While I was born after the Korean war, it is still sobering to know I was a product of its aftermath. More sobering still, are reminders of just how bad it was for the people of The Forgotten War.
While doing image research on Korean websites today, (I love google translate) I stumbled across this amazing footage of Korean orphans during and after the war.
The Christian missionary focus of the video is unmistakable, and I couldn’t figure out if this was a memorial to the Reverend Everett Swanson mentioned or if it was someone in Korea seriously living in the past, or WHAT it could be about.
Part of me continued with trepidation, thinking it might be yet-another-attempt at canonizing and perpetuating International Adoption.
But to my pleasant surprise, these are the posts of Compassion South Korea, a branch of Compassion International (and where the organization first began), and their focus is now, and has always been, sponsorship. Interestingly, the sponsorship today is not for Koreans, but from Koreans for children of other countries. And, I was correct that the footage and images are there as memorial to the founder and as a reminder of how tragedy was once in Korea’s backyard and how Koreans can return the favor. And you know what? I bet all the 22,000 children he helped are currently productive members of Korean society, with roots here despite their losses.
Seeing these images I am so deeply moved by what happened to the country of my birth, the land where I’m currently residing. And I truly do see how humanitarians could have been blinded by their desires to help fast and think later. But clearly, as the late Rev. Swindon demonstrated – we can help children without forcing them to lose their country, culture, language, and each other.
God, I’m always relieved whenever I see Christians NOT wreaking havoc and doing something beneficial. I wish Harry Holt had taken his cues from Rev. Swindon…