REACHING OUT: In addition to sponsoring art shows, Space 12, a community center run by Vox Veniae church in Austin, Texas, hosts concerts and swing dances and offers space to nonprofit agencies addressing social issues in the community. COURTESY JESSE JAMES DECONTO
In 2006, Vox Veniae (“voice of grace”) was a nondenominational church plant growing out of the Austin Chinese Church’s ministry to Asian students at the University of Texas. These were the stereotypical children of “tiger mothers”—Asian moms who raise their kids to be smart, educated, ambitious and self-starting overachievers. But the church’s members felt that they were isolated from other people; they wanted to break down barriers that restricted them to worshiping and doing service only among other Asians or only among the privileged collegiate crowd around UT’s campus.