Compassion Ministries - March 2016 Update

North Korea

“… He will come to save you. Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer and the mute tongue shout for joy.”   Isaiah 35:4 b -35:6a

Sue Kinsler made her fourth and final 2015 visit to North Korea in November. The purpose of her visit was to monitor and evaluate Green Tree International (GTI) partnership aid, secure an agreement on plans for 2016, and attend North Korea’s celebration of the World Day for the Disabled. Sue met Ms. Ri Boon-Hee, former North Korea table tennis champion, in Shenyang, China. Ms. Boon-Hee is now in charge of special athletes from North Korea who are training in China. 

Sue flew from Shenyang with Mr. Jong-Yoon Na, a graduate student at Syracuse University studying photo journalism and a member of her visiting team. He had taken pictures on a previous visit to North Korea that had helped him enter his graduate school program. When they landed, they were welcomed by their guide and driver who took them to their hotel. 

In the hotel tearoom they discussed their week’s schedule with the guide which all had to be approved ahead of time, including permission for Mr. Na to be able to take pictures. On Sunday, Sue and Jong-Yoon attended worship at Chilgol Church in Pyongyang, which has been newly rebuilt. The pastor and women elders welcomed them warmly. During the worship service Sue extended her heartfelt greetings and thanks to God to be back again.

On Monday, Sue and Mr. Na met their welfare partners at the Korean Federation for the Protection of the Disabled. After exchanging greetings and information at the main office, they went to the Culture and Sports building next door and encouraged the table tennis athletes practicing there. 

They also visited Sariwon, Hwanghaedo where Sue met with the director of the Yukawon Orphanage and the chair of the North Hwanghae Province Citizen’s committee to hear about orphanage-related construction. In the afternoon, Sue visited the orphans. The three and four-year-olds rushed to hug her calling out “Welcome Grandmother.” She was glad to see how healthy looking they were. 

The next place they visited in Sariwon was the bakery/soymilk plant. They were pleasantly surprised to see the new varieties of bread and baked goods which had been produced and tastefully wrapped. The bakery staff had acted on the suggestions made during a previous Green Tree team visit. Because it had become increasingly difficult to regularly send in the ingredients for baking bread, the bakery staff had developed attractive baked goods for sale locally using that money to purchase ingredients from the North Korean market. Of course Sue was happy to receive tasty breads to take, some of which they delivered to the GTI office in Seoul.

Back in Pyongyang the team had hoped that the late Dr. Syngman Rhee’s sisters would be able to come from Hamhung, but because of a large snowfall that was not possible. So they delivered letters and small gifts for Dr. Rhee’s sisters to a cousin living in Pyongyang. That evening Sue, Mr. Na and their guide rode the new tour boat “Rainbow” on the Taedong River and saw the reflected lights of the city. 

The World Day for the Disabled celebration was held in North Korea for the seventh time at the Kim Ch’aek Industrial College’s gymnasium. There were almost 2,000 in attendance when the celebration began. Moon-Cheol Kim, head of the Korea Foundation for the Protection of the Disabled, welcomed the guests and told of the work with the disabled and its progress. Then the blind musicians began their performance followed by the deaf dance team whose performance included a rendition of the white swan ballet. Then the mentally and physically impaired children did a hula hoop dance bringing an emotional response and applause from attendees who knew that such children had been previously hidden away. After the performance was over, guests moved to the reception for refreshments and a chance to discuss the disabled work with the visitors. After seeing the outstanding performances of the North Korean disabled persons, Sue Kinsler prayed for the day to soon come for a joint celebration and performances of North and South Korean disabled people which would help with the work for reconciliation and peace on the Korean peninsula.

Latest news: Sue left Seattle on February 9 for five days to attend a seminar on work in North Korea and then traveled on to China and Pyongyang for nine days. God bless and keep all of you who partner with us in this ministry. Please continue sending your support of this important work to The Outreach Foundation. 

Yours in Christ’s peace and love, 

Art and Sue Kinsler
15703 36th Drive SE
Bothell, WA  98012

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Amount needed in 2016

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