Contributed by Edmund Tay
From 5 to 9 January 2009, I had the privilege of joining the team from City Harvest Church on their trip to South Korea, to visit Yoido Full Gospel Church. This church has a membership of 850,000 and is currently the largest church in the world — a spectacle the entire team was eager to witness. This trip was special for me, personally, because it was also my first time in South Korea and my first experience of winter.
We reached Seoul in the late afternoon of 5 January, and a cold harsh reality began to hit us! The temperature in Seoul was subzero — minus 3 deg to be exact! Coming from Singapore where summer is perennial, our bodies had to make major adjustments. But it was great fun pulling on our woollen thermal wear, thick jackets and ear-muffs — something we never get to do back home. Many of us looked like oversized wan tons!
We were grateful for the extra layers, as we waddled along the freezing streets of Seoul, to meet up with the whole team for dinner.
Korean BBQ in Seoul was a real treat! The heat from the burners kept us really warm. A major bonus of this time together was the chance to catch up with friends from 11 of our affiliate churches who joined us on this trip. In fact, it felt like a Chinese reunion dinner! With delicious food and the warm company of friends and family, it was truly a night to remember.
|PHOTOS: Edmund Tay & Jimmy Sng|
A highlight for many of the Singaporeans in the group was the bottomless pot of kimchi that was placed on the table. Let me tell you, there is nothing like authentic kimchi from Korea, and many of us asked for refills, which quickly disappeared. As we left the restaurant that night, many of us carried a strong sense of anticipation in our hearts. The trip had just begun, and greater discoveries lay ahead of us. South Korea, here we come!