By Barbara M. Leung Lai


On the evening of September 11, 2001, I began teaching a course on Daniel and apocalyptic literature. Students were stunned by the tragic events still unfolding through the afternoon hours into the evening. A student whose husband, daughter, and son-in-law were working in the World Trade Center was sitting in the corner of the room. 

Fifty years ago, millions of Red Guards—a ruthless cadre of radicalized students—waged war against tradition and religion, the twin threats to Maoism. This was modern China’s darkest decade: the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (1966–1976). Several thousand years of Chinese history were reduced to rubble and ash.

Last summer, our purebred chocolate lab enlivened our home with a litter of puppies. One of them captured the hearts of many visitors, both in person and online. Flash had looks and personality—and the ability to soothe the soul of whoever held him. But he remained available until we got a call.