By Ken Camp
A Korean Texas Baptist minister returned recently from North Korea where he verified delivery of 60 tons of corn and 10 tons of wheat noodles to schools, orphanages and a hospital. He also renewed a memorandum of understanding with the North Korea Education Foundation to continue the relief ministry.
Yoo Yoon, director of the Korean-American Sharing Movement of Dallas, has traveled to North Korea more than two dozen times in the last 19 years. His trips typically include supervising delivery of corn and other food supplies provided by Texas Baptist Men and other donors.
“I visited four units and chatted with children, students, staff and principals at least 10 times to share the love of Christ and to improve the quality and quantity of the relief mission,” said Yoon, former Korean mission field consultant with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.
This year, Yoon planned to travel to North Korea in July and November. But through a series of unexpected circumstances, he already made two visits, in March and May.
“I have learned a lesson that it is not my plan or my way but God’s plan and his way in doing missions,” he said. “The Lord has increased my patience and character through the complicated and unexpected happenings.”
During the March trip, Yoon expected to verify delivery of 10 tons of noodles to Wonsan City in Kangwon Province, but he was not able to travel to that site. However, on that trip, he talked with two women who subsequently made professions of faith in Jesus Christ.
When Yoon returned to North Korea in May, he visited three institutions — a school that educates 383 orphans, an institute that educates 850 junior high and senior high school students, and a 400-bed hospital — in Wonsan City. He also visited Joongdung Institute, with 370 junior high and high school-age orphans in Moonchon City.
“I have had a few opportunities to talk to the group of orphans, and I shared how much Korean-Americans and American people with children love them,” Yoon said. “They called me ‘grandfather’ and expressed many thanks. I felt the presence of Christ in a strong way. They know that someone from the U.S. loves and cares for them.”