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May 6-Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Moment for Mission

"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you." —John 15:12, NRSV

May is designated as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month  by Congress. During this month we recognize and celebrate the unique gifts and contributions made by Asian Pacific Islanders in our nation. Asian and Pacific Islander Americans are those who have migrated here from anywhere in the continent of Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Polynesia. This group of people is actually made up of several groups of people coming from places with different cultures, customs, and languages.

In the quick pace of life it is easy to get swept up in the mainstream and lose sight of the beauty within our diversity, the image of God that is reflected in people of all cultures, nations, and ethnicities. That is why it continues to be important to set aside time to call out the unique contributions and influences of Asian Pacific Islanders that have become a part of the ecology of whole.

There is much to be celebrated in our nation and in our congregations. During this month many United Methodist congregations will incorporate hymns, songs, prayers, and liturgy that are from some of these countries or have been translated into one of the many languages spoken by Asian Pacific Islanders. This is an opportunity to celebrate and honor the Asian Pacific Islanders among us as we experience worshipping God together in new ways while more vibrantly reflecting the image of God.

Offertory Prayer
God of Love, Make room in our hearts for all of your children. Make room in our congregations, our worship services, and our communities for our Asian Pacific Island neighbors. We thank you for their unique voice in the world you created. Amen.

From Discipleship Ministries:  Sixth Sunday of Easter – O Lord, you are the victorious King! You have revealed your victory over death through Jesus' resurrection. With joyful songs we rejoice in your marvelous deeds. Let our voices and actions reflect your saving power. Use our gifts to help more people to know your steadfast love in Christ, until the day when this world is made new in your kingdom. Amen. (Psalm 98)

Newsletter Nugget
May is designated Asian Pacific Heritage Month. Asian Pacific Islanders are not from one country, or even from one continent. The people we honor during this month are from the continent of Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Polynesia. This category includes people from China, India, Hawaii, and several places in between. During this month we remember the Japanese immigrants who were instrumental in finishing the transcontinental railroad. We remember the presence and contributions made in how we cultivate land, in developing technologies, and the influences in cooking and art.

As we celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in our congregations, we are reminded that the image of God is revealed in all of us. This is why during this month we might experience worship in new ways and even sometimes in different languages. When we love one another with the love of God there is room for all to worship with our unique voices. When we worship with all of our unique voices, we are better able to reflect God's image.