Eugene Cho

our summer plans and prayers

Folks from both our church community and blogosphere have asked us what we intend to do during our summer sabbatical and how people can be praying.  Well, first of all, please pray that I don’t get run over by a car [this is not a joke] as I did during my last sabbatical three years ago.  I was attempting to save this woman’s life [who we discovered was later pregnant] and in doing so, I got run over by a car. I am blessed to be alive.

You can read more of that crazy story by clicking the pic of pants [notice the tire treads!] which the fire department ripped open to tend to my leg. In case you were wondering, I was wearing clean underwear that day.  Praise the Lord.

copy-of-vacation-pictures-2004-023.jpg

SABBATICAL:

  1. Every three years, I take three months off.  It’s great but in actuality, I’m getting stiffed.  Typically, senior pastors take a full year off every seven years.  Seven years is too long to wait and a year away is too long to be away.  So, every six years, I take six months off so I’m actually losing some time.  But regardless, the sabbaticals are absolutely important to my rhythm of maintaining vitality in ministry and family.
  2. My sabbatical begins on Saturday, June 22 and will be returning to the pulpit on Sunday, September 21. 
  3. We are spending two months in Korea and a month here in Seattle.  We leave for Korea on Monday, September 23.  We are staying with Minhee’s mother for two months.  This will be the highlight of our trip.
  4. After we return to Seattle, I’m hoping to take trips to two of the following three destinations:  India, Haiti, or Africa.  If airfares are reasonable, hoping that we can take the entire family to Haiti.
  5. I’m hoping to rest, get some exercise, read some books, eat good Korean food, party with Minhee like it’s 1999, and work on the new humanitarian organization.

HOW YOU CAN PRAY:

  1. Pray for health and safety in travels especially for our children – and for my left leg.
  2. While our hope is to rest and rejuvenate, Minhee and I will also be devoting much work to launching the new humanitarian organization this Fall.  Please pray for the critical work we need to do this summer. 
  3. For “divine appointments” during our travel to Korea and to the other countries I plan to travel to.
  4. While we’re away, we’ll be selling our home.  We hope to have our home listed by the 2nd week of July and sold by the end of August.  Trying not to be anxious but the real estate market isn’t doing too well – even in Seattle.  Gulp.  We’ll be subletting the current home we’re living in right now so please pray for “good” tenants.
  5. I’ve got a great group of pastors, leaders, and staff working with me.  So continual prayers for the work at Quest Church and Q Cafe.

I hope you’ll journey with us over the summer via this blog. 

QUESTION:  What are your plans for the summer?  Anything special? 

Filed under: family, religion

8 Responses

  1. drunkdreamer8 says:

    ALOHA,

    Read your post, and just wanted to invite you over to check out mine. If you ever dreamed before this might intrest you.

    C.Apana

  2. Matt says:

    wait…
    # My sabbatical begins on Saturday, June 22 and will be returning to the pulpit on Sunday, September 21.
    # We are spending two months in Korea and a month here in Seattle. We leave for Korea on Monday, September 23. We are staying with Minhee’s mother for two months. This will be the highlight of our trip.

    u sure about those dates? return to pulit on sept 21 and go to korea on a monday, two dates later?

    I was just in Cambodia with my seminary cohort, and it was definitely a country in need. If you have any contacts there, I think it would be a great place to visit while you’re in korea. you can spend some time with your fam visiting angkor wat while getting a feel for a country that’s been ravaged by genocide. There’s also a LOT of foreign investors (from korea/japan) that are almost robbing the country, going in and making a quick buck and getting out, while leaving the people there poor and begging.

    Anyways, I hope you have a great few months, and are rejuvinated on your return to continue the work you’re doing in Seattle.

  3. gar says:

    Good luck on your travels, pastor! I’m still working on those music mixes you requested, but I should have them done well before you leave. 😉

  4. Beth says:

    Blessings on your travels.

    Our summer plans are simple. Stay home, save some money, enjoy our family, and build good friendships with our neighbors.

  5. Paul says:

    i work with the haitian timoun foudnation, a group from colorado and beyod who’s focused on giving children in haiti a shot at life. they sponsor a couple of orphanages, street kid orgs, a hospital, and are working now with a non-profit bank in haiti that is doing micro-credit lending to the poorest of poor. when i travel with them in haiti, we stay at st. joseph’s home for boys in Petionville, a part of port-au-prince. if you’re interested, here’s their website: http://www.hopeinhaiti.org

    my summer plans: start a conversation with other 20somethings at my church about creating a ministry they’d want to be a part of and own themselves. fish. stain my fence the approved HOA color.

    in my christian-tribe (lutheran-elca), they recommend a 3 month sabbatical once every 5 years. talk about getting jipped!

