“Planting the Church in Chicago” <Part 1>

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Pastor Stephen Yang’s ‘Christian Column’]       

“Planting the Church in Chicago” <Part 1>

Written by/Pastor Stephen Yang

Senior Pastor,  Goback Church


Goback Church was founded on April 13, 2014, while I was still attending theological college.

My family immigrated to the United States and faced many big problems while living as a minority.

First, it faced serious problems in making a living and social status.

However, it was a truly absurd and absurd thing to start a church under these circumstances.

Nevertheless, the first person who strongly pushed me to start a church was none other than my beloved wife.

I couldn't understand her request.

 But My wife told me that she had thought about it for a long time and deeply and that there is no one like you 

as a pastor who truly fears God and truly loves the souls of the church members, and who can carry out 

the mission well.

So my wife said I should start a church right away.

As a husband who had immigrated with her and made a living and lived a religious life together, 

I could fully understand his wife's sudden request.

This is because, over the past seven years since immigrating to Chicago, USA, we have discovered through 

seven pastors and several other pastors that there is a major problem with the spiritual leadership of the Korean church.

So we have been worrying and thinking about this problem together.

However, from my perspective as a head of a household responsible for the livelihood of my wife 

and children and their education, starting a church out of the blue was, in a word, 

a completely impossible and absurd idea.

In the end, I avoided my wife's persuasion, saying that it was impossible, but she raised her voice 

even louder and did not back down at all, telling me to think about the mission that the Lord 

had commanded me to come to her.

We had a heated argument that day, with no compromises between us.

The cold war lasted for more than a week.

However, a situation arose where the tense battle between me and my wife centered on church planting, 

and the battle line was sharply tilted towards my wife.

That was because there was a Presbyterian elder among the employees who helped us at the shoe 

and bag repair shop we ran, and that elder Chung suddenly sided with my wife and encouraged us to start a church.

Having always respected and liked Elder Jeong, who was carrying out a difficult mission despite poverty and hardship, 

I asked him to provide a valid reason for doing so.

Elder Jeong said:

“It has already been five years since I watched Pastor Yang from the side. From what I have observed, 

Pastor Yang is truly a person who has received the Holy Spirit.

And You will become a real pastor. If you live past 80 years like I did, you will develop eyes 

that can clearly see what people are like.

So do as I say. And isn't the reason you came to Chicago because Jesus commanded you to come here?

Did Jesus send Evangelist Yang here for no reason? God sent you to fulfill God's will, and isn't that 

why you have been studying theology for several years despite such difficult times? “

But despite this, I could not follow Elder Jeong’s words.

Because, from my perspective now, my family's livelihood was at risk, and my children were attending high school, 

a very important time.

I had to take care of my family at all costs.

However, the reality was that both the house rent and the store rent were overdue by more than 10 months, 

so both parties were now faced with a situation where they could be evicted in an instant.

In the midst of this, it was completely incomprehensible and certainly not possible to start a church.

However, when I saw my wife insisting so strongly, I suddenly thought that she was going crazy 

because she was having such a hard time.

I shed tears in my heart, feeling sad and sad.

However, her wife's expression was completely different from her usual quiet and gentle personality, 

and she seemed to be very determined and full of firm beliefs.

She said she was sure that I was at least a God-fearing person, and that alone was enough to qualify me as a pastor.

In addition, my wife told me that recently many Korean pastors do not hesitate to commit sinful acts 

because they do not fear God and that you must at least speak out the voice of truth to the believers.

The reason was that she felt sorry for the Korean people who were preached and educated by the wrong pastors in Korea. She said to me, it's okay if you're not good at preaching, but God will be pleased if you just convey the truthful message that the Holy Spirit wants.

She also said that no matter how many people listen to your sermon, it will be good medicine for those who listen 

and will lead those souls to salvation, so she forced me to start a church.

*Continued on the next page

" Goback Church is an inland missionary church working in the western part of Michigan. 

Goback Church, which is fighting on the spiritual front lines to save souls in crisis, 

desperately needs your prayers and continued support. Hallelujah!"

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Article registration 2024-05-12 12:16:29

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