Church of KFC

post date: November 2, 2011


If you want one picture that will explain one part of modern China, this will do as well as anything else we saw.
If the picture looks like a church, that’s because this building was once a church. After the 1949 Revolution the church was closed and the building taken over by the government. In recent years some savvy businessmen bought the building and opened a KFC restaurant there. I assume business is good since it is located on a major road in Dalian.

If the picture looks like a church, that’s because this building was once a church. After the 1949 Revolution the church was closed and the building taken over by the government. In recent years some savvy businessmen bought the building and opened a KFC restaurant there. I assume business is good since it is located on a major road in Dalian.

You see Western restaurants in all the major Chinese cities–KFC, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, and you see restaurants like TGI Friday’s. There is a huge Wal-Mart a block from our hotel. Turn on the radio and you hear the latest Western hits. Due to widespread copying, the latest Hollywood movies are sometimes available here before you can buy them on DVD in the States. 

As for church buildings, you see only a few here and there. It’s not like in the US where you see church buildings on every corner. The house church movement meets in homes, apartments, in tiny living rooms, and occasionally in rented buildings. Those congregations range in size from a few dozen to more than a thousand. 

But the picture says it all for me. A building that once housed a church is now home to a KFC. God is moving all across China, but as in the book of Acts he doesn’t need a building to do his work. 

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