayers, empathy and suppor t is especially appreciated. The PCT has truly responded to the Apostle Paul’s call to share the bur- dens of this time, and we give thanks for their friendship and the faith we share in Jesus Christ. We praise God for these blessings!
 (Left to right): Y-S Columbus Leo, the Rev. Glynis Williams, the Rev. Luis Liang, the Rev. Ian Ross-McDonald, the Rev. Dr. Beth McCutcheon, Edward Chung.

   11   12   13   14   15