The Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp
Grantee Organization: Flagstone Foundation
Fund Type: Project-based Fund & Non-restricted Fund
3-year Granting Plan:
Table 4: Bedrock Foundation’s 3-year Granting Plan to Flagstone Foundation
Grantee Nonprofit Organization
(Unit: Thousand US Dollars)
Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp
Grantee Organization Introduction
Founded on December 18th, 2019, the initial goal of the Flagstone Foundation, which is a 501c(3) organization, is to assist the spread of the Gospel in China by promoting the Chinese version of the Bethel Series course and other activities.
The outbreak of Covid-19 at the beginning of 2020 quickly changed the plan and led the Foundation into a great humanitarian effort to fight against the pandemic and preserve lives. Flagstone Foundation participated in the Life Preservation Initiative Project sponsored by the Daofeng and Angela Foundation and made a significant contribution. The Flagstone Foundation completed the procurement, international transportation, and on-demand distribution of 420,000 non-surgical disposable masks and 39,480 N95 masks during the pandemic break-out period when the PPEs were the shortest. After the most urgent pandemic stage in the United States passed, the Flagstone Foundation began to think about fulfilling its mission in the context of the global pandemic.
In 2021, Flagstone Foundation decided to open a Chinese version of the Bethel Series course in the United States, providing Chinese American pastors and preachers with a panoramic Bible training course to promote Chinese Americans’ true understanding of Christian doctrines.
Flagstone Foundation has no full-time staff, and the operation depends on volunteers. As a typical grassroots NPO, Flagstone Foundation has no official website.
Grantee Project Introduction
The Bedrock Foundation plans to provide three gifts in the total amount of 200,000 US dollars to Flagstone Foundation between 2021-2023 for The Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp for Chinese American Pastors and Preachers Project.
- (1)General Background
The Bethel Series is a well-developed and widely used biblical training course in many countries. It provides a unique perspective on the Old Testament and New Testaments of the Bible. Over 6,000 congregations are enrolled, and more than 2,000,000 laypeople have graduated and benefited from the Bethel Series course for sixty years. It has been translated into English, Japanese, Russian, French, German, Spanish, and Chinese. More than a dozen countries and regions have participated in Bethel Series, including Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Germany, Canada, Costa Rica, Hungary, the United States, mainland China, Guinea, etc.
The most significant difference between the “Panoramic Bible Course” and other Bible study programs is that, instead of searching through the scriptures sequentially, each volume and chapter are put together like a jigsaw puzzle, making a Panoramic depiction of God’s magnificent plan of salvation. This course placed the main historical events of the Bible in a vast picture of God’s salvation to show the power of God in a macroscopic manner, thus overcoming the restricted sense of sequential Bible study. Many believers, even pastoralists who have received strict theological training, have a sense of broadening their horizons after the Bethel Series study.
The copyright of Bethel Series courses belongs to “The Bethel Series.” This institution is located at 312 Wisconsin Avenue, Madison, WI 53703. The official website is www.bethelseries.org.
（2）About Chinese Version of Bethel Series
As a Chinese graduate of the Bethel Series, Rev. Lin Qiu （also named Pastor Paul Chu）has been authorized by The Bethel Series to translate courses into Chinese (Figure 15).
Figure 15 Rev. Lin Qiu and Bethel Series Boardmembers
Since then, Rev. Lin Qiu has been teaching in mainland China for 15 years. He traveled to 18 Chinese cities from 2007 to 2019 (Figure 16) and held courses mainly in rural areas. Due to the pandemic outbreak in 2020, he has primarily provided online courses for churches in China since 2020.
Figure 16 The Pastoral Training Seminars Rev. Lin Qiu held in China during 2007-2019
（3）The Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp for Chinese American Pastors and Preachers
The original plan of the Flagstone Foundation was to support Rev. Lin Qiu to carry out the Chinese version of the Bethel Series in mainland China. However, due to the pandemic, Flagstone Foundation decided to shift the focus of the foundation’s goal to supporting Rev. Lin Qiu to provide the Bethel Series training service for pastors and preachers of Chinese American churches in North America.
On May 10, 2021, Flagstone Foundation held a meeting to discuss the details and decided to initiate a new project – The Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp for Chinese American Pastors and Preachers.
The project got donations from the Bedrock Foundation and Daofeng and Angela Foundation.
- The goal of the Training Camp Project
To preach the correct and systematic, and the comprehensive gospel of God to enable more people to believe in the Lord and help those who believe in the Lord to be more edified.
