Probably some of you wanted to hear more about our family than all those ministry stuff. Thank you! So, here we go!
We purchased a car in May for which we had asked you to pray and help. Thank you, again, for all your prayers and support! It’s a 2006 Hyundai Trajet in a good condition. We got it at €2,100 after three trips to Dublin. It took me a while even to do some basic research on different car models and prices, because the models and even the vehicle categories are different here and I initially didn’t even know what I could buy for my family with the given budget. But, eventually everything boiled down to two models only – Renault Scenic and Hyundai Traget.
I felt to the bone that I have come to Europe where most countries are socialistic as paying for the motor tax, which was over 1/3 of the car price. Ouch! (FYI, the general sales tax rate is 23 percent here.) You should be now thinking, ‘wow, that was really a lot’. But, wait! My heart collapsed even further when I had to pay for the insurance almost as much as for the car, after having my full drivers licenses from 4 different countries now. I thought I should be qualified for the lowest insurance rate in the world by now. But, I guess I should pay these every year, as I’m kinda starting over. Didn’t I tell you I’m a newbie again? …After several qualified full licenses from 4 different countries.
The kids are doing really well. We thank you for all your concerns and prayers for them. Unexpectedly we have found there is Child Evangelism Fellowship here in Sligo in active ministry. Our kids are actively involved in CEF meetings and camps as well as local church gatherings and activities. They even served as a leader at summer youth camps. Hyejin and Yujin just turned to 15 and 13, and we celebrated it with two bunches of their friends. In the meantime, all our kids have officially become teenagers now (13, 15, & 17 – going on 18).
Kevin’s been working very busy for his college preps as he is aiming for America. With our particular situation having had the international movings for the last several years, it seems more challenging to us if he tries a college elsewhere, including Korea and Europe. He has already taken two SAT tests and two SAT subject tests in Dublin. Now he’s got another two SAT subject tests in about two weeks. In the meantime, he has to work on applications and essays. His hands are full, and our (especially Seunghee’s) minds are overwhelmed. With anguish, we put our trust in God alone as a family.
With no idea where he would end up being, we ask you to pray for Kevin that he would discern God’s guidance and follow Him carefully, yet boldly. Also, please pray for our financial needs for his college. We would much like it, if he gets a full scholarship plus more scholarships whatever they could be.
It is, of course, Seunghee who’s helping Kevin’s college preps the most. She, too, needs help from the Lord for wisdom and strength, and has her own needs, also. Please pray for her!
MORE IRISH STORIES
Things should be different in big cities like Dublin, but these Sligo Irish people are very friendly (and interesting). Although they seemed to be unwillingly bureaucratic at government offices and banks, we were thankful that our neighbors nicely greeted us and we felt welcomed. Some of them stopped their car to talk to us, and others asked us to stop by for a cup of tea. But, the Irish accent is very strong to us and the roads are (biblically?) too narrow here, and there is still much more for us to learn and adapt to.
Before we left Korea early this year, we found an interesting saying while researching on Irish culture a little bit. “Ireland is Korea in Europe.” I wondered how it could be when they were at the other ends from each other of this humungous Eurasian continent. When we came, I thought to myself, “Are they really western Europeans? It’s interesting to see this kind of culture in the western civilization”.
Our next door had already found out where we were from, what we were doing, and we were homeschooling our three kids. When we talked to them for the first time, we were surprised by it. We realized later this is not unusual here. Sometimes something said on this side of town today is literally known on the other side tomorrow, all by word of mouth. It wasn’t definitely by SNS. Most of our neighbors here are farmers who are raising sheep and castle.
I didn’t know how to understand it for a while, when I saw our neighbors jumping over a gate to take a walk into somebody else’s property. When I asked locals around, they kindly said we could just open it up or jump over and keep going on the trails. Later Seunghee found on a tourist information paper that those gates are mainly for sheep and cattle, and people are supposed to close it behind if it was closed, or leave it open if opened, and proceed on the trail. I still wondered, however, because some of the gates had a “Private Property” sign on it, though. Irish sheep and cattle must be so smart as they be able to read English. But, I’ve never heard them speaking in English. “Moo… Maaahhhh…. Meeehhh….” Huh? Was it Irish accent?
In a grocery store parking lot, the car in front of me accidentally reversed and hit my car, then was taking off right away without a word. I hurried out and talked to the driver about what just had happened and said that he couldn’t do that. The old man came out and barked at me foaming at the mouth. I repeated myself to him. Then, he barked again, “Sorry!” and took off. I became stunned on the spot. Thankfully neither of the cars was damaged. (Continuing in PART 3: The Celtic Heroes that Saved Europe)