Eugene Cho

world aids day – who cares?

world-aids-day

Today is World AIDS Day. We must care. Every one of us…we need to take a step closer to learning, growing, giving, shouting, singing…each of us playing a part.

You can learn more via the ODW blog about World AIDS Day: Turning Grief into Action.

Do you have any good resources to share with others? Words of encouragement, advice, etc? How are you taking a step closer towards caring & acting?

One of the best resources to learn more about the HIV/AIDS crisis is UNAIDS. And from that site:

  • Approximately 33.4 people living with HIV/AIDS at the end of 2008.
  • 2.7 new people infected with HIV in 2008.
  • More than 25 million people have died of AIDS since 1981.
  • Africa has over 14 million AIDS orphans.
  • At the end of 2008, women accounted for 50% of all adults living with HIV worldwide
  • In developing and transitional countries, 9.5 million people are in immediate need of life-saving AIDS drugs; of these, only 4 million (42%) are receiving the drugs.
  • Around 95% of people with HIV/AIDS live in developing nations. But HIV today is a threat to men, women and children on all continents around the world.

And of course, we need to be reminded that this isn’t just a global issue but a local and national issue as well: Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: health, religion, , ,

in memory of brenden foster

While being away in the East Coast last weekend, I did not receive the news of Brenden Foster’s passing last Friday, November 21, 2008 until this morning.  Brenden is the 11 year old boy from Seattle diagnosed with leukemia three years ago who stirred a movement of compassion and genersosity.  On a recent trip from his doctor, he passed the homeless community called Nickelsville and his last wish was to help feed the homeless.  It’s an amazing and beautiful story.

Like many others, I’m moved, compelled, and deeply encouraged by the short but significant life of Brenden.  His life is an encouragement – simply – as a reminder that one person really can make a difference.  And even more so, he isn’t alone.  We are not alone.  There are many people seeking to be agents of hope, compassion, and generosity.

The stuff below didn’t make the news and we don’t do it for the purposes of making news Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, health, religion, , , ,

your “past” year resolution?

Many of us make resolutions every year.  But before we get into our new resolutions for 2009 next month, how about we talk about how we’re doing with this past year’s resolution.   This is an easy question so I’m hoping that many of the regulars, visitors, and blog lurkers and stalkers will contribute.

Question: What was your past year resolution?  And, how’s it going?  [* Be honest.  Don’t forget.  You are commenting on a minister’s blog.]

Me and my past year resolution?  Not well. 

My resolution was to Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, health, ,

relationships, technology, facebook, and fighting poverty

I’ll be posting a more thorough update on our Global Poverty initiative and organization in the next couple days.  I was supposed to be in Haiti this week to visit some orphanages and to learn more abou the global food crisis but had to make some changes due to the increment weather in that area.  Today, I’d like to share about two things that make our goal of creating a grassroots movement to fight extreme global poverty possible:  Human Relationships and Technology. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: health, technology, , , ,

the power of education

* if this post compels you, consider joining us in prayers and dreams.

Consider this quote from Joseph Addison [an English essayist/poet – 1672-1719] regarding the power and influence of education:

“Education is a companion which no misfortune can depress, no crime can destroy, no enemy can alienate, no despotism can enslave. At home, a friend, abroad an introduction. In solitude, a solace, and in society, an ornament. It hastens vice, it guides virtue; it gives, at once, grace and government to genius. Without it, what is man? A splendid slave, a reasoning savage.”

Asides from the “reasoning savage” [think contextual], it’s a very potent quote which explains why it’s often used to support education.

For the past week, we were able to enroll our daughters [9 & 7] as guests in the local public elementary school here in Seoul, Korea. Our oldest joined the 4th grade class and our younger daughter joined the 2nd grade class. To be honest, they weren’t thrilled about our plans especially since they “already finished school and we’re on vacation” but we told them that this would be an incredible cultural experience. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, health

fighting global poverty f.a.q.

As most of my blog readers know, my wife and I [and our three children] are starting an organization for the purpose of joining the fight against global poverty.  We are not the first, and thankfully, we will not be the last.  People – acquaintances, strangers, blog readers and stalkers, Twitters, Facebookers, internet surfers, and our church folks have asked us questions and so this entry is our attempt to answer those questions – in hopes that it may intrigue and inspire you and also to excuse myself from answering countless personal emails.

Recent Updates: Dec. ’08 / March ’09

Here are some Frequently Asked Questions: Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, health, , , ,

compassion versus indifference

I was deeply saddened and disturbed when I read the following story of Esmin Green – a 49 year old woman who collapsed and died on the floor of a waiting room at a New York psychiatricl hospital.  After she collapses landing face down on the floor, no one attends to her.  No one – for over an hour until it’s too late.

Compassion is what makes us uniquely human; another manner in which we were created in the image of God [imago dei].  If we lose our heart or sense of compassion, we become less human…less than what God calls us to be.  Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: health, religion,

materialism, mammon and simplicity

Materialism and money is an issue and a threat in my life.  I hate to admit it but it is.  I wrestle with it nearly every day.  I read once that a person spends about 80% of their time awake engaged with MONEY:  earning it, spending it, and dreaming about it.  There are days it overwhelms me and there are days I feel like I have a great understanding and mastery over money but only for it to rear it’s beastly head again. 

We’re all consumers.  Every single one of us so how would you respond to this question?

In our society, we’re surrounded by the push to consume. We’re constantly bombarded with the newest gadget or trinket we supposedly cannot live without. How do we combat the pull toward materialism, and what does simplicity look like in the 21st Century? Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: health, religion

girl effect

What do you think?

“The powerful social and economic change brought about when girls have the opportunity to participate in their society.” Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: health

using facebook to fight global poverty

After mocking social networking sites for awhile, I finally joined Facebook one year ago.  And while there are still some things that I strongly dislike about Facebook [e.g. constant invitations to Applications], I am a big fan.  It works.  I’ve reconnected with friends from high school and college.  And Facebook is helping me to stay connected to the growing community at Quest. 

But asides from just connecting with past and current friends, I’ve been dreaming how to leverage the power of technology and the internet to further social causes.  This is one of the primary hopes with the new organization we are working on.  How do we utilize and converge technology and human relationships to fight global poverty?

With that in mind, I started this GROUP on FacebookRead the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, health, technology,

stuff, connect, info

one day’s wages | video

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As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

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