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Chinese Pastor at Home in Iowa


The story of how Rev. Wen-Yau Hsieh wound up pastoring a church in Iowa by way of Queens, N.Y., is an unexpected one.

Raised in the Holiness Church in Taiwan, Hsieh, 57, came to the U.S. in 1980. He began attending a Reformed Church in America congregation in Queens, where he served as an elder for 16 years. He left a long career as a corporate lawyer to study for the ministry in Deerfield, Ill.

Friends who belong to the Chinese Church of Iowa City, Iowa, encouraged him to consider leading the congregation.

“When my wife and I felt God’s leading to come to the church, we found out it was a Christian Reformed church,” Hsieh said. That information surprised Hsieh because most Mandarin-speaking Chinese churches in the States are independent, he said. “Since the CRC is very close to our RCA heritage, we feel at home serving here,” he said.

The family moved to Iowa in August 2009.

Rev. Ed Laarman, a Christian Reformed campus minister in Iowa City, says Hsieh’s life experience is valuable for the church. “He is an excellent fit for those involved in the professions and involved in the university,” Laarman said. “He has a great passion for sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ, and a love for people.”

“My hope for the future of the church is that it will root itself firmly in God’s Word,” Hsieh said. “This is a church of many young Christians. They need God’s Word to grow mature in their faith.”

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