샘터와 쉴터(nahanayana)
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Blog Open 02.22.2009

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아래 글은 졸업식 전날 교직원들과 졸업생들만이 모여 졸업축하연회를 열었을 때 내가

발표한 글이다.  그 때 주제는  Supper Bloom이었다.  순서로는 Germinate, Sprout, Bloom 

그리고 Scatter이었다.  내가 맡은 역은  Sprout이었다.    

“Potato, sprouts, leaves!” Many of you here today know this game as “Rock, paper, scissors!” I remember playing this game with childhood friends. In Korean it is Moogchippa. “Potato, sprouts, leaves!” But I did not know then that the game contained the process of sprouting like a flower.  

This year, the wildflowers were so beautifully blooming in the mountains near Los Angeles. We called it Super Bloom. Here is another view of Super Bloom. We are precious, precious and such beautiful flowers as we sprouted on the campus of the Claremont School of Theology.  

But I am not trying to talk about the beauty of flowers. I want to become a

dandelion with its spores going everywhere. I want to prepare for tomorrow,

flying around somewhere. But I had to sprout first.

My parents, who lived in a small rural village, took my 72 year old grandmother

and their four daughters to the south to flee persecution by the communists.

As I look back on our journey today, I planted seeds at the Claremont School

of Theology and began germinating as I entered the campus.

The professors were the water they sprinkled, and the buds grew and

the leaves flourished. Then I gathered the knowledge and experience

I had learned during the process of writing a thesis and came to flower today.

Now, like you, I am ready to leave this place and share what I have learned

as we scatter the love and care into the world.

My family walked like a caravan from north to south Korea during the year

of the Korean War. In 1951 I was six years old. It was to live. Since then,

our families have continued our lives as refugees by fighting hunger.

During that time, hunger was my strongest enemy. I was envious of my

friends' lunch boxes during my school days. Since then, I have learned

how depressing and painful it is to starve.

I have wanted to become famous since my childhood. At that time,

it was from the idea that it would not be so tough if I became famous.

I still want to become famous but now I have a clear goal and a reason

to be famous--If I could become a famous person, I could have much

more donations and the power to help more homeless people.

If I become famous, I think I can win the fight against hunger.

The sprouting of my educational journey has never been a traditional process.

My first study permit was at a small Baptist seminary in a rural town near San Diego, California. Then I began in the Extension Program at the San Francisco Theological Seminary in Southern California. I was called an unclassified student. I continued to sprout. One day a letter was delivered from the school to say that if I receive B grades in the next three courses, they will accept me as a full-time student. Another letter came. Congratulations! Since you have achieved a successful outcome, we have decided at the faculty meeting to accept you as a full-time student at our school. So after that I graduated in May 1996 with an M.Div degree.

I went to practice on the mission field with the homeless people of Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles. Then, after receiving ordination as a minister, I established The Well Mission. I sprouted again. It is the 20th anniversary of the foundation on July 12 of this year. For twenty years I have always been with the homeless people. Of course, I am very famous among the homeless people.

When I read the CST "D.Min Program" guide in Practical Theology for conflict, healing, and change I thought, "That's it." I had found a way to become famous.

I have chosen schools that are well known. I think that the prestigious CST is the fastest way to be famous. And today I have been able to join in this glory.

At the first lecture of my M.Div program at SFTS, I learned the words of Karl Barth, “The Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other hand.” I want to become

a dandelion spore now that I have sprouted and bloomed at CST. I will fight

hunger by flying with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other with

the homeless people. I wish I could see the super bloom anytime and anywhere

in the world where the lonely and the alienated are sprouting with hope, leafy

and flowering.





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