Volume 212, Mission news-country K, part 2.
The village of Shaharjaboth was once a rich village when the sugar factory was operated, but now the factory has been shut down. There was a shanty apartment where each room is connected with another room. It is a four story apartment consists of many rooms where each room is 3.3 meters long and 3.3 meters wide. The residents share one restroom and bathroom in this apartment. There is no kitchen, but they cook in their room with a burner.
Many single moms live in the shanty apartment. They live with two or five children there. Because of poor condition, the power frequently goes out. Most of moms have no job. They did not receive education. They came to city to find a job from a rural area. Or they married but got divorced, so they live alone.
At night, many drunken men come to this apartment and go to bed with a single mom. Of course, there is a family that lives with a husband. Unlike prostitution in South Korea, there is autonomy in this country. The significant difference is that they raise their child by themselves. They don’t care who a father is.
Broken family is not strange in this country
The reason why poor women give birth to many children by themselves is because the country gives support for children. Country K has a large land and abundant resources, but has a very small population. That’s why the government continues to encourage child birth. Even if a single mother gives a birth, the country gives child support. For example, a minimum wage is 42500 tenge (about 130,000 won). If a single mom gives a birth, she gets 95950 tenge for maternity benefit, 14544 tenge monthly for maternity leave, and 25541 tenge monthly until the child reaches adulthood. A single mom receive minimum 50,000 tenge (150,000 won) monthly and if she has a second baby, the support will increase. Even though raising a child is difficult, they receive a child support from the nation and in some ways they can grow their future dreams.
However, because of the poor living condition, children cannot receive education and they learn bad habit and wrong behavior of their parents, so the vicious cycle is keep going.
Even though I have lived in country K for a long time, it is less than two or three years that since I have known their painful stories. Because it is not easy to notice their heart broken custom, I can say it is another world that is found only when the border between foreigners and locals is broken and only when I deeply understand their situation. Looking back, now I can understand many souls that I have met.
The only hope for the soul who is thirsty: The gospel
My mission is to help them to know the gospel and to live in productive life leaving from the wrong life that is against the gospel. So, I teach them various skill and find a job from them. I help not only for my congregation but also for the poor. In order for them to open to the gospel, I have to keep a sincere relationship with them.
In Ddalddi church, there are several Korean Diasporas wives whose husbands left to South Korea to earn money, so the wives raise their children by themselves. They also need skills and job to earn money. I teach Korean Diasporas wives how to hang wallpaper and they teach this skills to single moms who live in the shanty apartment. While helping each other, Korean Diasporas mothers who believe in Jesus teach skills and deliver the gospel to single moms who are Muslim.
The gospel is the only hope in this poor country. I pray that the Lord work for them and this place where it seems that there is no dream.