A Lunar New Year’s Feast for the Homeless in Busan

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Back home in Florida I would often volunteer at homeless outreaches that my church supported. There was a large one in Ft. Lauderdale that was jointly supported by the city and our church. Reaching out to those in need or even homeless is a rewarding and humbling experience. It helped me to reflect on the issues in my life and immediately see them in a different light. I think King Solomon put it best when he said,

I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless (vanity), a chasing after the wind. (Ecclesiastes 1:14)

Back home in Florida I would often volunteer at homeless outreaches that my church supported. There was a large one in Ft. Lauderdale that was jointly supported by the city and our church. Reaching out to those in need or even homeless is a rewarding and humbling experience. It helped me to reflect on the issues in my life and immediately see them in a different light. I think King Solomon put it best when he said,

I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless (vanity), a chasing after the wind. (Ecclesiastes 1:14)

20150219_121154When I came to Korea I knew that being involved in a ministry like this would be helpful for me in planting my feet and keeping me sane during the readjustment phase of being in another country.

I actually teamed up with a family from America and headed aimlessly into Busan streets looking for homeless people. It was a completely random effort as we had no familiarity with Busan and also no idea where to find the homeless. Common sense told us that a good place to start would be near bus or train stations and lower income districts. We were right and we eventually stumbled upon some folks sleeping out near Busan Station that told us of a large soup kitchen a couple subway stops down from us.

20150219_121342They were right in directing us to this facility as there were hundreds of people lining up to hear the Word and have their stomachs filled at this location. At Busanjin Station is a complex that is funded and supported by local churches and City Hall that provides multiple meals throughout the week, each week, all year for the thousands in need in Busan.

Ever since those days I’ve attended periodically to lend a hand with handing out food and even speaking at times (with a translator).  It’s a great and blessed place. Even though we may not speak the language, just being there is a welcome gesture to the team as well as the people coming to dine.

20150219_122405It’s Lunar New Year in this part of the world and it’s a big holiday. Everything is shut down here in Busan at least for the first part of the day in celebration of the new year. At this soup kitchen was also a special effort. The meals served were great, and there were 7 served in total in recognition of the new year.

20150219_121109I attended this time, lent a hand, and went away feeling blessed as usual. With a slight re-calibration of my mind and heart that the things I stress over are generally a figment of my imagination.

And temporary.

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