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On This Father’s Day

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Pastor’s letter (679)                                                                                                                                    June
18th 2017

 

 
  On This Father’s Day   

 

 


In America, Father's Day is the third Sunday in
June. It was originally enacted by Mrs. Sonora Smart Dodd from Spokane, Washington. 

In May 1910, when she was listening to a Mother's Day sermon at her church, she
thought of her father who suffered 

from raising six brothers and sisters alone.
She proposed to the pastor that her father's birthday, June 5, be called
Father's Day. 

The pastor decided on June 19th for Father's Day to have more
time to prepare a sermon. National support for Father's Day spread quickly, 

but
Congress did not pass it because it was not commercially viable. 62 years later,
President Nixon officially enacted it in 1972.

 

I can imagine how hard it would have been to think of Dodd’s
Father, who raised six brothers and sisters alone. 

The first Korean immigrant
fathers who moved to other countries where the language was different 

and did
the hardest manual labor had it very hard too don’t you think? They chose
immigration to improve their quality of life, 

but if we look at the history of
Korean immigration, we can clearly see how hard our fathers lived. 

American
missionaries Horace Allen and George Herbert Jones visited many churches in
Incheon, 

 

South Korea and encouraged Koreans to immigrate to the United States.
On December 22, 1902, the first emigrant ship leaving 

Incheon Harbor carried 56
men, 21 women, and 25 children, 50 out of 77 adults of whom were Christian
believers. 

The immigrant life that started in Hawaii in 1903 consisted of hard
manual labor in the sugarcane or pineapple fields in the heat. 

Most were
bachelors and widowers. At the time when the wandering bachelor, widower, and
workers became mainstream, 

American society was so oppressively racist that it
was difficult to live with the social discrimination, identity problems,
language, 

cultural maladjustment and economic poverty. Nonetheless, most of
them survived difficulties while living in their faith in the church, 

and
remitted hard earned money to their families in their home country.

 

Recently, the fathers who come to the United States
have gone through a great deal of learning and preparation, 

but their role as a
father in the family does not seem quite right. Despite the sarcasm, there is a
"chunk series" 

that shows a cross section of the lives of our
fathers. When the husband comes home, he becomes an <Anxious lump>. 

 

When
she takes her husband outside, he becomes a <headache lump>. When she
sees him face to face, he becomes the <enemy lump>. 

When she asks her
daughter - in – law to take care of him, he becomes an <abused lump>. 

When
she sends him out alone, he becomes an <accidental lump>. Maybe you will
be treated like this. 

 

Perhaps there is an increase in the number of men who
choose to live freely alone, rather than living in their homes. 

I wonder if this
is the time that warm consolation is most desperately needed by powerless
fathers, 

exhausted fathers whose shoulders are weak. The fathers of this age
seem to be somewhat lonely, and feel alienated from their families. 

It may be a
factor in the collapse of modern society.

 

Since the family life is shaking, it is also Father's
Day that started in Spokane; I look back on the meaning of the presence of the father. 

We should pray for our fathers and say warm words of encouragement, not rethink
old fears or sorrows caused by our fathers. 

When you say thank you to your
weakest fathers who are strong on the outside, and say that you feel safe
because of him, 

you will enjoy the happiness that bursts from laughter.

 

 

                                              In
Spokane Washington, 

                                                                             Pastor Ki Beom Lee