Posted on March 15, 2024 Cloud of Witnesses – Feature Seohyeon Kim

Cloud of Witnesses – Celebrating 210th Anniversary of International Ministries

Ms. Seohyeon Kim

Member of Cheongju Jinseong Baptist Church of Cheongju City, South Korea

Junior, Chung Ang University in Seoul, South Korea


In 2009, at the age of 7, I first visited American Baptist International Ministries (IM) with my family, guided by Rev. Dr. David Hojin Yu, who was at the time Pastor of First Baptist Church of Merchanville, New Jersey.

I was just a young child who did not know much, but as I grew into a middle school student in 2015 and 2017, I revisited IM and participated in the Camp Lebanon program nurturing my faith. In 2023, as a young adult, I led a youth group to experience the new culture of the United States and gain motivation, much like when I had participated in the camp.

The four visits to IM that I made always provided a great vision for me. Each time, I was deeply moved by witnessing various forms of ministry, service, and leadership firsthand and hearing diverse testimonies. Beyond the confines of my narrow life, I constantly glimpsed new worlds in the United States and dreamed bigger dreams. During my adolescence, I realized that the path God leads us on is incredibly diverse, and through a firm faith in how God guides me—when, where, and how. I found the strength to live my life with peace.

This vision has also become deeply personal for me. I wanted to witness God’s work not only in Korea but also abroad, meeting diverse people. Through the Camp Lebanon program in the United States, which was drastically different from Korea in 2015 and 2017, my dreams became more concrete. In the vast and lush nature, I experienced that God is alive and active in my life. This became a solid foundation for studying foreign languages and daring to challenge myself overseas. Subsequently, I began to dream of a bigger world, focusing on studying German and English.

For a long time, I’ve been pondering what it means to be a leader and what kind of leadership I possess. During my one-year exchange as a student in Germany, and in the summer of 2023 as a leader, I revisited IM once again with a youth group from Cheongju Jinseong Baptist Church. I learned the true posture of a baptized individual, serving with One’s given talents regardless of age or gender and giving glory to God. This kind of service began to resonate even more deeply with me. I pray for a life where love, service, obedience, and gratitude and following Jesus become the essence.

Through a total of four visits to IM, I have seen the path I must live as someone who relies on God, as an individual, as a young adult, and as a woman. I experienced the love of God, which serves as strength to weary souls and shines light on dark paths. I am growing as a true Christian and baptized person who strives to please God wholeheartedly. I am grateful for allowing all these experiences and for enabling my life to glorify God.


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