VANCOUVER- Canadians yesterday voted for a change to endorse the Conservatives, marking the end of the 13-year rule of the Liberal Party in Canada. Chinese Christian leaders celebrate the success and call on prayers for the new leader.
The result of the Monday’s poll was confirmed in Monday evening after 65 percent of the 22.7 million registered voters cast ballots at 60,000 polling stations across six time zones in Canada. Final results for the 308-seat House showed Conservatives with 124 seats; Liberals with 103; the Bloc Quebecois with 51, New Democratic Party with 29; and one seat to an Independent, according to the Associated Press (AP).
Just as the pre-election forecast has portrayed, head of the Conservative Party Stephen Harper has become the prime minister-in-waiting. While the Liberal Party has been aggressively liberalizing the legislation in Canada to accept same-sex marriage, abortion, assisted-suicide and even prostitution, the Canadian society is being destabilized by the overwhelming debate between different parties. Monday's vote showed that Canadians are weary of the Liberal Party and are willing to change, leaving Harper a chance to govern.
The mostly conservative evangelical Chinese Christians in Canada have received the new leader Harper with joy and gratitude.
"Thank God. Thank God for He gives Canada a second chance," the renowned Chinese Christian leader Rev Thomas Wang welcomed Monday’s election result. "This is the grace from God. Many countries and many societies in the world have failed to get the second chance... I hope that the new Conservative leader and the Canadian societies will be awake."
Prior to the election Wang has been working hard to push the Canadian Chinese Christians to vote with conscience as a mean to encounter the moral chaos brought by the prevalent liberal movement in Canada. In particular, Wang and many other Chinese Christian leaders in the United States are deeply concerned by the legalization of same-sex marriage in Canada and some of the states in North America.
Wang is a very outspoken leader in awakening the Western countries to return to God amid the decline in morality. In one of the pre-election seminars held in a Chinese church in Vancouver earlier this month, he encouraged the Chinese Christians to carry the responsibility to bring the nation back to God, "We should not be assimilated by the Western culture; the Bible is our standard as it will never change."
The Toronto-based Chinese Christian charity Jubilee Center for Christian Social Action (JCCSA), which has collaborated with churches and Rev Wang to organize educational campaigns for Chinese Christian voters, commented it is "good" to see the change of the government.
However, chairman of JCCSA Rev Dominic Tse is concerned if the new Conservative government could overthrow the same-sex marriage C-38 bill because it has failed to win the majority in the very much divided House of Commons and it could be hard for them to get legislation through. Therefore, Christians should remain tense and get prepared for the next election, Tse suggested.
Chief Pastor of the Faith Chinese North American Baptist Church, Rev. Hong Yujian, is conservatively optimistic about the election result for the Conservative Party has not gained the majority in the House.
The failure of many other Christian candidates in the election has also disappointed the pastors. They wish that more Christians can be involved in politics. Moreover, they call on prayers for the emerging leader Harper that he will have wisdom and will stand firm to uphold morality.
Meanwhile, Harper vowed to fulfill his commitments as speaking to a crowd of jubilant supporters in Calgary on Tuesday, "We will honor your trust, we will deliver on our commitments," CBC reported.
"Tonight friends, our great country has voted for change, and Canadians have asked our party to take the lead in delivering that change," Harper told the AP reporters Monday night upon his victory.
In a short essay written by Harper for the evangelical Christian publication Faith Today, Harper said that faith should not be excluded from the public life; those of different faiths and no faith should seek areas of common agreement based on their different perspectives.
Harper cited the issue such as the definition of marriage, saying that citizens and legislators can certainly make reference to all different faiths, which all "consider marriage to be the union of a man and a woman, and to call for this moral consensus to be reflected in civil law."
The White House congratulated Harper on Tuesday for his Conservative party's election win in Canada, according to AP.
"We look forward to strengthening our relations and working with the new government," said Scott McClellan, spokesman for President George W. Bush.
[Editor's Note: Carol U contributed reporting from Vancouver for this article.]