ISAAC to Celebrate Decade of Efforts to Provide ‘Third Space’ of Cultivating Asian American Leaders

ISAAC — formerly the ‘Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity,’ and currently the ‘Innovative Space for Asian American Christianity’ — will be celebrating its 10th anniversary in October with a ‘Gala ArtFest,’ featuring singer-songwriters Soo Kim, Priska, and Sera Chung, and violinist Jing Wang.

Working under the banner, “Bridging the academy, church, community,” ISAAC’s leaders often call the organization a ‘third space’ — a space in which Asian American Christians could learn about their ethnic and spiritual identity outside of the church and the classroom, but enmeshing both academic and spiritual aspects.

To that end, the non-profit has hosted events such as symposiums and forums in which attendees have discussed various themes, including race and gender, the religious ‘dones’ and ‘nones,’ and Asian American history, among others. More casual gatherings have also been hosted, such as the ‘Together We Cook and View’ gathering that took place at the home of a Korean American pastor with some 20 ministry leaders from Asian American and African American communities.

ISAAC 7th symposium
(Photo : Courtesy of ISAAC)
Panelists at ISAAC's 7th Symposium shared their thoughts on what churches could do to bring the 'dones' and the 'nones' back into the pews.

ISAAC has also hosted summer internships since 2015, one of which included a bilateral internship with Asian American interns placed in African American churches. The internships are designed to give college-aged young adults a glimpse of full-time vocational ministry as they serve in the assigned or chosen church, and meet with other interns and ISAAC mentors on a weekly basis.

Most recently, ISAAC launched an East Coast branch with Rev. Dr. Milton as the ‘ISAAC East’ director. The organization will also be hosting its first forum in northern California on the topic of ‘The Future of the ANA (Asian North American) Church’ from September 26 to 27.

“In celebrating ISAAC’s 10th year anniversary, we thank God for all of you who have so faithfully showed up to ISAAC’s programs. Your presence and voice have sustained us for one decade,” said Young Lee Hertig, the executive director of ISAAC. “The night will be a memorable moment for all of us at one of the most sacred spaces — The Church of Our Saviour, SGV. We are grateful for their generosity of sharing their beautiful church with ISAAC.”

The Gala ArtFest will be taking place on October 15 at 6 PM at The Church of Our Savior in San Gabriel, and will feature pastor and program manager for the USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement Rev. Dr. Najuma Smith Pollard as the keynote speaker. For more information, visit:

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