‘For the Son of Man came to seek out and to save the lost.’ (Luke 19:10)
Take Melbourne as an example. Over 50% of those who live around Melbourne come from a non-English-speaking background. Over half of this population group communicate in either Mandarin or Cantonese. For those who live in Melbourne, over half of them use English as their first language. Other languages include Mandarin, Cantonese, Indonesian, Vietnamese and Korean. It is estimated that about 20% of the residents in Melbourne speak Asians. Most of these people come from mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia and Vietnam. However this proportion varies with time.
In the past, most of the people in the Chinese churches came from Hong Kong who speak Cantonese. The main media used in their church services is Cantonese. These days there is an increasing number of people from mainland China migrating to western countries. Alongside with that, more immigrants and students are coming from Singapore, Malaysia and Taiwan. The proportion of the community groups speaking Mandarin has been increasing.
Some years ago Gospel Hall has started the Mandarin ministry. Under the team agreement of the Council, we have started the Mandarin-speaking Cai Hong Fellowship in 2008, and since 2013 it has renamed as Agape Fellowship. The languages used during the Sunday services are Cantonese, Mandarin and English (wireless). We ask God to continue to guide us and provide us with the manpower and wisdom in these ministries.