  6. Are you friggen kidding me? You got toppled by a CAR. I love the tread and blood on the ol’ trousers.

    I had a similar experience- motorcycle accident a few years back (including a pavement slip n’ slide down an offramp at 40 MPH). I too received the red carpet treatment from the ambulance staff and cops- pants and underwear cut off, whisked to ER. I still have my bloodied underwear. They make for a great souvenir don’t they?

    Should we compare skid marks? Uhh…

    Thanks for the post. Our prayers will continue and will be focused around your requests.

    -ian

  7. eugenecho says:

    @ian: geez. i’d rather get run over by a honda civic than be in a motorcycle accident.

    i wanted to save those pants but before i could think of doing that, the fire department tossed it away. let me just say i was very cold in those underwear.

  8. Daniel says:

    Sabbaticals are definately a key part to staying in shape as a pastor. But why three months? why not 4.5 months so it will balance out?

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One Day’s Wages

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Collaboration.

col·lab·o·ra·tion
kəˌlabəˈrāSH(ə)n/
noun

the action of working with someone or a group of others  to produce or create something.

May we hold our logos, egos, and tribalism have their place. May we hold them loosely for they too shall pass. May we collaborate for the sake of the greater Kingdom of God ... which endures forever. As we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., don't forget the God behind the man. The one true God who deposited this dream into MLK is still speaking to us today. Are we listening?

Be courageous. Be brave.

Being invited by the King Family to speak at the MLK worship service at Ebenezer Baptist Church in 2016 remains one of the most unexpected honors of my life. On the right is his daughter, Dr. Bernice King and his sister, Dr. Christine King Farris. Walking throughstreet markets in different parts of the world is the best. Soaking in the culture. Listening to the local language and music. Enjoying the amazing cuisine. Meeting new friends. Praying for the Gospel to penetrate. #ChiangRai Blessed be the local, indigenous leaders for it is they who live in the very communities they seek to love. For it is they who understand their context and culture...better than a Westerner ever will. For it is they who will continue to tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love when visitors like me leave.

Yes, blessed be the local, indigenous leaders. What an honor and privilege to celebrate with the on-the-ground local @thefreedomstory team to celebrate the recent opening of their Education and Resource Center for the local youth in Chiang Rai, Thailanf. This was made possible through a partnership and matching grant by @onedayswages and The Freedom Story.

While it was an honor to be there to cut the cord and say a few words, this is an example of collaboration. Much love to the Freedom Story team including their co-founders Tawee Donchai and @Rachel Goble, to their staff who live in the community, who understand their context and culture, and who tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love. And of course, much love to the students themselves for they each matter. Finally, to each person that donated to @onedayswages to make this grant possible.

May hundreds and even thousands of youth be impacted, encouraged, and mentored. May they capture a glimpse of God's love for them.

Photo: @benjaminedwards Part 2 on my wrestling with the complex issue of human trafficking. In part, documenting my trip to Thailand for @onedayswages...to listen, learn, and visit one of our partner orgs @thefreedomstory. More to come.

There's such painful and poignant irony in pursuing justice...unjustly. One way we do this is when we reduce people into projects...and thus, propagating the dangerous power dynamic of US as heroes and THEM as helpless and exclusively as victims. So dangerous.

Human trafficking is not just an issue. It’s ultimately, about people. Depending on the sources of statistics, there are anywhere from 29-40 million people in some form of forced labor and slavery, including sex trafficking.

And one thing I’ve learned, personally, is how easy it is easy to reduce people into projects which is why mutuality, reciprocity, and dignity are so vital. These are critical because God never intended people to be reduced into projects.

We forget this and we indirectly foster a culture and system of victimization or worse, the pornification of the poor or in this case, "the trafficked." And when you start dehumanizing the poor or trafficked, you have no genuine desire to build relationships with them. You believe or build stereotypes in broad strokes, singular, black and white narratives that have been told about them. You believe the lie that they have nothing to teach us and are incapable of contributing to the larger society.

Lord, break our hearts for the things that break your heart. Give us eyes to see others through your eyes. Give us humility so that we acknowledge our own need to learn and grow. (Photo via @thefreedomstory)

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