Dr S. Wu’s Memorial Service Message
By Rev. Alan K. Chan
My name is Alan K. Chan. I am the lead pastor of Chinese Christian Union Church-North, Highland Park, IL, where Dickson and Emily attend my church.
Let me begin with Romans 1
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
When and after Paul wrote these verses, he had become known for his missionary works. Paul was not ashamed of the Gospel. That’s why he shared the Gospel wherever he went and thus establishing churches in Asia Minor and in Europe.
Paul knows very well: Only through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, everyone who believes in Jesus would be saved by the power of the Gospel. There is no other salvation through any world religions besides Christianity.
Christianity, however, is not a religion but a relationship. Many in this world confuse Christianity with one of the world major religions. But Christianity is NOT a religion and let me tell you why.
Religion, by definition, is human’s quest for God and they make gods out of stone and wood.
But Christianity is God’s revealing Himself to mankind. In fact, Christianity is God’s quest for all mankind, so they could come back to Him, trust Him and love Him. While religions are human effort to look for God, and creating gods to worship, Christianity is opposed to all religions. God has revealed Himself to man and has come to seek us.
Jesus said: “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost." (Luk 19:10 ESV)”. God has come and is seeking to save those who are lost. Man is lost because they sin against God. They reject the true God who revealed Himself in the Bible. When man is lost, they need to be found. And God wants to find the lost and save them.
Dr. Stewart Wu, following the footstep of Jesus Christ, went out to find and save the lost. Romans 1:16 says:
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
Dr. Wu had lived out this verse in a contemporary version.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the AMERICANS first and also to the CHINESE.
The church here, the Calvary Church, knows very well of Dr. Wu’s heart for the Gospel. He went out all his way to save the lost. He was a medical missionary all over the world, but his interests in his own kinsmen were quite obvious, here in Valpo, in Chicago Chinatown, and in China.
Dr. Wu’s love for his own kinsmen was quite obvious. Someone captures the importance of the ministry to Chinese. In a book called If the World Were a Village (pp.1-3):
As of 2002, the world population is 6.2 billion. And 1.3 billion is in China.
To make it more understandable, let’s say the world’s total population is 100 people. Here is the distribution:
*61 are from Asia, 13 from Africa, 12 from Europe, 8 from South and Central America, 5 from US and Canada
*Half of the population comes from the 10 most populated countries: 21 from China, 17 from India, 5 from US!
*In terms of language, if you can speak “Ni Hao Ma?” (in Mandarin, how are you), you can speak to 22 people in this 100 people global village. That is 22% of the world population.
In this world, 22% are Chinese speaking people. And Dr. Wu knew the urgency and importance to minister to his own kinsmen and he devoted his life to spreading the Gospel to them.
Dr. Wu was a grandfather of two beautiful boys from his son Dickson. He could be like many grandparents, staying all the times at Dickson’s home – I am sure Dickson wouldn’t mind his dad staying with him. In fact, Dickson and Emily welcomed him anytime to stay with them. Dr Wu could have chosen to play with the two grandsons, spending his retired years with them, just to enjoy life. But he didn’t choose that kind of typical grandparent’s life. Instead, he chose to use his profession to serve God by spreading the Gospel here and overseas.
I met Dr. Wu when he came to Chicago Chinatown for a weekly free medical clinic in 1980s. Almost every Wednesday, he and a team of Christian doctors would come to the Chinatown Church, offering free medical checkup, advises and medicine, to many. 99% of them are Chinese. I remembered I had flu one summer, and he checked me out.
Ten years ago, Dr. Wu led me and a team of brothers and sisters from my church, CCUC-North, to go to China. That was my church’s very first STM trip to China.
We heard from Dr. Wu how he went into some remote villages in China to do medical missions. How he had to walk several hours, climbing mountains to reach these villages. We heard about there was no bathroom in some places. And Dr Wu was not young and just like some senior citizens, he needed to go bathroom in the middle of the night. When he shared with us this lack of bathroom, he sounded like he didn’t mind the inconvenience.
And when in some of those places, whenever he ate, the white rice immediately turned black, because the white rice was covered by flies. Yes, his food was covered by flies. The flies and Dr Wu ate the same food. This to us, living in this land, is a horrible story to hear, but when he shared, it seemed like nothing to him. It didn’t bother him at all.
This is our Dr. Wu because Dr. Wu could say: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to the AMERICANS first and also to the CHINESE.
I’d say that Dr. Wu died for what God called him to do. He practically died on his last mission trip to China. It was during his last mission trip, he got an infection. And he had to fly to Hong Kong for immediate medical attention. I happened to be in Hong Kong and we were in the same district, Shatin, New Territory, HK. Once I learned about his admission to that hospital, I took the bus to his hospital. I visited him several times.
Dr. Wu was so surprised to see me, but I was thankful I could visit him then. After he took the long flight home with his son Dickson, I still expected to see him again back in Chicago. But God took him into His eternal presence. I think I might be the only one in my church who saw him during his last days.
Yes, I will see him again, not in this world but the world to come. We all expect to see him again in the world to come. We share the hope of resurrection because of our faith in Jesus Christ. But I am not sure whether everyone here has the same hope. Do you have the hope that Dr. Wu had? He served people here and in China for that hope.
If Dr. Wu were here today, he’d say to all of us, especially for those who are not Christian, who have not trust in Jesus Christ: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to the AMERICANS first and also to the CHINESE.
For Dr. Wu, he trusted in the Gospel, he lived for the spreading of the Gospel and he spent the last moments of his life for the Gospel. In this memorial service, if Dr. Wu were alive, he would tell me: “Don’t say too much about me. Say more about Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. He saved me; He called me; He used me. Christ has done so much for me, what I did is nothing - what I did is nothing - compared to the great redemptive works God has done on the cross, in the empty grave and in the sky.
Say or tell more about Jesus Christ, not me, because my life was to tell everyone about Jesus Christ.
Yes, Dr. Wu was not ashamed of the Gospel because he knew the Gospel had saved him. His prayer/wish was that everyone who knew Dr. Wu would become followers of Jesus Christ.