Posted on March 11, 2024 Cloud of Witnesses – Feature Jongpo Kim

Cloud of Witnesses – Celebrating 210th Anniversary of International Ministries

Rev. Dr. Jongpo Kim

General Secretary of Korean Baptist Churches of the Republic of Korea (KBCROK)


In 2009, Rev. Dr. David Hojin Yu invited my family to visit International Ministries, where I met Rev. Dr. Benjamin Chan. During this first visit to International Ministries, Ben shared with our family about the mission work of the first missionary to Nagaland, India. My family and I were deeply moved by the testimony of God’s mission that was told to us. To this day, we are still moved by this testimony.

At that time, I asked Dr. Yu to share with me about the values of the American Baptist Churches in the USA (ABCUSA) especially those related to children, youth, young adults, and women’s ministries. From then on, every two years, my church’s youth and young adults participate in the summer camp in New Jersey to learn about the ABCUSA ministries. In 2012, we first started this program, where a group of 7 youth led by Mrs. Hyun-Jeong Kim (Sunday school teacher) from our church attended Baptist Camp Lebanon, visited International Ministries, ABCUSA office and other member organizations learning what the identity and mission of being an American Baptist. Through the visits to America, my church’s youth and young adults have grown in faith and have become the pillars of our church. Subsequently, our youth in KBCROK have also started attending the U.S. camps. In the future, our congregation members and pastors will continue to visit International Ministries and continue our learning.

In October 2017, 60 Baptist Churches in South Korea gathered to establish the Korean Baptist Churches Republic of Korea (KBCROK), desiring to form a historic Baptist Church in partnership with ABCUSA and to share common theology and faith. In April 2018, an inauguration service was held to celebrate the establishment of KBCROK, and staff from International Ministries, members from the American Baptist Churches of New Jersey, and pastors and church members from KBCROK attended. During the worship service, we shared our vision and mission for the Kingdom of God. At that time, Dr. Yu was appointed as a consultant for global relations. In September of the same year, a partnership agreement was signed between International Ministries, the American Baptist Church of New Jersey, and KBCROK. We are thankful to work and have Dr. Yu as our consultant. In 2021, Dr Yu obtained his doctoral degree in Doctor of Ministry from Palmer Theological Seminary of Eastern University with the topic of “Creating A New Model of Pastoral Leadership in the Korean Baptist Churches of the Republic of Korea” and in 2022, he presented his dissertation at the Cheongju Jinseong Baptist Church, which is a rich learning experience for the pastors and church members of KBCROK. Just as Dr. Yu’s dissertation says, we pray that our denomination continues in an effective leadership style, which is servant leadership.

While working with International Ministries, God has given my family the strength and courage to continue to have faith in him and glorify God. My wife serves as a teacher for children, and for my four children, my eldest, Ah-hyeon, serves as part of the church broadcasting system team, my second daughter Seo-hyeon and third daughter Ju-hyeon serve as youth teachers, and my youngest daughter Hyo-hyeon leads service as being part of the youth praise and worship team. Through this, God has shown how my family members are growing as healthy Christians.

We, KBCROK continue to focus on God and face the challenges to bring glory to His Kingdom.

*Ben Chan: Special thanks to Cathy Holmes for proof-reading the article