家父李重卿於公元1915年元月八日生在台灣澎湖縣馬公，祖籍福建省泉州。先祖隨明末鄭成功蒞台，世居台中縣土城草屯鎮(現今中興新村)，祖父 李帶在水上鎮當私熟老師。 因為祖父識字，得英國長老會宣教士巴克禮博士(台南神學院創辦人)之注意，因而得帶領信主，後來進神學院就讀，成為台灣基督教早期之傳道人。畢業後在高雄舊城當傳道牧會，牧師館是間無人敢住的屋子，但祖父不怕鬼而搬進，果然晚上睡覺時床頭是一個方向，早上起來已轉到另一方向，但祖父靠主得勝，後來鬼就離開那房子。接著調到澎湖馬公瓦銅牧會，生了家父。又再調到員林牧會。祖父常常借幫助人讀信、寫信的機會來傳福音， 因傳道人收入微薄，祖母用她靈活的手藝替人縫紉衣服補貼家用。這也是家父的手藝非常好的基因遺傳。家父二十五歲時與台南林彩雲女士結婚育有兩男兩女。家母於1958年安息主懷。家父中年喪偶，多年獨自撫養明哲、惠蓉、瑞蓉、明輝四兒女，直到大女兒成家之後才續弦，後母蘇瑩暉女士也是賢妻良母，甚得我們兄弟姊妹敬愛。
家父十歲喪母，十二歲喪父。排行老三，上有姐姐、哥哥，下有兩位妹妹。過著赤貧的生活，五兄弟姐妹晚上合蓋一條棉被睡覺，有時得趁著雨後到田間撿農人收稼後，被雨水沖開曝露出來的番薯過活。家父常說：耶和華是孤兒、寡婦及寄居人之上帝( 申 10:18)。數年後姐姐結婚，家父得住居姐姐和姐夫家。
家父最喜歡唱詩讚美上帝，青少年時加入高雄鹽埕長老教會詩歌班，直到七十五歲因移居美國才停止，四十年從不間斷地擔任詩班的隊長，因他與年輕的隊員相處融洽，他們不肯讓他退下。甚至在離世前天，還以宏亮的歌喉與長子明哲一起唱他最喜愛的台語詩歌「咱著來吟詩 - 詩篇95 」。
最敬愛的爸爸，您的一生充滿了天上的恩典，樂於助人，盡心養兒育女，疼愛孫兒女，無微不至，我們真捨不得您離開，相信您也捨不得離開我們，但您也知道我們兄弟姊妹會彼此相愛，互相提攜，但顯然上帝要您先回天家，您就安心地走吧! 再見! 親愛的父親。
by Elder MingChe Li
Grandpa Li was born on January 8, 1915 on Penghu Island off the west coast of Taiwan. His paternal ancestry goes back to Chuan Zhou, Fujian. His father, Great grandfather, being a private tutor and literate, which was relatively rare then, caught the eyes of Dr. Thomas Barkley, an English missionary dean and founder of the Tainan Theological Seminary. Great grandfather later became a Christian and enrolled in the seminary. Upon graduation, he was commissioned to pastor in the old city of Kaohsiung. The young minister and his family found a house no one wanted to live in due to rumor to be haunted. Despite the rumors, great grandfather was not afraid and moved in because of the low rent. Once he found his bed turned around when he slept. But because he was not the afraid, the ghosts never bothered again. Later he was reassigned to the church on Penghu Island where our grandfather was born.
Grandpa married Chaiyuen Lin of Tainan at age twenty-five. They had two sons and two daughters. Grandma passed away in 1958. At the time their youngest son was only six years old. As a widower, Grandpa single-handedly raised the children. He didn’t remarry until after the oldest daughter was married. Our step-grandma, Yinghun Kuo was a godly mother, loved and respected by the grown-up step-children.
