Gabriel J. Catanus is the Lead Pastor of Garden City Covenant Church, a church serving young urban professionals and Filipino American families in Chicago. He is a former hiphop DJ, a Bulls season ticket holder, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu novice, and a Ph.D. candidate in Christian Ethics at Loyola University where he teaches.
Thirteen years ago, I was invited to a special gathering of Asian American Christian leaders. As a young seminarian, I was starstruck, almost giddy to be part of conversations with these leading scholars and megachurch pastors.
For the past few years, I’ve been a pastor in search of a home. As a Filipino American, the idea of home is unclear to me. The Philippines is my ancestral home and I feel close to my roots and relatives there. My theological lineage can also be traced back to specific people, churches, seminaries, and American denominations in the Philippines. But many of my concerns are markedly American, even though I was born in Canada. Despite having lived in the States for most of my life, I get regular reminders of my foreignness, especially here in the Midwest.
When the clip of Professor Robert E. Kelley’s interview with BBC News went viral, several of my Filipino friends and I feared that the Asian woman in the background might be a Filipina, one of the countless women who had left their families to care for the children of wealthy families in other countries.
Happy 18th birthday! I wish I could celebrate with you — can you believe that it's been an entire decade since I've last seen you?
ACCORDING TO TRIPADVISOR, you can’t experience Nashville without a visit to “Honky Tonk Row”, a downtown strip packed with world-famous venues where many great musicians started out.