L'Abri Newsletter, July 2020
July 15th, 2020
Dear L'Abri praying family,
How have you been doing while the COVID-19 spreads tumultuously? We decided to close the Korean L'Abri from July 10th through late August. The decision was made through L’Abri workers’ discussion right after the Korean government had put stricter safety guidelines over the Korean churches. We will follow the guidelines, though many praying families are concerned about the government's announcement. I would like to express apologies, on behalf of our community, to those who got canceled by this closing decision.
There is one more thing that I would like to ask your favor. We had to cancel the Christian Worldview Forum that is supposed to be held at the end of this semester. However, we decided to make a resource book that will include already worked-on papers and creative ideas. This way, we think that we can comfort the speakers and those who will miss the opportunity to join the forum. Those who are interested in contributing to the resource book, please contact our worker, Chang-Hee Cho (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The two weeks that we opened for the summer semester was too short. Nonetheless, visitors who needed the greatest support stayed with us. Among others, the letter of Ye-Young - she had been the last guest during this short semester - was a great joy to all our workers who experienced disappointments due to the shortened period of the summer semester. Here I share an excerpt from the letter with her permission.
"I had researched on ‘The relationship between male or female farmers' labor time and temperature increase of Tanzania' for a year from April of 2019 in the States before I returned to Korea. Interestingly, here in L’Abri, I watched the movie, "Boy Who Harnessed the Wind", in the movie night. The movie is based on the true story about a boy who made the windmill in Malawi where the food production was bad during the dry season. I was so surprised that the movie night leader chose this movie without knowing about my academic background. It was my first African movie that did present well the reality of African agriculture which I plan to research. Originally I had planned to leave on Wednesday, but I realized that there was a reason that God allowed me to stay here one more night.”
This short personal testimony demonstrates that God carefully works through L'Abri's ministry - the African agricultural movie, weeding during the labor time, walking in the rural village, talking with the farmers, and tutoring with the workers. Please pray that workers do not lose our focus and continue to do our best for even one soul.
- Please pray that workers can spend their time during the summer season wisely. We will work a half-day and study the other half as we did last April. This time we hope that we can create a study manual of Schaeffer's book, 'How Should We Then Live?' as a result of our study sessions. Research Fellows who live nearby will join as well. The title of the book came from the question raised by the Israelites for the prophet Ezekiel, "Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them. How then can we live?" (Ezekiel 33:10). In the same way that the Israelites received the answer from God, we also hope to grow in understanding the times.
- Please pray for the L'Abri's ministry in the age of Post-coronavirus. Social distancing is a critical hurdle for our ministry considering that our main community activities include eating, sleeping, and sharing the gospel with visitors under the same roof. Sensing that our society watches over church activities, we will try to keep the government regulations and at the same time to spend our time on untact activities like individual research, translating workers’ articles, publishing a resource book, and online tutoring. However, I ask your continued prayers for the L’Abri’s preparation of the Post-coronavirus era, our deep understanding of the times and young generations, workers’ physical and spiritual health, and purchasing the Old Gas Station. The Old Gas Station house will be posted in the real estate market in late November for sale.
- Please pray for the safety of L’Abri from the natural disaster. There is a high risk of a landslide because last year, some trees got cut down due to the fire. Some parts of the mountain behind the Old Gas Station fell down due to the rainstorm a couple of days ago. The drain manhole that we cleaned last spring is filled with dust almost. We ask God’s protection from the hazard. Your prayers will be appreciated. We will also work hard to prevent the disaster.
- Lastly, please pray that the vaccine for the COVID-19 can be developed anytime soon. Also, pray for wondering young people and for churches or mission organization that can not do small group gatherings any longer. We will pray for you knowing that our praying families are also experiencing many different trials these days.
Translated by Hyun-Suk Ji