Following the memorial service held by China Evangelical Seminary (CES) in Taipei for their school’s founding president James Hudson Taylor III, Holy Light Theological Seminary (HLTS) in Kaohsiung that have had a history with the Taylor family also held a memorial service titled “A Celebration of Life” in the afternoon of March 30.
The participants included many alumni, former and current presidents of the seminary and the president of China Methodist Denomination, who all came forward to commemorate the footsteps of Rev. James Hudson Taylor III.
Having grown up in Kaohsiung, Rev. Jamie Hudson Taylor IV, son of Rev. James Taylor III, gave thanks on behalf of his family, and he encouraged the participants to follow after the examples set by his father in living out a life of change for the Lord.
Former president of HLTS Rev. Rong-Huay Lu reminisced on how he used to frequent the dining table at the Taylor family when he was still a student and that was how he met with James. When he went to study abroad in United States, Jame Taylor also continued his studies at Yale University. While he invited James to give sharing numerous times at the overseas student fellowship that he lead, Lu said that James’ attitude of faith and commitment to the Lord’s service left a deep impression on him.
A pastor from the ninth graduating class expressed that Rev. James Taylor deeply emphasized the importance of theological education; he not only taught in the classrooms, but he also led the students to conduct missions, applying what they’ve learned. As a result of Rev. Taylor’s pioneering efforts, two churches now exist in the southern part of Taiwan.
Former president Rev. Peng-Tsao said that when he heard of Rev. James Taylor’s passing he felt in heart this unwillingness to let go and he felt that James Taylor’s life is an example of what Apostle Paul said “raced to the finish” and of what his great-grandfather Hudson Taylor said “I’d give them all to Christ.”
The current president Samuel H. H. Chiow delivered a sermon from 2 Timothy 4:17-18 on the letter that Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy knowing that he will be soon leave this world.
“But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom.”
Chiow hopes that such testimony of Rev. James Taylor can also become our testimonies.
“Looking at core of Rev. James Taylor’s life of service”, Chiow continued, “We can see that it is build upon the friendship that he had with Jesus, instead of a servant, he is a son. Unfortunately, many ministers today serve as if they are slaves.” God has given him strength to devote in world missions and also in theological equipping and thanks to God that he escaped from various traps of Satan. “As we are commemorating our beloved Rev. James Taylor here, I hope that we can hear the same encouragements.”
Towards the end of the service, the participants together sang praises and held up candle lights symbolizing the passing down of President James Taylor’s will. The donations collected at the service will be used entirely towards the Tai-Le Education Fund setup by Rev. James Taylor that will be used to raise more workers for God’s kingdom.