Ethical Foundations for China Service

We have been involved actively in China ministry since 1996. We often tell people that those years have been some of the most exciting times for China, her government and her church. Just as we were actively getting involved, the Chinese government was beginning to wrestle with what place people of faith could have in Chinese society. That struggle continues today in modern China!

Significant changes abound in China today. The last 25 years have specifically been significant in regard to change. Most China analysts (this one included) could not, in 1996, have predicted such great change in areas of China’s economy, governance, religious affairs, international relations, and redistribution of rural populations to urban areas. Likewise, foreign involvement in China non-profit service has changed significantly in its approach and scope. Many of the other significant changes have led to a reevaluation of how Christian non-profit organizations serving in China do their projects and activities. Many non-profit leaders are still taking a look at the China they find themselves in and are revising the way their standard operating procedures work today.

In 2005-2006, we were s a part of a team of ministry leaders that wanted to reevaluate foreign involvement in China to maximize effectiveness. The result of our meetings was a statement paper that would guide foreign organizations serving in China and would be used to help the foreign Christian community make the most of their service in China.

Although a number of years have passed, We believe that these guidelines for China service are as applicable today as they were when first developed. The current edition of Ethical Foundations for China Service follows with additional insight into each point.

Our hope is that you may be able to apply these points in your own service in China, and use them as a guide to evaluating your service.