Christ's College Makes a Difference in Taiwan

By Romana White, Jun 30, 2014
Making a difference——it’s part of Christ’s College’s DNA. It’s a story repeated again and again through CC alumni around the world. 

For ’79 graduate Bai Guang-sheng the story began with the Bunan aborigines on the banks of the Luming River in southeast Taiwan. As a young man, Bai longed to help his people. But he was a self-described “nobody.” Crippled since childhood by polio, he sought to become a school teacher. After eight weeks in college, Bai was dismissed. “Why is a handicapped person allowed this training?” the dean asked. Society shows little sympathy for those who are different, he learned. Heartbroken, he returned home.

Other disappointments followed—rejection for a government job he had pursued for three years being the most difficult. “That hurt my heart even more,” Bai said. “Don’t make me study again,” he told his mother. “I would rather stay here and be a farmer with my father.”

Touched by kindness
Then the young Bunan tribesman learned of MTW’s Christ’s College, a Christian liberal arts school in Taipei. “I gave my heart to the Lord. I wanted to study at Christ’s College,” he said. Despite his fears of failure, Bai completed his entrance exam and entered Christ’s College in the fall of ’75. “People loved me and accepted me,” Bai said. “Their attitudes were warm to me. They touched my heart.”

The freshman met the revered educator Dr. James Graham, son of Presbyterian missionaries in China, brilliant linguist, and college founder. The two could have not been more different, except for their love of people. Dr. Graham, then in his late 70s, began to disciple the young Bunan student until Bai’s graduation in 1979.

Back home with a vision
After seminary, seeing the desperation of the uneducated and unemployed of his village, many who were alcoholics, Bai knew he must return home. He prayed, “Lord, send me as a pastor to the Bunan tribe.” He would also teach them to work. “You have to take action,” Bai said. More importantly he would teach them God’s Word and shepherd His people.

Three years later in his native village, Bai—who was himself marginalized in his attempts to study and make a living—established the Bunan Cultural and Educational Foundation, an organization and farm employing almost 100 workers. His vision was being realized. Today visitors from all parts of the island come to learn about the culture of indigenous people as they tour the organic farm.

For almost 30 years, Pastor Bai has shown his people how to support themselves. He has provided education for many. He has shown them how to live. Pastor Bai, Christ’s College alumnus, is making a difference.

Ramona White is an MTW second-career intern serving with Christ’s College in Taiwan.

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