God Cares for Orphans
Grandpa was the middle of five children, having an older sister, and older brother and two younger sisters. His mother- great grandmother- passed away when grandpa was ten years old; and great grandfather died one year later, leaving the young children orphaned with little for subsistence. The five siblings had to share one blanket at night. When the rains exposed leftover small sweet potatoes after the harvest, they would go into the field to pick them, in order to survive. Grandpa often said God protects and provides for orphans, widows and aliens. (Deut. 10:18) His life improved a few years later when grandpa’s older sister was married. He then moved in with them
Well Endowed Intellectually and Physically
Grandpa was handsome, intelligent and well-liked. He knew how to keep good company and maintained a good number of close friendships for over fifty years. Though he was not fortunate enough to receive higher education, he always strived for self-improvement. He studied accounting at trade school and mastered the abacus, receiving the highest honors. In fact, his fingers were so adept at using the abacus and his calculations so accurate, that he had no need for modern calculators when they became available.
As a young man grandpa loved soccer and basketball and played in the teams for the City of Kaohsiung. His soccer team played against Royal British Navy when the ships docked in Kaohsiung. He was very clever in using his hands and very resourceful - always doing chores around the house, using leftover materials to build something even to his old age. He once crafted a handsome music stand out of scrap wood for Jocelyn, his oldest granddaughter.
Paths are Blazed by Footsteps
In his early thirties, Grandpa went into business in manufacturing and trade with friends in Taipei; on occasions, he travelled to Fujian and Shanghai. When inflation and subsequent deflation hit Taiwan in the early 1950’s, the business folded due to the currency crisis. Grandpa moved the family back to Kaohsiung and opened a store to support the family; he never looked back or complained about the turn of events.
When grandson Jonathan was little, grandpa once asked him, “how do the paths come about?” Jonathan was stunned. Grandpa then told him paths were made by footsteps. It is Grandpa’s faith that by God’s grace and personal hard work, there will always be new opportunities to rise up from disappointment to blaze new paths.
A Good Storyteller
Grandpa was a natural storyteller. His close friends and family were very entertained by his humorous stories and jokes. His ability to recall so many stories made one wonder at times if he was making it up as he went along. We were amazed by his excellent memory - he could remember telephone numbers as well as stock prices even into his old age. Just two days before his death, when he watched the video of his granddaughter Edith and her children who are living in London, quite surprisingly grandpa uttered, “England.”
Always Praising God
Grandpa loved to sing hymns. He joined the choir at the Yen-Cheng Presbyterian Church in Kaohsiung when he was 20. With the exception of the few years in Taipei, he faithfully participated in the choir even beyond his retirement at age 75. For forty years he was elected the choir leader because the younger members wouldn’t let him quit.
Two days before his death, Mingche came to the convalescent hospital. Put the hearing aid on him so he could listen to singing. Amazingly he joined Mingche singing with full voice an old hymn, “O Come, Let Us Sing,” as adapted from Psalm 95.
A Good, Wise and Faithful Servant
Grandpa started serving as deacon in his thirties with his primary responsibility being to keep the church’s financial accounts. The role made good use of his accounting background and his abacus skills (there was no calculator then). His was an excellent bookkeeper who was known for his handsome handwriting. He rarely had to make corrections. He was also a visionary. Later on in life when he was elected an elder, he helped to found a church daycare center and organized a church cemetery. The choir he led regularly made concert tours visiting churches around Taiwan. Grandpa often exhorted young coworkers to serve the Lord with a joyful heart and to exhibit a pleasant composure in serving. Upon retirement, his church congregation gave him the honor as an “Elder-for-life.”
“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--and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.” (2 Timothy 4:7,8)
Dear Grandpa, you have lived a life full of heavenly grace and, in return, of generosity to others and devotion to your children and grandchildren. In our hearts, we truly do not want to let you go, and you likewise. Nonetheless, it is God’s appointed time now. As you are fully aware of your children’s love for one another, you may go in peace to be with the Lord. Good-bye! Dear Grandpa!
《錄自《李重卿長老追思感恩禮拜》手冊 2008年8月17日 p.5-9