Friday, 21 January 2011

A Change of Scenery

I am not in the habit of posting about personal matters, but this one is of sufficient moment to warrant a post, I think.

As readers of this blog would be aware, I have planned for a while to spend a couple of weeks in China. Some of my thinking and reading (and, consequently, blogging) has reflected this. In fact I am to leave this coming Monday. But there has been something of a change of plans.

Suffice to say, without going into unnecessary details, instead of a couple of weeks it now looks like I am going to be in China for a year, and possibly longer. Due to various market forces and governmental immigration policies, my present job's days have become numbered. I have (albeit with some reluctance) therefore decided to abandon ship and leap across to a more seaworthy vessel. From February 21, then, I shall be an employee of the Hubei University of Chinese Medicine (湖北中医药大学) in Wuhan. There I shall teach English, as I have been doing hitherto, but in a decidedly different environment.

Naturally, I will continue to blog, and there will be no end of interesting details and incidents to report. But I shall also have to be careful, especially when it comes to religious matters, and most especially Chinese religious matters. There are no spiders watching over the web here in Australia, but that is not the case yonder. So expect at least some level of self-censorship in future, at least for the time being.

I humbly petition all of you who read this blog to keep me in your prayers in the days to come.


Stella Oriens said...

It seems, in a way, you'll be getting your eremitical wish after all!

GAB said...

In a way. At least until I can get my Chinese up to an acceptable level.

Mattias said...

GAB i will pray for you.Can I ask is there an official catholic church in Wuhan where you can worship,for to worship in a unoffical one would place you and they at risk. The name rings a bell,as in it being a centre of Missionary activity associated with Hudson Taylor perhaps? The organisation EVERGREEN may be able to assist you,as they will only work with official churches.
If you get to Harbin in NE China,you may like to know that the first members of Australia's Russian Catholic church came form that city.
Is there a Mrs GAB going along as well??

Matthias said...

Hey GAB have you come across some Catholics who are anti semtic?? I have just had a"run in" over at cardinal pole's blog,and frankly I hope that this is not indicative of the Traditional catholic scene

GAB said...

There is an official Catholic church in the city, but I don't know very much about it. I have been looking into that side of things, but information seems quite thin on the ground. I do know that there were two French missionaries who were martyred there around the turn of the nineteenth century, but I know nothing else about them. I wasn't aware of a connection with Hudson Taylor, but that bears looking into as well. I'll see what I can find out. Mostly it looks like I'll have to wait till I get there to get a real idea of the state of things.

Evergreen, alas, is only active in Shanxi Province. I'll be in Hubei, a good bit farther south (and a lot farther south than Harbin!- interesting about the Russian connection).

And no Mrs GAB. :)

Re the anti-semitism you mention, I have met that tendency among a small proportion of traditionalist-leaning Catholics. I'm not sure why it should be traditionalists who are more prone to such prejudices (I can't see any connection between the two myself), but I would call it a fringe thing rather than mainstream.

rangoon88 said...

I was talking to a friend at my Bible study group's last event-the leaders are going on to run the church youth group,and this is a good opportunity for me to join the RCC via the local CCR group- and he has been to Wuhan ,and thought that there may have been a Hudson taylor connection,however he also said it was a nice city.
Oh you may come back with a MrsGAB

GAB said...

Well, anything's possible.

I still haven't found a Hudson Taylor connection to Wuhan. He seems to have been mostly based at Changsha and Ningbo, which are in different provinces (Hunan and Zhejiang respectively). On the other hand, he did travel pretty widely, so it's perfectly possible he passed through at some point and set up a CIM post.

On a completely different note, Rangoon, your use of 'however' is very interesting.

Rangoon88 said...

"However was meant to be a comma and Rangoon was an error it was i matthias. I was distracted at the time and was remembering that rangoon was where my Anglo-Burmese grandmother was born in the year of Our Lord 1888,whilst her daughter-My dear old Mum- was born in Shanghai

Matthias said...

Now it is making fun of me this blog sign in