With a heavy heart we would like to announce that at 11:45am on January 31, 2016, our dear sister Jianhua “Jan” Zhang, Pastor Youping’s wife, rested from her 58 years of labor on earth and returned to her heavenly home with her deeds in Christ (Revelation 14:13).
“‘賞賜的是耶和華，收取的也是耶和華。耶和華的名是應當稱頌的。（伯1:21）’友平，我回天家的時間到了，你不必太難過。”這是張建華師母在2015年4月初被確診為末期胰腺癌並肝臟、頸胸腹淋巴結廣泛轉移之後的第二句話。相對這句鄭重又豁達的宣告，建華師母的第一句話則充滿了溫情與幽默：“I got the lottery。友平，上帝可是真愛你，讓我一生為你承擔了很多，現在竟然連癌症也替你得了。”
“The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed by the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21).
“My time is coming, Youping. Don’t feel too sad.” This is what Jianhua told Youping in April 2015 when she was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer and learned that the cancer had spread to her liver and lymph nodes in her neck. Before continuing, she said jokingly, “I won the lottery.” Then she said with love and humor, “Youping, God loves you so much that He has let me carry many of your burdens for you, even taking on cancer.”
Indeed, Jianhua had carried burdens for many people, but she delighted in it. She believed it was a blessing if she could walk with others through their difficult situations. Since she knew that even this illness was part of God’s will, she was initially reluctant to go through any cancer fighting treatment but wished to spend her remaining time ministering to those around her as much as she could. However, she was moved by more than 200 people praying for her on April 15 and was struck by God’s word in the book of Philippians 1:20-25, so she said, “Even though it would be a wonderful thing for me to avoid all the suffering from the treatments and peacefully return to my heavenly home, I cannot bear to see the disappointment of my friends if I decide to give up. For them I will take on the challenges of receiving the treatment.”
Based on the severity of her diagnosis and considering all possible side effects of chemotherapy, doctors believed she could only survive three to six months. However, our God to whom we have prayed, saved Jianhua from one crisis to another, including brain stroke, pulmonary embolism, gastrointestinal bleeding, pleural effusion, and edema, which amazed doctors and nurses, and greatly boosted all of our faith.
We give praise to the Lord for the faithfulness that He has shown to Jianhua again and again. God built a loving network of many who became involved with her treatment and fighting against cancer. At Chinese Christian Church of Thousand Oaks (CCCTO) many people prayed, contributed financially, and bonded tighter. In the neighborhood, several Chinese churches started to collaborate with each other. In south California, many churches, evangelical organizations and seminaries came together to support her. Many churches in North America, Germany, Australia, China mainland, Taiwan, Hong Kong, unknown to us before, were praying for one thing–Jianhua’s healing and recovery. Friends in Conejo Valley formed a support group of about 400 people, through many means, including WeChat, email, phone and word of mouth. Many of them did not know each other before, but they worked as a team and shared all the responsibilities of praying, medical care, dining needs and transportation. What an amazing thing! What a blessing!
Now like many saints before Jianhua who followed Jesus Christ, Jianhua can proudly proclaim: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day.”(2 Timothy 4:7-8) All of us, who fought together with her in love, not only pray that the God of truth in whom she believed will bless all these that she loved, but we also aim to fulfill Jianhua’s wishes: 1) donate her body to a research institute, in hope to help other cancer patients in the future; 2) donate money to build a trust fund to help Chinese cancer patients in the community; and 3) continue to provide and care for her mother.
建華的追思禮拜現定 周日 2月21日下午兩點於千橡華人教會舉行 地址 218 W Janss Road, Thousand Oaks, 91360
We will have a memorial service for Jianhua on Sunday, February 21 from 2:00pm-4:00pm at Chinese Christian Church of Thousand Oaks. The address is 218 W Janss Road, Thousand Oaks, 91360.
知道有很多朋友有太多和建華一起美好的回憶願意跟大家分享，也是對建華家人親友的安慰。由於追思禮拜上分享的時間很有限，我們會出一個紀念建華的專刊，歡迎大家把文字分享或者附上1-2張照片在 2/12 ( 週五) 中午12點截稿前郵件寄到welovejianhua@gmail.com ，教會可以及時排版印刷成冊，謝謝大家！
We know many friends would like to share their beautiful memories of Jianhua and to comfort Jianhua’s family. However, it is impossible for all of us to speak at the service; also some of you may not be able to come to attend the service. Therefore we are planning to publish a special memorial journal for Jianhua and we welcome your sharing in words or pictures. Please send your article or photos (no more than a few) to firstname.lastname@example.org before Friday, February 12, 12 noon, so that we have time to edit and publish.
洪希 617-270-3358, 瑤畑 (805) 807-0385, 方智武 (626) 716-2016
If you have any questions, please contact any of the following friends:
Angela Hong Xi 617-270-3358, Louise Chen (805) 807-0385, and David Fang (626) 716-2016
Your friends at Chinese Christian Church of Thousand Oaks