- The approach of the Training Camp Project
The first step is to recruit pastors in Chinese churches or preachers in essential communities such as campuses.
The second step is to provide Bethel Series Chinese courses to study how to teach the class.
The third step is to follow up and support the pastors and preachers to carry out the Bethel Series Bible training for believers in their church or community to help believers have a more accurate and in-depth understanding of the gospel.
- The Training Camp Project Structure
Funders: Daofeng and Angela Foundation, Bedrock Foundation
Co-sponsors: Flagstone Foundation, Rev. Lin Qiu
Supporter: The Bethel Series
（4）The 1st Training Camp
From May to June, the Flagstone Foundation organized two online briefing sessions around the Bethel Series Course. The foundation also tried to recruit students through telephone and email invitations. Finally, the first training camp enrolled seven students from Boston, South Carolina，and Virginia.
Flagstone Foundation successfully held the first 10-days training camp in Crystal City Marriott, Virginia, from July 26 to August 4, 2021.
The 1st training camp had three modules ( Table 5 ), Training Course, Bible Museum Visit, and Graduation Ceremony Dinner.
Table 5: Agenda of The 1st Chinese-language Bethel Series Training Camp
for Chinese American Pastors and Preachers
Arrival Day and Welcome Dinner
July 27 – August 3
8:00 am – 6:00 pm
The Old Testament – Three and a half days
The New Testament – Four days
July 30th afternoon
Bible Museum Visit
August 3 evening
Graduation Ceremony Dinner
Each lesson of the “Bethel Series” is accompanied by a symbolic drawing meticulously drawn by a famous illustrator. These pictures contain meaningful elements and enable students to firmly grasp the main content and concepts of each lesson, and they will not forget them for many years. Preachers and Bible study leaders can often find a series of sermon topics and Bible study content in each picture (Figure 17).
Figure 17 Rev. Lin Qiu Explains Illustrations for Students
Rev. Jeff Quinto, the Executive Director of The Bethel Series, delivered a speech on the history and global development trend of the Bethel Series at the graduation ceremony (Figure 18). The Bethel Series posted a blog on its website to honor the “First-ever” training camp.
Figure 18 Rev. Jeff Quinto and Rev. Lin Qiu (Pastor Paul Chu) congratulate one of the students Hongmei Luan on her graduation.
The students gave high praise and positive feedback to the training camp.
“This class not only teaches us some knowledge of the Bible but also makes me feel the impact of life on life.” – Luan Hongmei, one of the graduated students of the 1st training camp
Figure 19 Group Photo of the 1st Training Camp, including 7 students, the founders and volunteers of Flagstone Foundation, Bedrock Foundation, Daofeng and Angela Foundation, Rev. Jeff Quinto, and Rev. Lin Qiu
（5）Current Progress And Future Plans
After the 1st training camp, Flagstone Foundation, Bedrock Foundation, and Daofeng and Angela Foundation visited two students to understand the possibility of promoting the Bethel Series in their church. At the same time, the project team decided to hold the second training camp from October 26 to November 3, and the scale will remain below ten people.
The founder of the Bedrock Foundation, Mr. Feng Dong, was deeply involved in the Life Preservation Initiative (LPI) as a volunteer and worked with the Flagstone Foundation team to source qualified masks in China and try their best to break through export barriers and transport them to the United States. Then, after the end of the LPI project, the Flagstone Foundation organized a three-day mini-seminar and invited Mr. Feng Dong and other board members of the Bedrock Foundation to listen to Rev. Lin Qiu presenting the Chinese-language Bethel Series course.
As a Christian, Mr. Feng Dong benefited a lot from the mini-seminar. He persuaded the Bedrock Foundation’s board that Christian civilization had played a decisive role in the development of modern philanthropy. Therefore, Bedrock Foundation believes that supporting Bethel Series is an essential point for humanity education.
Flagstone Foundation has no full-time staff. Bedrock Foundation not only provides project-based and nonrestricted funding but also volunteer actions to support the project.
The Bedrock Foundation has provided 60,000 US dollars to support the 1st Training Camp. Besides the funding, Mr. Feng Dong, the founder of the Bedrock Foundation, contributed his business experiences to negotiate with hotels to find the best site for the training and connect with Chinese American churches and associations to promote the course. In addition, Mr. Feng Dong stayed on-site throughout the whole training process and served as a logistics volunteer for the students.