The K. H. Ting Story
Jia Ma and Suyun Liao
K. H. Ting (1915–2012) was an important Christian leader and theologian in China. Indeed, since the late-1970s, he has been seen as the spokesperson for Christianity in China. Many stories surround his life, but it is sometimes unclear which ones are true, making him a mysterious figure.
K. H. Ting became the principal of Jinling Theological Seminary in 1952 and remained in this position until his death, making him the longest-standing principal of any theological seminary in the world. He experienced many difficult times in his 97 years, and in any ways the history of Christianity in China is reflected through the ups and downs he experienced. In Incorruptible Love: The Story of K. H. Ting, the authors offer Christians, as well as people of other spiritual beliefs, intellectuals, and the general public, a greater understanding of K. H. Ting’s life and beliefs. This biography will help people learn not only about K. H. Ting, but also about the fundamentals of Chinese Christianity.
Written in a blend of creative and academic writing styles, Incorruptible Love makes the story of K. H. Ting vivid and convincing. This text can be used in courses on Christianity in China, the Chinese Church, religion in China, and modern Chinese history.
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- New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, 2018. VIII, 302 pp.
- About the author(s)/editor(s)
- About the book
- This eBook can be cited
- Table of Contents
- Chapter 1. The Wind Blows When It Chooses
- Part 1: Where the Story Begins: Interviews with K. H. Ting
- Part 2: An Upright Man’s Compassion: Rejoicing in Truth
- Chapter 2. New Legend of a Good Christian—K. H. Ting’s Early Life and Career in Shanghai
- Part 1: Life at St. John’s University: Development of Spiritual Beliefs
- Part 2: Assuming Elijah’s Mantle: Work Experience After Graduation
- Part 3: Stronger than David’s Lyre: Influence of a Courageous Churchman
- Chapter 3. Discerning Truth through a Long Journey Abroad
- Part 1: Toronto: Signs of Leadership
- Part 2: New York: Development of Theological and Personal Ideals
- Part 3: Geneva: Preparations for Returning to China
- Chapter 4. At the Nanjing Union Theological Seminary (NJUTS): 1952–1965
- Part 1: An Emerging Leader
- Part 2: Seeking Christian Common Ground
- Part 3: Moving Forward with Caution
- Part 4: Struggling under Job’s Question
- Chapter 5. Looking Back: The Time of GCR
- Part 1: Who Protected K. H. Ting?
- Part 2: Together, Though Far Apart
- Part 3: No Longer Strangers to Revolution
- Chapter 6. At the Nanjing Union Theological Seminary (NJUTS): After 1980
- Part 1: Return to No. 17: Events Before and After the School’s Reopening
- Part 2: Saturday Lectures: The Teaching Method of K. H. Ting
- Part 3: Attention to Warmth and Love: Ting’s Management System
- Part 4: Carrying Back the Olive Branch: NJUTS’ Students Study Abroad
- Part 5: Peace of Mind in the Face of Disaster: Three Challenges for K. H. Ting
- Part 6: New Wine in a New Bottle: Beginning Again
- Part 7: Looking Towards the Future: The New NJUTS
- Chapter 7. As Diplomat and Spokesperson for Christianity in China
- Part 1: The Ladder to Heaven
- Part 2: On the International Stage
- Part 3: Always a Pleasure to Greet Friends from Afar
- Part 4: Christianity and Other Religions in China
- Chapter 8. The Amity Foundation
- Part 1: A Foundation without Funds?
- Part 2: “A Real Hermit Living in the Bustling Place”: The Special Location of the Amity
- Part 3: The Story of “Amity Bakery”
- Chapter 9. A Theologian Who Follows St. Paul
- Part 1: How to Understand the “Three-Self” Movement?
- Part 2: Who Said It’s Simply Two Sides of a Coin?
- Part 3: Modernist and Fundamentalist Christianity in China
- Chapter 10. A Theologian Who “Writes How I Want to Write”
- Part 1: The Role of “Cultural Christians”
- Part 2: Publications about Christianity and K. H. Ting’s Own Writings
- Part 3: Treasure in Clay Jars: Theological Reconstruction in China
- Part 4: Providing Only Key Points: K. H. Ting’s Theological Method
- Chapter 11. Life and Family
- Part 1: K. H. Ting’s Family: An Intellectual Family Tradition
- Part 2: K. H. Ting’s Wife, Kuo Siu May
- Part 3: K. H. Ting Stated: “I need time to relax!”
- Chapter 12. Love Never Ends
- Part 1: My Impression of K. H. Ting: A Philosopher and A Poet
- Part 2: Uncompromised Love
- 1. A Brief Chronology of K. H. Ting’s Life
- 2. Glossary of Terms in English and Chinese
- 3. Glossary of Chinese and English Names in the Text
Chapter 4. At the Nanjing Union Theological Seminary (NJUTS): 1952–1965
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AT THE NANJING UNION THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY (NJUTS)
Part 1: An Emerging Leader
In 1952, it took only three months to found NJUTS with the support of the government and TSPM, a government-sanctioned “patriotic” Christian organization, as they were eager to fine-tune the old theological seminary based on different sects and missionary societies. The Communist Party of China (CPC) had governed PRC for only three years and the so-called “War to Resist the U.S. Aggression and Aid Korea”1 broke out in 1950, while the communist government faced various challenges and believed it was threatened by the U.S. Army and United Nations Army on the border between Northeast China and North Korea. The government had to re-concentrate military forces and financial resources so as to reunite people in all walks of life, especially those who tended to affect the morale of the troops. Chinese Christianity, which came from the West, was regarded as “the opiate of the masses” by CPC while the communist government viewed Chinese Christianity as closely linked with the churches in the U.S. and U.K. that were leading representatives of imperialist powers. As the Chinese saying goes, “the lotus root breaks, the fibers still hold together”; the CPC government thought it was necessary to rectify the old China Christian Theological Seminaries as ← 67 | 68 → they were financially dependent on American and other western countries’ missionary societies, as well as their Christian theological thought.
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