May is Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month in the U.S. The theme that the Federal Asian Pacific American Council has selected for 2023 is “Advancing Leaders through Opportunity.” This theme offers an invitation to remember and celebrate leaders of Asian, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander descent throughout American history. It also calls us to advocate with and for the empowerment of people who identify as Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander and to redress injustices that have obstructed and devalued these communities’ experiences and leadership.
To help Christian communities amplify Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander voices in American and church history during May and throughout the year, we at Building Faith want to share a list of resources. This list includes new and recent books, reading lists, podcasts, documentaries, virtual exhibits, and church resources. Our hope is that this compilation will provide churches with fruitful avenues for attending more deeply to Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander histories and futures.
History and Cultural Criticism Books
- Detours: A Decolonial Guide to Hawai’i, edited by Hōkūlani K. Aikau and Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez (Durham: Duke University Press, 2019)
- Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park Hong (New York: One World, 2021)
- Opening the Gates to Asia: A Transpacific History of How America Repealed Asian Exclusion by Jane H. Hong (Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2019)
- Our Voices, Our Histories: Asian American and Pacific Islander Women, edited by Shirley Hune and Gail M. Nomura (New York: NYU Press, 2020)
- Remembering Our Intimacies: Mo’olelo, Aloha ‘Āina, and Ea by Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2021)
Histories and Stories in Christianity Books
Reading Lists for All Ages
- “Asian Pacific American Heritage Month,” hosted by the Library of Congress website – a hub of resources, exhibits, and events to commemorate Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month (Note: As of this article’s publication date, the site lists events for 2022, so be on the lookout for updates as May 2023 approaches.)
- Japanese American National Museum – digital resources, collections, and exhibits provided by the Japanese American National Museum that illuminate Japanese American history and experiences
- “#AAPI Alive! Eastertide Devotional,” produced by The Gathering, a ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles – daily devotionals for the Easter season created by Asian American and Pacific Islander writers, artists, and musicians
- “Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month Worship Resources” by David Kim and Diana Sanchez-Bushong, Discipleship Ministries of the United Methodist Church (Apr. 29, 2022)
- “Church leaders suggest ways to mark Asian Pacific American Heritage Month,” United Church of Christ website (May 18, 2021)
- “May: Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage” at the Beloved Community Initiative website, a mission of the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa – a collection of articles, videos, interviews, reflection prompts, and prayer