Contributed by Victor Lim Fei
A Visit to Elim Welfare Town and Hansei University
True to the spirit of saving the best for last, the final day of the Korea Study Tour saw demonstrations of love and care by Yoido Full Gospel Church in the form of Elim Welfare Town.
Drawing revelation from the verse in Exodus 25:27, “And they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water, and threescore, and then palm trees: and they encamped there by the waters,” Elim Welfare Town is set up to be a place of refreshing and refuge for the community.
Offering welfare services for personal and social development, Elim Welfare Town provides comprehensive training programs for the young adults in its Vocational Training Institute as well as the provision of a conducive and adequate environment for the destitute and ailing elderly in its senior citizens home and nursing home. The Town also boasts a pre-school education center that hosts a carefully conceptualized and executed curriculum for children aged four to seven. Indeed, the Town is designed to be self-sufficient with all necessary facilities such as offices, cafeterias and apartments. In fact, Elim Welfare Town even has a satellite chapel of Yoido Full Gospel Church, with a 1,500-seater serving 4,000 members.
The scale and standards of Elim Welfare Town are awe-inspiring. Elim Welfare Town is built on 66,116 sq m of land and is the largest of its kind in Asia. The Town has modern amenities supported by cutting-edge technology along with a team of dedicated professionals to ensure the delivery of quality and care to the needy.
|PHOTOS: Edmund Tay & Jimmy Sng|
It was at Elim Welfare Town that our team developed an understanding of the extent of the influence and compassion of Yoido Full Gospel Church. The Town started with a budget of KRW 15 billion (US$15 million), a sign of Yoido’s commitment to serve the community, beyond the four walls of the church.
Indeed, if “pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is to visit orphans and widows in their trouble” (James 1:27), Yoido Full Gospel Church is living out the Word and raising the standard for other churches.
Our next stop was Hansei University, where Dr Kim Sunghae (Mrs Yonggi Cho) serves as president. Hansei University provides a rigorous tertiary education program based on Christian faith and values. Founded in 1958 as a bible school, Hansei University has since grown into eight colleges and seven postgraduate schools that have graduated over 6,000 students, many of which have emerged as leaders and professionals in their chosen fields.
The success of Hansei University stands as testimony of how the church can shape education and thinking through leadership. Building the curriculum on the firm foundation of righteousness, truth and love, Hansei University shines as a beacon in academia, preparing Christian leaders of tomorrow to engage the world. In more than one way, the legacy of Yoido Full Gospel Church is established through its impact on education and in shaping the minds of the future.
Our visit to Elim Welfare Town and Hansei University left a deep impression. Not only did we get to witness the love and compassion of Yoido Full Gospel Church, we also received insight to the influence and impact the church has made in society. Because we have seen these works first-hand, there arises a desire in us to accomplish these works in our home cities as well. For now that we have seen it, we know that we can have it.